This is part 2 of a walking tour of Podil, our neighborhood in Kyiv. (Part 1 is here.)
As we continued our walk, we noticed several small crowds around the entrance to Iliyinskaya Church which was built in 1692. The church’s single dome was recently gilded. Per our guidebook:
“The gates leading into the courtyard of the church are notable: the brick arch dating from the middle of the 18th century picturesquely topped with a torn fronton and decorated with paired columns is a fine example of Ukrainian Baroque.”
When we arrived at the gates to the church we came to the conclusion that there must have been a special morning of baptisms. Some parents were leaving with children while others were arriving by car, by taxi, and on foot, all toting little sinners. This one young girl made me chuckle as I recognized that her parents had dressed her in angel wings. Not wanting to OBVIOUSLY be taking a picture of the angel, I took another view of the entrance to the church courtyard.
And then I did step through the arch to see a peaceful courtyard — hard to believe that we were in a bustling capital city!
A block further down the street we looked to the left and saw a rather interesting crane. I haven’t strolled this direction for awhile so I was quite surprised to see a ship being built there on the river.
As we continued walking we discovered a beautiful business center that we didn’t even know existed in our little neck of the woods. You just never know what you’re going to find on an afternoon excursion.
Our goal was to find the old post station located one metro stop away…cleverly named Post Office Square station. We had a map with sites numbered so we knew we were in the general area, but we could NOT find this building. We decided to get a bottle of water and regroup for the rest of our tour. As we looked around us we suddenly realized that we were sitting with our water directly behind the old post office building.
“A mail-coach station was opened in 1865, giving the square its name. The single-story station building has been preserved. although of modest dimensions, the building took a very long time to build — from 1852 to 1865. The Post Station was a whole complex with stables, coach-halls and service outhouses, but most of them were demolished when the subway station was built. Now the building is used as an exposition hall.”
Nearby was a memorial sign in honor of 100 years of Kyiv’s tram system. The first tram line was opened in May 1892. I love that this picture has a working tram in the background. (Wish I could say that I planned that!)
Directly across the street is the funicular — a cable railway that takes travelers straight up the hill.
“During the atheistic bacchanalia of 1935, the Church of Christ’s Nativity, which formerly stood between the Post Station and today’s Sagaydachnogo Street, was levelled. In May of 1861, the coffin with the remains of Taras Schevchenko was kept in this church during its shipment from Petersburg for burial in Kanev. Thousands of people gathered to say farewell to the Great Kabzar. A passer-by asked: ‘Who is the deceased?’ The answer was: ‘A simple peasant, but with the status of a general.’ The church was subsequently called Shevchenkova.”
Jim and I popped into a grocery store to pick up a few items for dinner, and headed home. We agreed to make it a weekend routine to tour SOME area of Kyiv…with the camera firmly in hand.