This promising city was established 240 years ago but the history of this region spans more than 2,000 years.
Modern Kherson is a charming city on the banks of the Dnipro river. Old neighbourhoods are buried in the greenery of the trees, and the new districts being on their place. The Dnipro river, like a precious necklace, is framed by the southern gates of Ukraine.
The culture and the history of Kherson, is unique and multifaceted. The city itself harbors many attractions for tourists. There are many cozy corners, ancient buildings, temples and parks. Streets, alleys and quiet courtyards of Kherson are the most eloquent guides for tourists to enjoy the architecture of the city.
The territory of the modern Kherson has been inhabited since ancient times. Found burials and material assets from different parts of the city are the evidence of human presence in the copper and bronze era (III – II millennium BC). In the IV–III centuries BC on the modern Kherson territory the Scythians were on the move and on the turn of our era there were Sarmatians. Later in the period of Kyiv Rus (IX – XII centuries), along the Dnieper, past the future city, there was the way «from the Varangians to the Greeks» which the Slavs used for trading purposes. There was a
Slavonic settlement on the Big Potemkin Island.
In 1737, the Russian fortification of Oleksandr Shants appeared on the site of the current Kherson built during the Russian-Turkish war of 1735-1739. The city Kherson was founded by the decree of Catherine II of June 18, 1778.
The city was created to protect the southern borders of the country. In order to strengthen them it was decided to build a port at the Dnieper mouth with a shipyard, a commercial pier and a fortress.
Also, Kherson was given the role of the main trading city. In the mid-1990s there had already been about 2,000 houses and 10,000 inhabitants. The best buildings were in a Greek suburb. One of them was the house of the local government, now located in Suvorova st. 1, were O. Suvorov had been living in the period 1792-1794. He was a commander of Kherson corps in Kinburn and Kherson regions. The main street of the city is now named in the name of the famous commander.
Nowadays, the «old city» occupies most of the modern center of Kherson.
WEATHER/BEST TIME TO VISIT
PLAN YOUR TRIP
- As most of Ukrainian cities Kherson is navigable by trolleybuses, and buses. Urban public-transport systems are usually overworked and overcrowded. There’s no room for being shy or squeamish — learn to assert yourself quickly.
- Travelling by taxi anywhere in the ex-USSR can be a decidedly unpleasant experience for foreigners, but we can surely recommend you trustworthy localcompany called 7:40 or Elit-Taxi (see the ads below).
- To order by phone you need to speak some Ukrainian-Russian and know exact pickup and destination addresses. You also need a Ukrainian SIM card on your phone, so they can call you back. You will receive a text message with arrival time and car registration once you have placed your order.
- Uber is not available in Kherson.
- If possible, have your hostel or hotel call a cab for you – they generally use trustworthy companies with set fares.
- Avoid taxis that tout for business outside airports and stations as these operators are very likely to rip you off.
- Never travel in a cab that already has passengers in it.
- Seatbelts are optional extras in taxis. Child seats are unheard of.
WHAT TO SEE
The main attraction of Kherson is the historical town center with the buildings of the XIX century, as well as the Kherson fortress of the XVIII century, which preserved the remains of the ramparts and gates of the fortress, representing the town boundaries of that time. The Ochakiv Gate facing Greek Suburb is still extant. St.Catherine’s Cathedral, the pearl of the town, rises just above the gate. This monument of the XVIII century respires history. Pay attention to the icons of
St. Catherine and St.Gregory. Also there are a bell tower and a fortification pit which is 78 meters deep on the territory of the cathedral.
Another place for leisurely strolls is the main street of Kherson − Suvorova Street. The center of the historic part of the old town, the Greek Suburb, connects Ushakova Avenue with Teatralna Street. Now there are many cozy cafes and shops here. Street performers often act in this place. It is good to walk slowly along the street, watching the local people and their lifestyle, sitting on a bench or on the terrace of a summer cafe having a cup of flavorous coffee.
There is a large number of operating temples and religious buildings in Kherson − Orthodox and Catholic churches, synagogues. Among them the Assumption Cathedral, the Greek-Sophia church of 1780, Hryhorivskyi monastery, the temple of the Sacred Heart of Jesus of 1787 and others are worth visiting.
John Howard memorial in the shape of a huge sundial is one of the five most unusual city clocks in Ukraine. It is possible to judge how Kherson grew due to its location. After all, a century ago the monument was situated exactly on the town line, opposite the town gates, beyond which
the street turned into a post road to Nikolaev. Until 1948, this main Kherson street had the name of John Howard, and since then has become the avenue of Admiral Ushakov.
Ploshcha Svobody is the heart of Kherson. The town government is located there. Public gatherings, parades, concerts are held in this place. On New Year’s holidays the main Christmas tree of the town flaunts there and Christmas festivities take place. One of the walking routes in Kherson − crossing the square and going along Ushakova Avenue, you can get to the Dnipro quay.
There is a large number of operating temples and religious buildings in Kherson − Orthodox
and Catholic churches, synagogues. Among them the Assumption Cathedral, the Greek-
Sophia church of 1780, Hryhorivskyi monastery, the temple of the Sacred Heart of
Jesus of 1787 and others are worth visiting.
Potemkinsky square is the favorite place of couples in love and for wedding pictures in Kherson. There you can find «the lovers’ bench» with its classic love locks, the royal carriage and the symbolic monument «the lover’s heart». Recently, it was opened the bench, which is made in such a way that one can sit on it only by closely hugging his/her life partner, in order to stop any quarrels
between people in love. There is the statue of the Kherson founder Potemkin in the center of the square. The city’s theater is located just about the corner.
One of the most beautiful places in Kherson is Park Slavy. Nowadays the amphitheater of the Glory Park leads along the large staircase to the riverfront of the Dnipro River near the industrial park of the Kherson sea port. At the end of the 18th century, walking galleys of Catherine the Great replenished there after her famous journey. Currently it is one of the most beautiful area in the city, where you can find the most breathtaking views.
THINGS TO DO
Going on a trip to Kherson be ready for an amazing meeting with the one of the brightest symbols of Ukraine – the Dnipro River. Kherson is located on the right bank of its outfall. Travelers can
enjoy the picturesque panoramas, the entrancing magnetism of the mysterious marshy and ready banks and be surprised at the scope and grandeur of the river’s deep, during they are sailing
the Dnipro River. There are flooded areas where you can get only by johnboat there. The depth in such places is from ten centimeters to several meters.
Voyage along the Dnipro River will acquaint you with the most inaccessible and unexplored areas, provide an opportunity to see the purest water and enchanting landscapes that will amaze
you with their diversity. Such a way of travelling will leave vivid memories in
your memory. You can renting the yachts, boats and small motor boats that you can find at the pier of the city central riverfront.
In addition, you may have a great time visiting the suburb area. If you practice equestrian sport or just love horses, you should go to the elite country club Grand Prix, which is located thirty kilometers far from the Kherson city.
There you can ride horses in the woods or in the arena. Moreover, it is possible to relax and take a steam bath in the sauna with a swimming pool, and also take a walk around the mini-zoo or go by boats along the lake.
Web site: https://grandprix.ks.ua/en/
It is hard to believe, but there is its own desert in Kherson region — the national park Oleshkivski Pisky. This place was formed at the place of the Dnipro сhannel. The river poured sand, which was covered with a layer of fertile soil over the time, and the former channel became the continuation of the boundless steppe. But people brought sheep here, who ate all the grass, leaving only sand again. In the warm season, many tourists prefer to go to the Black Sea for the whole
day, Kherson is connected with coastal resorts by the regular bus service.
HOTELS AND ACCOMODATION
Try some Kherson local food!
What about the stuffed aubergines or the fish broth (ukha) and a glass of wine from the local
chateau and the winery? Moreover, you can eat plenty of fruits for six months a year! By the way,
speaking about fruits: be sure to check out the market in the city center where there is an abundance of vegetables, fruits, nuts and berries!
Find more recommended places on KhersonRegion.com: