Lviv was founded in 1256 by Prince Danylo Halitsky, who named the town in honour of his son Lev (”Lion”). One of Europe’s most historic cities, Lviv is known as the nation’s symbolic heart.
For some what makes this city so special is its stunning collection of Gothic, Baroque and Renaissance buildings, while for others it’s the cosy atmosphere created by its many old Viennese-style cafes.
The Old City is now on UNESCO's World Heritage List as one of the best preserved medieval cities in Europe.
Day 1. Medieval Lviv City Tour
Rynok (“Market”) Square is the heart of Old Lviv, a remarkable place with Old City Hall at its centre and surrounded by old residences, among them the so-called Italian Courtyard, a cafe once home to a Polish nobleman. From the square, head down Virmenska Street, home to the 14th-century Armenian Cathedral and the spiritual heart of medieval Lviv, the buildings there virtually untouched for over 600 years. The city’s most modern contemporary art gallery is located on this street, with local Dzyha Cafe also there for travellers to enjoy a cup of traditional coffee on the street or inside.
The entire Old Town includes well-known landmarks such as the Boyim Chapel from the 16th century, old Baroque cathedrals, the Arsenal (now a museum), the Powder Tower (a restaurant) and many others. Particularly worth mentioning is the only operating medieval drugstore in Europe, now give over in part to a museum, and one of the most beautiful opera houses in the world, the Krushelnytska Lviv Theatre of Opera and Ballet.
Day 2. The ‘Golden Horseshoe’ Tour: Castles and manors around Lviv
Olesko Castle – a unique piece of 17th-century architecture – was built in 1620 in the Italian Renaissance style. One of the most beloved residences of the Polish royal family, Polish King Jan Sobieski III was born there.
Nearby sits the castle of Pidhirtsi, considered one of the most beautiful castles in Ukraine. Completed in 1640 by Italian architect Andre del Aqua, this legendary but now deserted place was often visited by European monarchs and remains today one of the best examples of Renaissance style in Europe.
The castle in Zolochiv was once housed the wife of Polish King Jan Sobieski III, Maria Kazimira. The Great and Chinese Palaces in the courtyard recall the grandeur of the erstwhile Polish kingdom and its many battles against invading armies.
Have a cup of traditional coffee flambé and watch the world go by in one of Lviv’s many street side cafes. Particularly good are The Clepsydra and The Fresca.
Premier Hotels in Lviv: Dnister Premier Hotel.
Dinster Hotel in Lviv is a modern property in the heart of ancient city. Warm atmosphere, delightful breakfast and the best panorama of the Old Town included in the UNESCO World Heritage List make the hotel a great venue for any kind of event – romantic getaway, family weekend or business meeting. Dnister is a hotel in Lvov that combines traditional hospitality and individual attention to each guest with high service standards of Premier Hotels collection.
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