Now is time for boat trips to ex­plore Kyiv’s Dnipro River, Desna River

Kyiv Post - - Lifestyle - Where and when: On week­ends and hol­i­days from the 7th pier. 10 a.m.

The Dnipro River used to be a main wa­ter­way for public trans­port and freight. To­day, the public trans­port role is go­ing through hard times, and op­er­ates only lo­cally within Kyiv city lim­its and its sub­urbs.

Nev­er­the­less, diesel-pow­ered mo­tor ves­sels leave from Kyiv’s river port of­fer­ing trips that fea­ture panoramic views of the an­cient city. Pass­ing un­der the bridge over the Dnipro, cruis­ing past the Percher­ska Lavra and Vy­duby­chi monas­ter­ies and Trukhaniv Is­land, these trips usu­ally take an hour or 90 min­utes, and cost Hr 100 and Hr 120, re­spec­tively.

Where and when: Ships leave port daily from the 7th and 8th piers at Naberezhno-Khreshchat­yt­ska Street near Posh­tova metro sta­tion. 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.

A two-hour up­stream cruise pass­ing Kyiv’s out­skirts as far as the mouth of the River Desna costs Hr 100. A bar on­board serves drinks and snacks.

If there’s more time to spare, take a Desna River trip with a pic­nic for Hr 200. The fare in­cludes a round trip to Ve­lyky Is­land, but it doesn’t in­clude any meals. In­stead, bring a pic­nic bas­ket and blan­ket and re­lax for a while on the is­land’s beach, where one can also play football or bas­ket­ball, and roast meat on a grill.

Another route past the mouth of the Desna goes to the Kyiv reser­voir, built for the hy­dro­elec­tric power plant near the vil­lage of Vysh­horod. This four-hour cruise takes you through the ship­ping lock to the reser­voir and back to the pier for Hr 250.

Where and when: Trip to Desna River – on week­ends and hol­i­days from the 7th pier. Noon, 5 p.m. Trip to Kyiv reser­voir – on week­ends and hol­i­days from the 7th pier. 1 p.m., 3 p.m.

To view fugi­tive ex-Pres­i­dent Vik­tor Yanukovych’s for­mer op­u­lent coun­try es­tate, Kyivrich­flot ship­ping com­pany of­fers a seven-hour cruise to Mezhy­hirya for Hr 300. Sail­ing past Kyiv’s Podil and Obolon dis­tricts, and the vil­lage of Vysh­gorod, the ship then en­ters the Kyiv reser­voir to reach the res­i­dence known as Mezhy­hirya. The en­trance fee of Hr 50 lets visi­tors see all the sights on the 140-hectare com­plex com­plete with lakes, a wa­ter­fall, golf course, and yacht pier. For an ad­di­tional charge one can visit the retro car ex­hi­bi­tion, the zoo with its now-fa­mous ostriches, the so-called Putin House, and a spa com­plex. Guests can rent a bike to ped­dle around the sights for Hr 50 per hour.

The most im­pres­sive build­ing, the Honka, where Yanukovych resided, will shock visi­tors with its crass op­u­lence, but the taste­less fur­ni­ture and dec­o­ra­tions will take more than an hour to fully take in, and it costs an ex­tra Hr 200 fee.

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