Jaen is a city that every lover of Andalucia should visit, enjoy and - if possible - spend a good deal of time getting to know. Not only does the city have an ancient and fascinating history, but the castle that towers over its winding streets offers some of the most quintessentially Andalusian views there are to be had. Stand at a prime lookout point at the top of the Santa Catalina castle and you will look down on a charming provincial capital that drapes over hills thus sending streets winding up and down steep inclines. From here you'll also enjoy the towns architecture and monuments. Fields and olive groves sweep out beyond the town and as you turn to the south and southeast, the spectacular peaks of the Sierra de Jaen and Jabalcuz rise and fall in the castle's backdrop. And if you find these views too breathtaking to enjoy for only a few moments, stop in at the Parador. There may be a castle room with a view just waiting for you.
Click here for Andalucia travel books
Jaen´s name comes from the Moorish word geen or jayyan, meaning stopping post on a caravan route. King Ferdinand III captured the city from Ibn-Nasr, who subsequently founded the Nasrid kingdom of Granada in 1246, and Jaen had a strategic position on the frontline between Christian Spain and Moorish Granada. It was used as the gateway for the armies in the Reconquest, and Ferdinand and Isabella launched their final assault on Boabdil´s Granada from here in 1492. Its Moorish old town, now the hillside barrio of La Magdalena, had many mosques, while the Moorish baths are the largest in Spain.
The fact that for years it was one of the least visited province in Spain owes much to the terrible roads and communications leading to this province. But since the new motorways have been opened, and local roads improved, more and more travellers - from Spain and further afield - are starting to discover the delights of this beautiful and singular province. One of Spain's most important rivers, the Guadalquivir, crosses Jaen, adding to its attractive landscape and fertile lands.
Fiestas in Jaen: Holy Week celebrations in Jaen are famous and people travel from all over Spain to watch the processions. Other important local fiestas include San Antón's Day in January when people gather round bonfires, eat and dance, Carnaval in February, Corpus Christi in June and finally Cruces de Mayo, a festival celebrated in many villages and towns throughout Jaen where people decorate the streets and patios with altars made of flowers to commemorate the Holy Cross.
- Jaen Cathedral. Inside Jaen´s impressive Renaissance cathedral, behind the high altar, is a much-prized religious artfect: a cloth said to have been used by St Veronica to wipe Christ´s face as he carried the cross to Golgotha. The lienzo del Santo Rostro (cloth of the Holy Face) has an image of his countenance, allegedly, and is housed in its own chapel. The sacred cloth is removed from its reliquary on Friday mornings so that the faithful can kiss the glass box where it resides (the priest wipes the glass after each person). The image has been the subject of many Spanish paintings.
- Arab Baths . Although a palace was built over them in the 16th century, Jaen´s 11th-century hammam have survived another 400 years, and are now the largest baths open to the public in Spain. They were probably constructed on top of earlier (Roman) baths which used local hot springs - you can see Roman ruins through a glass walkway in the basement of the palace, on your way to visit the baths. The perfect horseshoe arches, star-shaped skylights and vaulted brick chambers (hot, warm and cold) were rediscovered in 1913, under the Palacio de Villardompardo, and their restoration project won the Europa Nostra (European Cultural Heritage) prize.
- Santa Catalina Castle. The Castle sits on the top of a hill overlooking the city.
- Museo Provincial de Bellas Artes. The Provincial Fine Arts Museum in Jaen has the World's best permanent exhibition of Iberian objects
- Royal Monastery of Santo Domingo. Used to be headquarters of the University of Jaen, this impressive monastery is located within the district of Magdalena.
Jerez de la Frontera is a municipality in the province of Cádiz in the autonomous community of Andalucia, in southwestern Spain, situated midway between the sea and the mountains. As of 2010, the city, the largest in the province, had 208,896 inhabitants; it is the fifth largest in Andalucia. It has become the transportation and communications hub of the province, surpassing even Cádiz, the provincial capital, in economic activity. Jerez de la Frontera is also, in terms of land area, the largest municipality in the province, and its sprawling outlying areas are a fertile zone for agriculture.
The Discovery of America and the conquest of Granada, in 1492, made Jerez one of the most prosperous cities of Andalucia through trade and its proximity to the ports of Seville and Cadiz. Despite the social, economic and political decadence that occurred in the seventeenth century, towards the end of the Habsburg rule, the city managed to maintain a reasonable pace of development, becoming world wide famous for its wine industry.
Jerez has always been an important trading city in which the most traditional products and ancient crafts can be found (barrel-making, wicker work, items related to wine or flamenco, saddling, etc.), with the many boutiques and companies where you can find the most exclusive of these products.
Jerez is also the site of Circuito de Jerez, formerly called the Circuito Permanente de Jerez, where the annual Motorcycle Grand Prix is contested. The race course is a prime destination for Formula One teams who wish to perform off-season testing; it also hosted the highly controversial 1997 European Grand Prix.
The town possesses a charming old town, casco antiguo, with beautiful palm lined squares. The 11th century Moorish fortress, or Alcazaba, has been partially restored. Of special interest is its church, originally built by the Arabs as a mosque. The Sacristy of the Cathedral del Salvador is home to a lovely painting by Zurbarán, The Sleeping Girl. Today the city of Jerez has a remarkably aristocratic air with wide streets, squares and magnificent rows of jacaranda trees during spring.
The restaurants in Jerez are generally of very high standard, having improved in quality over recent years. Many restaurants offer traditional Jerez cuisine of the highest level, prepared by professional chefs with long standing experience. The main restaurant area is located along the C/Constitorio and Plaza Vargas. In Spain it is unusual to eat an evening meal before 9.00pm. and Spaniards are often to seen arriving to eat as late as 11.00pm. Lunchtime too, begins later than in many other countries and diners can arrive as “late” as 3.30 or 4.00pm.
- The Cathedral of San Salvador is the cathedral church of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Asidonia-Jerez. It was declared Bien de Interés Cultural in 1931. Built in the 17th century, it is a mix of Gothic, Baroque and Neoclassicist style. It was elevated to the rank of cathedral in 1980. The church is on the central plan, a nave and four aisles of uneven height, supported external by normal and flying buttresses; in correspondence of the crossing of the transept is a dome. The interior houses a Virgin Mary by Francisco Zurbarán, and a late 15th century Gothic Crucifix (named Cristo de la Viga).
- The Charterhouse of Jerez is a monastery in Jerez de la Frontera. Its architecture is of a Late Gothic style, corresponding to the start of construction in the 15th century, with Baroque aspects dating from the 17th century. The building, completed in the 17th century, has been designated by the Spanish government as an Historic-Artistic Monument. The impulse behind the monastery dates back to Alvaro Obertos de Valeto, a knight of Genovese descent, appointed during the Reconquista by Alfonso X of Castile to defend the city shortly Alfonso had conquered it from Muslim rule in 1264. Lacking descendants, he left his fortune to establish a Carthusian monastery in the city. It was not until 1475 that this location near the Guadalete River was chosen, of special significance because in 1368 it has been the site of a victorious battle against invaders; the victory was attributed to intercession by the Virgin Mary, to whom a hermitage had been dedicated on the site.
- The Andalusian Centre of Flamenco is an institution in Jerez, founded in 1993 to safeguard and promote the values and standards of the traditional Andalusian art form known as flamenco. It is devoted to the investigation, recovery, and collection of flamenco-related historical documents, whether they are in audio, visual, or journalistic form. It also has a collection of flamenco artifacts, including musical instruments, costumes, promotional posters, sheet music, and postcards. The Centre operates a museum and library to help educate the public and serve as a resource for scholars.
- The Museo Arqueológico Municipal de Jerez de la Frontera is an archaeological museum on the Plaza del Mercado. The museum occupies an 18th-century building which was declared Bien de Interés Cultural in 1962. It was established in 1873 as the Municipal Archaeological Collection, merging collections donated by wealthy individuals, and based at the Old City Hall of Jerez. The museum opened to the public in 1935. The collection includes a Corinthian helmet, extremely rare in Spain, found near the city's Charterhouse by the river Guadalete. The collection also includes Roman ceramics and other items.
Originally named Königsberg in German, the town was founded in 1255 by the order of the Teutonic Knights in honour of the Czech king Přemysl Otakar II and was part of Prussia and then of Germany until 1945, but was largely destroyed during World War II. Its ruins were occupied by the Red Army in 1945 and its German population forced out. At the end of the war in 1945, the city became part of the Soviet Union.
|Victory Square with the Cathedral of Christ The Saviour|
In 1957 an agreement was signed and later came into force which delimited the border between Poland and the Soviet Union.
During the Soviet era, access and control to the Baltic Sea was imperative because of Soviet perceptions that this meant that the hegemonic power had "influence on European and global affairs." Russia had replaced Sweden as the hegemon since the 18th century. At any point in time during the Soviet Era, there would be at least 100,000 troops stationed in Kaliningrad (though there are some estimates that run up to 300,000). Therefore, the population of the city was fluid and almost always temporary. Many military officers and their families would refer to the Kaliningrad Oblast as "the West". The Soviet Union also kept nuclear weapons for use in case a war were to occur.
Having fallen on hard times with the collapse of the Soviet Union, the exclave has undergone a recent recovery, having been given special economic status by President Putin. Many historic buildings were lost or heavily damaged during the Second World War. However, the Königsberg cathedral has been restored and other buildings are being overhauled. Soviet-era curiosities include ‘The Monster’, an unfinished and disused building from the 1960s.
And it’s certainly a sign of the times when the city’s Lenin statue is moved to make way for a new Russian Orthodox cathedral.
The people of Kaliningrad generally imported their respective culinary traditions to the region when they settled in the area after 1945. Borshch and okroshka may be served as in the rest of Russia. Many Italian and Asian restaurants (or fusions of both traditions) are in operation all over the city. Pizza and sushi are amongst the most popular dishes today.
- Kaliningrad Cathedral is a Brick Gothic style church on an island in the Pregel (Pregolya). The island was called Kneiphof in German times. The cathedral was built to replace a smaller cathedral, after Johann Clare, bishop of Sambia, insisted on the construction of a bigger building. The smaller cathedral, situated in Altstadt, was subsequently demolished and materials from it were used to build the new cathedral on Kneiphof. The construction of the cathedral on Kneiphof is considered to have begun in 1333. The soil on which the cathedral was built was marshy, and so hundreds of oak poles were put into the ground before the construction of the cathedral could begin. After the relatively short period of almost 50 years, the cathedral was largely completed by 1380. The cathedral originally had two spires. The spires (one north and one south) overlooked the entrance (west side) of the cathedral. But in 1544 the two spires were destroyed by fire. The south spire was rebuilt, but the north spire was replaced by a simple gable roof. In 1640 a clock was built underneath the rebuilt spire, and from 1650 the famous Wallenrodt Library, donated by Martin von Wallenrodt, was situated underneath the gable roof.
- Cathedral of Christ the Saviour. The Cathedral of Christ the Saviour is the largest church of Kaliningrad Oblast. It is the dominant building of the inner city and is situated near the central square, called Ploshchad Pobedy (Victory Square). The Russian Orthodox cathedral is 70 meters high. Its construction was completed on 10 September 2006. A small wooden chapel stands nearby. The church's architect is Oleg Kopylov.
- The Kaliningrad Amber Museum is a museum devoted to housing and displaying amber artworks. It is located in the city center, on the shore of Lake Verkhneye. The museum opened in 1979 and houses over 6,000 individual pieces. The museum occupies part of a reconstructed Teutonic castle, originally built by Karl Friedrich Emil zu Dohna-Schlobitten in the Napoleonic wars. Among the exhibits are the world's second-largest piece of amber and a 4-foot-tall (1.2 m) vase named The Abundance, as well as a collection of over 3,000 amber inclusions. Construction on the museum began in 1972.
- Juditten Church of St. Mary (Kirche von Juditten) is the oldest building in Kaliningrad . It was built in the late 13th century as a parish church of Juditten, a district now known as Mendeleyevo. The early Gothic church, first documented in 1288, was frescoed a century later. It had an organ from 1840, a Baroque altar, a cathedra from 1686, and a medieval statue of Madonna, which was reputed to work miracles. The local graveyard contained the tombs of Erhard Ernst von Röder (an 18th-century war minister), Hans von Lehwaldt (a Prussian Field Marshal), Stanislaus Cauer (a 20th-century sculptor). It was there that Johann Christoph Gottsched was baptised. The church remained in use until 1948 but quickly fell into ruin after the arrival of the Russians. It was reconsecrated in October 1985 as a Russian Orthodox church and was eventually restored to serve as the main church of St. Nicholas Orthodox Convent.
- The King's Gate is one of the former six gates that were built during the 19th century around Kaliningrad. The gate was designed by Friedrich August Stüler. The west facade has three sandstone statues, made by sculptor Wilhelm Stürmer: nine metres above the ground to the left the Bohemian king Ottokar II is depicted, who was Königsberg's namesake. Frederick I of Prussia, Prussia's first King, follows as the middle statue. To the right Duke Albert, Prussia's first duke and founder of the Albertina university, holds an eye over the city. Above the sculptures the coat of arms of Samland and Natangen are shown. The gate was damaged during the Second World War. Furthermore, as a first victory celebration, Soviet soldiers decapitated the statues. With the celebration of the city's 750 year existence in June 2005, the gate was renovated. Even a few months before the beginning of the festivities, the gate was still in a desolate condition. Within a few weeks, however, the gate was restored to its condition before the war. Fully restored statues replaced the decapitated ones on the gate with this renovation.
Kaunas is the second-largest city in Lithuania and has historically been a leading centre of Lithuanian economic, academic, and cultural life.
After the Partitions, Kaunas was one of the centres of the November Uprising (1830–1831) and the January Uprising (1863–1864). To suppress the local population, the Russian authorities subsequently established the Kaunas Prison and placed a huge military garrison in the town. The Russian military fortifications from that time still survive throughout the town.
Prior to the Second World War, Kaunas, like many other cities in eastern Europe, had a significant Jewish population. According to the Russian census of 1897, Jews numbered 25,500, 35.3% of the total of 73,500.The population was also 25.8% Russian, 22.7% Polish, 6.6% Lithuanian.
After the proclamation of Lithuanian independence in 1990, Soviet attempts to suppress the rebellion focused on the Sitkūnai Radio Station. They were defended by the citizenry of Kaunas. Pope John Paul II made the Holy Mass for the faithful of the Archdiocese of Kaunas at the Kaunas Cathedral Basilica and held the meeting with the young people of Lithuania at S. Darius and S. Girėnas Stadium, during his visit to Lithuania in 1993.
- Kaunas Cathedral Basilica The exact date when the first Gothic style church dedicated to apostles Saint Peter and Saint Paul, was built is unknown, but it was first mentioned in written sources in 1413. The construction works were concluded only in 1624. The church greatly suffered from wars in 1655 and was rebuilt in 1671 and gained some Renaissance features. Only one of the towers was rebuilt after the fire of the roof in 1732. As a part of renovation, the internal decorations were funded by the King Stanisław August Poniatowski in 1771. The main altar, a lectern and a choir were installed by Tomasz Podhajski in 1775. The present day shape of the building is from 1800 renovation. Тhе bishop of Samogitia, historian and one of the best known Lithuanian writers of the 19th century Motiejus Valančius was interred in a crypt of the church in 1875. The church was promoted to cathedral status by Pope Leo XIII in 1895. It received the Basilica title in 1926, when the Diocese of Samogitia was reorganized into the Metropolitan Archdiocese of Kaunas by Pope Pius XI. The cathedral is the largest Gothic church in Lithuania.
- The Town Hall of Kaunas stands in the middle of the Town Hall Square at the heart of the Old Town. The structure dates from the 16th century. It houses a Museum of Ceramics. The construction of Kaunas town hall started in 1542. At first it was a one-storey building with not daubed facade and vaulting cellars. In the 16th century the first floor was build and the eight storey tower was built in the east of the building. The ground floor was adjusted for trading and prison guards, the first floor - for trial, magistrate, treasure, archive and office. Cellars were used to store the goods. The cellars of the tower were used as a prison.
- House of Perkūnas is one of the most original and archaic Gothic secular buildings, located in the Old Town. Originally built by Hanseatic merchants and served as their office from 1440 till 1532, it was sold in the 16th century to the Jesuits who had established a chapel there in 1643. The Jesuits have also completed the Church of St. Francis Xavier at the Town Hall Square in 1722. The ruined house was rebuilt in the 19th century and served as a school and theatre, which was attended by Polish-Lithuanian poet Adam Mickiewicz. At the end of the 19th Century it was renamed "House of Perkūnas", when a figure, interpreted by the romantic historians of that time as an idol of the Baltic pagan god of thunder and the sky Perkūnas was found in one of its walls. Today, the house of Perkūnas once again belongs to the Jesuits and houses a museum of Adam Mickiewicz.
- The Vytautas the Great War Museum It was opened on 16 February 1936 and named after Vytautas the Great, Grand Duke of Lithuania. The museum displays historical artefacts pertaining to Lithuania and Kaunas from prehistoric times to the present day, including a large collection of historical weapons. There are expositions dedicated to the military skills of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, Vytautas the Great Chapel, collections of weapons, firearms, ammunition, army uniforms of various states, defense of the Kaunas Fortress in 1915, and others. The airplane Lituanica, on which Steponas Darius and Stasys Girėnas flew across the Atlantic Ocean in 1933, is on display and remains a popular exhibition.
- Kaunas Castle Archeological evidence suggests that it was originally built during the mid-14th century, in the Gothic style. Its site is strategic – a rise on the banks of the Nemunas River near its confluence with the Neris River. At the beginning of the 21st century, about one-third of the castle was still standing. The precise construction date of the first Kaunas Castle is unknown. Archeological data suggests that a stone castle was built on the site during the middle of the 14th century. Situated on an elevated bank near the river junction about 100 kilometers (62 mi) from the capital city of Vilnius, it served as a strategic outpost and guarded nearby cities as well as trade routes. Today the round tower of Kaunas Castle houses an art gallery. The castle is open to tourism, and hosts occasional festivals. Major reconstruction work started in 2010.
Kharkiv is the second-largest city of Ukraine. Located in the north-east of the country, it is the largest city of the Slobozhanshchyna historical region.
In the course of the administrative reform carried out in 1708 by Peter the Great, the area was included into Kiev Governorate. Kharkov is specifically mentioned as one of the towns making a part of the governorate. In 1727, Belgorod Governorate was split off, and Kharkiv moved to Belgoro Governorate. It was the center of a separate administrative unit, Kharkiv Kazak Sloboda Regiment. The regiment at some point was detached from Belgorod Governorate, then attached to it again, until in 1765, Slobodsko-Ukrainian Governorate was established with the seat in Kharkiv.
As the country's capital, it underwent intense expansion with the construction of buildings to house the newly established Ukrainian Soviet government and administration.
In 1928, the SVU (Union for the Freedom of Ukraine) process was initiated and court sessions were staged in the Kharkiv Opera (now the Philharmonia) building. Hundreds of Ukrainian intellectuals were arrested and deported.
In the early 1930s, the Holodomor famine drove many people off the land into the cities, and to Kharkiv in particular, in search of food. Many people died and were secretly buried in mass graves in the cemeteries surrounding the city.
In 1934 hundreds of Ukrainian writers, intellectuals and cultural workers were arrested and executed in the attempt to eradicate all vestiges of Ukrainian nationalism in Art. The purges continued into 1938. Blind Ukrainian street musicians were also gathered in Kharkiv and murdered by the NKVD. In January 1935 the capital of the Ukrainian SSR was moved from Kharkiv to Kiev.
- The Annunciation Cathedral is the main Orthodox church of Kharkiv. The pentacupolar Neo-Byzantine structure with a distinctive 80-meter-tall bell tower was completed on October 2, 1888, from designs by a local architect, Mikhail Lovtsov. The church was baptized in 1901, while the first church of Annunciation (built in 17th century), located next to it was dismantled. The candy-striped cathedral supplanted the older Assumption Cathedral as the main church of Kharkiv and was one of the largest and tallest churches of the Russian Empire. The church was frescoed in a style derived from St Vladimir's Cathedral in Kiev. On July 3, 1914 the temple became recognized as the city's cathedral. The cathedral was closed to worshippers in 1930, but it was reopened during the German occupation in 1943. During that time the space in the temple initially was assigned to a cultural lyceum, while there are some evidences that it was used as a warehouse. During WWII it was a temple of the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church. Since 1946 the cathedral is the seat of the Kharkiv and Bohodukhiv eparchy of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate), while the bishop residence has stayed in the Saint-Pokrov Monastery. The Ecumenical Patriarch Athanasius III Patelaros and several saintly bishops are buried in the cathedral.
- The Kharkiv Choral Synagogue is the largest synagogue in the country, and a building of architectural significance. Construction of the synagogue began in 1909, with architects submitting design proposals as part of contest. St. Petersburg architect Yakov Gevirts submitted the winning design and construction was completed in 1913 at a cost of 150,000 rubles. In 1923, the synagogue was closed, nationalized by the government, and used by a Jewish worker's club, part of the Comintern. It then served a variety of uses including housing a club, cinema and a sport complex and was not used as a place of worship until 1990.
- The Shevchenko Gardens is the oldest green area in the city centre. It was planted as far back as 1804. The gardens central path is a beautiful chestnut-tree alley leading from the Taras Shevchenko Monument to the University building. The gardens area of 25 hectares has over 15,000 trees and bushes of more than 100 varieties. It also has gigantic oaks, which are over 200 years old. One of these grows close to the monument to the great Kobzar (Bard). The gardens are being expanded and improved every year. After the war, their western slope was reconstructed with a water cascade and stairs leading down to the Klochkovska Street. A color and music fountain is located in the center of the gardens.
- The Kharkiv State Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre named after M.Lysenko is the first academic theatre in Ukraine. It presents operas in Ukrainian, Russian, French and Italian. This leading Ukrainian theatre was opened in 1925 by putting on the stage opera "Sorochynska yarmarka" ("Sorochyntsy Fair") of Russian composer Modest Mussorgsky. From 1991 the theatre works in the new building which is built in postmodern style and is located at Sumskaya Str. 25/27. The repertoire includes around 50 operas and ballets, the majority of which are Ukrainian and Russian but there are also Italian ones.
- The Assumption or Dormition Cathedral was the main Orthodox church of Kharkiv until the construction of the Annunciation Cathedral in 1901. The cathedral stands on the University Hill by the bank of the Lopan River and dominates the entire downtown. The Neoclassical cathedral bell tower, built in the 1820s and 1830s to a height of 90 meters, remained the tallest building in the city until the 21st century. The original Dormition Church was built in the Kharkov Fortress in the 1680s. It was completely rebuilt after a fire to a Late Baroque design loosely based on St Clement's Church, Moscow. The cathedral was consecrated in 1780 in the presence of Ukraine's governor, Pyotr Rumyantsev. The church boasted a gilded icon screen, carved from limewood to Rastrelli's Rococo design. The free-standing Alexander Bell Tower was built in the aftermath of Napoleon's expulsion from Russia "to express the people's gratitude to Alexander I". It used to be the second tallest building in Ukraine after the Great Lavra Bell Tower. The seat of the local bishop was moved from the older Intercession Cathedral to the Dormition Church in 1846. A large French clock was installed in the bell tower in 1856.
Kiev or Kyiv is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. Founded 1500 years ago, Kiev is the bustling capital of newly independent Ukraine. This city, with a population of 3 million people, is distinguished for its rich architecture and cultural life. The city boasts two stunning UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and is fast becoming a major cultural destination for Europe, especially for those interested in travelling ‘off the beaten track.’
Click here for Ukraine Travel Books
Throughout the city, museums, theatres, opera houses, historical buildings and gardens are to be found, laid out on either side of the picturesque Dnieper River. The western bank is home to the older part of the city and was, pre-urbanisation, characterised by its forested hills, as well as steep ravines and winding rivers, which serve as ice-rinks in winter. Watched over by a statue of the historic protector of Kiev, Michael Archangel, the city also boasts a successful blend of the old and the new. Modern buildings nestle against historical gems and cultural wonders rub shoulders with trendy, buzzing nightclubs, bars and restaurants.
Kiev is a city of invaluable historical and cultural monuments, a city of great events and outstanding people. Everyone will find there something especially interesting for himself.
The art and architecture of Kiev are considered world treasures. Many famous artists, poets and writers estimated the unique beauty of this city. The most renowned landmarks include: Cathedral of St. Sophia with outstanding mosaics and frescoes dating back to the 11th century; Kievo-Percherskaya Lavra featuring several monasteries and cathedrals; Golden Gate of Kiev, which date back to 1037; Ukrainian Baroque Church of St. Andrew; the magnificent 19th-century Cathedral of St. Vladimir; and many other attractions. Kiev is often referred to as "the mother of all cities" by Russians and Ukrainians. It is one of the oldest towns in Europe. In the historical center of Kiev you can feel the spirit of the past everywhere.
Kiev is distinguished for its rich cultural life. Theater lovers will find many theatres offering various theatrical programs. Most performances are held in Ukrainian or Russian. The recently renovated Kiev Opera House presents very good opera as well as a broad repertoire of ballets. Ivan Franko Theater is a center of Ukrainian drama, comedy, and musicals. A lot of various exhibitions are carried out in the city's numerous museums and art galleries.Take a walk through the ancient streets of this scenic city, feel its unique beauty and the spirit of its past. For sure your stay in Kiev will become one of your most memorable experiences.
A wide variety of farm produce is available in many of Kiev's farmer's markets with the Besarabsky Market located in the very centre of the city being most famous. Each residential region has its own market, or rynok. Here one will find table after table of individuals hawking everything imaginable: vegetables, fresh and smoked meats, fish, cheese, honey, dairy products such as milk and home-made smetana (sour cream), caviar, cut flowers, housewares, tools and hardware, and clothing. Each of the markets has its own unique mix of products with some markets devoted solely to specific wares such as automobiles, car parts, pets, clothing, flowers, and other things.
- St. Sophia's Cathedral. one of the city's best known landmarks and the first Ukrainian patrimony to be inscribed on the World Heritage List along with the Kiev Cave Monastery complex. The cathedral is famous for its mosaics and frescos by Byzantine masters that date back to the 11th century. Marvelous frescos decorate walls, pillars and vaults. Inside, the central part of the cathedral is decorated with large mosaic depicting praying Virgin Mary.
- Kiev Fortress. Kiev fortress is the 19th century fortification buildings situated in Ukrainian capital Kiev, that once belonged to western Russian fortresses. These structures (once a united complex) were built in the Pechersk and neighbourhoods by the Russian army. Now some of the buildings are restored and turned into museum called the Kiev Fortress, while others are in use of various military and commercial installations.
- Independence Square. The central square of Kiev is located on Khreschatyk Street. The square has been known under many different names, but it became known simply as the Maidan due to the political events that took place there in 2004 after the Ukrainian accession to independence. The square becomes a large outdoor party place at night during summer months, with thousands of people having a good time in nearby restaurants, clubs and outdoor cafes. The central streets are closed for auto traffic on weekends and holidays.
- Kievo-Pecherskaya Lavra. On the high hills of the right bank of the Dnepr River magnificent Kievo-Pecherskaya Lavra topped with gilded domes is situated. According to the legend, Apostle Andrew, while preaching the Word of God in the Scythian Land, blessed the hilly bank of the Dnepr River and said to his disciples: "On these hills great city and many churches in glorification of Holy God will be".
- Golden Gate. The Golden Gates of Kiev is a major landmark of the Ancient Kiev and historic gateway in the ancient city fortress. Currently it serves as a museum and can be found on the corner of Volodymyr street and Yaroslaviv Val Street (Yaroslav's Moat). The gateway was one of three constructed by Yaroslav the Wise, Prince of Kiev, in the mid-11th century. It was reputedly modelled on the Golden Gate of Constantinople, from which it took its name.
Koblenz, also spelled Coblenz or Coblence, is a German city situated on both banks of the Rhine at its confluence with the Moselle, where the Deutsches Eck (German Corner) and its monument (Emperor William I on horseback) are situated.
Around 1000 BC, early fortifications were erected on the Festung Ehrenbreitstein hill on the opposite side of the Moselle. In 55 BC, Roman troops commanded by Julius Caesar reached the Rhine and built a bridge between Koblenz and Andernach. About 9 BC, the "Castellum apud Confluentes", was one of the military posts established by Drusus.
Remains of a large bridge built in 49 AD by the Romans are still visible. The Romans built two castles as protection for the bridge, one in 9 AD and another in the 2nd century, the latter being destroyed by the Franks in 259. North of Koblenz was a temple of Mercury and Rosmerta (a Gallo-Roman deity), which remained in use up to the 5th century.
In 1688, Koblenz was besieged by the French under Marshal de Boufflers, but they only succeeded in bombing the Old City (Altstadt) into ruins, destroying among other buildings the Old Merchants' Hall (Kaufhaus), which was restored in its present form in 1725. The city was the residence of the archbishop-electors of Trier from 1690 to 1801.
The Rhine Gorge was declared a World Heritage Site in 2002, with Koblenz marking the northern end.
The Romans brought the first wines to the region. Since then this old tradition has been maintained and has manifested into the wine town of Koblenz and about half a million wines. The wine growers can prove their fantastic talents in the Rhine and on the Moselle presenting the best of these two famous wine cultivation areas.
During wine and wine growers festivals, directly on the wine grower’s premises, in one of the quaint taverns and in wine bars, restaurants and pubs along the banks of the river, you can enjoy a few “Schoppen” and delve into the world of the Bacchus.
- The Basilica of St. Castor is the oldest church in Koblenz. It is located near Deutsches Eck at the confluence of the Rhine and the Moselle. A fountain called Kastorbrunnen("Castor well") was built in front of the basilica during Napoleon’s invasion of Russia in 1812.Pope John Paul II raised St. Castor to a basilica minor on 30 July 1991. This church is worth seeing for the historical events that have occurred in it, its extensive Romanesque construction and its largely traditional furnishings. Since 2002, the Basilica of St. Castor has been part of the UNESCO World Heritage cultural landscape of the Upper Middle Rhine Valley. In addition, it is a cultural property protected under the Hague Convention. The church of St. Castor was built between 817 and 836 by Hetto, the Archbishop of Trier with the support of Emperor Louis the Pious, just outside the city of Confluentes (the city founded by the Romans in the area) and dedicated on 12 November 836. As Koblenz had a Frankish royal court, Louis was in charge of the construction of the church and it was built as a Carolingian proprietary church. However, Louis did not come to Koblenz until after the consecration of the church. This points to the importance of the Archbishop in the building of the church, especially as the church was until the 13th century outside the city of Koblenz.
- The Electoral Palace (German: Kurfürstliche Schloss) was the residence of the last Archbishop and Elector of Trier, Clemens Wenceslaus of Saxony, who commissioned the building of the castle by the end of the 18th Century. In the mid-19th Century, the Prussian Crown Prince (later Emperor William I) resided in the castle for a number of years as a Rhenish-Westphalian military governor. Today it is the location of various federal agencies. One of the most important castles of the French early classicism in southwestern Germany, and one of the last residence palaces built before the French Revolution in Germany. Since 2002, the Electoral Palace is part of the World Heritage Upper Middle Rhine Valley, acknowledged by UNESCO.
- William I monument The Teutonic Knights were given an area for their Deutschherrenhaus Balley right at the confluence of the Rhine and Mosel, which became known as German Corner (Deutsches Eck).In 1897, a monument to German Emperor William I of Germany, mounted on a 14 meter high horse, was inaugurated there by his grandson William II. The architect was Bruno Schmitz, who was responsible for a number of nationalistic German monuments and memorials. The German Corner is since associated with this monument, the (re) foundation of the German Empire and the German refusal of any French claims to the area, as described in the song "Die Wacht am Rhein" together with the "Wacht am Rhein" called "Niederwalddenkmal" some 30 km upstream.
- Stolzenfels Castle Finished in 1259, Stolzenfels was used to protect the toll station at the Rhine, where the ships, back then were the main transport for goods, had to stop and pay toll. Over the years it was extended several times, occupied by French and Swedish troops in the Thirty Years' War and finally, in 1689, destroyed by the French during the Nine Years' War. For 150 years the ruins decayed, until in 1815 they were given as a present to Frederick William IV of Prussia by the city of Koblenz. Following the romantic traditions, the prince started to completely rebuild the castle after 1826 as a summer residence. Supported by famous neoclassic architect Karl Friedrich Schinkel, the castle was completely remodeled in the then fashionable neo-Gothic style, aiming to create a romantic place representing the idea of medieval knighthood - the architects even created a tournament site.
- Ehrenbreitstein Fortress is a fortress on the mountain of the same name on the east bank of the Rhine opposite the town of Koblenz. It was built as the backbone of the regional fortification system, Festung Koblenz, by Prussia between 1817 and 1832 and guarded the middle Rhine region, an area that had been invaded by French troops repeatedly before. The fortress was never attacked. Early fortifications at the site can be dated back to about 1000 BC. At about AD 1000 Ehrenbert erected a castle. Its initial name "Burg Ehrenbertstein" became:Burg Ehrenbreitstein. The Archbishops of Trier expanded it with a supporting castle Burg Helferstein and guarded the Holy Tunic in it from 1657 to 1794.
The first evidence of inhabitance can be traced back to the end of the Paleolithic era. The first written reference to the Hungarian town of Košice (as the royal village - Villa Cassa) comes from 1230. After the Mongol invasion in 1241, King Béla IV of Hungary invited German colonists to fill the gaps in population.
The city was made of two independent settlements: Lower Košice and Upper Košice, amalgamated in the 13th century around the long lens-formed ring, of today's Main Street. The city grew quickly because of its strategic location on an international trade route from agriculturally-rich central Hungary to central Poland, itself along a greater route connecting the Balkans and the Adriatic and Aegean seas to the Baltic Sea.
After the Communist Party seized power in Czechoslovakia in February 1948, the city became part of the Eastern Bloc. Several present day cultural institutions were founded and large residential areas around the city were built. The construction and expansion of the East Slovak Ironworks caused the population to grow from 60,700 in 1950 to 235,000 in 1991. Before the breakup of Czechoslovakia (1993), it was the fifth largest city in the federation. Following the Velvet Divorce and creation of the Slovak Republic, Košice became the second largest city in the country and became a seat of a constitutional court. Since 1995, it has been the seat of the Archdiocese of Košice.
The city has a well preserved historical center, which is the largest among Slovak towns. There are many heritage protected buildings in Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, and Art Nouveau styles with Slovakia's largest church - St. Elisabeth Cathedral. The long main street, rimmed with aristocratic palaces, Catholic churches, and townsfolk's houses, is a thriving pedestrian zone with many boutiques, cafés, and restaurants.
- The St Elisabeth Cathedral is Slovakia's biggest church, as well as one of the easternmost Gothic cathedrals in Europe. Built between 1378 and 1508 and a Gothic masterpiece, is the city's oldest architectural landmark. The northern tower was completed in 1775, while the southern, Matthias tower as late as 1904. During the last phase of the restoration a crypt was built under the northern nave of the cathedral. In 1906 the remains of Francis II Rákóczi and his friends from Rodosto were buried there. Particularly imposing is the winged main altar with its three oversize statues and forty-eight panel paintings, while the lateral altars, Gothic wall paintings and sculptures add to the charm. Refurbishment work on the Cathedral is currently under way.
- St. Urban's Tower. is originally a Gothic prismatic campanile with a pyramidal roof. It was erected in the 14th century. A church bell installed in the tower has been dedicated to Saint Urban, the patron of vine-dressers. In 1775 the pyramidal roof was constructed with annion in the Baroque style with an iron double cross. There are 36 old gravestones (dating from the 14th and 15th centuries, one of these dates back to the Roman Empire in the 4th century) bricked into the exterior walls of the St. Urban Tower. The East Slovak Museum set up an impressive exhibition of foundrywork in the tower after the reconstruction in 1977. It was removed in 1995. Today, there is a unique wax museum exhibition in the tower.
- The East Slovak Museum is one of the oldest Slovak museums; it was founded in 1872. A neo-Renaissance building was erected in the early 20th century. It was the first building in the town designed to serve its needs as a museum. There are sculptures of Perseus and Vulcan on the facade of the building. The museum presents the Stone Age and the Middle Age period in eastern Slovakia, the Košice Gold Treasure, jewellery and numismatic exhibits. Also on the site of the museum, there is a wooden church from Kožuchovce (Svidník district). The church was founded in 1741 and it was brought to Košice in 1927.
- Jakab's Palace. At the end of Mlynska street opposite City Park, the site where the enchanting artificial brook called Mlynský náhon was originally created is now home to this charming palace. The palace was not the residence of some noble family, however, but the private house of well-known Košice builder Peter Jakab, who was also responsible for building the National Theatre building and the East Slovak Museum. In April 1945 the palace enjoyed its greatest heyday, when it was the residence of the president of the Czechoslovak Republic, Edvard Beneš.
- Immaculata. the Plague Column of the Virgin Mary from 1723. The column is situated in a small park and commemorates the gratitude to Mother Mary for an end to the plague epidemic from 1709 and 1710. It is a fine example of a Baroque sculpture surrounded by later sculptures of saints and angels. Legend has it that the bodily remains of St. Valentine are hidden under one of the columns.
St Urban's Tower
Kotor is a coastal city in Montenegro. It is located in a secluded part of the Gulf of Kotor. The city has a population of 13,510 and is the administrative center of the municipality. The old Mediterranean port of Kotor is surrounded by an impressive city wall built by the Republic of Venice and Venetian influence remains predominant in the city's architecture. The Bay of Kotor, one of the most indented parts of the Adriatic Sea, is sometimes called the southern-most fjord in Europe (though it is actually a submerged river canyon). Together with the nearly overhanging limestone cliffs of Orjen and Lovćen, Kotor and its surrounding area form an impressive and picturesque Mediterranean landscape. In recent years, Kotor has seen a steady increase in tourists, attracted by both the natural beauty of the Gulf of Kotor and the old town of Kotor itself.
Kotor is a unique city as it was built like a maze for protective purposes and it is very easy to get lost here. In fact, even the locals get lost. Take one wrong turn and you will wind up far from your destination. This can happen even with a town map in hand as most of the streets in Kotor are unnamed and are only know informally by names such as ’Let Me Pass Street’ and ‘Square of Milk’, which can be confusing. However, looking for landmarks, such as the 12th century St. Tryphon Cathedral, will help—and these landmarks are listed on nearly every tourist map. What can be more difficult is finding places like the Maritime Museum, which is located inside the Grgurina Palace, or finding public squares with funny names such as the Lattice Square, Flour Square, Milk Square and Cinema Square.
For tourists, Kotor should be more than simply a one-day visit. However, if you’re pressed for time, the best way to see as much of the town as possible is to start at the main gate and work clockwise. From the main Arms Square, you will go right across the Flour Square to the Cathedral, then left to the Maritime Museum, straight on to the square housing the Churches of St. Luka and St. Nikola and then left, which will lead you back to where you started from.
True to its traditions, Kotor is the host of many yearly traditional festivals and carnivals, and the city knows how to showcase its beauty well. One method of really touching the imagination and romance the city has to offer involves the Kotor city walls. As an ancient city built in a strategically fortified edge of Kotor Bay, the city of Kotor is a walled city. The Kotor city walls are often illuminated during special occasions, and on the slopes above the city, the sheer magnitude will awe any visitor.
|St John's Fortress|
- The Cathedral of Saint Tryphon This Roman Catholic cathedral is the largest and most beautiful building in Kotor, and was consecrated on June 19, 1166. The cathedral was seriously damaged and rebuilt after the earthquake of 1667, but there were not enough funds for its complete reconstruction. That is the reason why its two towers are so different one from the other. Another massive earthquake in April 1979, which completely devastated the Montenegro coast, also greatly damaged the cathedral. Luckily, it has been salvaged and the careful restoration of parts of its interior has not been completed until a few years ago. Today, this formidable piece of Romanesque architecture, one of the oldest and perhaps the most beautiful monument along the Adriatic Sea, is showing its splendour again. It contains a rich collection of artifacts. Older than many famous churches and cathedrals in Europe, the Cathedral of St. Tryphon has a treasury of immense value. In its interior there are frescos from the 14th century, a stone ornament above the main altar in which the life of St. Tryphon is depicted, as well as a relief of saints in gold and silver. The most representative works of Kotor's masters and craftsmen are kept in this Cathedral, making its collection quite unique.
- City Walls. the city walls blend beautifully with the city’s ancient stone houses, and at other times stand apart like ancient bastions to ward off invading armies. The Kotor City Walls are more than 4 kilometers (2.5 miles) in length and reach a stunning height of 260 meters (850 feet) At the top of the ramparts you can find the fortress of Saint Ivan, reachable by walking along the walls. The Kotor city walls in general offer an amazing opportunity to circumnavigate the entire city on foot while taking in it’s rich history and beauty from the best vantage point – from above.
- St John's Fortress. Stretching some 4.5 km directly above the city, on almost vertical cliffs. Climbing up the 1350 steps will be rewarded by an excellent view of Kotor and the bay from St John's fortress. Only advisable for physically fit people, furthermore on some sections the steps are broken up although the entrance fees are clearly being spent on repairs (July 2010). The 1200ft ascent may take an hour.
- St George and Our Lady of the Reef. Are two islands in the bay of Kotor reachable only by boat, regular day trips run from the harbour. The Island Sveti Djordje (St George) is also called "the island of the dead captains", because, according to legend, a French soldier, shot his cannon towards Perast, and accidentally hit the house of his girlfriend and killed her. The Island Gospa od Skrpjela (Lady of the reef), is an artificial island, which according to the stories was created by sailors from Perast and Kotor. On the island there is a church. According to a legend, fisherman from Perast, after a shipwreck near the island, found an icon of the Holy Mother of God with the Christ on a sea rock, so as the customs say they vowed to build a church on the island. The church was built in 1630. As the island had to be maintained, the seaman continued to bring stones. The custom continues to this day, it is called Fasinada from Perast and it is held on the 22nd of July.
- The Maritime Museum. Sailing in Kotor began to develop during the middle ages. The Museum houses portraits of the famous captains, models of old galleys and sail boats, navigational instruments, and other very valuable exponents. There are six bronze tables on which the most important events and personalities from the tumultuous history of Kotor are displayed.
St George and Our Lady of the Reef
Kraków also Cracow, or Krakow, is the second largest and one of the oldest cities in Poland. Situated on the Vistula River in the Lesser Poland region, the city dates back to the 7th century. Kraków has traditionally been one of the leading centres of Polish academic, cultural, and artistic life and is one of Poland's most important economic hubs. It was the capital of Poland from 1038 to 1569; the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth from 1569 to 1596; the Grand Duchy of Kraków from 1846 to 1918; and Kraków Voivodeship from the 14th century to 1999. It is now the capital of the Lesser Poland Voivodeship.
The city has grown from a Stone Age settlement to Poland's second most important city. It began as a hamlet on Wawel Hill and was already being reported as a busy trading centre of Slavonic Europe in 965. With the establishment of new universities and cultural venues at the emergence of the Second Polish Republic and throughout the 20th century, Kraków reaffirmed its role as a major national academic and artistic centre.
In 1038, Kraków became the seat of the Polish government. By the end of the 10th century, the city was a leading centre of trade. Brick buildings were constructed, including the Royal Wawel Castle with St. Felix and Adaukt Rotunda, Romanesque churches such as St. Adalbert's, a cathedral, and a basilica.
In 1978, Karol Wojtyła, archbishop of Kraków, was elevated to the papacy as Pope John Paul II – the first Slavic pope ever, and the first non-Italian pope in 455 years. Also that year, UNESCO approved the first ever sites for its new World Heritage List, including the entire Old Town in inscribing Cracow's Historic Centre.
The centre of 'stare miasto' is 'rynek glowny (main square) with the focal point being Sukiennice (the old Cloth Hall), where all the souvenir shopping action happens. Walking through the cobbled centre will show you exactly what trinkets you can buy on your visit - leather, wooden goods, nice glass, crystal, lots and lots of silver. The stalls in Sukiennice can be more expensive, so either try the side road shops or haggle like you’ve never haggled before.
Polish cakes are pretty delicious. The main ones to look out for are 'szarlotka' (apple cake), 'sernik' (cheesecake), 'piernik' (honey cake), 'makowiec' (poppy seed cake) and of course 'paczki' (donuts). 'Szarlotka' is often filled to the brim with apples, with a crumbly dough on top, and if you're lucky to find a traditional one - it'll have a lovely egg maringue layer on top too.
'Piernik' is a lovely warming cake, and the interesting thing about it is that you can keep it around for weeks and it actually gets nicer. 'Makowiec' is a popular polish cake for New Year's Eve, as the poppy seeds are meant to signify money in the New Year! So the more poppy seeds at New Year's, the more prosperous the year will be.
'Paczki' are different to English donuts in that they're larger, crispy, covered in glaze and with real strawberry inside (less sweet than English). You can now also get them with custard inside and various other jams. They're a lovely snack and of course a must on shrove Tuesday.
- The Wawel Cathedral or by full name Cathedral Basilica of Sts. Stanislaus and Wenceslaus, is a Roman Catholic church located on Wawel Hill. More than 900 years old Polish national sanctuary traditionally has served as coronation site of the Polish monarchs and as well as the Cathedral of the Archdiocese of Kraków. Pope John Paul II offered his first Mass as a priest in the Crypt of the Cathedral on 2 November 1946. The current, Gothic cathedral, is the third edifice on this site: the first was constructed and destroyed in the 11th century; the second one, constructed in the 12th century, was destroyed by a fire in 1305. The construction of the current one begun in the 14th century on the orders of bishop Nanker. The Cathedral has been the main burial site for Polish monarchs since the 14th century. As such, it has been significantly extended and altered over time as individual rulers have added multiple burial chapels.
- Wawel Castle. The Gothic Wawel Castle was built at the behest of Casimir III the Great and consists of a number of structures situated around the central courtyard. In the 14th century it was rebuilt by Jogaila and Jadwiga of Poland. Their reign saw the addition of the tower called the Hen's Foot (Kurza Stopka) and the Danish Tower. The Jadwiga and Jogaila Chamber, in which the sword Szczerbiec, was used in coronation ceremonies, is exhibited today and is another remnant of this period. Other structures were developed on the hill during that time as well, in order to serve as quarters for the numerous clergy, royal clerks and craftsmen. Defensive walls and towers such as Jordanka, Lubranka, Sandomierska, Tęczyńska, Szlachecka, Złodziejska and Panieńska were erected in the same period.
- St. Florian's Gate or Florian Gate, is one of the best-known Polish Gothic towers, and a focal point of Kraków's Old Town. It was built about the 14th century as a rectangular Gothic tower of "wild stone", part of the city fortifications against Turkish attack. Until the 19th century, Kraków had massive medieval city walls. The inner wall was some 2.4 meters wide and 6–7 meters high. Ten meters outside the inner wall was an outer, lower one. The walls were punctuated by defensive towers 10 metres high. In the 19th century — just before they were demolished by the Austrian authorities — there were 47 towers still standing. Now there are only three Gothic towers left in all Kraków: the Carpenters', Haberdashers' and Joiners' Towers, connected to St. Florian's Gate by walls several dozen meters long.
- St. Mary's Basilica also known as the Mariacki Church is a Brick Gothic church re-built in the 14th century (originally built in the early 13th century), adjacent to the Main Market Square. Standing 80 m (262 ft) tall, it is particularly famous for its wooden altarpiece carved by Veit Stoss (Wit Stwosz). On every hour, a trumpet signal—called the Hejnał mariacki—is played from the top of the taller of St. Mary's two towers. The plaintive tune breaks off in mid-stream, to commemorate the famous 13th century trumpeter, who was shot in the throat while sounding the alarm before the Mongol attack on the city. St. Mary's Basilica also served as an architectural model for many of the churches that were built by the Polish diaspora abroad, particularly those like St. Michael's and St. John Cantius in Chicago, designed in the so-called Polish Cathedral style.
- Sukiennice. The Renaissance Sukiennice (Cloth Hall, Drapers' Hall), is one of the city's most recognizable icons. It is the central feature of the Main Market Square in the Kraków Old Town. It was once a major centre of international trade. Traveling merchants met there to discuss business and to barter. During its golden age in the 15th century, Sukiennice was the source of a variety of exotic imports from the East – spices, silk, leather and wax – while Kraków itself exported textiles, lead, and salt from the Wieliczka Salt Mine.
Kumanovo is a city in the Republic of Macedonia and is the seat of Kumanovo Municipality which is the largest municipality in the country.
Kumanovo became an urban settlement and administrative center of the region at the end of the 16th century or the beginning of the 17th century. Following the turbulent events (notably, the Karposh Uprising in 1689) the city experienced a period of stagnation, and by the end of 18th century Kumanovo epitomized an Ottoman provincial town.
Other organizations active in bridging the community divide include the Center for Intercultural Dialogue (CID), Roma community center DROM, the local Red Cross and others.
You can buy souvenirs at Biba Ethno Shop located in the "Kasapski Krug" area. Also some postcards and smaller souvenirs are available at the small multi-product shops and libraries in town.
- The Church St. Nikolas, is a church designed by Andreja Damjanov. It is surrounded by arcades and has a rich interior with galleries, frescoes and furniture. According to an inscription on the south entrance, it was built in 1851 on the same site as a prior church (with the same patron) in the "Varosh maalo". The Church is tree-aisle monumental basilica type building a characteristic for all of the secred buildings in the Balkans in the 19 century period. It is built from stone and bricks. On the northern side there is a porch with colonnades. The central aisle is overtopping with four blind domes. Above the northern, western and southern pa rt of the church extends a gallery where unique collection of icons is placed. Above the western part of the gallery extends another one but with smaller dimensions. The oldest fresco drawing is performed only in the blind domes of the centar aisle and origins from the sixt decade of the 19 century.
- Kumanovo Central Square - the central square of Kumanovo features many interesting and historical buildings. Starting from the building of the old cinema Napredok built at the beginning of the XX century as the home of the Manufacturers Association of Kumanovo. Just in front of the building is the statue of Batko Gjorgjija (Brother George) who is the town's mythical person admired as the biggest drunk and ladies-man. Across the streets you will see the nowadays administrative municipal buildings that are called "Kasapski Krug". The town square also features a fountain with a monument called "tumba 4 bandere" that was the symbol of the city centre. On the smaller square you will find several monument from the antifascist war as well as a monument dedicated to Tito (Yugoslavia's lifelong President).
- The Karpino Monastery is an important Macedonian Orthodox monastery situated in the northeastern part of the Republic of Macedonia, near the city of Kumanovo (near village Suvi Orah). The main monastery church is dedicated to Presentation of Virgin Mary, it was built of crafted stone in the shape of single nave basilica with apse in form of triconhos, from the 16th – 17th century. The church itself was erected in 1100. The monastery and church has been burnt and destroyed many times, but has always been restored by the inhabitants of villages Suv Ora, Aljince, Drenak and Kanarevo.
- The Church of St. George - in the village of Staro Nagoričane, near Kumanovo. It is noteworthy both for its architecture and its frescoes. It is considered a key example of Christian heritage in this area. The church was first constructed in 1071, and reconstructed between 1313 and 1318 by the Serbian king Stefan Milutin. During this reconstruction period, the church's walls were painted with frescoes by Mihailo and Evtihij, among which are depictions of Stefan Milutin and his queen, Simonida. The Bulgarian emperor, Michael Shishman, was buried in the wall of this church after he died at battle of Velbazhd, against Serbian king Stefan Urosh III Dechanski in 1330.
- Kokino is an important archaeological site and a megalithic observatory discovered in 2001 by archeologist Jovica Stankovski in the northeastern Republic of Macedonia, approximately 30 km from the town of Kumanovo, near the village of Staro Nagoričane It is situated 1030 m above sea level on the Tatikjev Kamen Summit and covers an area of a 100-meter radius. The site is more than 3800 years old. The oldest archaeological finds date from the Early Bronze Age. Finds from the Middle Bronze Age are the most numerous (mainly ceramic vessels, stone-mills and a few molds). An agglomeration from the Iron Age has also been discovered. The archaeo-astronomical research was carried out by the Macedonian archaeologist Jovica Stankovski. In March 2010, the nomination proposal for Kokino to be included on World Heritage Site list was accepted by UNESCO. Kokino consists of two parts. It includes special stone markers used to track the movement of the Sun and Moon on the eastern horizon. The observatory used the method of stationary observation, marking positions of the Sun at the winter and summer solstice, as well as the equinox.