Medieval Lviv region

Duration: 4 days
Location: Lviv region
Day 1:

Upon arrival to Lviv, you will go to “Taurus” hotel or Citadel Inn. Check-in.

Day 2:

After breakfast at the hotel, we offer a walking tour of the old central part of Lviv.

The tour route covers: Rynok Square and adjacent ancient quarters and streets of the city – Old Ukrainian, Armenian, Jewish quarters, a unique Armenian church, the house “Seasons of the year”, the majestic Dominican Cathedral, a monument to the artist Nykyfor Drovniak (a place where wishes are made in Lviv), a monument to the first printer with a story about the first book in Ukraine and many other unique attractions. You will see the architectural ensemble of Rynok Square, visit the largest and oldest churches in the city and hear incredible stories about the way of life of Lviv burghers. You will also have the opportunity to climb to the roof of the Town Hall and admire the panorama of Lviv from a bird’s eye view.

After the tour, you will have lunch at the “Town Hall” restaurant, which is located in the building of the Town Hall.

“Master class in making candles” tour.

We offer an excursion to the Lviv Candle Manufactory, where you will feel like an artist, making a unique candle yourself, and then take it with you as a souvenir.

Also on the basis of the candle manufactory there is a cosy cafe “Dominikanes”, where you will drink a cup of true Lviv coffee and try Lviv signature cake – a sweet showpiece of the city.

After that, you will have free time and dinner at “5th Dungeon” restaurant. This is a real medieval restaurant in Lviv. A place where you definitely need to come for delicious food and a feeling of step into a time capsule – in the mystical and still closed world of dungeons under one of the oldest houses in Rynok Square.

Day 3:

Today you will have a tour of the castles “Golden Horseshoe of Lviv Region” — Olesko, Pidhirtsi, and Zolochiv castles.

Olesko castle

On a high hill, the slopes of which rise above the swampy meadows of the Libertsia River, there is a mighty fortress – Olesko castle. The ancient building was erected in the early 14th century. It is considered that the castle was built by one of the sons of Prince of Galicia–Volhynia Yurii Lvovych.

Olesko castle is full of secrets and interesting legends. Some believe that it is haunted. According to one version, the spirit of the Czech monk Jan Casper inhabits the castle. According to the castle chronicle, once during the service on St. Anthony’s Day, Casper jumped into a well in front of a thousand of pilgrims. Today, his soul wanders the corridors and cannot rest in peace. They say you can see two more shadows at night. These are the souls of lovers who follow the echoes of voices, but cannot meet each other.

Olesko castle is famous for the birth of the mighty Polish king Jan III Sobieski. There is a strange legend about his birth. The future king was born during a terrible thunderstorm and the attack of the Tatars on the castle. When the midwife laid the baby on the black marble table, thunder suddenly struck.

Nowadays, the castle is a museum and branch of Lviv Art Gallery. Each hall is a kind of museum exhibit. Its interior is impressive– wallpaper, furniture, walls, floor, lamps – and typical of the 16th -18th centuries. Lint-free wall carpets made of woollen and silk threads – so-called tapestries – attract a visitor’s attention. One of the tapestry has an interesting plot depicting some scenes from Homer’s poem “Odyssey”. In the museum, you can also see ancient iconostases, a collection of icons of the 15th -18th centuries, a majestic painting by Martino Altomonte “Battle of Vienna”, which was commissioned by King Jan III Sobieski. The unique collection of wooden sculptures of the 14th -19th centuries is also impressive. Interesting works of Johann Pinsel are also worth seeing.

Pidhirtsi castle

Once upon a time, Pidhirtsi stronghold was a blossoming pearl and was considered one of the best palace and castle complexes in Europe, which amazed with its grandeur and sophistication. Located in the cosy village of Pidhirtsi, Lviv region, the castle was built in 1640 on the site of an old defensive work that belonged to the Pidhoretskyi family. It was in honour of the first owners that it got its name. The new owner of Pidhirtsi castle – hetman Stanislav Konetspolskyi – built a unique in its architectonics building according to the project of architects Guillaume de Boplan and Andrea Dell’Acqua. It was a castle like Palazzo in Fortezzo, which means a combination of a defensive fortress and a magnate residence.

Today, restoration work is underway at Pidhirtsi castle, and the castle ensemble is open to visitors. Here you can see the entrance inn, which has survived to the present day from the 17th century, check the time on the old sundial, visit the brewery, walk along the alleys of the amazing old park, go down to the dungeons of the castle, where you can hear the cries of the “white lady” who wanders the building, without finding shelter. It is rumoured that this is the ghost of Maria Zhevuska, who was once walled up alive in the castle wall by her husband, Count Zhevuskyi, because he was jealous of her and suspected that she was unfaithful.

It was here that part of the legendary movie “D’Artagnan and Three Musketeers” was shot, as the castle in Pidhirtsi is still considered one of the most beautiful in the Lviv region.

Lunch at “Ravelin” cafe on the territory of Zolochiv castle. The institution is located in one of the rooms of the ravelin (defensive structure) in front of the main entrance to Zolochiv castle. The interior is stylized on the Middle Ages; the menu is traditional Ukrainian cuisine. Excursion to the castle.

Zolochiv castle

Zolochiv castle is a real stone gem, which is the pride of not only Lviv, but the whole Western Ukraine. The impregnable fortress, as one that seems to have conquered time, has been demonstrating its greatness and pride for many centuries on the green hills of Zolochiv. The history of the castle is shrouded in ancient legends and secrets, sometimes cruel and tragic.

Built in 1634 at the expense of Jakub Sobieski, Zolochiv Castle has hardly changed. However, time and events have rewarded it with cold beauty and medieval tranquillity, which gives it a unique atmosphere with a taste of royal charm.

The Zolochiv stone giant was designed by an unknown Italian architect, who used for construction a Dutch fortification technology that was new at that time. It is a two-storey rectangular building in the Renaissance style, surrounded by a large earth rampart with bastions on each corner. The rampant was equipped with a communications system, and inside it were casemates. It was reinforced with stone blocks from the outside.

Zolochiv castle consists of two parts: the Grand and Chinese palaces. The Grand Palace has a museum, which presents the entire history of the castle: paintings, antique furniture, weapons, sculptures, carpets, hunting trophies and other interesting things. The palace chapel of the Annunciation, halls of the 17th -18th centuries and the royal treasury with the re-creation of the crown of Danylo Halytskyi are also here. The Chinese Palace has five exhibition halls, which display the art of Egypt, China, India, Japan, Turkey, Persia, and Indonesia, namely: paintings, graphics, decorative and applied arts items, sculptures, archaeological exhibits – fragments of Egyptian sarcophagi, falcon mummy, etc.

The most popular among visitors of the Zolochiv fortress are the stones, which are located at the entrance to the castle. Both stones were imported from the village of Novosilky and, according to ancient legends, are considered the heritage of the Templars. One of them is covered with a carved cryptography, which is still a mystery to scientists. The second stone depicts intertwined wreaths – thorny and flowering, and there is a small hole inside the weave. The people call this stone “the stone of desires”. They say, if you make a wish and put your finger in that hole, the wish will come true. If the desire is material, the finger should be turned in the direction of a dead wreath (thorny), and if it is spiritual – in the direction of a living wreath (flowering).

After a busy program, you will return to Lviv, where you will have dinner at “Pstrug, bread and wine” restaurant. Here you will taste Lviv liqueurs accompanied by colourful Lviv trumpeters with interesting stories about the institution and Lviv.

Day 4:

Today another interesting tour of “Golden Horseshoe of Lviv Region” will take place to Svirzh, Univ, and Stare Selo castles.

Svirzh castle

Svirzh castle is a fortification of the 15th -17th centuries. Its white stone towers, topped by a high pointed red roof, are reflected in the mirror surface of the Svirzh River. This unique attraction is located in an extremely picturesque area. The fortress stands on a hill above the pond. Protected by water on three sides, strong walls and a defensive tower, it forms one of the most beautiful in Ukraine complexes due to its successful location and harmony of architectural forms. Scenes of the famous movie “D’Artagnan and Three Musketeers” used to be shot here.

Univ Lavra

Univ Lavra is one of the oldest monastery complexes in Ukraine, which was originally built as a medieval fortress – its impenetrable walls, loopholes and defensive towers are still preserved. The monastery has existed in this place since the end of the 13th century. Initially, it was cared for by the rulers of Kingdom of Galicia–Volhynia, and later by the Lithuanian princes Gediminids. In the middle of the 16th century, the monastery was burned by the Tatars, who often went on foray to these areas. It was rebuilt by the Polish noble Alexander Lahodovskyi, who, according to legend, recovered after washing with water from the monastery spring. At different times, the monastery had a printing house, a bookbinding workshop, an orphanage and an icon-painting workshop.

After the tour you will have lunch at a cafe on the territory of Univ monastery, then go to Stare Selo castle

Stare Selo castle

In the village of Stare Selo, the remains of the once largest fortification are preserved, which was founded in the middle of the 15th century on the site of the wooden fortress, built by Vladyslav Dominik, Prince of Ostroh and Zaslavl in 1642. However, in 1648 Bohdan Khmelnytskyi’s army destroyed the fortress. The prince restored and fortified the building, the walls of which withstood the siege of Khmelnytskyi’s Cossack detachments during the second campaign against Lviv. The fortress also withstood the onslaught of the Turks in 1672. The change of owners led to the decay of the castle and only at the beginning of the 18th century the new owners Seniavskyi family restored it and moved arsenal from Lviv here. After 1731, the building passed to the Czartoryski family and lost its defensive significance. Since 1809, the castle has become the property of the Potocki family, who turned it into a brewery, which eventually led to the decay of the fortress.

Upon returning to Lviv, you will have dinner at the Pravda Beer Theatre to the sound of a real orchestra, which performs hits of such performers as “AC/DC”, “Metallica”, Frank Sinatra, Adele, Maroon 5, soundtracks of the famous films, and “Red Flower” song, “Okean Elzy”, “Gadiukin Brothers”, “Scriabin” bands. Unique beer brands and gourmet meals accompany all of the above from the open kitchen.

The interior of the restaurant is decorated in a loft style, so you can’t help feeling that you are at the factory – tasting the beer, you can observe the brewer watching the preparation of wort, brewed in a large vat, throwing hops and reading Antonych’s poetry to beer, giving it specific Lviv spirit.

After dinner, you will be transferred to the airport.

Prices and more information here: