Beside the annual renaissance of nature, this year’s spring came to see Kharkov and its citizens in the state of true revival. No wonder such excitement reigns all over the place: the city goes full blast finishing its preparations for hosting the UEFA European Football Championship which will take place in July 2012 in Ukraine and Poland.
Not only the main venue of the event – the Metallist Stadium – was reconstructed and modernized. All the parts of the city are involved in the mass renovation: streets get broader, historical buildings are refurbished, parks and squares are gentrified. On top of usually being beautiful and interesting itself, the city is becoming really trim and festive.
Traditionally attractive are the main tourist sites in Kharkov. Among those is the Shevchenko Park with its numerous fountains, old oak trees. Here the city dolphinarium is situated which opens its season in May together with the great cascade fountain. Another place of interest is the symbol of the city – the Mirror Stream (Zerkal’naya Struya) which mysteriously changes its colors by night. The Blagoveshchensky and Uspensky cathedrals are the famous orthodox monuments, and the Lovers’ monument is a relatively new venue which has already acquired its status of a tourist attraction. All these and many other places are spruced up ready to meet the great events.
People do not only decorate their city, they are actively preparing to receive the guests from all over Europe themselves. Numerous groups of volunteers are organized to help the foreigners to “survive” in the new cultural and language environment.
The first to meet the fans from other cities and countries will be Kharkov’s reconstructed airport and the railway station with the new high-speed trains that will take the tourists from Kiev to Kharkov, Lviv, and Donetsk in a 3 to 4 hours’ time. There are also a lot of comfortable buses plying between all cities hosting EURO 2012.
Another thing Kharkov is preparing to amaze the local fans and the guests with is the immense fan-zone. It will be opened on the Svobody square in the beginning of June and will become a great venue for entertainment and communication to thousands of citizens and the Euro 2012 visitors. Massive theme events are planned here, all the matches will be broadcasted here and even the football-lovers outside the stadium will be able to watch them together over a glass of beer to share the emotions with other fans from different parts of the world.
For the guests of Euro 2012 to become better acquainted with Ukrainian culture a nationwide culinary contest was held to define ten most characteristic dishes to form the National Menu (which was of course taken on board by Kharkov restaurant chefs).
As to accommodation in Kharkov during the Euro 2012 Championship, the city has now much to offer here. Some new hotels have been constructed not far from the city center, many hostels and mini-hotels are ready to receive their guests.
However, the renting an apartment remains by far the most popular accommodation type. You can book comfortable modern Kharkov apartments in the city center online in advance to feel at home in the new city and to fully enjoy all the moments of the great event.
Your visit to Kharkov for the Euro 2012 will be a great experience if you take care of your accommodation well before, and the hospitable city will make your stay unforgettable!