12 Things in Kiev Under 5 $ €
The longer I stayed in Kiev the more impressed I was with how far my money would go. Whether it was food, nightlife, sites, tours and even operas, just about everything is available at some of the cheapest prices in Europe. I’m very passionate about how great of a city Kiev is to visit. The locals were so welcoming, the food was delicious and there was so much to see and do. Just one more reason why you should go is because of how far the dollar will go. Take a look at 12 things in Kiev under 5 $ or €
1. Street Food
I found a number of incredible street food deals including this burger at Furgoneta for just $3.50. I also found light and healthy vegan falafel wraps at Vegano Hooligano for around $1, Georgian khachapuri for $2 and more. You certainly won’t go hungry in Kiev! The complete street food post with all of my findings and costs can be found here.
Local cafeteria-style favorite Puzata Hata has a number of locations throughout Kiev that serve a vast number of culinary options. From Ukrainian dishes to pizza and breakfast options, you can eat here for a week straight and still not try everything. When I wasn’t eating street food, this was one of my favorite spots. They’re easy to find across Kiev. Each meal I had cost between $3-$5.
Another breakfast option is Home Cafe where they offer a number of traditional Ukrainian selections, eggs and omelettes. Just about everything will cost $5 or less with a drink. Check out their website here.
For cheap dinner or late night food, one of my favorites is the chicken schnitzel at Palata No. 6 for just $3. Add a large local draft for only $0.75 more. Their ribeye steak is also a great deal for under $5. These are tough deals to beat! Check out a full local review of Palata and the crazy drinks they have to offer here.
3. Public Transportation
Kiev currently has three comprehensive metro lines and a number of trams and busses. One of the best deals you will find is this public transportation at the incredibly low price of around $0.20 from any stop to any other stop. You’ll pay $0.25 or less for:
- Tram and bus
- Small yellow buses (private company, routes differ from city buses)
- Most taxi rides
- Many train and bus lines to neighboring cities across Ukraine
I took taxis to and from restaurants and bars at night and never paid more than $3. I’m told you can get a taxi driver to take you all over Kiev for $5 but I didn’t have a chance to try this out. Make sure to negotiate your taxi far prior to getting in the taxi. It should almost never be more than $3-$5 within Kiev.
For the trains and buses to smaller cities across Ukraine you should go directly to the station. They don’t currently have updated schedules or payment methods available online.
The Metro map can be found here.
4. Street Coffee & Hot Wine
The cold weather has brought a considerable street coffee and street glühwine, also known as hot wine or mulled wine, culture to Kiev. Street vendors run cafes out of the backs of trucks and specially built cars everywhere. You’ll see these all over the city throughout the day and early evening. Enjoy a latte in the morning and a hot wine when it gets later. Coffee drinks are around $1-$2 and mulled wine is around $2 for a large. Go with the large.
I was fortunate to run into a local Ukrainian named Constantin during my time in Kiev. He took it upon himself to show me the nightlife scene one evening. He taught me that Ukrainians like to snack as they drink and some of their favorites include fried pig tail and stringy cheese called chechil that is sometimes smoked. At locals bars the beers cost around $1-$2. Snacks are usually $2-$5.
After the local bar we went to American themed bar Coyote Ugly where beers averaged around $2 and shots were $3-$5 depending on what you order. Cover is free before 9 p.m. Otherwise it can be $5. You can find their website here.
6. Churches & Cathedrals
The many churches and cathedrals across Kiev are all either free to enter or cost around $1-$2. These are all beautiful and unique buildings to see. Some of my favorites included:
- Kiev Cave Monastery
- St. Sophia’s Cathedral
- St. Michael’s Golden Domed Cathedral
- St. Andrew’s Church
- St. Volodymyr’s Cathedral
An interesting fact I learned is that Russian Orthodox churches have no pews or chairs because people stand during the entire service, including their holiday mass that can last several hours.
A complete list with information can be found here.
The museums in Kiev are all around $1-$2. The Modern Art Museum is even free! I particularly enjoyed the War Museum’s layout. It’s done very well but is all in Ukrainian. They hope to have English translations soon. If you’re interested in a tour, which I highly recommend, just keep on reading. Check out the:
- Great Patriotic War Museum
- Chernobyl Museum
- Modern Art Museum
- Kiev in Miniature Museum
A complete listing of museums can be found on TripAdvisor here.
8. Walking Tours
I was fortunate to have met Slava at a networking event and when I found out she owned a tour company, I took several of her tours. I started with the Free Revolution Walking Tour offered daily at 10:30am. It begins in Maidan Square under the tallest statue. Though the tour is free, they offer optional tipping. Please make sure to tip the guide if you enjoy the tour.
Starting around $8 they also offer walking tours of many cathedrals and museums. This is helpful because as I mentioned above, the signs are not yet written in English so you will miss a lot in the museums without a knowledgeable guide. For my article about Slava and her tour company information check out my interview with her here.
She and her team offer great information and all speak English fluently. I highly recommend checking them out.
Current tours include:
- Free Revolution walking tour (daily)
- Churches & Cathedrals
- Chernobyl and other tours outside of Kiev (these are more expensive, check price updates)
9. Kiev Central Station Hostel
Starting at just $5 for their 12-person dorm, Kiev Central Station Hostel offers two of the best hostel owners I’ve ever met, a great common area, kitchen and comfortable beds all at very affordable prices. I booked for two nights here initially and stayed for a week and a half. They cooked extra food one night and offered me some. I cooked pork goulash a few nights later in their great little kitchen. I loved my time here and can’t wait to return.
Their website can be found here.
The grocery stores in Ukraine offer very fresh and tasty produce, a variety of meats and most other foods you’re used to. I also recommend checking out their chechil cheese. At around $1 or less, try both the white version and the smoked.
The evening I cooked goulash I purchased four pounds of pork loin, bread, seasoning, some beer, tomato paste, a variety of peppers, onions and garlic for around $15. This fed five of us, so it was about $3 per person and was on the more expensive side according to locals.
Beer in the store goes for around $0.50 for a bottle or $1 for a plastic 1-2 liter. My favorite was $1 for a 1.25 liter. Vodka starts around $3 a bottle for the local Ukrainian brands and it’s better than most of the cheap vodkas you’ll find in the U.S.
Kiev has some really cool second-hand shops. Many clothing items including shirts, sweaters and some pants start under $5 and go up from there. Make sure to check out the ones near the Metro station Lisova. They’re all over the place right as you exit the station. I found a nearly brand new black leather jacket that fits me for $38. Some of the more worn jackets that had started around $8.
12. Nation Opera House of Ukraine
With tickets starting at just $1, many local in Kiev frequently visit the opera. For this reason, make sure to get your tickets early if you’re interested. I didn’t have a chance to enjoy an opera on this visit but will make sure to attend one the next time I’m in town.
Check out the National Opera House of Ukraine website for more info.
Tickets can be purchased in advance here.
- NomadicNotes Travel Guides: Ukraine is still growing in its tourism popularity. Take a look here for additional travel guides for Ukraine and many other countries.
- Kyiv Friendly Tours: As I mentioned above, Slava’s team of English-speaking tour guides will help you to make the most out of your time in Kiev and the surrounding areas, including Chernobyl. I’ve taken several of the tours and highly recommend taking at least one while you’re in Kiev.
Kiev Under 5 $€ Recap
After spending nearly three weeks in Kiev, I’m very passionate about this wonderful city. I think it’s one of the most under-appreciated and off-the-beaten-path destinations for Westerners because of the negative imagery in the news about the conflict with Russia. This is sad because there is so much to see and do in Kiev and the prices, as I’ve shown here, are incredibly affordable with so much in Kiev under 5 $€. Kiev is far removed from what is taking place in the southeast with Russia. I encourage everyone to consider it as a travel destination in the near future while this great value is still around. You won’t regret it. I truly enjoyed my time in Kiev and feel so lucky to have met so many great people there.
Budmo! (Cheers in Ukrainian)
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