Street Food With a Local – Vegano Hooligano
During my time in Kiev I was fortunate enough to meet a number of locals who took it upon themselves to show me some of their favorite places to eat and things to do. I met Slava for the first time at a local networking event. Energetic, smiling and possessing a love of food and travel we hit it off right away. When I found out that she owns a local tour company in Kiev I planned to attend the Free Revolution Walking Tour, followed by walking tours of the National War Museum and then some famous cathedrals. I asked Slava about allowing her to interview her for my new Street Food With a Local series and she happily agreed. When I told her about my love of street food she also knew just the place to take me. Her favorite vegan spot called Vegano Hooligano inside Besarabsky Rynok (Market) for falafal wraps.
My name is Slava and I’m traveloholic! I’ve lived in New York, traveled to 35 countries and I’m not stopping anytime soon. Travel is my biggest passion in life. My hometown city of Kiev has great tourism potential with historical sights, architectural heritage, authentic culture, friendly people and amazing food. The mission of my company is to help people explore best of the city and fall in love with it!
1. How long have you lived here in Kiev?
I was born and raised in Kiev. I’ve lived here almost my entire life.
2. How did you find out about Vegano Hooligano?
I’ve known the owner of Vegano Hooligano for 3 years now. His name is Rudolf. Once I happend to attend a food festival where he talked about the vegan lifestyle and the great influence it had on his life. It was an impressive speech that lead to my choice of becoming a vegetarian. I eat at least one falafel every week here at Vegano.
3. What’s your favorite thing to eat at Vegano Hooligano and why?
Falafel is an absolute bestseller and my favorite choice!
4. If you had at opportunity to tell people just a couple of things about why they should visit Kiev what would they be?
First, it’s extra affordable. You can get fresh falafel on the central street for 1 dollar. Second, Ukrainian national food is hard to find abroad and its worth coming here. Things like borsch, salo, varenyky, chicken Kiev, buckwheat porridge, pyrizhky and deruny are all delicious. Lastly, the night life here is awesome. People know how to party no matter what their budget. We smoke shisha, mix fancy cocktails and dance on bars!
Kyiv Friendly Tours
Be sure to contact Slava about her local tours during your time in Kiev. I found the Free Revolution Walking Tour very interesting and I learned a lot from her. I had no idea how long the Ukrainian people protested in order to remove their previous president and how many protesters died during the process. The tour encouraged me to do a lot more reading about the events in the following days.
The World War II Museum tour was also very helpful because the signs inside the museum are not yet written in English so Slava was able to provide a tour and translate. Finally, the tour of churches and cathedrals allowed us to tour some of the more hard-to-find places we would have missed on our own. The last two tours are about $8 each. Each tour lasts around 1.5-2 hours.
Contact: You can find Slava and and Kyiv Friendly Tours online at KyivFriendly.com
Social Media: You can also follow them on Facebook.
I highly recommend reaching out to Slava during your time in Kiev! Hopefully you enjoyed this first in my Street Food With a Local Series!
For even more delicious options, check out my Street Food in Kiev post as well!
Budmo! (Cheers in Ukrainian)
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