Odessa is the third largest city of Ukraine after Kiev and Kharkov, the second richest city of Ukraine after Kiev; a major industrial, cultural, scientific, and resort center in the Northern Black Sea region. The territory of Odessa is about 160 square kilometers. The population is over than 1.200.000. Odessa is cosmopolitan city on the South of Ukraine where live people from more than one hundred nationalities.
Odessa earns reputation of the Black Sea resort (Odessa is also titled as “Southern Palmira”) due to its mild climate, plenty of beaches, and the sea; The Black Sea attracts thousands of tourists to Odessa throughout the year. Odessa also is the most important Ukrainian seaport. Odessa city is also well known for its rich history, beautiful architecture and inexhaustible humor.
ODESSA SIGHTS’ TOP LIST:
The Potemkin Stairs or Potemkin Steps is named after Grigori Aleksandrovich Potemkin a Russian statesman and a favourite of Catherine II. The stairs are even more famous for the movie "Battleship Potemkin" which is an old propaganda film about the uprising of the battleship crew in 1905. The legend says that in order to recieve great luck in life, you should walk down and up the 192 steps in your bare feet, discovering how the ground and the air changes as you come close to the sea and vice versa.
The construction of the stairs begun in 1837 and were finished in 1841. It was a gift to the city from the Odessa leader Vorontsov by the architect F. Boffo. From the top of the Potemkin Steps you have a great view of the sea port and the Black Sea.
Deribasovskaya Street. Is the very heart of Odessa. What lends Deribasovskaya its unique character is magnificent architecture, crowds of people leisurely sitting on terraces of numerous cafes and restaurants, perfect cobblestones, no vehicle traffic and big shady linden trees. This special character has survived even through the Soviet times when conforming Soviet canons was highly recommended. Deribasovskaya leads to the City Gardens with its fountain, old summerhouse and sculpture of lion and lioness. City Garden was laid out shortly after the foundation of Odessa and was its first park.
The Souvenir Market at the Sobornaya square with a crowd of artists and craftsmen demonstrating their works is situated right here. Prices are really low, and some items are gorgeous. Don't miss it if you want to get originally Odessan souvenirs.
The Odessa Opera House. The full name of the opera is: Odessa National Academic Theater of Opera & Ballet. The Opera house was originally built in 1809 and the first performance took place in 1810. The old building burned down in 1873. Then it was decided to invite the architects from Vienna, F. Felner and Y. Helmer. The new Opera house was built in the baroque style. The grand opening took place on the 1st of October 1887.
The Odessa Opera House is a very popular tourist attraction and many visitors gathers outside everyday. It is recommended to see a opera or ballet performance if you have the oportunity. Shows usually starts at 7 p.m. and tickets can be bought at the entrance on the left side of the building.
Primorsky Boulevard. This is one of the most beautiful boulevards in Odessa. It has newly been restored with new surface and while they where digging they found an old settlement which is now on display under a small glass pyramid. Primorsky Boulevard has many old and beautful buildings. One of these are the famous hotel “Londonskaya”.
Flat house. If you walk south of Primorsky Blvd you will find a short street called Vorontsovsky lane. There you will find this odd building which seems to be only a façade, absolutely flat. This is off course only an illusion. The thing is that when the house was building they have not enough construction materials. And it was decided to make a house with three walls. Thanks that, for many years Odessa citizens and guest of the city enjoy this interesting building.
Monument to Catherine the Second was founded in 1900. In 1794 Catherine the Second ordered to start a building of the city and a habour. Later this city recived a name – Odessa. As a thanks to Great Empress and to the founders of the city: de Ribas, de Volan, Potemkin and Zubov Odessa citizens placed a monument in a wonderful place near the sea port and intersection of the main streets of Odessa.
Arcadia Beach is the most developed beach in Odessa. It looks gorgeous in summer - plenty of flowers, shady trees, numerous restaurants and cafes with sea view terraces. Being a little bit pricey, they are really good for drinks and snacks.
Besides swimming and sunbathing, you can rent paddleboats, rowboats and other sailing vehicles for moderate prices.
Surely, Arcadia is not for solitude seekers, but they can find a quiet place by walking further. There is 5 km walking area along the seaside, if you would get to par Shevchenko and city center. Such an interesting way.