Places in Ternopil Region
The remains of a hill-top fortress overlook picturesque Kremenets' cluster of pastel-coloured, freshly renovated churches. The Mongols never managed to capture this castle during their sweep through Kyivan Rus in 1240–41 (despite reaching Kremenets' outskirts), but today it's easily breeched by individual hikers and day-trippers.
Known today primarily for its striking natural hilltop standing stone, the village of Pidkamin was once most celebrated for its huge fortified monastery. This was founded at the same time as Pochayiv by monks hightailing it from Kyiv before the Mongols hit town in 1240, and was later beefed up to protect the icon of the Blessed Virgin.
The Ternopil region is home to dozens of karst caves, including the 212km-long Optimistic Cave, one of Europe's largest. These are all 100km south of Ternopil, near Borshchiv. It's not really safe to visit without a tour, but unfortunately, as with so many Ukrainian sightseeing gems, tours are sometimes tricky to arrange.
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