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If you’ve spent time in other Ukrainian regions, Lviv will come as a shock. Mysterious and architecturally lovely, this Unesco-listed city is the country’s least Soviet and exudes the same authentic Central European charm as pretourism Prague or Kraków once did. Its quaint cobbles, bean-perfumed coffeehouses and rattling trams are a continent away from the Soviet brutalism of the east. It’s also a place where the candle of Ukrainian national identity burns brightest and where Russian is definitely a minority language.

But the secret is out, and those who foresaw that Lviv would become Ukraine’s top tourist attraction are watching their prediction come true. No other city is more geared up for visitors and no other attracts so many of them. Lviv has the best range of hotels in the country, plus hostels, tour agencies, guides and English-language information abound, making this Ukraine's premier destination by a long way.

Top attractions

These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Lviv.