There are a number of ways to get to the capital city of Ukraine and your choice of transportation mode would mostly depend on your starting point and your budget.
Get To Kyiv By Plane
Flying into the city is still the most convenient and fastest way for visitors. Kyiv has two main airports: the Boryspil International Airport which services international flights and the Zhulyany Airport for domestic flights. Borypsil International Airport (IATA Code: KBP) located around 30 kilometres from the city receives regular flights from 31 foreign airlines such as KLM, Lufthansa, Delta, Turkish Airlines, Finnair, British Airways. On the other hand, Zhulyany Airport (IATA Code: IEV) is located in the Zhuliany area in southern Kyiv. It is an international airport that can also receive international flights from neighboring countries but it has been traditionally used for domestic flights only. Depending on the season, budget flights to Kyiv can be found and some of these airlines that offer budget charters include AirBaltic and Estonian Air.
Get To Kyiv By Train
The city's railway network connects Kyiv to a number of cities and towns in Ukraine as well as several European countries and has regular train services. Check the website www.poezda.net/en/web for schedules as well as fares. The central railway station of Kyiv Passazhyrskyi is close to the city centre and is linked to the metro station of Vozkalna. Travelling by train can take you anywhere from 14 hours to 36 hours depending on your starting point but the advantage is you can take the scenic route to get to Kyiv.
Get To Kyiv By Car
If you are in Europe the main route is via Poland. There is a 24-hour customs post located in Krakovets in Lvivska Oblast. Look for the town of Przemysl and drive straight by following route #4. EU registered cars should queue in the EU-passports section and then the Ukrainian customs. For other cars, queue in the appropriate lanes and watch for border officers who can direct you to the right lanes. Once you’re cleared drive straight through the main road towards Lviv on the E40 – you will pass by the towns of Lviv, Rivne, Zhytomyr on the way so don’t fret about getting lost.
Get To Kyiv By Bus
There are international buses coming from Germany, Poland and Moldova. However, this is rarely recommended especially for first-time visitors as the central bus station is hardly in a good and safe condition.
Get To Kyiv By Boat
If you prefer to take a leisurely cruise to the Dnipro River to enter Kyiv then it is recommended that you check with travel agencies or go to the websites to book such a trip. Summer is the best time to do so, any other season might not be favorable for a boat trip into the city.
Getting Around In Kyiv
Once you get to Kyiv, it is actually fairly easy to get around and explore the city on your own. The city has plenty of transportation modes such as the metro system or the subway (Metpo) which is open from 6:00 a.m until midnight. There are three lines (red, blue and green) with three connecting points between the lines, and 46 stops or stations. A ride in the subway costs about UAH2.00. The government-owned metro is the most reliable and safest mode of transport within the city. Another transport mode unique to the city is the funicular, a cable railway that goes up the hills across the Dnipro River and into the city. A ride in the funicular costs UAH1.50. There are also the “marshrutkas” or the private mini-buses which the locals prefer as they run faster and cover more areas of the city. A ride in a marshrutka costs anywhere from UAH 1.50 to UAH 3.70. It is best to check the organized stops and terminals first before getting on one. Other types of buses would be the public bus and the trolley bus, both often crowded and can be an uncomfortable experience for tourists to the city. Of course there are taxis that can also be taken in the city. There are two types – the official company taxis which can be booked over the phone, and the “gypsy” taxi which is an unmarked vehicle and which would typically negotiate with you over the fare. The average taxi fare for a ride anywhere in the city could be from UAH 20 to 50.
It is advisable to pick up a city guide map or book once you get to Kyiv and to study the transport routes if you plan to do a lot of exploring in the city. Signs are mostly in Cyrillic and most locals do not speak English so brushing up on a few phrases to help you find your directions is worth considering.