Although Ukraine has numerous advantages like wonderful traditions, friendly people and beautiful historic architecture one thing that cannot be added to such a list is Ukrainian roads. Ukrainian roads are one of the mysterious themes that is often tried to be avoided. Everything is not as bad as often written; of course it has its odds but what country doesn’t.
It may sound that the conditions of the roads are really bad and it might be true. Anybody who is travelling by car should be aware of that: first of all Ukrainian roads are pretty rocky, so be sure to drive anything except for sport cars, second – not all the signs have been translated, so it is probably better to study a map of the roads before you start your journey, and third is that our road police is very corrupted and unfortunately there is nothing that government can do to change it, it should be just accepted that dealing with police is of no use.
Another important thing about Ukrainian roads is that some of its part can be under reconstruction; meaning that they don’t work, so check everything nicely in order not to get stuck in the middle of, indeed, beautiful Ukrainian landscapes.
Anyway, road trips in the country are really popular and what is important is that they are hell of a fun. Driving may seem as a little jogging what is useful for your health. What really makes difference is that you will come across breathtaking places that Ukraine is filled with. It has high Carpathian Mountains, Long Dnepr River, vast flower valleys, cozy and nice towns where each will find lots of adventures. Ukraine is very pleasant to visit by car because of its people. Of course, you should try to speak at least little Russian or Ukrainian but anyway there is no doubt that if you knock at somebody’s little wooden house – they will answer.
People here like foreigners and they surely will help you. Important tip is to carry some alcohol as a gift to anyone whom you are to visit.
Another thing is big towns or cities like Kyiv, Kharkov, Donetsk and Lvov. These cities are in almost perfect conditions. Roads are smooth, bars are open, and stadiums are reconstructed. In such cities there will be no problem to park a car or find an English speaking guide.
Despite all problems Ukraine today is rapidly building new highways, repairing old ones so those who will come to EURO 2012 football championship can stay calm because they won’t be lost in a middle of a forest. The country is fast developing and adopting European style. Wise versa – the country has repaired most of the roads, built hotels so there is a place for most tourists to stay during their road trip.
The biggest achievement for the country was a construction of new highway between two hosting countries Ukraine and Poland which is quite good and ready for exploitation. This road is safe, so if you are going to watch your favorite team playing you will come in time.
For those who are not adopted to Ukrainian roads it is more than important to mention that the most dangerous ways are located in Carpathian Mountain region, where it is in fact really difficult to find a road as it is and the Crimean peninsula which is despite its gorgeous nature has very little of paved roads.
One more thing to bear in mind is Ukrainian drivers, who like to drink and drive very fast despite rules and regulations, probably because most of Ukrainians think that Schumacher is not a person but a way of safe driving. This way, only in 2012 there were 36 000 car accidents in which thousands of people were killed and hundreds injured.
All in all each trip is a challenge. Ukraine is not a cave age country – it has it all, just with a small addition of slightly shitty roads.