If you have a soft spot for castles and are expecting to see tall rock towers with crenulated turrets while you are in Ukraine, thing again. What passes for a castle in this unique country is a fairy tail structure more out of a Walt Disney movie than a King Arthur story. Castles in Ukraine were built not only for defense by also as homes and residences that complimented and blended into the beautiful surroundings. These successful lines of defense can be found all over Ukraine and if you have the opportunity to visit one, indulge in it.
Ukrainian castles can usually be found situated on a hill where the entire countryside could easily be seen and the castle itself defended from all sides. Many of them double as prisons through the centuries, lending the castles their own unusual history. Elaborate and decorative additions were added to many of Ukraine’s castles and today most of the double as museums for the public to enjoy. Those that are considered more ‘palace’ and less ‘castle’ still serve as royal residences and these dwellings – while strongly defendable – are decorated with gold-tinted artwork, gold-plated arches and jewels and decoration that have been crafted by the best artisans the Ukraine had to offer.
While there are many castles of note in Ukraine, the following are worth taking the time to see personally during your visit to this country: the Livadia Palace; the Mariyinsky Palace; the Olesko Castle; the Kodak Fortress; and the Lviv High Castle.