Lviv travel guide

Lviv Tourism | Lviv Guide

You're Going to Love Lviv

There is a reason why the majestic city of Lviv is marked by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, with plenty of art, culture, and music, as well as its perfectly preserved regional churches, castles, and distinctly Ukrainian customs.

Top 5 Reasons to Visit Lviv

1. History in the Everyday

Lviv's beautiful churches and buildings have been revived, restored, and fortified. When you walk through the city, you'll see such monuments to history as Boim Chapel, Church of Sts. Olha and Elizabeth, and the Armenian Cathedral of Lviv.

2. Scenic Views at Lviv High Castle

At the top of Castle Hill sits the Lviv High Castle. The castle itself is in ruins, but you can capture views of the city, especially at sunset, from the observation platform located atop the kurgan.

3. Vibrant Nightlife

You'll find the city comes alive at night. Check out Metro Club and the Millennium Club for beats and people you simply can't miss.

4. Museums and Galleries Galore

Lviv's museums portray the various works of art, the movements, and all the culture that has unfolded in this spot. Of particular note are The Lviv National Museum and Lviv Museum of Religious History.

5. Relax at the "Bania"

A favorite pastime of locals, visiting the "bania" or local bath/steam-house and sauna is a social activity. The experience ends with a (optional) beating of an olive branch bouquet and a dip in cold pools.

What to do in Lviv

1. High Castle: Gorgeous Views and Romantic Ruins

Ransacked by Poles, Lithuanians, and Cossacks (among others), Lviv's High Castle may not have been the world's stoutest fortification, but it's among the most spectacular. Dating back to the 13th century, the High Castle towers over central Lviv. Not much of the actual fortress remains, but what's there is wonderful: miles of wooded paths that open out onto a gorgeous vista across the city. There's no better vantage point to take some snaps.

2. Lviv Theatre of Opera and Ballet: A Showcase for Ukrainian Arts and Culture

The Theatre of Opera and Ballet is the crown jewel of Lviv's Old City. Built between 1897 and 1900, it's a fin de siècle masterpiece that has seen transitions from Austro-Hungarian rule, through Soviet Communism, to an independent Ukraine, where it's one of the country's greatest artistic centers. Don't miss the murals and sculptures inside the theater, and try to attend a show if you can. There's a thriving annual Opera season with affordable ticket prices, and the promise of magical cultural experiences.

3. Lychakiv Cemetery: A Tangled Web of Historical Memorials

Located a couple of miles southeast of the Old City, Lychakiv Cemetery is a state-run museum of history that's well worth an afternoon's stroll. Thanks to sections like the Field of Mars (the resting place for thousands of soldiers who died fighting the Nazis), it's a poignant place to spend time and a testimony to the city's tangled history. Ukrainian and Polish patriots and heroes mingle in the cemetery's lanes, along with a controversial memorial to the Ukrainian National Army (associated with the SS). Complex, yes, but fascinating nonetheless.

4. Rynok Square: The Heart of Old, and New Lviv

Right at the center of everything in Lviv, Rynok (which means 'market') Square is the place to start an exploration of the Old City. Start with the square itself, with its Renaissance-style fountains, before touring the 16th century Bandinelli Palace, and the elegantly simple Black House, along with a visit the Sobieski Palace (home to a 17th century Polish monarch). If the square reminds you of Italy, that's no coincidence. It was rebuilt in the 16th century with Italian expertise (and money) brought in to help fireproof the new design, and became the playground for Lviv's elite for centuries.

5. Armenian Cathedral: A Stunning Survival of a Turbulent History

Although it's a long way from the Caucasus, Lviv has long had connections to Armenia thanks to a sizable trading community. In the 14th century, Armenian merchants got together to fund a church, which was steadily expanded into a cathedral. However, the community suffered disaster under Stalin and was almost wiped out. But the Armenians have started to return and the cathedral has been restored. Nowadays, its colorful interior and graceful composition is a breathtaking sight, located just a few hundred meters from Rynok Square.

1. High Castle: Gorgeous Views and Romantic Ruins

Ransacked by Poles, Lithuanians, and Cossacks (among others), Lviv's High Castle may not have been the world's stoutest fortification, but it's among the most spectacular. Dating back to the 13th century, the High Castle towers over central Lviv. Not much of the actual fortress remains, but what's there is wonderful: miles of wooded paths that open out onto a gorgeous vista across the city. There's no better vantage point to take some snaps.

2. Lviv Theatre of Opera and Ballet: A Showcase for Ukrainian Arts and Culture

The Theatre of Opera and Ballet is the crown jewel of Lviv's Old City. Built between 1897 and 1900, it's a fin de siècle masterpiece that has seen transitions from Austro-Hungarian rule, through Soviet Communism, to an independent Ukraine, where it's one of the country's greatest artistic centers. Don't miss the murals and sculptures inside the theater, and try to attend a show if you can. There's a thriving annual Opera season with affordable ticket prices, and the promise of magical cultural experiences.

3. Lychakiv Cemetery: A Tangled Web of Historical Memorials

Located a couple of miles southeast of the Old City, Lychakiv Cemetery is a state-run museum of history that's well worth an afternoon's stroll. Thanks to sections like the Field of Mars (the resting place for thousands of soldiers who died fighting the Nazis), it's a poignant place to spend time and a testimony to the city's tangled history. Ukrainian and Polish patriots and heroes mingle in the cemetery's lanes, along with a controversial memorial to the Ukrainian National Army (associated with the SS). Complex, yes, but fascinating nonetheless.

4. Rynok Square: The Heart of Old, and New Lviv

Right at the center of everything in Lviv, Rynok (which means 'market') Square is the place to start an exploration of the Old City. Start with the square itself, with its Renaissance-style fountains, before touring the 16th century Bandinelli Palace, and the elegantly simple Black House, along with a visit the Sobieski Palace (home to a 17th century Polish monarch). If the square reminds you of Italy, that's no coincidence. It was rebuilt in the 16th century with Italian expertise (and money) brought in to help fireproof the new design, and became the playground for Lviv's elite for centuries.

5. Armenian Cathedral: A Stunning Survival of a Turbulent History

Although it's a long way from the Caucasus, Lviv has long had connections to Armenia thanks to a sizable trading community. In the 14th century, Armenian merchants got together to fund a church, which was steadily expanded into a cathedral. However, the community suffered disaster under Stalin and was almost wiped out. But the Armenians have started to return and the cathedral has been restored. Nowadays, its colorful interior and graceful composition is a breathtaking sight, located just a few hundred meters from Rynok Square.

Where to Eat in Lviv

For authentic Ukrainian cuisine, like a hearty bowl of bohrach or banosh, check out Trapezna Idey. Mains cost from between ₴50-100.

When to visit Lviv

Lviv in May
Estimated hotel price
$25
1 night at 3-star hotel
Lviv in May
Estimated hotel price
$25
1 night at 3-star hotel

The best time to visit Lviv is April to October, especially if you prefer the warmer weather, when the spring turns to summer and the temperatures rise to around 75 - 84.

Data provided by weatherbase
Temperatures
Temperatures
Average
Celcius (°C)
Data provided by weatherbase

How to Get to Lviv

Plane

International travelers will land at the Lviv International Airport (LWO), a mere 4.3 miles from the city center. From here, take a taxi for ₴100 or a mini-bus for ₴4.

Train

There are multiple domestic train routes heading into Lviv from Kiev, Vinnitsa, and Odessa using the Intercity +, a high-speed train.

Car

Coming in from Warsaw will require a border crossing; use the DK17 to get into Ukraine and continue on. Coming from Kiev, use the Е40 and М06.

Bus

To get from cities like Warsaw to Lviv, use companies like Flixbus or Autokar Polska. Fares vary based on day of travel but start at around ₴382.

Airlines serving Lviv

Lufthansa
Good (1,359 reviews)
Turkish Airlines
Good (1,070 reviews)
Austrian Airlines
Good (195 reviews)
Singapore Airlines
Good (151 reviews)
LOT
Good (253 reviews)
Pegasus Airlines
Good (172 reviews)
airBaltic
Good (27 reviews)

Where to stay in Lviv

There's no place better for a luxury stay than the Grand Hotel. Modest accommodation can be found at Hotel Volter, and budget travelers will love Coffee Home Hostel.

Popular neighbourhoods in Lviv

Frankivskyi District - this district was named after writer and social activist Ivan Franko. Besides its historical architecture, Frankivskyi has parks, the Altai lake, and residential areas.

Shevchenkivskyi District - named after the great Ukrainian poet Taras Shevchenko, this district has many Soviet-style apartment blocks, and is close to the Lviv National Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre.

Lychakivskyi District - this eastern neighborhood is home to many churches, buildings, and the picturesque Pogulyanka Park, perfect for summer picnics!

Where to stay in popular areas of Lviv

Most booked hotels in Lviv

Atlas Deluxe
Excellent (9.1, Excellent reviews)
$94+
Taurus Hotel & Spa
Excellent (8.8, Excellent reviews)
$46+
Hotel Cisar
Good (7.9, Good reviews)
$32+
See all hotels

How to Get Around Lviv

Public Transportation

Locals use a combination of mini-buses, trams, and trolleybuses. The former costs ₴4 and the latter two cost ₴2.

Taxi

Taxis are plentiful in Lviv but there are a couple of things to keep in mind. Try and agree on a fixed price before you get in. If the taxi is metered, try asking the driver to run the meter rather than negotiating a fixed price. On average, fares start at a flat rate of ₴35 and it's ₴3 per mile thereafter. If you call and book a taxi ahead of your journey the fare will be cheaper than hailing one from the street.

Car

Rent a car in Lviv from well-known providers like Budget and Avis. Rates start at ₴604 a day for a standard, 4-door compact car.

The Cost of Living in Lviv

There are multiple malls in Lviv. Take your pick from among the Dobrobut Shopping Centre, Magnus Shopping Center, or King Cross Leopolis and Auchan Hypermarket, to name a few.

Groceries and Other

A quart of milk costs ₴17 and a dozen eggs will cost you approximately ₴24.

Cheap meal
$4.19
A pair of jeans
$84.02
Single public transport ticket
$0.22
Cappuccino
$1.34
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