Come to Kyiv and visit the city's most beautiful and famous landmark, the 11th-century Saint Sophia's Cathedral (or Holy Sophia Cathedral). The cathedral is designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site, and its golden cupolas dominate Kyiv's skyline. Be awestruck by the stunning Byzantine and Ukrainian Baroque architecture of Saint Sophia. Step inside and discover one of the most impressive displays of mosaics and frescoes by Byzantine masters in all of Europe.
Saint Sophia Cathedral: Church of the Holy Wisdom
The Holy Sophia Cathedral stands as one of Europe's most significant edifices representing Eastern Christian culture in the 11th century. Founded in 1037 by Yaroslav the Wise (the Grand Prince of Rus'), Saint Sophia's Cathedral took two decades to complete. Saint Sophia then acted as a significant cultural and political center of Kievan Rus, used when anointing Kievan princes, when receiving foreign ambassadors, and as a burial place for Kievan rulers. As guests explore the Holy Sophia Cathedral, they will discover a glorious union of architecture and symbolic imagery. Gaze heavenwards to the cathedral's golden domes, representing Christ crowned by his 12 Apostles. Follow biblical scenes unusually presented beside secular imagery in the stunning ancient frescoes adorning the cathedral walls, pillars and vaults. Discover 11th-century graffiti and how it provides important insight into the cathedral's fascinating story.