Origin of Poltava
According to archaeological evidence, Poltava was founded in the 8th-9th century. But the first documented evidence is from 1174, when the settlement was known as Ltava.
At that time, it was ruled by the Lithuanian Princedom. Destroyed by the Tatars in the early 13th century, it was the center of the Cossack regiment by the 17th century.
According to Lyublin union of 1569, Poltava was ruled by Poland. In the chronicle of 1641, it was called a town. In the 17th century, the Magdeburg Law was adopted in Poltava.
The Battle of Poltava
In 1709, Peter I the Great defeated Charles XII of Sweden in the Battle of Poltava. Charles XII besieged the town for three months before the battle.
After the Northern War was over, Poltava became famous all over the Russian Empire as the town of Russian glory. It was growing rapidly and soon became one of the main trade and handicraft centers in the region.
More Historical Facts…
The Russian Empire times
In 1803-1805, the center of Poltava was designed and constructed. It was a unique ensemble with a round square - the beginning of 8 radial streets.
In 1811, the monument “Glory” was erected in the middle of the square to commemorate the anniversary of Russian army’s victory over Sweden.
Poltava was rich in its historical heritage. It became the center of cultural and spiritual life of Ukraine.
In 1891, the building of the museum of local study was constructed in the Ukrainian baroque style.
In 1909, in honor of the 200th anniversary of Poltava battle, the monument to glorious defenders of Poltava was opened.
The Soviet period
During the World War II, a lot of cultural and historical monuments were destroyed.
In the 1950s, after the war, Poltava was reconstructed. In 1958, the theater named after Nikolai Gogol was built.
In 1962, the first trolleybuses appeared on Poltava streets. In 1964, the museum of local study was rebuilt because it had been destroyed during the war.
When Ukraine became independent, Poltava was an important cultural and historical center of the region.
Nowadays, it is the focus of a fertile agricultural region and has a range of industries related to agriculture.
Textile and clothing industries include the largest cotton mill in Ukraine.
Poltava has a number of educational institutions: teacher-training, medical, agricultural, and agricultural-engineering institutes, several research establishments.
The Museum of Kotlyarevsky
The Monastery of the Holy Cross. This monastery was founded on the bank of the Vorskla River by means of the lower middle class in 1650. The cathedral (1699-1709) is the only Ukrainian seven-headed Baroque church survived to this day.
The four-storey late Baroque bell tower (1786) has a height of 43 meters. The complex includes a one-dome Trinity Church (1750) and Semenovskaya Church (1887).
During the war with Swedes, it was the headquarters of Charles XII. In the first half of the 20th century, the monastery was closed, its buildings were used by NKVD as a juvenile prison, then as a boarding school. The complex was returned to believers in 1991. Sverdlov Street, 2-a.
The Cathedral of the Assumption. It is the first stone building in Poltava. The cathedral was built on the site of a wooden church, which stood at Veche square of Poltava fortress on Ivanova Gora (Mount).
The bell tower (44 meters) had the bell “Kizi-kermen” cast from Turkish cannons at the end of the 18th century. Today, this bell is in the collection of the local history museum.
In 1934, the cathedral was destroyed by the Bolsheviks, but the bell tower survived. In 1999-2007, the cathedral was rebuilt and returned to the Orthodox church. Sobornaya Square, 3.
The Church of the Savior. It is one of the oldest churches in the city, an example of traditional Ukrainian architecture. The foundation date is unknown.
The official date is 1705, when the church was built by means of the Colonel Ivan Iskra as a separate wooden church on the site of a burnt-out church of the Transfiguration.
According to legend, after his victory over the Swedes at Poltava battle field, Peter I, resting in the house located next to the church, prayed there thanking for the salvation of the city.
In 1845, a stone pavilion was constructed over the church, and, two years later, a small stone bell tower was built. In 1849, a monument was erected next to the resting place of Peter I. Oktyabrskaya Street, 10.
Panteleimonovskaya Church. The Church of St. Martyr and Healer Panteleimon is located in Kotlyarevsky Park. In the past, the territory of the park was the city cemetery.
The cemetery had the Church of All Saints. At the end of the 19th century, the priest Gapon served there. He was an organizer of the mass rally of workers in the “Bloody Sunday” day.
In Soviet times, the church was destroyed. In 1999, the construction of the church of St. Panteleimon began nearby. It was opened in 2000. Frunze Street, 64.
The Church of Vera, Nadezhda and Lubov. The church in honor of the martyrs Vera, Nadezhda and Lubov, and their mother Sophia, was constructed on the initiative of local authorities and women’s religious community of Poltava in 2002. Pervomaisky Avenue, 23.
The Church of St. Sampson Strannopriimets. It is located at the Swedish Grave. It was built to commemorate the victory of the Russian army over the Swedes in 1852. In 1893-1895, the church was reconstructed. Shvedskaya Mogila Street, 32.
Makarievsky Cathedral. Makarievskaya church was built on the outskirts of the town in the beginning of the 20th century. Several restorations didn’t change its original form. The interior has the paintings of the early 20th century. Lyalya Ubiyvovk Street, 2a.
The Museum of Local History
Poltava city architecture
The Museum of Local History. The museum can be found in a house built by the architect Vladimir Krichevsky in the Art Nouveau style with some elements of Ukrainian folk style (this fact angered the Emperor Nicholas II).
The museum has more than 300 thousand exhibits. Various works of ancient and oriental art, ancient Egypt collection, the Cossacks relics are the most interesting exhibits. Konstitutsiya Street, 2. Opening hours: 9:00-16:00, day off - Wednesday.
The Field of the Battle of Poltava. This museum was opened to mark the 200th anniversary of the victory of the Russian army over the Swedes in 1909. The museum is located at the Poltava battlefield near the grave of the Russian soldiers.
The collection consists of more than eight thousand exhibits: works of art, weapons, decorations, flags, uniforms and equipment of the Russian and Swedish armies, personal belongings of Peter I and his companions. Also, there is a diorama of the Poltava battle.
The monument to Peter I, Sampson Strannopriimets Church, the Grave of Russian soldiers, the Cross on the Grave of Swedish soldiers, and the monument to Swedes from Russians are located nearby.
One of the redoubts is restored. It is located on the opposite side of the road; the others are marked by memorable signs. Shvedskaya Mogila Street, 32. Opening hours: 9:00-16:30.
The Museum of Kotlyarevsky. The manor of the eminent writer I. Kotlyarevsky was restored in 1969 in accordance with a drawing made by T. Shevchenko in 1845. Kotlyarevsky lived in Poltava most of his life. In this house he created most of his works, in particular, the famous “Aeneid”.
The atmosphere of the 19th century is recreated inside the house. It stores personal belongings of the writer, awards, handwritten pages of his works and the first editions of his books. Sobornaya Square, 3. Opening hours: 9:00-17:00, day off - Monday.
The Museum of Long-Range Aviation. The museum of Strategic Air Force is located on the territory of Poltava military airfield. The exhibition has the world’s largest strategic bomber Tu-160, the only one remained in Ukraine. It is the main attraction of the museum.
Other exhibits: Su-15, Tu-95MS, Tu-22KD, Tu-134UBL, Tu-22M2, Tu-22M3, Tu-16, AN-26. Tours must be arranged in advance. P. Yurchenko Street. Opening hours: 9:00-17:00, days off - Monday, Tuesday. Contact phone: +380 532 54 26 86.
The Museum of Panas Mirny. Poltava Literary and Memorial Museum is located on the outskirts of the city.
In 1903, the writer Panas Mirny bought a small one-storey house there. He lived in it for 17 years and was visited by Lesya Ukrainka, Olena Pchilka, M. Kotsyubinsky, V. Stefanik, M. Zankovetskaya and N. Lysenko.
In 1940, the museum was opened in the house. Seven rooms of the museum show the collection of over 150 hand-writings of Panas Mirny and his brother I. Bilyk, about 1000 personal belongings of the family of the writer, books, documents and photos.
In 1951, the monument to Panas Mirny was erected in the courtyard of the house. Panas Mirny Street, 56. Opening hours: 9:00-17:00, day off - Friday.
The Museum of Art. The museum is housed in a new building of the Art Gallery. The first art gallery was opened by the Ukrainian scientist-archaeologist M. Rudynsky on the basis of the collection given to him by artist N. Yaroshenko in 1919.
Today, the collection included works of I. Shishkin, V. Polenov, V. Makovsky, I. Repin, V. Maximov and others.
Western European paintings are presented by works of D. Tiepolo, P. Rubens, M. Hondekuter, A. Ostade, V. Lebren and others. Frunze Street, 5. Opening hours: 10:00-18:00, day off - Monday.
The Monument to Dumplings (Galushki). The monument to Poltava dumplings, placed next to the viewpoint on Ivanova Gora, is one of the symbols of Poltava. The monument, opened in 2006, was dedicated to the birthday of the writer Nikolai Gogol.
Initially, the monument was installed near the Cathedral of the Assumption, but at the request of the believers it was moved closer to the restaurant “Ivanova Gora”. Near the monument, each year in early June, the festival of Poltava dumplings is being held. Sobornaya Square.
The Monument to the Ukrainian Cossacks. The monument to the Cossack glory was opened in 1994. It is devoted to the Ukrainian Cossacks killed in the Battle of Poltava. Panyansky Boulevard.
The Monument to the Swedes from Russians. The monument to Swedish soldiers killed in the Battle of Poltava was opened in 1909 on the initiative of the Russian public in recognition of the valor and courage of soldiers of the army of Carl XII.
The height of the monument is about 9 meters. The monument is located at the entrance to Poltava from Okhtyrka. Zinkovskaya Street, Swedish Grave.
The Monument to Dumplings (Galushki)
Taras Shevchenko monument
Other places of interest
The Round Square. The central area of Poltava is a ring with Korpusny garden and the monument marking the 100th anniversary of the victory over the Swedes.
According to legend, at this place, Peter I met with Poltava defenders. The area is a popular walking place. Zhovtneva Street.
Ivanova Gora (Mount). This place is the historic center of Poltava. It offers the best views of the city.
More than eleven centuries ago, a fortified outpost of the ancient town of Ltava was standing on this hill.
Later, an earthen fort of Poltava town was constructed there. In the 18th century, it stopped the advance of the Swedes for three months until the army of Peter I finally came to the area. Sobornaya Square.
The building of the former Peasants Bank. The most elegant building in Poltava was built in the early 20th century for the Peasants Land Bank which was granting long-term loans to peasants for the purchase of land from nobles.
The architect A. Kobelev designed a building which is considered one of the best examples of Ukrainian modernism now.
Multicolored mosaic gives the house especially scenic view. The building was damaged in the Second World War, it was restored in 1948. Oktyabrskaya Street, 39.
The system of Poltava catacombs - a network of underground tunnels connecting various parts of the old town - is also among the main attractions of Poltava.
Hotel “Palazzo”. The hotel is conveniently located at the intersection of two main streets - Gogol and Pushkin streets, close to the main historical and architectural attractions of Poltava.
The main services: sauna, gym, massage, restaurant (European cuisine), bar, night club, billiards, Wi-Fi, conference hall, business center, laundry, excursions, parking. Gogol Street, 33. Contact phones: +380 532 61 12 05, +380 532 61 12 10.
Hotel “Gallery”. This hotel is located in the historical, cultural and business center. It was opened in September 1999.
The main services: restaurant, bar, billiards, sauna, conference hall, gym, laundry, Wi-Fi, underground parking. Frunze Street, 7. Contact phones: +380 532 56 16 66, +380 532 56 16 97.
Hotel “Kiev”. This former main hotel of Poltava was reconstructed in 1995.
The main services: restaurant, conference hall, pool, billiards, parking. Sennaya Street, 2/49. Contact phone: +380 5322 2 42 86.
Hotel “Ukraine”. The hotel, reconstructed in 1997, is located in the very center.
The main services: cafe-bar, conference hall, Internet, laundry, parking. Oktyabrskaya Street, 41-a. Contact phone: +380 5322 24 343.
Hotel “Alleya Grand”. It is a new modern hotel located near the center, close to the main historical, entertainment and sporting facilities. Korpusny garden, a place of recreation of Poltava visitors and residents, is located nearby.
The main services: restaurant, bar, Wi-Fi, conference hall, business center, laundry, airline booking, taxi, parking. Oktyabrskaya Street, 57. Contact phone: +380 532 57 97 37.
Mini-hotel “Mimino”. This hotel, located close to the center, was opened in 2009.
The main services: restaurant (traditional Georgian cuisine), Wi-Fi, parking. Biryuzov Street, 15. Contact phone: +380 532 50 98 97.
Hotel “Vivat Province”. This recreational complex is located on the outskirts, in the center of the Poltava battlefield.
The main services: restaurant (European and Ukrainian cuisine), brewery, banya (bathhouse), conference hall, Wi-Fi, safe, tennis court, fishing, horseback riding, excursions, parking. Pobyvanka village, Zenkovskaya Street, 3-a. Contact phones: +380 532 65 55 56, +380 532 55 93 53.
Motel “Muhomor”. It is a hotel and restaurant complex located on the outskirts of Poltava in the Kharkov direction.
The main services: cafe-bar, banya (bathhouse), billiards, hookah room, karaoke, Wi-Fi, parking. Kharkov Highway, 1. Contact phone: +380 532 69 33 95.