A Ukrainian flag. Photo by Mathias P.R. Reding from Pexels

Interesting facts about Ukraine

What is Ukraine famous for?

Ukraine is much more than just this crisis 

The lives of families living in Ukraine have been turned upside down as the crisis continues to escalate.

You may have seen horrible images and stories coming from Ukraine on the news, but Ukraine is much more than just this crisis. It has a rich history and has many unique characteristics. Read on to discover more facts about Ukraine.

Our top 10 interesting facts about Ukraine:

1. Ukraine is the second largest country in Europe in terms of total area– spanning 603.55 square km (or 233 square miles – twice the size of Italy!)

2. UNESCO World Heritage Sites designate some of the most important parts of the world and Ukraine is lucky enough to be home to seven, including the Saint-Sophia Cathedral in the capital city of Kyiv.

3.Although when asked to think of a Ukrainian food, many people are likely to say the humble chicken kiev (which actually was probably not invented in Ukraine at all), the national Ukrainian dish is actually borscht, a distinctive red soup made from beetroot and beef.

4. The official language of Ukraine is of course Ukrainian, however, there are 20 different languages spoken in Ukraine. 18% of Ukrainians are English speakers.

5. Ukraine is home to one of our favourite holiday pastimes – Easter eggs! Originally coloured and patterned using wax and dye, we have Ukraine to thank for our favourite decorative treat.

Easter Eggs - Photo by Polina Zimmerman from Pexels
Photo by Polina Zimmerman from Pexels

6. Standing at 2,061 metres, Mount Hoverla, part of the Carpathian Mountains which fall into Western Ukraine, is the tallest peak in Ukraine and a popular site for extreme sports.

7. Ukraine is the world’s largest producer of sunflower seeds, and across every part of Ukraine, you’ll see stunning fields of these yellow blooms – so many that they’d cover the entire of Slovenia if you uprooted them!

8. Ukraine is often called the “Breadbasket of Europe” because it boasts the ideal conditions for growing wheat, and is a major producer of the stuff.

9. One of the most unique tourist attractions in Ukraine is the so-called ‘Tunnel of Love’. A section of industrial railway that is surrounded by stunning greenery, it’s a favourite for couples who are looking for a romantic walk.

10. Ukraine is bordered to the south by the Black Sea, and here they have control over Zymiinyi Island, known commonly as Snake Island due to the residents. It’s the only natural home of the critically endangered Golden Lancehead Pit Viper, which were trapped on the island in the last Ice Age.

Kyiv monument
Monument in Kyiv - Photo by Petkevich Evgeniy from Pexels

How to help Ukraine

Ukraine is an amazing country, and the above facts remind us of what is at risk during this unfolding crisis.

But as well as the natural beauty and culture at risk, over 44 million people call this country their home. Already, more than 5 million people have fled their homes to escape conflict in Ukraine. Leaving behind jobs, belongings and loved ones; they now face an uncertain future.

Homes have been destroyed or are unsafe to live in. Critical infrastructure such as health facilities, water supplies and schools have also been damaged or destroyed.

That’s why we’re asking for your support to save lives and protect children. We’re in Eastern Europe right now, responding to the urgent needs of children and families who have been forced to flee their homes.

With your help, we can act fast to save lives. 

World Vision UK is a member of the DEC. Right now, DEC charities are in Ukraine and neighbouring countries meeting the needs of all refugees and displaced people:

  • £30 could provide essential hygiene supplies for three people for a month
  • £50 could provide blankets for four families
  • £100 could provide emergency food for two families for a month

Learn more