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St. Sophia's Cathedral, Kyiv (Kiev)

Must see · World heritage site · Church · Religious Site
Boasting an array of cupolas and a richly decorated interior, St. Sophia's Cathedral stands as Kiev's premier and oldest church, as well as a famous symbol of the city. Visit the cathedral, begun in the year 1037 as a tribute to a military victory, and marvel at its 13 Orthodox-style cupolas, the highest of which stands at 29 m (94 ft). Take time to enter the building and admire its complement of intricate frescoes, paintings, and decorations, many dating back to its earliest days and of great importance in Kiev's religious life. You'll find, among others, ornate portraits of founding fathers of the church, angels, and St. Sophia herself within, accented with shimmering gold paint and tiles. Don't miss seeing the tomb of Yaroslavl the Wise, the man who first commissioned the building's construction. Plan to visit St. Sophia's Cathedral and other customer-reviewed, writer-recommended Kyiv (Kiev) attractions using our Kyiv (Kiev) online holiday planner.
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St. Sophia's Cathedral reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
2,288 reviews
  • and one of the main attractions not to be missed. Beautiful architecture although much of the church has been restorated.  more »
  • I missed it last time I visited, so I'm happy I finally got to see it. It's beautiful on the outside, but the paintings inside are amazing. It's unlike any other church I've seen. Definitely check...  more »
  • The center of Kyiv, Sophia is a must! Some of the frescos are amazing...and be sure to look for the graffiti written on the walls!!!!!! Once you understand where Sophia is located, you'll not be lost....  more »
  • I headed over to St. Sophia’s Cathedral, which was massive and enchanting, but also super dark, cold and fascinating. The nuns were everywhere to be found and the big entrance was really lovely, but the star of the show is the giant egg display upstairs. It’s a 15,000 painted egg mosaic made in about 10 years ago. The coolest part was that the artist enlisted the help of schoolchildren in order to paint all the eggs needed for the project.
  • I went on a tour with an amazing sweet Kate Dobromishev, she works as a private guide in Guide me UA. It was more convenient for me to take one English-speaking guide to visit all the temples and sights of Kiev, and the Cathedral of St. Sophia as well. But here we stayed for 1 hour or even longer, as this is the oldest temple in Kiev, and inside there are a lot of interesting things to see. Must visit in Kiev, you will not regret it.
  • Visited during winter 2020. Tickets include 3 different musuems. Best to buy the tickets that include the golden gate as well for full value. Beautiful structure, friendly staff who speak English and happy to explain the history of the place. Must visit when in kyiv.
  • It was amazing. This area consists of three parts - territory, bell tower and the kathedral. Bell tower is so tall and tiring to climb but at the end of it you ll find a really good scenery. The kathedral has a nice architectural structures both inside and outside. Definitely you should visit it.
  • Beautiful and well preserved historic church. A must see if you are in Kiev. I was really impressed with it's incredible history

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