Ukraine: Odessa – Around the City
Odessa is unlike any other city in Ukraine – a historic Black Sea port town with its own culture, way of speaking, customs, art, and attitude. The modern Odesa was founded in 1794 by the decree of Empress Catherine the Great of Russia as a “Window to Europe”. It’s relatively compact center is packed with historic buildings resembling French and Italian architecture, with monuments and museums of all sorts. It’s equally packed with bars and restaurants and strip joints and night clubs. Potemkin Staircase leads up from the Port of Odessa to the Primoskiy Boulevard monument of Duke de Richelieu (the first city mayor and governor of Odessa), and further to the center of the city (at the right angle, it appears that the Duke has a hard-on rather then a piece of paper in his hands). Other attractions include Vorontsov Palace, Opera Theater (next post), the Colonnade, House with One Wall, Fine Arts Museum, Archaelogy Museum, snow white City Hall, Museum of Smuggling, and much much more. And the atmospheric the famous Derybasivska Street is where all the nightlife happens. Oh and not to forget – you must sit on the monument to the 12th Chair from the Ilf & Petrov nobel “12 Chairs”. Also not to be missed is the Odessa National Academic Theatre of Opera and Ballet is the second most important historic landmark in the city after the Potemkin Stairs. Originally built in 1810, it was rebuilt after the fire in 1887 in luxurious rococo style and a horseshoe building designed to provide incredible acoustics that even a whisper can be equally heard throughout the theater.