Tuesday, June 9, 2015

The best of Ukrainian summer

Kharkiv summers are everything a person could want from summer.

Flowers and sunshine.

Enough heat to force a person into the refuge of deliciously air-conditioned coffee shops or grab beer/kvass from street vendors under sun umbrellas.

Холодные напитки = cold drinks.

Afternoons with ominously low grey skies, only moments away from hail and thunderstorms.

Long picnics in the countryside with homemade salads, open-faced sandwiches, and watermelon.

Parks filled with swimmers and sunbathers and students.

Markets stuffed with everything fresh that you could ever want.

This was 150 uah... at the time, about $20 USD.
Tis the season of slightly-sketchy watermelon vendors.

Summer puts everyone into a good mood- even the scowling metro ladies tone it down a little during this season. (Hint: if you don't have an air conditioner, the metro is the best place to be during a hot day.) I absolutely loved summer in Kharkiv!

Here, from the archives, is a little taste of what Ukrainian summer is like. Enjoy!!



На кухне 5: Mealtime in our original Ukrainian kitchen. Oh, the heat!

River picnic: Our first time out in the countryside, complete with mud-scrubbing, Crimean wine, and the origins of Jabba the Hutt.


Grigorovski forest: A short walk through the best forest ever.

Orange, orange, orange: Remember Euro2012?


Independence!- for Kharkov, Ukraine, and Belgium: In which we miss a Verka Serduchka concert (noooo!!!) and see a swimming cat.

Guns, heat, and storms: On surviving a Kharkiv rainstorm.




Summer approaches: Now is not the time to work ; )


Parks, apartments, go carts, and pho: Summertime apartment hunting and how to race a go-cart without a seatbelt.

Summer in the city: My favorite summer entry of them all! 


Sasha. Aka "the giant wild pig in the driveway".

Playing tourist: Odin the reindeer herder visits us in Kharkiv.

Summer's last hurrah: Ukrainian Independence Day + Kharkiv City Day.


На кухне: Summer Recipes: Summer soup and other goodies.

A summer's worth of street art: Ray Charles, Darth Vader, tanks of peace, and rabbits on drugs.



May flowers: Summer is already here!


Picnic: In which we make porridge in a pot over the campfire and defy a swimming ban.

Snapshots of Ukrainian Life, Part 20: Written just a few weeks before we leave Ukraine.

If you've been through a Ukrainian summer or two, what was it like? Leave me a comment below with your best memories! : )


  1. Beautiful photos! I left Kharkiv forever 17 years ago but this post made me feel nostalgic.

    1. Glad you enjoyed them, Clarissa : ) I bet a few of the landmarks haven't changed much since you last saw them!