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Ten little-known amazing facts about Kharkov (Kharkiv)

Kharkov (Kharkiv) isn’t just the scientific and industrial center of Ukraine. It is also one of the biggest cities with developed infrastructure in the eastern part of the country. Many amazing, little-known facts about Kharkov make this city even more attractive for the visitors.

Kharkov was the first capital city of Ukraine

Kharkov is known as the first capital city of Ukraine. It was Ukraine’s capital in 1943 and today it is likely to receive this title once more. Kharkov is developing at a very fast pace. It is growing in terms of the transport system, real estate market, and various businesses and enterprises. Many people call Kharkov the "Silicon Valley" of Europe , because of its high number of IT companies.  

The largest market in Eastern Europe

Barabashovo (informal barapashka, baraban, barik) is the largest market not only in Ukraine, but also in the entire Eastern Europe. Barabashovo is the 14th largest market in the world. Its area is equal to 75 hectares. Istanbul has direct flights to Kharkov everyday and lots of traders travel to and from Kharkov Barabashovo Market throughout the year. 

The first skyscraper in the USSR

Today the  Gosprom Building doesn’t look like a skyscraper if we compare it to the newer tall buildings in the city. However, in 1955 this 65 meter building was crowned with one of the first TV towers in the USSR, and its total height reached 108 meters. Gosprom was also the first multi-storey reinforced concrete building built during the USSR existence.

Three Nobel Prize winners lived and worked in Kharkov

Three scientists and Nobel Prize winners ( Ilya Mechnikov - Biologist ; Lev Landau - Physicist ; and  Saimon Kuznets - Economist ) all lived and worked in Kharkov.

Ludmila Gurchenko’s birth place

One of the greatest theatre and cinema actresses of USSR and Russia, Ludmila Gurchenko, was born in our city, Kharkov.

The oldest Zoo in Ukraine

National Zoo, located in Shevchenko Garden (Sumskaya Street) is the oldest Zoo in Ukraine. It is also the third oldest zoo in the entire Russian Empire. 

The biggest city on the 50th parallel

Kharkov is located right on the 50th geographical parallel. A memorial sign was put in Shevchenko Garden in recognition of this fact. Some other cities – Krakow, Ust-Kamenogorsk, Prague, and Mainz – are also located on this parallel, but Kharkov is the largest of these cities. 

Еuro 2012 Football Championship 

Kharkov was one of the cities to accept UEFA EURO 2012™ Poland-Ukraine (14th European Soccer Championship 2012). We were well prepared for that grand event. The airport was able to accept three times more traffic, the fan zone accommodated 750 thousand fans, and our guests from Holland were amazed by our people's hospitality and friendliness. The championship itself had some unpleasant surprises. For example, journalists have mentioned that hotel prices in Poland during the championship were even higher than those in London during the 2012 Olympic Games. In our city, on the other hand, Kharkov apartments for rent didn’t become more expensive so drastically, with room rental market dominated by the old and well-recognized rental companies such as In fact Kharkov For Rent had over 110 Dutch Fans staying in their apartment rentals in Kharkov for the duration of the tournament . In total 15,000 Dutch Fans from The Netherlands came and stayed in Kharkov. The Fan Zone in Freedom Square was full of " Orange" dressed supporters everyday. The atmosphere during the Euro 2012 competition was amazing and it really put Kharkov on the European map as an ideal location for sports tournaments.  New rental agents sprung in the city during the championship, but their room prices were sky high. As a result, they were unable to get any customers and destroyed their own reputation. Kharkov For Rent is owned by an English/Ukrainian partnership and they are able to capitalise on their many years of experience to grow from this new increase in Western European Sports market. 

The beginning of the nuclear epoch

The Worlds first atom was split was performed in Kharkov in 1932. Kharkov had many of the Worlds top Scientists. 

The largest square in Ukraine

Freedom Square is the largest square in Ukraine (11.9 hectares). It is also the 4th largest square in Europe, and the 14th in the entire world.

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