Why Ukraine Is A Great Solo Female Travel Destination


As a woman, before choosing any travel destination, I always think if a place is safe for me to visit. This is a big issue even in the 21st century because while in many countries women and men have equal rights, there are still some places that can be very unwelcome or even unsafe for solo female travellers.

Some people would say that this is not a big issue and if the place is unsafe it is unsafe not just for women but for men as well. Maybe in some cases that is true, but there are so many examples, horrifying examples that show women have to be more cautious travellers than men. In the end of 2018 the world was shocked by the news of two Scandanavian girls who were beheaded in Morocco, a country that was considered fairly safe.

One of the great destinations that I consider to be great for female solo travellers is Ukraine. And while there is an old conflict in the east with Russia that started in 2014, it is isolated and the rest of the country is safe for people to go about their daily life.

Women in Ukraine are still considered the weaker sex and it reflects in Ukrainian’s behaivor. If you are in a group with Ukrainian men you can expect them to open doors in front of you, carry your heavy bags, and pay the bill if you are on a date.

There are a few underrated places in Ukraine that can be attractive for different types of solo female travellers.

  1. City breaks (Lviv, Kyiv, Odesa)
  2. Camping and hiking (Kherson region, Carpathians)
  3. Extreme sports and winter sports lovers (Bukovel {ski, snowboarding}, Vorokhta{rafting, kayaking})

City Breaks

Lavra church kyiv

For those female solo travellers to Ukraine who prefer city breaks I would recommend visiting the three most popular cities in the country for tourists.



Lviv is the cultural capital of Ukraine and I do recommend starting with this city. There is an international airport in Lviv, so it is quite easy to get here from many places in Europe. This city is aiming to be the biggest tourist destination in the country, but unfortunately, since Ukraine is such an underrated tourist destination, there are many people who have never heard of this place before.

The city can be separated into two parts: the beautiful old town that is located in the center of the city and the ugly Soviet Union boxes that were built on the outskirts of the city.

The old town is a typical old European town with amazing architecture, thin cobblestone streets, and many cute cafes and restaurants all over the place.

Alona Tiunina from Jet Set Together has written a great guide to Lviv with tons of things to do. Start with visiting all the historical themed restaurants, to exploring Lviv dungeons, unique museums and castles around the city.



Kyiv is the actual capital of the country. It is a completely different place to what you would see in Lviv. Kyiv is a more industrial and less romantic city but there are some hidden gems that you should visit in Kyiv.

There is the statue of The Motherland, the pride of (many) Ukrainian people. There are a few old monasteries, one of which was built in the caves along the Dnipro, there is Maidan, the main square of Kyiv where a revolution started in 2014, and many other places. Although Kyiv is a very spread out city, you can visit all the most important places by just walking from one to another.

This city is not very touristic, but there are more foreigners than anywhere else, although most of them are business travellers.

To get to Kyiv you can go by flying or taking a train. My advice if you are coming from Lviv to Kyiv or opposite then just take the train.

Between these two cities there are many convenient trains. For Kyiv – Odesa I say you should fly. The trains on this route are much older and take way longer than just taking domestic flights. For Lviv – Odesa, you should definitely go by plane, since the train will take no less than 12 hours.


Odesa is a mix between Lviv and Kyiv. It has beautiful architecture, walking streets, cute cafes on every corner, and street musicians. And at the same time it is a busy city with many industrial sights. But don’t forget that Odesa lays on the Black sea, and that gives it a special charm.

Odesa, like Lviv and Kyiv, has its own long history with its heroes, its victories and its loses. It was founded by the Russian Empress Catherine the Great. One of the most famous people that lived in Odesa was Sonia The Golden Hand, a woman who was very smart and I must say sneaky. She of course was a criminal, but the way she organized her robberies was very original, almost theatrical and mystical. And this is what you can say about Odesa, that it is theatrical and mystical.

Three of these cities would be a great city break for solo female travelers, a safe, cheap, new destination that you never planned to visit.

Camping and hiking (Kherson region, Carpathians)

For those who are sick of cities and want to get closer to nature there are a few amazing places in Ukraine that you can visit even if you are travelling solo.

Kherson Region


One of the places that I recently traveled to myself was Kherson. It is a region that lies in the south-east of Ukraine and has access to the Black Sea and the Azov Sea. Here the land doesn’t have thick forests or tall mountains, but it has some of the most unique locations for Ukraine.

One of such locations is the amazing Pink Lake. This is a marvelous place with unreal colors, almost like from another world. Until I saw the Pink Lake myself I could not believe that the photos from there are real and not photoshopped.

And then there is the uninhabited island Dzharylhach with white sand beaches, mineral lakes, a beautiful tall lighthouse and frequent guests – dolphins. Here you can live in a tent for as long you want away from civilization.

Let’s also not forget about the largest steppe reservation in Europe, “Askania-Nova” with plenty of wild animals. The place offers safaris through the wild virgin steppes among saiga antelopes, zebras, bisons, Przewalski horses, and many other animals.


The Ukrainian Carpathians are a great place for anyone who loves hiking and camping. There are many trails and spots that you can explore as a solo female traveller.

Among the Ukrainian Carpathians there are many cute villages where any traveller will be welcomed. A few years ago this part of Ukraine started to develop more tourist’s trailas and attractions. This action of course helped to bring tourists to this part of the country, although the tourists are coming just from a few European countries, since the government doesn’t really promote Ukraine as a great tourist destination. Nevertheless, the Ukrainian Carpathians are a pretty comfortable place to travel to. You can easily get to any mountain village by train or bus from Ivano-Frankivsk or Lviv.

For those who are keen on hiking, there is Hoverla, the tallest mountain in Ukraine that you easily can hike up.

Extreme sports and winter sports lovers (Bukovel {ski, snowboarding}, Vorokhta{rafting, kayaking})

The Ukrainian Carpathians are extremely beautiful. They have everything: tall mountains, deep rivers that cut throughout the rock, thick forests, and flower fields. All of this gives the opportunity to do different kinds of activities and sports.

In summer tourists go to the Carpathians for kayaking and rafting. Due to a large number of mountain rivers, it is possible to start as a beginner on easy and safe rivers and advance to the difficult and extremely fast rivers that require knowledge and muscle memory. I do recommend visiting Vorokhta village; there you will find a very good tourist base with rafting and kayaking specialists.

In the winter there is of course skiing and snowboarding. All over the Carpathians there are many tracks for different levels and it is very easy to find everything you need to try yourself in any of these activities. All the equipment you might need you can rent in any village that has ski tracks. If you are a female solo traveler you might try visiting Bukovel. It is an extremely safe and fun place, especially in winter. There are many places for renting equipment and hiring an instructor if you need one. There are also many hotels with saunas and chany (traditional Ukrainian hot tub).

There are many reasons to explore Ukraine and open this country to yourself. In the world of tourism it is an undiscovered destination with beautiful locations, many attractions, fun activities and to top it off, it is quite cheap (well, some people would say very cheap). And you might think that because this is Eastern Europe it’s not safe for women, but this is not the case. In fact, even first time solo female travelers can have an awesome time in Ukraine.


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