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Lutsk

Lutsk

City in Ukraine

Lutsk is a city in Ukraine, the administrative center of the Volyn region, one of the oldest cities of Western Ukraine.

Lutsk is one of the most ancient towns of Ukraine, with a history dating back to 1085. In the Middle Ages, Lutsk played an important role in the political life of Central and Eastern Europe. By the end of the XIVth century, it was the second capital (after Vilno) of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, Ruthenia and Zhamozhitia. In 1429, European monarchs, among which were Polish King Władysław II Jagiełło, future Holy Roman Emperor Sigismund of Luxemburg, King of Denmark, Norway, and Sweden Eric of Pomerania, Grand Prince of Moscow Vasilii II of Russia, and others, gathered at the Congress of Lutsk to discuss problems of European defense, international relations and trade, and to witness the coronation of Vytautas the Great who received the title of King of Lithuania.

Lutsk High Castle, also known as Lubart's Castle, began its life in the mid-14th century as the fortified seat of Gediminas’ son Liubartas (Lubart), the last ruler of united Galicia-Volhynia. Lutsk Castle is one of the few remaining medieval castles of Ukraine, and recognized as one of the five most beautiful fortifications in the country. From the beginning of its existence, the Lutsk Castle became the administrative, political and spiritual centre of the region. Vytautas the Great founded the town itself by importing colonists (mostly Jews, Tatars, and Karaites).

In 1432, Lutsk was granted Magdeburg rights. Since 1569, the town developed as part of the Polish-Lithianian Commonwealth, and in 1795 it was annexed by the Russian Empire. In 1869, the first general plan of Lutsk was approved. From March 1921 to September 1939, Lutsk appeared as a capital of the Volyn province (Wolyn Voivodeship) in the Second Polish Republic. In autumn 1939, the Red Army entered the town, and on 4 December, it became the centre of the Volyn region of the Ukrainian Soviet Republic.

Lutsk features

Lutsk is a city where modernity is closely intertwined with history. The present appearance of the city was formed by a thousand-year history, dozens of peoples who lived here.

Everyone can find something for themselves in Lutsk. Lovers of rest and slow walks can spend hours enjoying the atmosphere of the Old Town and the central streets, lovers of history and architecture will find a lot of monuments of the past, adherents of art will certainly be interested in art galleries and numerous festivals.

Lesya Ukrainka, who lived several months in Lutsk, is depicted on the front side of the 200 UAH (Ukrainian Hryvnia) banknote, on the other side of the banknote you can see the tower of the Lutsk castle.

The climate of Lutsk is moderately continental, with mild winters and warm summers. The average temperature in January is minus 4.9 degrees Celsius, in July - plus 18.0 degrees Celsius.

The leading branches of local industry are engineering and metal processing, as well as chemical, light, woodworking, and food industries. Urban transport is presented by minibuses and trolleybuses.

Lutsk is the center of trade routes that go to Europe, and this determines the development of art and culture. The international festival “Polessye Summer with Folklore” (every two years in August) gathers more than 5,000 participants from dozens of countries.

Every year (the last week of June - the first week of July), the Lubart Castle hosts the art festival “Night in the Lutsk Castle” with improvised knight battles and medieval entertainments, theatrical performances, performances of local and invited groups and theaters, master classes of folk artists (pottery, weaving, straw, floristry, and blacksmithing), tasting and cooking of national dishes.

In Lutsk, on Sobornosti Avenue and Molodi Avenue, you can find the longest apartment house in the world (more than 3 km). Built in 1969-1980, it has the shape of honeycombs and 88 entrances, which are combined into 38 addresses on two streets. About 9,000 people live in this house. Today, there is a project called “Arka” in which street artists from Ukraine and Europe are involved. The goal is to turn this house into a unique tourist site.

The City Day of Lutsk is celebrated on the 3rd Saturday of August.

Castles

Lubart’s Castle (the Upper Castle) - one of the largest, oldest and most well-preserved castles in Ukraine, the main architectural landmark of Lutsk. In its current form, a typical European medieval feudal castle, it was built by the Lithuanian-Russian Prince Lubart in 1340-1385.

There are several museums (paintings, bells, building ceramics, book printing, weapons). The castle is constantly restored, archaeological research is conducted on its territory. Kafedralna Street, 1A. Opening hours: 10:00-17:00.

Chartoryiskykh Tower (the Okolny Castle). This defensive tower and a fragment of the fortress wall are the remains of fortifications of the Okolny (Roundabout) Castle, which strengthened the Upper Castle from the south and west. In the 18th-19th centuries, the fortifications were gradually dismantled.

Only the tower survived, named after the Princes Czartoryiski, who owned the town in the 15th-16th centuries. Today, the tower is adjoined by a wall to the Jesuit monastery building, you can view it only from courtyards of Drahomanova Street. Kafedralna Street, 6.

Small Castle (Choral Synagogue) (1622-1629). This defensive synagogue, nicknamed the “Small Castle”, was part of the fortification system of the Okolny Castle of old Lutsk. Today, the building houses Dynamo Sports Palace. Danyla Halyts’koho Street, 33.

Timeline

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