Ukraine, whose name means ‘borderland’, is a patchwork nation. The dominant culture is Slavic, but Scythian gold is still hoarded in the history museum at Kiev’s Kievo-Pecherska Lavra (Caves Monastery) and Byzantine mosaics line the capital’s St Sophia’s Cathedral.
The golden domes of myriad Russian and Ukrainian Orthodox cathedrals gleam out across one of Europe’s poorest nations. Yet, among the rocky outcrops of fascinating Crimea, you’ll also find Turkic architecture, not to mention ancient cave cities. The country’s marauding Cossacks are remembered on the Dnipro River’s Khortytsya Island, as well as in musical and dance rituals.