Donetsk and Svyatogorsk road trip

Salt caves in Soledar

Donbass is not indulged by permanent attention of travelers from other regions and countries. Hiking trails here are paveв by local citizens – donetchane (citizens of Donbass, locals prefer word "donchane"). Contrary to popular belief , you can meet here not only industrial sites, but also landscapes of rare beauty , historical places, unusual museums. Sviatohorsk laurel adorns the chalk cliffs on the banks of the Seversky Donets river . In the depths of Donbass, except coal deposits there is hidden salt excavations wonders and impressive galleries of wine storages . And, of course, we can`t ignore the regional center, which is unhesitatingly turning into a modern, dynamic metropolis . Allocate four full days for a trip to Donetsk region.

Coal capital at night

City of Donetsk is Miner capital of Ukraine, one of its largest financial and industrial centers . Alexandrovka Farm was the origin of the modern city. It was founded in the XVII century in the upper Kalmius river by Zaporozhye Cossacks, mining here for coal for domestic needs . Founding date of Donetsk is considered April 1869, when Englishman John Hughes began construction of a metallurgical plant here. The village of Alexandrovka was subsequently renamed to Yuzovka (Hughes` city). Prior to 1917, the city became a center of metallurgy and big railway junction. In 1924-61 years bore Stalin's name in honor of the country's leader, General Secretary of the CPSU, tovarisch Stalin. During soviet government the city was one of the largest centers of coal mining in the USSR, was considered the most "green " industrial cities in the world ( the city of "a million roses" ). As part of independent Ukraine Donetsk is pretend to be the second most important city of the country, the informal capital of the eastern provinces . Unfortunately, with the claiming of independence of Ukraine, many people went away from the city in search of better life and Donetsk lost about 200K citizens and is not millionaire-city anymore. Dominated by the Stalinist and modern architecture , there are many unusual monuments (for example to Joseph Kobzon and Serghei Bubka). Day of Donetsk is celebrated simultaneously with Miner's Day on the last Sunday of August.

Victory square

Gorlivka is major industrial city north of Donetsk, belongs to Gorlovskaya-Enakievskaya agglomeration. The first settlements of the Zaporozhye Cossacks and runaway peasants were based along rivers Korsun, Zheleznaya (Iron) and Kodyma in the end of XVII. In place of zimovnikas in 1754-76 years. villages Zaytsevo, Iron and Sovereign Bayrak were formed . Push to the development of the city was discovering of coal deposits and beginning of industrial coal mining. At the same time the construction of the Kursk- Kharkov-Azov railway was very fast. In 1867 a working village was established. It was named after the mining engineer P. Gorlov – Gorlovka . In 1886 the first Russian mercury production plant appeared, and in 1895 – Machine-Building Plant was on queue. Gorlivka becoming a major coal-industrial center belonging to Society of South Russian coal industry. After the revolution, large enterprises of Gorlovka were nationalized, intensive development of the coal industry began. the Second World War caused strong economic damage to the city, however, industry and urban infrastructure were quickly restored. Now major companies are concern "Styrene" and SOE "Artyomugol". In Art Museum presented the biggest in Ukraine collection of paintings of Roerich . Also History Museum and Museum of miniature books works.

Artemovsk winery

Artemovsk city is district center on Bakhmutka river (former name – Bakhmut). The current name was in honor of Donetsk revolutionary comrade Atrem ( F. Sergeev) , an associate of Joseph Stalin. Bakhmut first mentioned in 1571 as the largest in southern Russia "Bakhmutskaya watchman". Bakhmut received fame as a center of salt, one of the places from where chumaks carried salt. In 1704 Peter I ordered to build a wooden fort and resettle Cossacks for salt manufacture . D.Mendeleyev been here . In neighboring Soledar you can book an excursion to the salt mines of GPO "Artyomsol" to a depth of 300 m in the mine workings of the mine 1-3. In the XVIII century producing of gypsum began in Bakhmut. In the shafts remained after coal production in 1950 was established the famous wine storage of Artyomovsk Winery (excursions to shafts and wine-tasting). Also In Artemovsk memorial sign "Bell of Chernobyl" placed. Individual monuments of architecture are preserved. Among them: wooden Nicholas Church (1798) on Bakhmutka river, All Saints Church (the beginning of the XX century) is near the railway station.

Konstantinovka church

Regional center on the River Crooked Face between Donetsk and Slavonic. Kostiantynivka founded in 1870 by K. Nomikosov who was a landowner. Town is named for the owner. Development began after the opening of the railway station on Kostiantynivka Kursk-Kharkiv-Azov line. Famous glass factory products (here bіli izgotovlenі pervіe rubinovіe zvezdі for the towers of the Moscow Kremlin). Since 1932 Kostiantynivka has city status. The area is regional landscape park "Kleban Bull."

Salt caves in Soledar

City of Soledar on Donbass is located at the confluence of Morkaya Plotva ("Wet Roach") into Bakhmut (tributary of the Seversky Donets) . Known since the last quarter of the XVII century , when here was located Bryantsevka village based by Izyum Cossacks Regiment and settlers from the north of Ukraine. The main occupation of the inhabitants was salt production. In 1881, near the village was founded the salt-mine . In 1965 it merged Bryantsevki and mine village into Carlo-Libknehtovsk (in honor of Karl Liebknecht). In 1991 it was renamed into Soledar ("Salt gift"). Enterprise "Artyomsol " produced during the Soviet era up to 40% -of all-soviet-union mining rock salt and 88% of Ukrainian extraction. In the used salt mines at a depth of 300m was opened speleosanatory for the prevention and treatment of asthma , respiratory diseases.


Svjatogorsk is resort city in the Donbass , on the bank of Seversky Donets river, one of the most beautiful places in the area and one of the most important shrines in Ukraine. In the XV-XVIII centuries Svjatogorsk was a border fortress and the spiritual center of the region (here was the Uspenskaya (Assumption) wold) , then turned by Potemkin-Tauride to a popular resort . The main attraction is Church of the Assumption Monastery (XVII-XIX cc.) on the hilly bank of the river. The whole mountain is riddled with a maze of passages and cells, which are open to the public. Here were Repin , Bunin , Anton Chekhov and many other famous people. Since 1922, hosted a resort and a leisure center, then a sanatorium. Now Svyatogorsky Historical and Architectural Reserve returned to the church . On the nearby hill – a giant monument to Stalin fellow compaigner F.Artem (TRC chairman of Donetsk-Krivoy Rog Republic in 1918-20). Many sanatoriums and recreation , most of which belong to Donetsk enterprises.


The ancient city Izyum ("Raisin") is located on the Seversky Donets river between Kharkiv and Donetsk . It is assumed that in the days of ancient Russia here was crossing "Izyumsky stile". In 1111 squad , led by Prince Vladimir Monomakh defeated here Polovtsy (Cumans) and in 1185 Prince Igor camped here before campaign. Later he had passed " Izyumsky Way " – one of the ways os Tatar invasions ("Izyumsky-kurgan ("barrow")" – long mountain). Russian settlement appeared in 1571 , and in the next century fortress Izyums'ka was built. Since 1865 Izyumsky Regiment formed of the Cossacks was located here. One of the first buildings of the castle is Izyum Spaso-Preobrazhensky ("Assumption-transformation") Cathedral (1684). Also survived Nicholas Church ( 1809-23 years.) snd Church of the Ascension ( 1819-26 years.) . Mountain Kremyanets with exposure " Polovtsian women" is the highest point of the region (218 m). Also here is the memorial complex of World War II.


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