Ivano-Frankivsk (Ukrainian: Івано-Франківськ; formerly Stanyslaviv or Stanisławów) is a historic city located in southwestern Ukraine. It is the administrative centre of the Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast (province), and is designated as its own separate raion (district) within the oblast, municipality. With almost 350 years of history as a city settlement. For the most part of its history the city was known for its Polish name of Stanisławów (Stanislaviv) until 1962 (300 years). In the Soviet times it was decided to change the name of the city during its 300th Anniversary. The current name of the city is longer than some of sentences therefore local population sometimes refers to it as Frankivsk or even Franyk.
The city is the third in population amongst other cities in the Carpathian Euro region, yielding only to Lviv and Kosice.
The city was founded as Stanisławów in 1650 in the name of the Polish Hetman Stanislaw "Rewera" Potocki. In 1772 it was transliterated in German as Stanislau when it was part of Austro-Hungary. From 1919 until the Soviet invasion of 1939 the city's original name was returned. Prior to 1939, the city was known in Ukrainian as Stanyslaviv (Ukrainian: Станиславів; Polish: Stanisławów; Russian: Станиславов; German: Stanislau; Yiddish: סטאַניסלאוו). It was changed by the Soviet authorities into more simplified version of Stanislav (Ukrainian: Станіслав; Russian: Станислав). In 1962 at the city's 300 year anniversary, it was renamed to honor the Ukrainian writer Ivan Franko. Due to the city's over-sized name unofficially it sometimes is being called simply as Franyk by its residents.
1662 founded as Stanislawow
1772 transliteration change to Stanislau
1919 transliteration change to Stanislaviv
1919 transliteration change to Stanislawow
1939 transliteration change to Stanislav
1941 transliteration change to Stanislau
1944 transliteration change to Stanislav
1962 name change to Ivano-Frankivsk (Ivano-Frankovsk)
When you travel to Ukraine, you will definitely want to visit the Western Ukraine and one of the most attractive places for tourists, the center of Galiciais the city of Ivano-Frankivs’k. Ivano-Frankivs’k (Stanislavov, Stanislav) is a very cozy and green city. It is the center of the identically named region and is located in the foothills of the Ukrainian Carpathians. Both in summer and winter, the city attracts many Ukrainian and foreign tourists. Many roads lead to amazing tourist and ski resorts in the Ukrainian Carpathians through here: Yaremche, Vorokhta, Bukovel and many others.
It was founded in 1662 by Angers Potocki (Andrzej Potocki) and named after his father Stanislaw Potocki (Stanislaw Szczesny Potocki). What began as a stronghold against the raids of Crimean Tatars became a rapidly developing city. In 1772 the city went under to the Austrian (later Austro-Hungarian Empire). In the Austro-Hungarian period Stanislavov formed as an industrial and cultural center. Ukrainian, Jewish and Armenian communities, which in those days were quite numerous, have contributed to the formation of individuality of the city. Laying of the railroad L’viv - Chernivtsi in 1866 gave new impetus to the development of the city. Railway station in Ivano-Frankivs’k represents an impressive architectural structure. It was built simultaneously with the railroad, and in 1906-1908 was reconstructed (photo). The platform of the station is decorated with iron casting in the Moorish style. Domed lobby rises to an amazing height of 20m. In 1897 the station building was the first building in Stanislavov illuminated by electric lights.
During the First World War as a result of the battles in 1915 - 16 on the territory of Ukraine a large part of historic buildings has been destroyed. In 1918 West Ukrainian People's Republic was created. Stanislavov became the capital of the republic from January to May 1919. After being captured by Poland in May 1919 Stanislavov became a part of Poland and was the center of Stanislavov's province till World War II.
From September 1939 to June 1941 the city was a part of soviet Ukraine. At the same time the town was renamed in Stanislav. From June 1941 to June 1944 Stanislav, like the rest of Ukraine, was occupied by the Nazis.
There were more than 40,000 Jews in Stanisławów when it was occupied by the Nazi Germany on July 26, 1941. During the occupation (1941–44), more than 600 educated Poles and most of the city's Jewish population were murdered. On August 1, 1941, Galicia became the fifth district of the General Government. On October 12, 1941, later called "Blutsonntag" ("Bloody Sunday"), thousands of Jews were gathered on the market square; then the Nazi forces escorted them to the Jewish cemetery, where mass graves had already been prepared. On the way the escort beat and tortured the Jews. At the cemetery the Jews were forced to give away their valuables and show their papers. The men of the Security Police (Sicherheitspolizei; SiPo) then started mass shootings, assisted by members of the German Order Police (Ordnungspolizei) and the railroad police. The German Police ordered the Jews to strip naked in groups and then proceed to the graves where they were shot. They fell into the grave or were ordered to jump in before being shot. The Security forces shot between 8,000 and 12,000 Jews on that day.
On August 8–9, 1941, the Security Police commanded by Hans Krüger with the help of the Ukrainian Auxiliary Police arrested several members of the Polish Intelligentsia (mainly teachers, professors). At night around 14th on August 15, they were transported to a place near the city, named the Black Forest and executed. The number of victims is unknown, but some have estimated around 200.
Up to July 1942 most killings were carried out in Rudolf's Mill and from August onward in the courtyard of the SiPo headquarters. On August 22, 1942, the Nazi held a "reprisal Aktion" for the murder of a Ukrainian, which they blamed on a Jew. More than 1,000 Jews were shot. German policemen raped Jewish girls and women before taking them to the courtyard of the SiPo headquarters.
About 11,000 Jews were still living in Stanisławów when the next Aktion took place. On February 22 or 23, 1943, Brandt, who had succeeded Hans Krüger as SS-Hauptsturmführer, ordered the police forces to surround the ghetto—initiating the final liquidation. Four days after the beginning of the Aktion, the German policemen put up posters announcing that Stanisławów was ‘Judenfrei’ or ‘free of Jews’. At this time 27 members of the UPA were shot by the Nazi government in the centre of the city.
When Jehovah's Witnesses learned that the Nazis planned to execute all Jews in the city, they organized an escape from the Jewish ghetto for a woman of Jewish origin and her two daughters who later became Witnesses. Risking their own lives, the Witnesses hid these Jewish sisters throughout the entire period of the war.
When the Soviet army reached Stanisławów on July 27, 1944, there were about 100 Jews remaining in the city who had survived by hiding. In total about 1,500 Jews from Stanisławów survived the war.
A formal indictment against Hans Krüger was issued in October 1965, after six years of investigations by the Dortmund State Prosecutor's Office. On May 6, 1968, the Münster State Court sentenced him to life imprisonment. He was released in 1986.
In Vienna and Salzburg there were other trial proceedings against members of the Schupo and the Gestapo in Stanisławów in 1966
After liberation by the Soviet Army the efforts of city residents helped to heal the wounds of the war. In 1962, Stanislav had celebrated its 300 anniversary and was renamed Ivano-Frankivs’k in honor of the outstanding Ukrainian public figure and writer (Ivan Franko).
In April 1990 the town raised the national yellow and blue flags of Ukraine. In today's Ivano-Frankivs’k even the most demanding tourists will be met not only by comfortable hotels, friendly people, numerous bars, cafes, restaurants, cozy green lanes, but also by numerous attractions and sightseeing.
Traveling around the city can start with walking down the Nezalezhnosti (Independence) street, green, neat, pleasing to the eye of the even most tempted tourist with its architecture, an abundance of shops, cafes and restaurants.
The Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary (1700), one of the most interesting architectural monuments, is located on the Sheptitskiy square (photo). The church was built as a tomb for Potocki family by Fransua Korrasini in baroque style. Currently, there are the expositions of the Art Museum there, where the works of Ukrainian and Western European artists of the 18th - 20th centuries are presented.
Near the church is a Jesuit College, built in 1744 on the basis of the monastery of the Order of the Jesuits. It was the first school to open in the city.
Cathedral of the Holy Ascension was built in 1720. In 1753, it was completely dismantled and a new one was built in its place under the leadership of Potocki. To date, the cathedral underwent several restorations, preserving its appearance virtually unchanged.
The Holy Virgin Cathedral is located on Armenian str, not far from the Market Square. It has two towers and was built in Baroque style in the 18th century. The look and structure of the cathedral was well preserved in the soviet era due to the status of the Museum of Religion and Atheism.
The Reform Synagogue was constructed in 1895-1899 by architect William Stastny (Wilhelm Stiasny). The building was built in the Moorish style and was originally decorated with four towers with stars of David. In the wars of the twentieth century, sweeping Ukraine, the building has suffered greatly, but later it was restored. At present it belongs to the Jewish community. There is a memorial slab in memory of the fallen soldiers of OUN-UPA in the wall of the building.
Initially, the Town Hall was made out of wood. It was constructed in 1666. But already in 1672 there was the new brick Town Hall in the form of a round tower built. But soon it was taken down as well. Another New Town Hall was finished in 1695. It stood nine stories tall, with the bell-tower and the figure of the Archangel Michael on the dome. But it did not live to our days. Military action during the First World War caused great damage to the Town Hall. The building, which visitors can admire now, was completed in 1932. It has an original form (its base is made in the form of a cross) and is 49.5m tall, crowned by a gilded dome. Incidentally, this is the only civic building in Europe with a guided dome! Currently, the building is a museum.
The monument to Adam Mickiewicz (Adam Bernard Mickiewicz) (1898) and the fountain in the shape of an egg, situated in front of City Hall are other places one might want to see. We are sure that a visit to Ivano-Frankivs’k will leave most with good and warm memories.
Climate and Geography
As is the case with most of Ukraine, the climate is moderate continental with warm summers, and fairly cold winters. The following climate date provided for the past 19 years. The average number of days with precipitation is 187 spread almost equally throughout a year. Most of precipitation takes place during the winter months and least - early fall. Thunderstorms occur mostly in summer months averaging around 25 annually. Ivano-Frankivsk averages about 296 days of fog or misty days with about 24 per month.
The city is situated in the Carpathian region north east of the mountain range, sitting approximately 120 meters (390 ft) above mean sea level. One of the several main geographical features is the Vovchynets Hill also known as the Vovchynets Mountains. The hill reaches 300-350 meters (1,150 ft) above the sea level and is part of the Pokuttya Highland (Upland). Around the hill Bystrytsia River branches into Bystrytsia of Nadvirna, Bystrytsia of Solotvyn, and Vorona. The last two rivers serve a natural border between the Pokuttya Highland and Stanislav Basin. The Vovchynets Hill is located just outside and north-east of Ivano-Frankivsk. South-east from the Stanislav basin in the direction of the Prut Valley is located the Khorosnen (Prut-Bystrytsia) Highland. The highest point of that highland is the mount Hostra 425 meters (1,394 ft).
The city of Ivano-Frankivsk has an extensive network of public transport including buses, trolleybuses, and taxis. There are nine trolleybus routes and about 52 for regular buses. Some of the routes run beyond the city into nearby villages.
There is one railway terminal locally known as Vokzal. There are also smaller rail stations in the adjacent villages such as Uhryniv, Khryplyn, and other. All of them are part of the Lviv Railways.
Until 2008 the railway terminal also housed a bus terminal which provided several inter-city bus routes, including some to international destinations. In 2000 construction work began on a new bus terminal next to the railway terminus on Zaliznychna Street. Inauguration of the new bus terminal took place on May 22, 2010. At the opening ceremony the mayor of the city, Viktor Anushkevichus, noted that the new bus terminal was only partially completed, and for a period it would be necessary to offload at the Pryvokzalna Square, which is already saturated with traffic. He also emphasized the need for another bus station on the outskirts of the city.
The city is served by the Ivano-Frankivsk International Airport, which was granted international status in 1992. The airport shares its facilities with the 114 Brigade of the Ukrainian Air Force. Since 2002 the airport has been leased to the private enterprise company "Yavson", and from 2005 the Public limited company "Naftokhimik Prykarpattia", a (subsidiary of Ukrnafta) with whom the contract expires in 2013.
All street names reflecting the city's Soviet or Russian past have been returned to their former names, or given new names of national historic importance, or other non-controversial name. For example, Gagarin Street (connecting the city with its suburbs) became Vovchynets Street, Suvorov Street is now Harbor Street, and Soviet Street is Nezalezhnist Street (meaning Independence).
Around 100 other streets were renamed.
Important transportation arteries
Nezalezhnist Street/Tysmenytsya Road
Hetman Mazepa Street/Krykhivtsi Road
Yevhen Konovalets Road
Vasyl Stefanyk Shore Drive
The city of Ivano-Frankivsk is located on the intersection of three major national (Ukraine) routes: H18, H09, and H10. There also is one important regional route T09-06. All the H-routes eventually connect to E50.
H18 connects Ivano-Frankivsk with Ternopol. It starts at the intersection of Sichovi Striltsi Street and Halych Street - Hetman Mazepa Street. At this point the route connects to H-09. H-18 takes Sichovi Striltsi Street east where after couple of miles connects to Yevhen Konovalets Street (T09-06), passing which continues on, until merges into Nezalezhnist Street and heads towards the edge of the city eastward. Once beyond the city its name changes to Tysmenytsia Street (or Tysmenytsia Road) which heads straight to the city of Tysmenytsia, not far from Ivano-Frnkivsk.
H10 is actually of an international level, coming through the city from Stryi (Lviv Oblast) and going to Moldova, passing on its way Chernivtsi. Heading towards Ivano-Frankivsk from Kalush as Kalush Chaussée, after the village of Pavlivka west of the village of Uhryniv the route spurs three ways with one branch (southeast) continues on as Kalush Chaussée merging with H-09 at the intersection with Halych Street - Horbachevsky Street and then continues as Fedkovych Street (H-09); and another one (southwest) comes around the city on the west side through the village of Pilissya and intersects H-09 south of the village of Drahormychany. Note that at this point for a short distance both routes use one and the same road. From there H-10 continues on independently towards Chernivtsi crossing the T09-06 route near village of Cherniiv. One more branch H-10 (northeast) is very small and connects the H-10 spur point (northwest of Ivano-Frankivsk) with the village of Uhryniv and then comes back to the Kalush Chaussée.
Intersection of Halych Street (into the picture) and Sichovi Striltsi Street (to the right) view in the north direction.
H09 is sort of a detour route that first travels south from Lviv to Rakhiv and then turns west to Mukacheve. Through Ivano-Frankivsk H-09 makes a lot turns and changes its name using the local streets of the city. It comes to Ivano-Frankivsk from Halych by Halych Street (or Halych Road) to the intersection with Kalush Chaussée - Fedkovych Street where it merges with H-10 and continues on turning southeast onto Fedkovych Street as H-09 and later as Halych Street. Once in the downtown H-09 swerves southwest and intersects Sichovi Striltsi Street that going eastward as the route H-18. After the intersection the street heads straight as Hetman Mazepa Street in the southwestern direction. After crossing Dovzhenko Street it leaves the city limits as Krykhivtsi Street (or Krykhivtsi Road). Upon leaving Krykhivtsi and passing Drahomyrchany on the east, H-09 makes a break in the route H-10 (mentioned above). After that H-09 heads southwest towards the city of Nadvirna, on the way bypassing the town of Bohorodchany.
T09-06 is a regional route that runs within the Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast. It is a direct road from the Ivano-Frankivsk city to the Nadvirna city unlike H-09, with the final destination being the village of Bystrytsia. T09-06 starts at the intersection of Sichovi Striltsi Street and Konovalets Street heading directly south onto Konovalets Street (or Konovalets Road). It leaves the city west of the Khryplyn village before crossing one of the Bystrytsia Rivers. Shortly T09-06 also crosses the H-10 route continuing south.
The city has seven main city squares four of them located in the "old town" part of the city.
Viche Maiden (Ukrainian: Вічевий майдан) is a city square located in the center of Ivano-Frankivsk
The square stretches from Halych Street to Vitovsky Street. Through Vitovsky Street a city wanderer may travel from the Viche Maidan to another city square the Mickiewicz Square. To the Maidan connect couple of small streets such as Bachynsky Street and Belveder as well as the stometrivka that is the extension of Nezalezhnist Street. It is surrounded by numerous buildings such as the main post office, the Ukrtelecom building, the shopping mall "Malva", the business center "Kyiv", and many others. The square has couple of fountains, flowerbeds, and a small park.
The square started out from a city park that was created on an initiative of the local district starosta Francisco Kratter in 1825. He on behalf of the city bought the adjacent land owned by the Agopsowicz brothers in the vicinity of today's Sichovi Striltsi and Mazepa streets which were called respectively Sobieska and Kazimirowska. The land was implanted with numerous trees, flowerbeds, and park benches. In 1827 in its place a city park was opened, locally proclaimed as Kratterowka. The residents gathered there for rest and recreations. It was the first public city park. However, by the end of the century Kratterivka lost its charm as the new park "Dąbrowa" opened not far from it (today - Shevchenko park).
During the Austrian times Kratterowka carried the name of Princess Gisele and during the Polish - General Haller. During the Soviet times maiden was called the Radyanska (Soviet) Square. In 1904 right next to the park was built the Gartenberg's Passage. In 1960 the passage was rebuilt into a department store and later became a department store for children. In 1990 the building was renovated into an exhibition hall, after which it turned into the shopping mall "Malva".
The Viche Maidan is favorite spot for political protests, music concerts, big holidays celebrations such as New Year and Christmas. At the New Year traditionally a big, oversize pine (New Year tree) gets placed in the middle of the square. During Christmas the maiden gets filled with people participating in a vertep parade. The name of the square derives from the Old-Slavic word viche, meaning a public gathering. It was given after the fall of the Soviet regime
Market Square in Ivano-Frankivsk is called Rynok Square (Ukrainian: Площа Ринок) and is historically the central square of the city. It is the oldest square, heart of the city, that traces its history back all the way to the city's establishment. The main feature of the square is the former city hall - Ratusha which today serves as the building of the Museum of regional studies.
The square is rectangular in shape with one major street running through its western side, the Halych Street. The Halych Street is one of the major transportation arteries of the city and is part of the H09 (National Route 9). On the east edge stretches the Street of Sheremety which starts at Shpytalna Street (just northeast of the square) and connects the Market Square with Mickewicz Square. The southern edge was part of the September 17th Street, but after the fall of the Soviet Union the street was "annexed" to the Market Square. The northern raw of buildings was the only one that never changed its owner and stayed as part of the square even through the Soviet times. In the middle of the square is located Ratusha, the former city's town hall. Just south of the Ratusha is located a fountain in the form of an egg. The square is surrounded by rows of some commercial and residential houses of two-three stories high.
On the western side a single row of buildings splits the Market Square from the Sheptytsky Square named after Andriy Sheptytsky.
Shevchenko Park – a big park that consists of an amusement park, a big lake with swans, couple of full-size football fields, and many others interesting places worth of seeing.
Mickiewicz Square (Mickiewicz Park)
Distance to Ukrainian border wit EU countries Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania is some more than 100 km.
The city it a gateway to the Carpathians mountains, holiday resorts and national parks.
Hoverla Mountain, the highest in Ukraine, is about 120 km from here. Bukovel, large modern all-year-round mountain resort is 110km away. Yaremche is the large tourist area. Along with famous resort towns Mykulychyn, Tatariv, Vorokhta its popular tourist destination.
Ivano-Frankivsk is also a regional centre. Regional units in Ukraine are called oblast. To Ivano-Frankivsk oblast belong other cities like Kolomyia, Kalush, Rohatyn, Kosiv, Verkhovyna and others.
Ivano-Frankivsk is one of the cultural centers of Ukraine with deep historical roots and national traditions.
Group of popular modern Ukrainian writers here in 1990's was called "Stanislavskyi Phenomen".
Yuri Andrukhovych, a popular writer in Ukraine and abroad, is from Ivano-Frankivsk.
Another famous Ukrainian writer who lives in town is Taras Prokhasko.
Yuri Izdryk, writer from nearby city Kalush is also working actively in Ivano-Frankivsk, organizing exhibitions and art projects.
Regular art events and presentations take place at Khymera Restaurant/Bar in Chornovola St. and Yeah Bookstore/Harmyder Art Cafe in Nezalezhnosti St., both located in city centre.
Paintings' exhibitions take place at The Ukrainian Artists Union, 52 Nezalezhnosti St.
Many cultural events are being held at Ivano-Frankivsk Musical and Drama Theatre, Philarmonia, National House N1.
Most popular events are Taras Shevchenko Days 09-10 Mar,
Ivano-Frankivsk City Day 07 May,
International Blacksmiths' Festival 08 May,
Ukrainian Independence Day 24 Aug,
Day of UPA 14 Oct (Ukrainian Insurgent Army 1942-1950s),
Day of ZUNR and UNR Unity 22 Jan (West Ukrainian National Republic and Ukrainian National Republic).
Ivano-Frankivsk (those days Stanislaviv) was the capital on ZUNR in January 1919 and here UNR and ZUNR Unity was proclaimed.
Nowadays Ivano-Frankivsk has quite a few museums.
Regional Museum at Rarusha,
Sacral Arts of Halychyna Museum,
Liberation Wars Museum,
Folk festivals are being held in city centre and in summer in City Park during major holidays, like Christmas, Easter, Ivano-Frankivsk City Day, Green Holidays/Pentecost, St.Johns' Day 07 Jul, Ukrainian Independence Day 24 Aug.