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Top-10 most amazing buildings of Western Ukraine

Even the most demanding traveler will appreciate treasury of interesting places, legendary fortresses and castles focused in Western Ukraine. Wherever you arrive each place possesses its own castle, palace, legend or a breathtaking story.

White Elephant: observatory on the top of the mountain

The largest wonder of the mountain of Pip Ivan is a highland observatory, ruins of which tower on the top. People call the observatory “White Elephant”. They say that in winter covered with snow and ice and blew with strong winds the outlines of observatory reminds figure of an elephant.


Vorokhta is situated among picturesque mountains at the height of 850 meters above sea level. According to the last cen­sus the population is more than 4,000 people and the total area of lands is 18,265 hectares. Vorokhta is situated both in low­lands and in highlands.The Rebrovach belt, which is overgrown with fir-trees forest, separates the settlement from the eastern side from Tatariv. This belt stretches through the valleys Dilok and Rizha, which separate Vorokhta from Kosmach. Other belts Bukovel and Pereval stretch from the valley Rizh to the valleys Ozirno and Kostrych. Kostrych belongs to Verkhovyna belt, which separates Vorokhta from Verkhovyna. After Kostrych the place alternates with forests and meadows. Farther is Mount Gomul, valleys Dantsysh and and Pozhyzhevska. From here we start out to Hoverla. Mount Hoverla itself is divided in half. Its northern slope belongs to Vorokhta and the southern slope belongs to Yasenia. It is the territory of Zakarpattia.

After World War I a border between Poland and Czechia passes in the middle of Mount Floverla. Boundary stone posts 80 cm high, which were dug in old times, were kept safe. From the side of Vorokhta there is a sign PL, from the side of Yasenia - CS. The boundary line stretched from Floverla to Voronenko and through Yablunytsia to Mount Khomyak.

According to one of the versions, the name "Vorokhta" de­scends from the word "vorokhy", i.e. trees, which the peasants brought to salt-works. One of the records of 1700 says that Vorokhy means firewood for salt works and bath­houses. According to another version, it descends from the name of one of the first settlers Mocherniak Vorokhta. The leg­end says that he was a soldier who ran away from drilling and settled here. He was a talented weaver and his good name was known in the whole neighborhood.

Works of weavers made in the mountains are in big de­mand. Weaving in the mountains has a peculiar feature be­cause the people who lived in the lowlands made clothes from the field plants - flax or hemp, they also made the wool of sheep. They produced lizhnyky (warm and soft wool blankets) which were noted for geometric strict ornamental pattern; thin woven fabric for sewing red and black pants and thick fabric for sewing outerwear. All these products have surprisingly bright colors from dyes made by the weavers.

Dyes came from many different sources. For dyed loom works, only natural dyes were used. Black dyes were made of dry bean-pods. Such a dye is not afraid of water. A dark red dye was made of the bark of alder- or cherry-trees. It dyes sheep wool and leather very well and is not afraid of water, either.

After Mykhailo Vorokhta had started craftsmanship, differ­ent people moved here one after the other. The trees in the woods were cut down and grubbed out to widen the living space. New areas, which were won from nature, were named after earliest explorers. Some of them have had these names until now.

Information taken from
the city guide-book "Ivano-Frankivsk"