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The baroque St Andrew's Church (1746-61), Kiev

A country whose state song declares that 'Ukraine has not yet died' might not seem the most uplifting destination, but don't let that deter you. The country rewards travellers with hospitable people, magnificent architecture and miles of gently rolling steppe.

Nearly every city and town has its centuries-old cathedral, and many have open-air museums of folk architecture, caves stuffed with mummified monks, and exquisite mosaics wherever you look. The food sticks to your ribs and the bandura tunes lodge themselves in your brain for weeks.

Ukraine has its share of the thoroughly modern, but it's also replete with Gothic, Byzantine and Baroque architecture and art - reminders of its many foreign overlords. There are also dozens of villages with picket fences, duck ponds and overloaded horse carts, where time seems to stand still.

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