Verkhnovyna: Museums and Immersion in Hutsul Culture

Here flow crystal icy cold waters of Black Cheremosh and rustle old spruce trees. Here you will watch the foggy summits of the Carpathian mountains and enjoy the aroma of wild mountain flowers. Here you will meet the authentic ancient culture and dive into a mysterious world of legends, magical creatures, and mesmerizing traditional music.

Here you will meet Hutsuls – an ethnic group of Ukrainians who live in the Carpathian mountains. Their community deserves special attention because they carefully preserve their culture and still live according to ancient traditions. In Verkhovyna, you can witness how they live, take photos in their unique clothes, and see their traditional art and crafts.

You can visit the museums of Verkhovyna on our tours:

Verkhovyna: Past and Present

The picturesque alpine village of Zhabie, located near the peaks of the Chornohora ridge, was renamed Verkhovyna in 1962. The first written mention of the village dates back to 1424. At that time, the future center of the Hutsul region became the property of Vlad Dragosimovich as a gift from the Lithuanian prince Švitrigaila.

There is a number of legends about the origins of the name of the village. The name ‘Zhabie’ might have originated from the former domination of swamps with an incredible number of frogs (a frog is zhaba in Ukrainian) or from the nickname Zhabka, which belonged to the first inhabitant of Verkhovyna, or even the name of the Hutsul god of fire.

After becoming a part of Austria in 1772, Verkhovyna eventually turned into the epicenter of the liberation movement. The independent and proud spirit of the mountaineers manifested itself in participation in the squads of people’s avengers, in the national liberation movement in the Legion of Ukrainian Sich Riflemen during the First World War, and in the Ukrainian Insurgent Army during and after the WW2.

Today Verkhovyna is a popular tourist destination due to its wide range of leisure options. Travelers will find here many facilities for active winter skiing and cultural experiences. Verkhovyna enchants with its stunning landscapes, and for gourmets, it offers unique Hutsul dishes.

You might also be interested in the Around the Carpathians in 7 days tour.

Best museums in Verkhovyna

Roman Kumlyk Hutsul Culture, Ethnography, and Musical Instruments Museum

In 2001, the famous Hutsul musician Roman Kumlyk, in love with his native land, opened a museum in his private home exhibiting his own collection of household items, works of art, and musical instruments.

Roman Kumlyk Museum

Trembitas and cymbals, a wheel lyre and various pipes, a bagpipe, and a unique collection of violins are just a part of the list of rare museum exhibits. Currently, the daughter of the musician Natalia is following in her father’s footsteps in running the business and she organizes excursions-concerts for everyone.

Roman Kumlyk Museum

Location: Verkhovyna, Ivan Franko St., 35

GPS: 48.1584  24.83757

Phone: +38 (03432 ) 2-17-44, +38 (097) 307-52-54, +38 (097) 585-89-52

Opening hours: by arrangement

Hut-museum Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors

Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors (1965) is a legendary and internationally acclaimed movie by  Sergei Parajanov. The film vividly portrays Hutsul culture, their customs, music, and clothing.

The ancient house houses the museum dedicated to this movie.

Museum Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors

Watching the Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors within the antique wooden walls of the house is a rare opportunity to learn about the life philosophy of the Hutsuls. It is based on harmony with nature, a strange combination of paganism and Christianity, the poeticization of the simple joys of life. The film was shot by locals, including the owners of the house, which adds more truthfulness to the film.

Location: Verkhovyna

GPS: N 48.14765 E 24.82963

Phone: +38 (097) 759-90-33

Opening hours: by arrangement

Cheesemaking Museum Khata-Staya

Khata-Staya created in 2014 in Verkhovyna, is not just a museum with national clothes and household items, but also a cheese factory, where you can buy the legendary Hutsul cheese and take part in masterclasses on cooking local dishes.

Khata-Staya Museum

Location: Verkhovyna

GPS:  N 48.14446  E 24.82652

Phone: +38 (097)-759-90-3

Opening hours: by arrangement

Church of Assumption of the Blessed Virgin in Verkhovyna

In Verkhovyna, there is the Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, which is one of the largest wooden religious buildings in Ukraine and dates back to the 18th century. The temple fully reflects the local essence and is built in the Hutsul style.

The church is bright yellow, rectangular, and has 4 silver domes. A wooden three-tiered bell tower was built near the Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin. Surrounded by thick tall trees in summer or shrouded in the snow in winter, the church looks like a fairy-tale house.

Interesting facts about the attractions of Verkhovyna

  • The Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin in Verkhovyna, built in the 18th century, is one of the largest wooden religious buildings in Ukraine.
  • The owner of the Museum of Musical Instruments Roman Kumlyk played 35 (!) musical instruments.
  • In total, there are more than 10 interesting museums in Verkhovyna. In addition to those mentioned above, you should also visit the Museum of Hutsul Magic, the Museum of the Hutsul Region, the museum of Hutsul Life and Art “At Trembitar’s”.

Every weekend you can see picturesque Verkhovyna on our Hutsul Carpathians and Bukovel tour. During the tour, you will not only see local attractions but also get to know Hutsul culture, listen to Hutsul music, and perform traditional dances.

We also offer you several other tours to Verkhovyna:

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