The wooden churches in Ukraine date as far back as the 15th century, when Christianity was first introduced to its people.

Visiting the Wooden Churches in Ukraine

This special type of wooden architecture is primarily focused on distinct structures and designs that are generally unique to a particular place in the nation.

New York Times writer, Evan Rail, personally visited Zakarpattia, a far-flung region in the western part of the country, which still accommodates the historical wooden churches (“In Ukraine, Churches with a Distinctive Allure”). He says that these special wooden churches are now “rough-hewn, idiosyncratic wooden structures with surprisingly tall spires — seem to be in danger of disappearing.”

Below is an excerpt from his article:

“Folk architecture and odd roadside scenes aren’t the only intriguing things about Zakarpattia, also known as Carpathian Ruthenia. Its rolling hills and dark forests are believed to have been the inspiration for the mythical kingdom of Ruritania in Anthony Hope’s 1894 novel, “The Prisoner of Zenda.” Even by European standards, Zakarpattia’s back story is rather remarkable: once part of Austria-Hungary, it became part of independent Czechoslovakia after World War I, then part of Ukraine and the U.S.S.R. after World War II.

As with a few of the churches I’d seen on Ms. Krushynska’s Web site, the tower of this church had been partly covered in tin, and the entrance had something like a front porch that was enclosed in glass. The doors were open, and I walked in to find an elderly couple cleaning up, the babushka sweeping briskly at the threadbare carpet with a broom. The altar was lovingly decorated with religious icons painted on wood panels, some charmingly naïve, some quite accomplished. It would have felt more vibrant, I imagined, during church services, when a full congregation would chase away the chill of a cold day.”

Check out the rest of his article here.


I want to go to Zakarpattia Oblast