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The National History and Culture Kachanivka Reserve

The National History and Culture Kachanivka Reserve

On the banks of the Smosh River in Ichnians’kyi district of Chernihiv region the National History and Culture Kachanivka Reserve is located. It was built in 1981 and used to be one of the most famous cultural centres and a bright example of manor architecture. This state reserve with its palace and park ensemble of noble estate has always attracted creative people and curious tourists. This is where a very talented Ukrainian artist Vasyl Sternberg has written his best works, Mikhail Glinka has worked on the opera "Ruslan and Lyudmila", Ilya Repin has painted the canvas "Vechornytsi", and Ukrainian poet Taras Shevchenko has visited this place. Today, the palace and park ensemble Kachanivka is a part of the State Register of Cultural Heritage, the national tourist route "Namysto Slavutycha", and since 2001 has an honorary status of the National Reserve.

The first record of Kachanivka dates back to the 40-ies C18th – that's when a chorister of the Imperial Choir Theodore Kachenovskyi bought small khutors in Chernihiv province, and this place was named after him. The first building in Kachanivka – one of the residences of the President of the Little Russian Collegium and the governor-general of Little Russia, was built by an earl, the famous Russian commander Petro Rum’yantsev-Zadunais’kyi. Later a Ukrainian architect Maxim Mostsepanov built a splendid romantic palace and laid a picturesque park by an order of the count. However, the cultural and artistic centre Kachanivka reached its glory in 1824 when the estate belonged to the Tarnovskyis, landowners. A true patron and patriot of Ukraine Vasyl Tarnovskyi turned this picturesque corner in an architectural and artistic gem.

Today the area of the estate park is 600 hectares, 116 of which are covered with ponds. Moreover, this is a place where you can see legendary Love and Loyalty Hills, "Romantic" ruins at Velykyi Pond – unique examples of landscape art C18th, as well as a pavilion with a grotto known as Mikhail Glinka Pergola, also you’ll be impressed with St George Church of 1816-1828, a palace with wings of the late 17th - early 20th centuries.

The palace with wings is worth your attention. Its state rooms, living and guest rooms were always filled with the spirit of art. Pictures and icons hung on the walls in all rooms. They say a picture of Raphael and three canvases depicting the Last Supper were in the count’s bedroom. Survived works are situated in various museums throughout Ukraine. Instead, the left front side of the palace, the room “Likhtaryk” where Vasyl Sternberg lived, and a parade dining room are restoring now.

Every year more and more tourists from different corners of Ukraine and the world come to Kachanivka. It is better to come here by car, as the reserve is located far from highroads and traffic centres. However you can get to Kachanivka by public transport. The first way - to go by train from Kyiv to Nizhyn, then take the bus “Nizhyn-Ivanytsia”. The other one - from the bus station "Darnytsia" by the bus "Kyiv-Talalayivka" or "Kyiv-Trostyanets" get to the bus station Parafiyivka and then hitchhike or go by taxi. By the way, four old buildings converted into hotels and organized places to relax and barbecue welcome their guests.

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