For those of you who are mobile we have a suggestion for a one day trip you can manage at any weekend. Sofyivka Park is a perfect place for a family or solitary walk and rest, to relax and enjoy a sunny day.
The dendrological park "Sofiyivka" of Ukraine's National academy of Science, which is situated in the town of Uman, Cherkasy region, is well-known far away the borders of Ukraine as one of the most famous masterpieces of the world landscape gardening of the end of XVII - the beginning of XIX centuries stands at the same level with other examples of park construction of Europe, such as Balbi Garden in Florence (Italy), San-Susi Park in Potsdam (Germany) and Versailles (France). This park was created by prince Pototsky for his beauty wife Sofia.
Sofia Pototsky was a legendary beauty, and Uman's stunning Sofiyivka Park is her husband Count Felix' monument to her physical perfection. Having bought Sofia for two million zloty from her former husband (she had been sold into slavery at an early age by her parents), the Polish count set to landscaping this 150-hectare site with grottoes, lakes, waterfalls, fountains, pavilions and 500 species of tree. The result, completed in 1802, was Ukraine's answer to Versailles.
A map at the park entrance describes the history of the park in English and points the way to the various highlights, most bearing sentimental names like Island of Love and Grotto of Venus. The park is such a superlative piece of landscape architecture that you do not need to be a park lover to appreciate it. In summer, you can hire boats to traverse the park's many ponds. As it turns out, Sofia broke Felix' heart before he died, having an affair with his son.