Today the spirit of ancient Chernivtsi, a forgotten European city or “small Vienna” as it is called , is being revived. Chernivtsi is quite a find. The city is situated in the south western part of Ukraine along both banks of the river Prut.
In the course of its centuries old history, Chernivtsi was a part of different states. The 1st record of it is dated 8 october 1408 in “Regulations on custom duties” of Moldavian landlord Oleksandr Dobryy. The city was a part of Moldavian princedom, the Ottoman empire and Poland. From 1774 to 1918 it was in the grip of the dual monarchy, from 1918 to 1940 part of Romania, from 1940 part of USSR and from 1990 Ukraine. In 1789 Chernivtsi got Austrian municipal Rights and the 1st council was elected.
The greatest prosperity of Chernivtsi began in 1778 when merchants starting moving here. Chernivtsi is called a city of merchants and artists. Marvelous architects and artists that decorated the city in 17th – 18th centuries makes the city unique,and original , and still attracts numerous tourists to it. There are 631 historic, cultural, arts, natural and archeological monuments. Several architectural monuments remained from the middle age, as St. Mykolay church (1604) made of wood is the most ancient one In 1992 the fire destroyed it but nowadays it has been completely restored. In the 19th century and at the beginning of the 20th century several building were constructed in Chernivtsi such as city hall, post office, Armenian church, dramatic theater, justice palace and railway station.
There are Ukrainian music and dram theatre, oblast music house, organ music hall, 8 museums, 5 cinemas, 41 libraries, 4 music schools an an arts school in Chernivtsi.There are more than 100 religious organizations and diocesan administrations and 4 religious establishments in the city. Tolerance is one of the most significant features of the city. Different nationalities, beliefs and political views never prevented Chernivtsi people from living in peace and mutual understanding.