NIGHT LIFE IN POLTAVA, UKRAINEBY ALEKS KRAVCHENKO
Poltava is a lovely city. It is home to 350 thousand people, and its population is steadily growing. The growth might be contributed to 5 large Universities located in the city. Young people who live in the surrounding villages come to Poltava to study, and most of them decide to stay here for a living. At the same time, Poltava seems to be a pleasant place for retired people because of its quietness and a relaxing lifestyle. There are people who have their second home in Poltava.
Despite the fact that Poltava is not the capital of Ukraine but more of a provincial town in its center, it does have quite a night life. There are lots of bars, pubs and restaurants that one can find here. Most of them work until 11 p.m., but some are open till the last client. "Apelsin" is one of them, and it will not close until the last client leaves.
Since an average month salary in Poltava is around US $200, restaurants try to keep their prices for meals at a reasonable level. As an example, one cat get a decent size steak made of pork for as little as US $5; and it is at a nice restaurant.
Despite low prices (from the point of view of a foreigner), most people in Poltava prefer to eat out at pizza places (pizzerias). There are quite a few of them in just about any area of Poltava. Various toppings are available to satisfy the pickiest of customers. One can even go for "do-it-yourself" pizza. This gives you a possibility to decide what your pizza will taste like. Other than serving pizza, pizzerias have different types of drinks on their menu. The most popular drink that is served with pizza is beer (UK people, read: lager).
Just one thing to note. They have different names for different types of beer in different parts of the world. A friend of mine, who is from England, gave me a lesson recently on the differences between various types of beer. According to him, what most people drink here should not be called "beer". Where he comes from they call it "lager" and it contains 5% of alcohol. It is Ukrainian dark beer what the British call "beer". Usually it is stronger than "lager" and contains around 7% of alcohol. There is also "bitter" and "stout", which are also available in Poltava. In our country, any beer other than stout is called "dark beer". If you ask a bar tender to bring a glass of lager, there is a chance he will not understand you. The same is true when it comes to bitter and stout. People just do not know the names of those types of beers. Here is a tip: if you want lager, then ask for "light beer". If you want to go for "beer", "bitter" or "stout", simply ask for a glass of dark beer and the bar tender will meet your expectations.
So, what else can you do in Poltava when it gets dark? Many people like going to the cinema. There are three of them in Poltava, with the newest and most popular being Konkord. A ticket for one person will cost you up to US $5. Plus, you are allowed to bring with you some snack and light alcoholic beverages (which might not be allowed in cinemas of Western Europe and the US). One can obviously buy beer and pop corn right in the cinema, but it will be more expensive than buying it at a nearby supermarket.
Other than going to cinemas and pizzerias, there are quite a few night clubs that up open until early hours of the morning. Viking, Spider, Kantina just to name a few from the top of my mind.
There are a few shopping malls (centers) in Poltava. One of them, which is called Equator, has got a skating rink, also an extremely popular place for people of all ages to go. A cost of 40 minutes of ice-skating is up to US $3. This skating rink is located indoors, with quite a few cafes and buffets around it. When you are in Equator consider visiting a place called Turbina. Turbina is a place where one can bowl, play billiards or simply have a meal. A game of bowling may cost up at US $15 if you decide to play on Saturday or Sunday night. The cost might go down to US $8 per hour if one plays Monday through Thursday before 6 p.m.
Those who like gambling may consider visiting "Split" casino. It is located in the city center and is a popular place for those who like playing poker.
As long as one has a terrific mood, feels like having a terrific time and getting to know the locals, there are quite a few places to check out. Night life in Poltava is nothing like that of Madrid where people party till 4 a.m. Nevertheless, finding a pleasant place in Poltava to spend a relaxing evening with a group of friends should be as easy as a piece of cake.