Difference between revisions of "Uzhhorod"
Revision as of 17:11, 24 August 2011
Uzhhorod (Ukrainian, Russian: Ужгород, Hungarian: Ungvár, German: Ushhorod) is a city in Western Ukraine, the administrative center of Zakarpatska Oblast (Transcarpthian Region). Its population is 120,000 people.
Uzhhorod, or Uzhgorod as transliterated till the end of 20th century, is the administrative center of the youngest region in Ukraine - Transcarpathia, which was annexed to the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic in 1945. Until that it was part of Czechoslovakia and before 1919 it was Hungarian. The population of Uzhhorod is multiethnic. The majority of the natives are Ukrainian, but there are a lot of Russins (immigrated here after World War II), Hungarians, Slovaks, Germans, Jews and Gypsies. A foreigner has to be very patient with the natives, because some of them will be glad to help you, but some might like to make your life tougher. Anyway, Uzhhorod is a very interesting place to visit because the cultures cross here.
Uzhhorod has a very small airport (IATA code - UDJ). There are flights only to or from Kiev, Simferopol and Moscow. There are plans to close the airport in a few years.
Uzhgorod has one bidirectional line, which heads north towards Lviv, and south towards Chop . There are no direct lines to Slovakia. The hub of railway transportation in Transcarpathia (and thus Uzhgorod) is Chop; it has dual-gauge rails for trains coming from Slovakia and Hungary, a line going towards southern Transcarpathia, and the main line going towards Stryi/Lviv that connects one with the rest of Ukraine, Moldova, Russia, and Belarus.
To/From Slovakia: there is a single border crossing train running two to three times a day between Čierna nad Tisou to Chop. Additionally, It is possible to get a train directly between Chop and Bratislava and Vienna for around 20 euros.
To/From Hungary: there are trains running between Záhony (Hungarian Border Crossing) and further westward to Nyiregyháza and Budapest. Note that connections to Budapest tend to be higher priced; if one wishes to get to Vienna or Prague, it's definitely cheaper to go through Slovakia.
To/From Moldova: a direct route does not exist in Transcarpathia; one must take a train directly to Chernivtsi, and from Chernitvsti there is a daily train going to Moldova.
Note that there are direct routes to Odessa, Kiev, Moscow, Simferopol, and Harkiv directly from Uzhgorod. For larger connections to Central Europe and elsewhere in Russia/Ukraine/Belarus, refer to Chop.
In general: it's best to consult Ukraine's railway web page, which is a relational database and allows anyone to examine the schedule of both a route AND a station simply by clicking on it. The web site for Uzhgorod station can be found here .
Uzhhorod's downtown is very nice with shops, restaurants, and even a small hotel. You will need to get on a taxi or marshrutka to get to downtown.
The newly renovated M06 highway connects Kiev with Budapest and runs through Uzhhorod. Driving from the direction of Budapest (Chop) you need to go straight after Rizivka through Mynay. If you Drive from the direction of Kiev (Mukachevo), you need to turn right after Rozivka. The road from Rizivka-Mynay will take you as far as Zakarpattia Hotel (the city's largest hotel) and then Petofi Square in downtown.
There are daily buses from Nyíregyháza in Hungary; from Košice, and Michalovce in Slovakia; from Kraków in Poland; and domestically from Kiev and Lviv. There are also buses six times a week (i.e., every day except Mondays) from Prague, the capital of Czech Republic.
Taxi in Uzhhorod is very cheap and is arguably the easiest way to get around town. A typical fare rarely exceeds 20 UAH. Taxi drivers tend to charge foreigners more, so be assertive and agree on the price beforehand.
Locals use marshrutkas (small buses) to get around. Those cost around 2 UAH per ride, can be crowded and uncomfortable but do their job in getting you there.