Ukrainian Lovin' in Lviv, Part 2

Walking through the streets of Ukraine's darling town of Lviv, there are so many little surprises and quirky bits of character just waiting to be doted upon:


The 1897 Lviv Opera House:
One thing I especially love about traveling is the markets. They're so colorful and such a classic representation of local people at work and among their peers. Even the touristy markets offer a collection on the crafts, arts, and items that have been chosen to represent the people and their culture.

As a hold-over from Soviet days, Lviv is definitely a city of markets, no doubt. At the folk art and craft market, you can purchase anything from embroidery, wood carvings, and paintings, to thick furs and knitted wools, used cameras (I got myself a Soviet-era Kiev for USD$12.50!), matryoshkas, and brilliantly painted pysanka. It's a treat to walk through:
One of the most charming markets in Lviv is a vintage book market held in a little square that is overlooked by a huge statue of Ivan Fedorov, the man responsible for bringing printing to Russia and Ukraine. Faded typography and beautiful designs nestled in their old suitcases and benches really pull you out of the iGeneration of computers and mp3s and Kindles for a bit--it's marvelous:
There's even a few old records and odds and ins to bring a little quirkiness to the lot:
And, after a day of exploring and soaking in the captivating Lviv, one of the best parts of my visit was enjoying the gorgeous autumn evening light, making everything seem even more magical:
As of now, Lviv doesn't enjoy the high-tourist traffic of such sister cities as Prague or Krakow, but with the co-hosting of the 2012 EuroCup Soccer championships this past summer, this best-kept secret in Europe just might be heading to the tour-package light. See it now, folks, before it's "out there."