Tours&Guides > Terebovlya > Walking tours > Old Terebovlya (Tour guide Stepan Zelinsky)

Old Terebovlya
(walking tour)
Terebovlya, Ternopil Oblast, Ukraine
(Language of the tours: English)

Description of the tour:

We are visiting Terebovlya castle, St. Nicholas Church, Carmelite Church (1635), Terebovlya Town Hall, Prince Vasilko Park, Old Market, Saint Peter and Paul Church (1928).

Terebovlya is a district center in Ternopil region, comfortably located at a distance of less than 40 kilometers from the capital of the region. One of the most ancient cities of Podillia and the whole country. A place that is still remembered by the princes of Kievan Rus, Polish kings, Cossack hetmans, Austrian rulers, soldiers of the Western Ukrainian People’s Republic and the Ukrainian People’s Republic and Soviet power. A city that woke up at night from the sound of swords and the whistling of Mongol arrows and remembering its distant past. Today, Terebovlya is able to please you with its charming nature, beautiful architecture and other monuments.

People lived in these parts since ancient times, since the Paleolithic. But for the first time the city is mentioned in the annals of 1097. Terebovlya was founded clearly earlier, at least at the beginning of the 10th century.
During the time of Kievan Rus, the city was the center of the Terebovly principality, in the late 1080s it became the property of the unfortunate prince Vasilko Rostislavich, who was blinded in 1097. Later, in 1141, it became part of the Galician, and then the Galician-Volyn principality. Together with neighbors, Terebovlya survived the internecine feuds of her rulers with other princes, the invasion of the Hungarians, the Mongol-Tatar invasion (the city was destroyed), the slow revival of the region. In 1349, the Polish-Hungarian period began in the history of our land. Then began the gradual revival and reconstruction of the castle destroyed by the Mongols and acquisition of Magdeburg Law. Then happened the construction of the Dominican and Carmelite monasteries and, of course, numerous Tatar raids, fires, uprisings and plague epidemics. In 1687, the Terebovlya castle last played its role as a defender of the city. Unfortunately, Tatar units took the fortification and destroyed it so badly that no one would ever take to restore the castle.

Terebovlya Castle
To this day, picturesque ruins are seen on the inaccessible castle hill.
The five-meter-high destroyed fortress walls, towering on one of the hills, is far from the first stronghold built in these places. During the time of Kievan Rus, the city was protected by a wooden fortress, later lined with stone. The fortress burned down during the Mongol invasion. Then there was a stone castle erected by the Poles in the middle of the XIV century. And only in the 1630s that one was born whose damaged, but still powerful walls, we can see today. It stands on the edge of a cliff, and its many opponents had to think about whether they should go home before siege. For even 107 meters of walls preserved to this day with a height of about 10 and a thickness of 5 meters, cause considerable respect.
In past times, the life of the ancient Ruthenian settlement was seething here. The stone fortress was first erected in the 14th century to protect against nomads. The fortress is surrounded by walls with polygonal towers, which were supposed to make it an impregnable firmament. But the fortress could not withstand the onslaught of the Tatars. In the Middle Ages it was repeatedly rebuilt and erected. When you walk around the castle, your attention will be drawn to the monument to the outstanding lady Sofia Chrzanowska on a high stone pedestal. This lady was the wife of the commandant of the fortress and the head of the garrison, Jan Samuel. During the Turkish siege of 1675, she was able to raise the morale of the defenders of the fortress. And they repelled the attack. It is said that during the siege she broke into the room, where one discussed the need to surrender to the adversary, with two daggers and threatened: one blade, if Jan opens the gate, pierces her heart, and the other pierces him. The husband seriously thought and decided that the Turks were not so terrible opponents. Moreover, a military aid soon appeared, and the castle survived ...
And if the enemy managed to break into the gate, then often the fault was not of the fortress, but of its cowardly defenders. At the beginning of the 20th century, restoration was carried out here. Now there is a cozy park around. From the ruins of the castle offers a charming panorama of the city.
Over a long period, the castle fell into decay, gradually hiding from human eyes behind the thickets of forests. In general, the castle complex has been preserved quite well. Today it is part of the reserve "Castles of Ternopil." A reconstruction project has been developed, work is underway. Finding a castle is not difficult - it is located almost in the heart of Terebovlia. By the way, not far from it is located the picturesque town of Mykulyntsi, famous for its monuments: the Church of the Holy Trinity and the Potocki Palace with a beautiful park.

Defensive St. Nicholas Church.
Appeared at the end of the XVI-beginning of the XVII century. Unfortunately, there are no exact dates for the construction of the temple. For a long time it was surrounded by fortifications. The church is one of the oldest buildings in the city. In 1734, the temple was radically rebuilt and expanded, at the same time created a stone belfry and a hospital, which was later destroyed. Later, the old church portal was dismantled, on the site of which a bell tower with seven bells was built. The church is interesting for its special closed battle tier with loopholes, the last legacy of its defensive past.
During many wars, the church was destroyed more than once, and then rebuilt. Saint Nicholas Church was a combination rare at that time: a temple and a fortress. In peacetime, the liturgies were made here, and in case of danger, weapons were inserted into narrow loopholes on the upper tier. Today it is quite difficult to see it because of the new roof, which was made in 2009 and which completely closed it. Today, the church belongs to the Greek Catholics, and within its walls is a copy of the Miraculous Icon of the Virgin, the original of which was once here.

The monastery-fortress of the Carmelites order was built in 1635 - 1640 instead of a wooden church and cost 6,000 golden ducats. For this money, a stone Assumption Church and a monastery attached to it appeared in Terebovlya. In 1672, during the war between the Commonwealth and the Ottoman Empire, the Carmelite monastery was looted and destroyed. In 1724, new towers were built for defense, as well as a new fortress wall and gate. For some reason, these were not very high and able to protect only from lazy invaders. And the lazy ones quite successfully reached the monastery treasures, simultaneously destroying the walls and towers of the monastery. By the middle of the 18th century, the Carmelite monastery was fully formed. Now it also had a church, cells and a bell tower, which were surrounded by defensive towers. In the 18th and 19th centuries the church was restored several times. The interior that we can see in our time, the building acquired in the mid-18th century. In Soviet times, there was a factory for the production of Christmas toys and decorations.
Since 1990, it was transferred to the ownership of the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church, and today the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, and the Assumption Church re-consecrated as the Church of St. Volodymyr. At present, the monastery and the temple are functioning, and seminarians who study in the seminary of Ternopol live in cells.

Town Hall
As in many cities of Western Ukraine, Terebovlya has a town hall. The exact date of its construction has not been preserved, it is only known that it was built in the 18th century. The governor's residence was first located in the hall of the town hall, and then the Polish school, which was located within the walls of the building until 1890. It is precisely known that during the First World War the premises of the town hall were completely destroyed. After several years after the war, the building was restored, but with a clock tower. Now the Terebovlya Town Hall is a two-story building with a clock on the tower, which was restored in 1970. There is an observation deck on the tower, thanks to which tourists and visitors can see Terebovlya from above. On the roof you can see the weather vane, made in the form of the coat of arms of the city, as well as the core on the facade of the building, it was found in the fortress. Nowadays, the city administration is located in the town hall. Going inside, on the walls you will see letters dated another 1660 with privileges and one of the ancient maps of the city.

Church of Saints Peter and Paul Built in 1924-29. Designed by the famous architect Adolf Rziszke-Bogusz in the style of the ancient basilicas of the Eternal City. A construction atypical for our latitudes - a 40 by 20 meter rectangle with two 39-meter towers, literally catches the eye. And this despite the fact that in Soviet times the church got a lot, in particular, the upper parts of the towers were demolished.

Duration of the tour: 3 hours

The biggest quantity of tourists
in a tour group: 50 persons

Schedule of collective tours:
Mo: 10:00 - 13:00,

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Tour guide:

License number

tic 0001

Stepan Zelinsky