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Sumy City Information


Sumy is situated in the northeastern part of Ukraine. Sumy is the capital of Sumy region (Sumshchyna). On the north and east it borders upon Bryans’k, Kurs’k, Byelhorod regions of Russia, on the south and the southern east – Poltavavs’ka, Kharkivs’ka, on the west – Chernihiv region of Ukraine.

Settling of the territory of Sumshchyna initiated approximately 15 thousand years ago. Since the first centuries B.D. the whole territory of Symshchyna was a part of lands inhabited by early Slavonic tribes. In the VII-X centuries Slavonic tribe of siveryan lived on the territory of the present Sumshchyna. Long process of social and economic development of the eastern Slavs caused the formation of feudal relations and establishment of one of the most powerful states of that time – Kyiv Rus’, about its grandeur and power Mykhajlo Hrushevsky wrote: “At the end of the IX century already many state belonged to Kyiv Rus’, rendered tribute to Kyiv princes – not only Ukrainian, but also the others, up to the present Petersburg and Moscow”.

Kyiv Rus’ also comprised the lands of actual Sumshchyna. The region borders upon the steppe; in spite of constant attacks of nomads, it was densely populated. On the territory of oblast’ more than 80 old Russian sites of ancient settlement, settlements, burial grounds. Besides small settlements existed also large cities, described in old Russian chronicles: Romny, Vyr, V’yakhan’, Putyvl’, Popash, Hlukhiv, Zartyj. The territory of Sumshchyna was a scene for implacable wars between the


princes particularly in 40s of the XII century. Using intestine wars polovtsi reinforced pressure on Russian lands. The most remarkable memorial of Kyiv Rus’ – “The word about Igor’s Regiment” was dedicated to our land, its people, deeds and glory, failures and defeats. At the beginning of 20s of the XIII century Mongolian-Tatar hordes invaded from the west. Might and power changed into decline and oppression. In 50-60s of the XIV century the region was a part of Grand Lithuanian Duchy, Rich Pospolyta. Bogdan Khmelnytsky tried to revive the glory of Kyiv Rus’. During the years of leberation war and to the death of Het’man existed a Ukrainian state, and the territory of Sumshchyna was a part of it, namely: Hlukhivshchyna, Konotopshchyna, Romenshchyna, Krolevechchyna. Later these lands referred to Het’man Ukraine and southeastern part belonged to Slobozhanshchyna. Large cities were Hlukhiv, Krolevets’, Romny, Putyvl’, Sumy.

The army of Het’man I.Vyhotsky passed the lands of Sumshchyna. Exactly here took place Sosnivska struggle where the Ukrainian army won a victory over the Russian army. In 1708-1709 the population of Sumshchyna was a center in the struggle of Het’man Mazepa against the Russian Tsar Peter I. National tragedy was that one part of people supported Het’man, the others – were on Tsar’s side, it resulted in numerous repressions, victims, tortures. In Lebedyni adherents of Het’man Mazepa were executed, in Sumy a manifesto on Mazepa’s condemnation was proclaimed. After the Het’man capital Baturyn was destroyed a new capital became Hlukhiv. When Catherine II in 1764 abolished the Het’man power on the left-bank and in 1765 regimental system and self-government in Slobids’ka Ukraine political

division of the Russian Empire was spread over Sumshchyna, and then except a short period between 1917-1919, when Ukrainian State system of the totalitarian Russian Soviet Social state has been revived.

20-40s – was a period of repressions against adherents of other parties and later against the Communists accused of espionage, sabotage, bourgeois nationalism, participation in terrorist organizations. They all considered to be “enemies of people”, their rehabilitation initiated only in 50s, for several only in 90s. Among rehabilitated were emigrants from Sumshchyna: poets and writers B.D. Antonenko-Davydovych, M.K.Zerov, P.J.Kapel’horodsky, poet and painter N.Kh. Onatsky, historians V.O.Rudynsky, M.O.Makarenko, geologist M.H.Svitalsky, I.F.Fed’ko, teacher M.L.Dovhopolyuk.

Sumshchyna was a basic place of the partisan movement. Only on the north of the region 35 partisan camps have been formed. People of Sumy also took part in the Ukrainian partisan army (UPA). One of the leaders of the Organization of Ukrainian nationalities was a son of the poet O. Olesya Oleg Ol’zhych, executed by fascists in 1944.

Sumshchyna is a native land of many famous figures of science and culture: philosopher and critic M.O. Antonovych, philologist O.O.Potebni, astronomer O.M.Savych, poets P.A.Hrabovsky and Y.Ishchogolev, historian O.M.Lazarevsky, teacher T.H.Lubenets’, bibliographer S.I.Ponomaryov, painter and teacher M.I.Murashka, painter H.I.Narbuta and many others.

The most interesting tourist places are: monuments of architecture of the XVII-XIX centuries in the city of Putyvl’, memorial of lanscape art and architecture – park and palace of the XIX century in the village of Kyyanytsya; architecture of the XVIII-XX centuries, museums: of arts and crafts, museum house of the prominent writer A.P.Chekhov in the city of Sumy; architecture of the XVIII-XIX centuries in the cities of Romny, Lebedyn and Okhtyrka.

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