Visit to National Sports Centre Olimpiyskiy Stadium, Kyiv, Ukraine on 15 Jan 2013

145 741 square metres. Capacity of 70050 people. 738 VIP seats

NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium, Kyiv, Ukraine. The largest stadium in Ukraine, the second largest of its kind in Eastern Europe.

The exchange participants of Explore Ukraine in Kyiv were brought on a guided tour to the stadium on 15 January 2013. It was an amazing experience to walk through the interview rooms, soccer players’ rooms and be in the stadium, with our English-speaking guide explaining to us the history of the stadium, especially about the EURO 2012.

The NSC Olympic Stadium is situated about 300 metres away from the similarly-named Olimpiiska station on the 2nd line (blue line) of the Kyiv Metro.

The symbolic Olympic rings at Olimpiyskiy Metro Station

The symbolic Olympic rings at Olimpiyskiy Metro Station

The facade

The facade

The facade with the newly-built hotel extension on the right

The facade with the newly-built hotel extension on the right

Our guide brought us into the preparation area, which during the matches are not open to public. We had a view of the conference hall, changing rooms and interview rooms before entering the main arena. The stadium is the home of the famous Dynamo Kyiv soccer team.

Our guide explaining the history of the football team Dynamo Kyiv

Our guide explaining the history of the football team Dynamo Kyiv

It’s hard to believe that the stadium was built in 1923 – it looks almost totally new. But the truth is the stadium was constructed in 1923 after the Red Army of Russia secured the city of Kyiv. It has experienced many historical events, and its name has been changed numerous times. During World War II, the stadium was named unofficially the Sport Palace Stadium, while on 12 July 1942, after all battles had retreated from Kyiv, it was officially opened as the All-Ukrainian Stadium. In 1978, it was closed for reconstruction in preparation for the 1980 Summer Olympic Games hosted by the Soviet Union. The stadium was also renamed as the Republican Stadium. In 1996, the stadium gained its current name, NSC Olympic Complex, though many people from the older generation are used to calling it the Republican Stadium or Central Stadium.

Interview room for Dynamo Kyiv

Interview room for Dynamo Kyiv

In the players' changing room

In the players’ changing room

Shevchenko, one of the most prominent players in Ukraine

Shevchenko, one of the most prominent players in Ukraine

Massage chairs for the soccer players

Massage chairs for the soccer players

What a good life soccer players lead - they have jacuzzi pools for relaxing

What a good life soccer players lead – they have jacuzzi pools for relaxing

After viewing the behind-the-scene areas, we finally entered the main seating area.

Making the majestic steps from the preparation rooms to the main arena

Making the majestic steps from the preparation rooms to the main arena

Awestruck by the sheer size of the stadium

Awestruck by the sheer size of the stadium

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Finally, we visited the souvenir store which sold various designs of soccer jerseys and T-shirts.

Soccer t-shirts at the souvenir store. Each costs about UAH 380 (USD 47.50)

Soccer t-shirts at the souvenir store. Each costs about UAH 380 (USD 47.50)

Dynamo Kyiv!

Dynamo Kyiv!

Click here for the official homepage of the stadium: http://www.nsc-olimpiyskiy.com.ua/en/

Here’s a panaromic view of the interior of the stadium, with my familiar and friendly commentaries. 🙂

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