A scenic way to get from the upper city down to Podil or, naturally, the other way around is to catch the funicular from Mykhaylivsâka Ploscha to Poshtova Ploscha in Podil. You can enjoy views of the Dnieper and left bank on the way down. The cost is 1.50 UAH, and the Funicular runs from 06:00 to 23:00 during summer and 07:00 to 22:00 during winter. As with the Metro, you buy a token and insert it into the entrance barrier.
Pick up a "Kyiv Tour Guide" map book Geosvit books - around US$3-4, which is available at a number of kiosks or at the central post office. Basic tourist maps are available at the baggage carousel at Boryspil Airport. If you are spending much time in Kiev, get the matching Ukrainian version of your map, many locals have as much trouble with the version that is transliterated to Latin characters as you will have with Cyrillic. They need the version in Cyrillic. When asking for directions or setting out in a taxi, it helps to locate the place you want on the English map and then point out the same spot on the Ukrainian version.
If you need more detailed tourist info visit Tourist Info Center on Khreshchatyk 19 in same building with metro Khreshchatyk. There you can pick up all kinds of city maps and brochures, get a free guide, join free walking tours, use wi-fi and get an answer for any question. Open: 10 am- 7 pm daily. Staff speaks English, Russian, French, German, Spanish and other languages.
There are two types of taxi in Kiev - official company taxis, and 'gypsy' cabs.
As with many former Soviet cities, it is perfectly acceptable for any car to stop and pick you up. An unmarked vehicle is a 'gypsy' cab. To hail a ride, simply stand with your arm out. When a car pulls over, negotiate a fare. As a rule of thumb, rides within the downtown should not cost more than 20-40 UAH and moving across the city might be anywhere from 30 to 70 UAH also depends on car model, time of day, weather and traffic conditions, whether both of you need to get to the same part of the city, etc.. Therefore, you should choose a proper street side, and your gender and numbers usually matter for the price. Generally, girls would find informal taxis easier and cheaper than men. It is safe enough compared to many cities, but in the middle of the night you may be taking a risk.
Official company taxis can be hailed, or booked over the phone. There is usually someone who speaks English working for the company. Simply ask 'pa angliski pazhalusta' or "English please". The operator will give you a quote, which will save you from the sometimes intimidating process of negotiating on the street.
Taxi fares do vary widely. On the same route, a local could pay UAH15 while a foreigner may be quoted UAH60 with the driver being prepared to settle for UAH30. Don't hesitate to bargain!
There are two types of city-run buses available – bus Ð°Ð²ÑÐ¾Ð±ÑÑ and trolleybus ÑÑÐ¾Ð»ÐµÐ¹Ð±ÑÑ – as well as slow and moribund trams. These can be hailed from assigned stops, which are marked by an inconspicuous sign on a telegraph pole. The buses are often very crowded during peak hours, but the norm is to push your way in. Once on board, you need to get a ticket and validate it by punching a hole with one of the small punchers that are attached to the posts inside the bus. If you can't get near the hole puncher, ask someone to validate your ticket for you. Tickets cost 1.50 UAH and are normally available from a special lady on board oddly enough, she first sells you as many tickets as you want, then asks you to validate one. Tickets can be also purchased from drivers or in kiosks throughout the city.
You can also travel, although with less comfort, on route taxis or mini-vans called "Marshrutky" ÐÐ°ÑÑÑÑÑÐºÐ¸. These are privately run vehicles that travel assigned routes, which are listed on the front of the bus. You can hail a Marshrutka at the assigned bus stops. When you board, you pay the driver directly or, if you're not near the driver, pass the money to the nearest passenger who will pass it to the driver. Your change will be returned in reverse order, but it is unwise to pass big bills. When you are reaching your destination, simply yell out to the driver to stop "Na a-sta-nov-ke" some 100 meters in advance to the bus stop you need. If you overshoot you get a nice walk and a driver gets a little extra stress a day. The fare ranges from 2.00 UAH to 3.00 UAH, and is usually stated on the front and sidewalk-side of the vehicle, so you will know how much you pay in advance. It is good to have some change, so you can pay exact amount.
Marshrutka routes can be hard to figure out, but they have a list of stops on the window and a Metro logo for the metro stops. The best way to figure out where these go is to ask some of the locals. City maps usually picture all public transport, both normal buses/trolleybuses/trams and Marshrutky. The one downside to using Marshutkas is that they tend to be a little overpacked understatement and very hot or cold, depending on season.