Khreshchatyk is the main street of Kiev with the length of more than 1 km. The street starts from the European Square, and ends – at Bessarabska Square.
The history of the street can be divided into two parts: before the XIX century and after. Until the XIX century the street was built up by small three-and four-storied buildings, which stood as the single unbroken facade, its width were 35 meters. After the number of buildings, rebuildings and replacing a lot of names, street finds its final shape only in 1837, and in 1869 it receives it current name - Khreshchatyk.
With the start of the Great Patriotic War and the occupation of Kiev by Nazi invaders, Khreshchatyk experienced its most tragic days. In September 1941, on the main street of the city there detonated ammunition laid down by the NKVD during the retreat. The powerful explosion and fire practically burned the whole center of Kiev. The decision to rebuild the street was taken only after the war. Configuration remained the same, but the buildings were built in entirely new style of Stalin's Empire. The street extended to 75 meters, there were planted world-famous Kiev chestnut trees.
At Khreshchatyk Street there are Ukrainian House, Bessarabskiy market, Kiev city council and Kiev mayor's office, Central Department Store, the main post office. Street crosses the main square of Kiev - Independence Square, known in Ukraine as Maidan Nezalezhnosti. The square has become world famous after the events of 2004, called the Orange Revolution, "manifestation of the will of the people", which led to the third round of elections and the coming to power of President Viktor Yushchenko.
History of Maidan starts from the time of Yaroslav the Wise, when there are placed the fortifications and gates that had carried the name Lyadski, which were almost completely destroyed during the siege of Kiev. On the place of location of ancient gates there is now a copy, which is a historical monument of the Ukrainian capital city.
Having changed a lot of names, current name and shape of the modern Independence Square were acquired only with obtaining the status of the independent Ukrainian state. After the reconstruction and restructuring of the square there appeared the fountain, new monuments, a magnificent white tower, which symbolizes the independence of Ukraine. Under the square there is the largest shopping center "Globus", offering people of Kiev and visitors the plenty of entertainment and great products.