Twin City since 1992
It was in 1988 that the first contacts to Darmstadt were initiated, when the partners got to know each other during the International Children’s Games at Ushgorod. Since then, the relationship was constantly improved and in 1992 the partnership contract was signed. The Ukrainians' interest is mainly directed towards an exchange in the areas of sports, culture, medicine and economy.
Usghorod with its 1100-year-old history is one of the oldest towns in Ukraine. The town is located in the western Ukraine, directly at the border to Slovakia. In the 10th and 11th century, Ushgorod belonged to the Empire of Kiev, but since the end of the 11th century it came under Hungarian rule. In 1919, the town reached Czechoslovakia, and in 1945 Ukraine. The influence of Austria-Hungary, however, is unmistakably left in the townscape.
Like the majority of old towns, Ushgorod lies on seven hills. In the past they had a defence function, nowadays they are surrounded by new streets. Whereas the seven hills of Rome and Moscow became world famous, the hills at Ushgorod are less known. The Castle Hill is the oldest part of the town. The Ushgorod people are very proud of their ancient castle that rises above the eastern part of the town and is easily visible from all sides. The Ushgorod Castle is still well preserved, although it was not much spared in the course of historic events. The foundation of the castle was between the 9th and the 12th century.
The town probably got its name from the river Ush that has its source in the mountains and winds through the valley like a snake (Ush means snake). The history of Ushgorod is inseparably linked with the history of the whole region of Transcarpathia. Ushgorod lies in the ante-mountains of the Carpathians. The city is the administrative, educational, scientific and cultural centre of Transcarpathia. The area borders on Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania. Due to its particular geographic location, Transcarpathia is considered as a bridge between the East, West, North and South of Europe.
The castle and the fortress from the 10th century, historical buildings, museums of ethnology and art, pleasant cafes and restaurants, the Transcarpathian mountains, the water rich in minerals with nearly 100 mineral springs, the green town on the riverbank – all this speaks for the development of a region of international tourism and holidays.
The town's pride are the institutions of science and education: the university, the institute of computer science, economy and law, the academy of arts, the music academy, the philharmonic orchestra, the society of dramatic art, as well as one of the best grammar schools in the country. Among the most important industrial branches there are the wood processing, electro-technical and food industries.
Every year, on the 1st weekend in October, the Ushgorod inhabitants celebrate the "Day of Ushgorod", an urban festival to which even the partner towns are invited. Darmstadt has already participated several times by presenting art exhibitions and music groups.