Through the Keyhole: A look at Ukraine's presidential palace

Journalists take a look inside Ukraine's presidential palace for the first time. Credit: ITV News/ James Mates

Hundreds of Ukrainians and journalists from around the world flocked to the presidential palace, as reports emerged that the country's President Viktor Yanukovich had left the city.

An aide to the president said he had left the capital for his support base in the country's Russian-speaking east, but that he had no intention of abandoning power.

Ukrainians tour around the presidential compound. Credit: ITV News/ Mark Nelson

The residence is in Mezhyhirya, some 15 km (10 miles) from the capital, Kiev. Yanukovich's whereabouts were not known. "Self-defence" units of anti-government protesters were controlling the entry to the compound, according to Reuters.

ITV News Europe Editor James Mates toured the lavish estate:

Inside President's Yanukovich's residence. Credit: ITV News/ Mark Nelson

It is believed that although the people had entered the grounds of the residence, they had not gone inside the building itself.

Hundreds waiting for chance to get in to abandoned presidential palace. Credit: ITV News/ James Mates

Ukrainian opposition group Euromaiden said that journalists had been "impressed" seeing the property, adding that it was the first time the residence was accessible to the public.

View of the golf course inside President Yanukovich's compound. Credit: ITV News/ Mark Nelson

Pictures on social media emerged depicting his lavish lifestyle with Greek ruins within the vicinity and even a galleon on his "man-made" lake.