Rejser til Ukraine

Ukraine er en europæisk gigant. Ridser man lidt i overfladen, så opdager man, at der er langt mere i det end man måske have troet. En rejse til Ukraine omfatter det allerbedste som denne sovende skønhed har at byde på.

Ukraines yndefulde byer er tætpakket med udsøgt arkitektur og den religiøse arv siver fra hver en mursten. Bjergene er hjemsted for traditionelle landsbyer, hvor folk taler deres eget sprog og traditioner går i arv fra generation til generation.

Udforsk paladser, der tilhører efterkommerne af Djengis Khan og gå gennem uberørte landskaber, der er hjemsted for noget af Europas mest fantastiske dyreliv.

Ukraine er måske ikke det oplagte valg for en ferie, men når du har været her, så undrer du dig over, hvorfor der ikke er flere, der besøger dette forsømte hjørne af Europa.

Grupperejse 1 ► Ukraine - Kosakkernes land

Generel information om grupperejser i Ukraine

Happy Lama Travels eksklusive grupperejser i Ukraine foregår i små internationale grupper med lokal engelsktalende rejseleder. Derfor er rejsebeskrivelserne på engelsk.

En lokal rejseleder kender sit land bedre end en dansk rejseleder. Det er desuden vores erfaring at en lokal rejseleder giver dig et bedre indblik i, hvordan livet leves i Ukraine.

Passer rejsedatoerne dig ikke eller vil du selv have maksimal indflydelse på dit rejseprogram – Kontakt os hvis du ønsker et tilbud på en individuel rejse i Ukraine.

Trip Summary

One of Europe’s least visited nations, Ukraine has been in the Soviet shadow for decades, hidden from the rest of the world with the result that few are aware of its charms. This trip will astound travellers with the varied delights of this charming nation and make you wonder why you have never visited before. Starting in Kiev we explore the rich cultural heritage and exquisite monuments of this important city, before heading to Lviv, one of the most elegant cities and a delight to explore. But you haven’t really experienced Ukraine until you’ve spent time in its glorious countryside. We stay in the Carpathian Mountains, a treasure house of traditional culture and spectacular scenery, with impressive wildlife and colourful customs. Staying in a local home allows us to really gain an insight into rural life and is one of the highlights of this tour. We then travel to Odessa, rich in revolutionary history, where we also have a chance to sample the excellent local wine. Ukraine has so much to offer that it is a wonder it has not been discovered by mass tourism. Enjoy the feeling of being a true travel pioneer in your discovery of this captivating country.

Fitness*** | Adventure*** | Culture**** | History***** | Wildlife***

Day 1 – Kiev

Arrive in Kiev and transfer to your hotel. Depending on when you arrive there may be time to explore the city. Overnight Rus Hotel or similar.

Kiev is one of the oldest cities in the region, founded back ion the 5th century and becoming an important centre of Slavic culture. Falling under the rule of the Varangians some time later it became the capital of Rus, benefitting from its position on the trade routes between Scandinavia and the Byzantine Empire and becoming infused with a wide variety of cultural influences which remain today. Over its time, Kiev has been sacked by the Mongols, incorporated within the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and then absorbed into Russia and the Soviet Union. Straddling the banks of the Dnepr River, Kiev is Ukraine’s most cosmopolitan city, and a real mix of old and new. With a historic old quarter, the city is packed full of monuments, the most famous being the Lavra cave monastery, a collection of underground chambers and spectacular churches dating back to the 11th century. Kiev is a city with an enormous amount of churches and cathedrals, with a particular style that looks almost Russian but is unique to Ukraine, and in many areas these dominate the skyline, reminding visitors of the intense respect that ordinary Ukrainians have for religion. But perhaps one of Kiev’s greatest delights is simply walking around the city and seeing where you end up, discovering for yourself its corners, streets and cafes and immersing yourself in Ukrainian culture.

Day 2 – Kiev

This morning we explore some of the key sights of Kiev, including the ancient ‘onion-domed’ St Sophia Cathedral, its bustling main boulevard Kreschatyk, and the Golden Gates, the only remaining section of ancient Kiev’s original fortifications. This afternoon we head the Lavra cave monastery complex, with its stunning churches and underground tunnels. This evening we may have the opportunity to visit the opera, if you wish (depending on availability and dates of performance). Overnight Hotel Rus or similar. (B)

Day 3 – Kiev - Lviv

Morning visit to the Pyrohovo Museum of Folk Architecture, a recreated village which contains excellent examples of traditional Ukrainian buildings in an open air setting. Free afternoon to exlore more of Kiev before we board the overnight train to Lviv. (B)

Day 4 – Lviv

Early arrival into Lviv where we have a little time to freshen up before heading out to explore the city. Lviv is renowned as one of the prettiest towns in Ukraine and its historic centre has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We take in some of its highlights including the Opera House, the Dominican Church and the fascinating Lykachivsky Cemetery, one of the oldest graveyards in Europe. Overnight Hotel Dnister or similar. (B)

Lviv is a fantastically eclectic city with a wide variety of architectural styles combining to create a place with a split personality, but which somehow definitely works. Founded in the 13th century, Lviv is almost dripping with history, and walking around its wide boulevards and large squares you will see Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque architecture among many other types. Its medieval atmosphere harks back to days when Lviv was at the forefront of regional events, and it was once a wealthy trading centre. Unlike many other cities in Ukraine, it mainly escaped the terrible destruction wrought by Nazi bombers in World War Two, and its charming streets make it one of the most exciting places in Ukraine to explore. Lviv has been named as the best place in Ukraine to live, and wandering around its historic centre it is easy to see why.

Day 5 – Zhovkva and Krekhov

This morning we travel to Zhovkva, which was declared a heritage site in 1994, and view Zhovkva Castle, the town’s oldest and largest building as well as the wooden Holy Trinity Church, listed in 2013 as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. We continue to Krekhiv, a popular pilgrimage site where the Basilian Monastery dates from the 16th century. We then return to Lviv. Overnight Hotel Dnister or similar (B)

Day 6 – Kamyanets-Podilsky - Ivano-Frankovsk

Drive to Kamyanets-Podilsky, an attractive town dramatically situated on an island of rock and surrounded by a river. We visit the 11th century castle, one of Ukraine’s most impressive, as well as the old quarter with its colourful buildings. We then head to Ivano-Frankovsk to spend the night. (Overnight Nadiya Hotel or similar. (B)

Day 7 – Ivano-Frankovsk - Carpathian Mountains

This morning we take a brief tour around Ivano-Frankovsk, the economic centre of the Carpathians before we head into the mountains. We stay on a local farmstead in Verkhovyna, a picturesque and very typical Carpathian village which is a superb base for exploring the mountains and the intriguing communities that live here. (BD)

The Carpathians
The Carpathian Mountains stretch across a wide part of Eastern Europe, encompassing parts of Romania, Ukraine, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland, Hungary and Serbia. Rich in wildlife they are home to some of Europe’s last remaining populations of large mammals, with bears, wolves and lynx to be found prowling through the forests. The birdlife here is equally spectacular, with raptors such as eagles a frequent sighting. This is one of the most pristine environments to be found on the continent and excellent walking country, with superb views to be had from every angle and the possibility of seeing wildlife adding further excitement. The mountains are also home to isolated rural communities of Hutsul people, who use the region for pasture for their flocks.

Day 8 – Carpathian Mountains

We spend today exploring this spectacular region. Staying here is like stepping back in time, to a rural idyll far from the stress of urban life, and we can see how age old traditions are still followed in this remote but beautiful corner of Ukraine. During our time here we enjoy typical home cooked Hutsul dinners in our cottage. This is an incredible way to experience a way of life that has long since disappeared from the rest of Europe. Overnight on local farmstead. (BD)

Hutsul people
The Hutsuls are a distinct ethnic group that live in Ukraine’s mountains. Their origins are shrouded in mystery and they speak a unique language found nowhere else and unintelligible to the rest of the population – in many ways they can be considered as following the most traditional lifestyle in Ukraine. Hutsul culture is centred around forestry and livestock, and is represented through their craftsmanship; weaving, pottery and woodworking are typical manifestations of Hutsul crafts. The Hutsul place importance on social customs including dancing and like their language many Hutsul musical instruments are also unique.

Day 9 – Carpathian Mountains - Lviv - Odessa

Spend the morning exploring the area further before we transfer back to Lviv to take the overnight train to Odessa (B)

Day 10 – Odessa

Arrive in Odessa, and after breakfast explore this historic city. Odessa’s location on the Black Sea has meant that it has sat astride important trade routes and been a crossroads of cultures for centuries. We visit the legendary Potemkin Steps – pivotal in the 1905 Russian Revolution, as well as its Opera House, considered to be one of the most beautiful in Europe. The afternoon is free to explore this vibrant seaside city. Overnight Chernoye More New Hotel or similar. (B)

Odessa was an incredibly important city in both pre-revolutionary and Soviet Russia, with its access to the Black Sea and beyond. Dating back to the 3rd century, it was only captured by Russia in 1789 – prior to that it had fallen under Tatar control. Its status as a free port meant that immense wealth passed through it, with the result that it underwent a huge and rather elegant period of construction back in the early 19th century. Its historical architecture has a style more Mediterranean than Russian, having been heavily influenced by French and Italian styles. Some buildings are built in a mixture of different styles, including Art Nouveau, Renaissance and Classicist. Odessa is blessed with elegant palaces and graceful boulevards, making it a delightful place to stroll around and one of Ukraine’s most pleasant cities.

Day 11 – Odessa - Bilhorod-Dnistrovsky

Today we will take a short drive from Odessa to Bilhorod-Dnistrovsky. This town is remarkable due to its age – Bilhorod-Dnistrovsky has recently celebrated its 2500 year anniversary, which puts it in the list of the oldest existing towns of the world. In the afternoon the excursion continues to Shabo. The Shabo vineyards have been around since the 12th century. We visit the vineyards, the factory and discover the complete cycle of the wine production as well as having the chance to taste the wine. We then return to Odessa for the evening. Overnight Chernoye More New Hotel or similar. (BL)

Day 12 – Odessa - Nerubayskoye

We start this morning visiting the Alley of Glory with the Eternal Fire and the Monument to a Sailor in the centre of Odessa, before continuing to a network of abandoned caves and tunnels created by limestone excavations beneath Odessa. After a short ride, you will arrive in Nerubayskoye village and we visit the Museum of Partisan Glory. Discover the every-day life of the partisan resistance group that was hiding in this area of catacombs during WWII. We return to Odessa in the early afternoon and have the rest of the day at leisure. Overnight Chernoye More New Hotel or similar. (B)

Day 13 – Odessa - Uman - Kiev

This morning we leave Odessa to begin the drive back to Kiev. On route we stop off at Uman and visit the famous Sofiyivka Park. We arrive in to Kiev early evening and check-in to the hotel for our last night in Ukraine. Overnight Rus Hotel or similar.

Sofiyivka Park
In 1802, Count Stanislaw Potocki presented a park to his beloved spouse Sofia, a woman it is said of rare beauty and talent. The Count chose his favourite hunting place near Uman as a ground for the park and spent 5 years to create a masterpiece of landscaping art. Fountains and ponds, waterfalls and bridges, grottoes and massive granite rocks, and even an island were in the park presented to Sofia. Rare and exotic trees planted at that time have grown old and future park owners added new details. Nowadays it is one of most beautiful parks in Ukraine.

Day 14 – Departure

After breakfast at a suitable time you will be met and transferred to the airport for your departure.

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