A jumble of traditions in a magical Slavic hinterland, the Ukraine is one of Europe’s last frontiers. Join us as we embrace off-the-map experiences and tangle ourselves in colourful time old traditions. From discovering the local and lesser known side of Ukraine’s quaint cities still tying to wriggle free of its former Soviet legacy, to getting active and exploring the Carpathian Mountains, Europe’s Green Pearl, you will encounter unexpected travel experiences with local village clans as you are welcomed warmly into their homes as they share with you their raw history in such a spectacular setting of life under post war communism.
Day 01: Arrive Kiev
Welcome to the Ukraine! Upon arrival in Kiev, you will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel.
Overnight at Hotel
Day 02: Mizhrichynsky National Park
Today you will visit Mizhrichynsky National Park – one of the largest regional landscape reserves in the country. Part of the Polissya region (one of the largest swamp areas of Europe) the park is full of wildlife and covered by lush forests and swamps.
The park relies heavily on the work of volunteers to help keep it pristine. You will be introduced to some of the team members who work within the park and join them in helping to maintain one of the three eco-trails. Tasks may include helping build bird houses, clearing tree roots and keeping pathways clear. You will then visit a local home for a delicious homemade lunch. Return to Kiev later in the afternoon.
Overnight at Hotel.
Day 03: Chernobyl
This morning after breakfast, you will make your way to the site of the world & s worst nuclear disaster, Chernobyl.
On 26th April 1986 reactor number 4 at the nuclear power plant exploded. The initial explosion and the massive radioactive fallout (thirty to forty times the amount released at Hiroshima) that spread over a massive geographical area lead to many deaths and harmed thousands more in the following years.
Over three decades later, the levels of radioactivity have dropped to safe levels and we can now explore the site to learn about Europe & s largest technological disaster and discover the impact it has had on the local population and wildlife.
Overnight at Hotel.
Day 04: Kiev
Enjoy a day tour of Kiev. You will visit the UNESCO listed St Sophia & s Cathedral, St Michael & s golden-dome monastery and taking in the views of the Dnipro river as you learn about the recent history of Maidan revolution, your expert local guide will lead you to discover the lesser known sights of this fascinating city known only by the locals.
Take a late afternoon train to Lviv (approx 5 hrs). On arrival, you will be met and transferred to your hotel. Lviv today is a hidden gem of European elegance. With origins as the capitol of the Kingdom of Galicia in 1272 and surviving Soviet and German occupation in WW2, this is a truly fascinating city with a unique combination of eastern and western culture, architecture and food.
Overnight at hotel.
Day 05: Lviv
This morning after breakfast, you will set out to explore the UNESCO listed old town. Walk its cobblestone streets dotted with beautiful cathedrals, enjoy street music and sit back and relax with a coffee in a quaint courtyard. (B)
Overnight at hotel.
Day 06: Kosmach
Enjoy a leisurely breakfast and some free time this morning to discover Lviv on your own.
Late morning you will take scenic back country roads to the historic city of Ivano-Frankivsk, stopping for lunch at Urban 100 Cafe, a community owned cafe where profits are used for social projects such as city parks and cycle-ways as part of a ‘warm city & initiative.
Continue on towards the Carpathian Mountains. Considered to be the Green Pearl of Ukraine, it is rural Ukraine at its best, with tiered wooden churches dotting the hills and horse-drawn carts clip-clop along potholed roads. Arrive at the village of Kosmach. Spend the afternoon walking around the village.
Day 07: Meeting the shepherds
Today you will immerse yourself into the daily life of a typical Hutsul village. Hutsuls are an ethnic group of highlanders in the Carpathians, who largely maintain their traditions and customs. Venture into the highlands via 4WD – this is an exciting off-road journey not for the faint hearted! Visit the shepherds who spend their summers tending to their flock. Venture into the forest where you will forage for mushrooms, along with some of the freshest and sweetest tasting berries you will have ever eaten. Spend your afternoon participating in your host family & s daily routine – working in the field, feeding the animals or stacking the hay (depends on the season, and weather, time of the day and household needs). After you return to the hotel. Overnight at hotel.
Day 08: Meeting Hutsul artisans
Today you will learn about traditional Hutsul crafts, and visit some of the artisans who earn their living continuing their family traditions. Join a Hutsul elder as she teaches you how to make your own Easter egg with intricate local designs. Travel to Yavoriv, where you will meet a local woman who makes beautiful woollen rugs. On your way stop by 16th century wooden church
in a town of Kolomyya and also view a unique exhibition at the Easter Egg Museum there. Transfer to Chernivtsi, one of the most incredible cities in Central Europe, a true multicultural gem with stunning architecture.
Overnight at Hotel.
Day 09: Chernivtsi
In and around Chernivtsi
Spend your day exploring the charming town of Chernivtsi, considered one of Ukraine & s most important educational and architectural sites. Discover beautiful parks and squares and enjoy its cultural heritage as you are surrounded by Habsburg empire architecture, there is no guessing why this city is known as ‘Little Vienna & .
Visit the UNESCO listed Residence of Bukovinian and Dalmatian Metropolitans, which is currently occupied as the Chernivtsi National University. The beautiful complex boasts exquisite architecture with intricate ornamentation and a lovely park. Visit and explore two stunning medieval castles in Khotyn and Kamyanets-Podilskyi.
This evening, take the overnight train back to Kiev.
Day 10: Departure
Upon arrival back into Kiev, you will be met and have time at leisure to explore the city or relax in one of the many parks. You will then be transferred to the airport for your onward flight.
|Kiev||04||City Holiday Resort & SPA|
|Kosmach||02||Touristic Guest House|
– Meeting and assistance by our representative.
– Welcome with fresh flower garlands.
– 08 Nights accommodation
– 01 Overnights in train
– Train tickets Chernivtsi – Kiev
– Daily Breakfast, Lunch and Dinners.
– Local English-speaking guide
– All transfers, sightseeing, excursions as per the program by private vehicle.
– Entrance fee as per program
– Transport, Parking, Gasoline & Toll ways.
– All present government taxes.
– International Airfare.
– Tips, gratuities, Portage, laundry, telephone calls, table drinks, camera/ video camera charges, or any other expenses of a personal nature.
– Visa fees, personal insurance.
– Any item not specified under cost includes.
– Accommodation in good hotels.
– Check-in / out time is 12 noon at most of the hotels.
– Extension to other places is also possible with a minimal extra cost.
– Additional nights are available at each place with minimal supplement.
– A visa is required and must be obtained prior to your departure from your Country.
– If quoted hotel is not available, we will provide one of a similar category and standard.
– Small deviations in the tour program are sometimes necessary, depending on weather, road conditions, flight schedules and room availability.
– In case the government changes presently applicable taxes, increase in airlines prices, fuel surcharge our rates will need to be adjusted accordingly.
– Sometimes, there is no relevance between the distance and time of travelling, as it depends upon the condition of the roads and congestion of the traffic.
– While every effort will be made to maintain the itinerary, in view of local strikes etc that are beyond our control all schedule and itineraries are subject to last moment changes.
– Clients must be fully insured, as the company cannot accept liability for loss or damage to client’s property, medical emergencies or any other loss suffered by them whilst on tour.
– In Case of issuing Domestic or International air tickets, SGV is not responsible for any refund if the flight is delayed or cancelled, as it is the responsibility of airline.