Three Ukrainian Itineraries to Jump Start Your Travel Plans (Part 2)
Three Ukrainian Itineraries to Jump Start Your Travel Plans (Part 1)
Option Three: Black Sea Mysteries
Odessa, a land of Greeks, Turks, and Catherine the Great’s fantasies, is cosmopolitan port city with a host of characters straight out of central casting. Immigrants from all over Europe continue to come to Odessa to either make their fortune or lose their lifesavings. Breeds apart from other parts of Ukraine, the residents of Odessa are stylish, cultured, funny, and a touch wild. Famous for the Potemkin Steps, Odessa’s beaches are famous for their carnival atmosphere as well as their polluted condition. Ukrainians vacation in Odessa where the climate is temperate and the nightlife outrageous.
If pristine and quiet coastline is what you seek, leave Odessa and travel along the cost to Sevastopol. History buffs will delight in this town, a center point of siege during the Crimean War. In addition to a number of monuments like the Eagle Column commemorating Russian ships that were deliberately shipwrecked on the rocks to prevent enemy ships from docking and the Admiral Nakhimov Monument, recognizing the man who led the city’s defense, there is a painted panorama on a hill near the center of town depicting the city’s 349 day siege.
Scuttling down to Yalta is a must to end your trip. Yalta is a political and cultural centerpiece with Livadia Palace, the site of the Yalta Accords, the negotiated settlement between Roosevelt, Churchill and Stalin. Much more is worth seeing in the near vicinity of Yalta, however, with day trips to Sudak to visit the ruins of an old fortress and the Kara-Dah Nature Reserve with its eerily shaped volcanic rocks. (Estimated Time: 3 weeks)
Whether you are traveling east or west, north or south, or down the center of Ukraine, your travels will benefit with planning and focus. Don’t try and “do Ukraine” all at once. Prioritize, prepare, and enjoy a well-executed journey.