KYIV–LVIV–ODESSA 10 DAYS
Group size 10 Start Kyiv
Countries 1 End Odessa
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Vacation Style Holiday Type
Activity Level Challenging
Group Size Medium Group
During our trip we will explore the most beautiful cities in the whole Ukraine : the city of Golden Domes – Kyiv, the cultural capital of Ukraine – Lviv and the pearl of the Black Sea – Odessa. Let yourself immerse into unforgettable adventures, which will forever stay in your heart! Welcome to Ukraine!
- 8 nights: 3 x in Kyiv, 2 x in Lviv, 3 x in Odessa.
- All-route English-speaking guide.
- Meals: HB.
- English-speaking city tours: Kyiv, Lviv, Odessa
- Transfer by modern coach throughout the whole trip.
- Entrance + guided tour: sacred buildings according to program; Kyiv Pechersk Lavra, St. Sophia’s Cathedral; Open Air Museum Pyrohovo near Kyiv; Lychakiv Cemetery in Lviv; Catacombs in Odessa; Fortress in Bilhorod-Dnistrovskyi.
- Other highlights: Dnipro Boat Trip; Train Tickets Kyiv-Lviv and Lviv-Odessa, Shustov distillery and Testing in Odessa; Shabo Wine Cultural Center and Tasting.
- Visa Fee
- Travel Insurance
- Single Supplement
- Any meals not mentioned
- Any transfers not mentioned (e.g. first and last day)
- Any expenses of a personal nature
- Camera/video permits
- Tips to the guide and driver
Welcome to Ukraine
You check in to the hotel in Kyiv, have a dinner and relax after the road. Time permitting, you could still have a walk around the city.
The cradle of Eastern-Slavic civilization
The history of the capital of once the most powerful East European state covers the period of 1500 years. Today you can enjoy the view of the densely forested Dnipro banks. We take a walk through Podil (Lower Town) the oldest district of Kyiv and on the hillside pedestrian street Andriyivskyy Descent (Uzviz) with picturesque views over the Dnipro Valley, also visit the located in a very picturesque area, in the 18th century St. Andrew’s Church, House of the writer Mihail Bulgakov, House of Tsar Peter I. You visit the government district and admire its magnificent buildings such as the House with Chimaeras and Mariyinsky Palace. Take a short stroll through Khreshchatyk – the city’s pedestrian boulevard, admire the overcrowded, monumental-looking buildings in the style of a confectioner, and stop for a brief moment on Maidan (Independence Square).
The city of golden domes and Pyrohovo
We are dedicating the second day to this beautiful city, especially to its spiritual side. Proud 300 churches characterize the cityscape. Among other things, we visit the Saint Sophia’s Cathedral, famous around the world as a masterpiece of architecture, fresco painting and mosaic art; built in the 11th century it is the place where the princes of Kievan Rus’ have found their rest. We visit the St. Michael’s Golden-Domed Monastery, built around a century later, and see the Golden Gate – the entrance to the medieval city. We also visit the absolute highlight of Kyiv sacral life and multitude of culturally significant churches, monasteries and museums – Kyiv Pechersk Lavra, the part of UNESCO World Heritage List, also known as Kyiv Monastery of the Caves. Nowadays, as it was almost a thousand years ago, Lavra remains the most important place of pilgrimage on the territory of Ukraine. In this place you find not only seclusion and asceticism, but also beautiful churches, decorated with paintings, monk’s cells, defence towers and other buildings that have arisen over the past centuries. Lavra Caves is a complex system of narrow underground passages with temples along the way and buried relics of sacred ascetics. There are also some museums and exhibitions on the grounds of the Lavra Monastery. We highly recommend you to visit the Museum of Historical Treasures of Ukraine. Among other things it houses a rich collection of unique artworks of the ancient Scythians, including the famous golden pectoral from the megalithic tomb. After that we visit the largest open-air museum in Europe “Pyrohovo” constructed to resemble the Cossack village from 17th-18th c. Around 300 buildings among which are churches, factories, farmhouses, windmills, etc. immerse you in the life of the Ukrainian countryside interspersed with the Cossacks’ traditions. You enjoy ancient Ukrainian folk music and learn a lot about life in the Ukrainian village in past centuries. At the end of the day, we take a one-hour Dnipro boat trip to admire the golden domes of the numerous Kyiv churches from the water.
Arrival to Lviv
From Kyiv we take a night train to Lviv – the largest city in western Ukraine and cultural capital of the country. Almost at midnight starts another unforgettable chapter of our tour. This trip may remind you old times, although night trains are still a very popular means of transportation in the country, you appreciate their leisurely driving, charismatic conductors and the rails that gently rock you to sleep. On arrival in Lviv, depending on the timing, we have a late breakfast or an early lunch together. Afterwards, you have a brief acquaintance with Lviv on a tour in the city center, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Discovering the city on foot, you see versatility of architectural styles implemented in historical churches and houses, you visit the Armenian and the Jewish quarters.
Bland of many cultures
After breakfast you explore Lviv with our English-speaking City Guide. Rarely can some city offer such a variety of culture on such a small territory. Lviv has a very diverse history and many people have contributed to its development. You should not only see the city, but feel its atmosphere as well, easily to find at every turn, in the rocks of old buildings, in many narrow streets inviting for a walk, in the curved backs of the park benches, in spontaneous chess games in the avenue in front of the opera, in the ambience of many coffee houses. And do not to forget the famous Lviv Opera House itself, one of the most beautiful opera theaters in Ukraine and Europe. Someone has once told that each society is worth exactly as much as it commemorates its dead. In the afternoon we invite you to visit the Lychakiv Cemetery – one of the oldest cemeteries in Europe. Only the wealthy elite, as well as artists, scientists, politicians, and members of the clergy were buried here. Prominent sculptors and architects were hired to create monuments, and over time, they turned the cemetery into the real outdoor museum. Here you hear numerous stories about the prominent personalities, who for centuries have been writing the history of these lands.
Zhovkva and Drohobych
On this day we make a trip to the surroundings of Lviv. There we visit the amazing wooden church, which has been recently declared a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site, visit the Synagogue, Zhovkva Castle, the Collegiate Church, the Basilian Monastery. Our next program point is Drohobych. Oil production in the neighboring region and investors from Western European have brought the city to its heyday. In the 14th century the city became a center of salt production. Although the investors have left Drohobych, today, this provincial city has a lot to offer. Drohobych is also famous as a birthplace of Bruno Schulz, the author of famous “Cinnamon Shops“ that made a great contribution to the history of literature. On the outskirts of the town, we visit one of the oldest wooden churches in the region- Church of St. George, UNESCO World Heritage Site. Our bus takes us from Drohobych to Lviv, and there we travel by train to Odessa.
Welcome to Odessa
Welcome to Odessa – the largest port city of Ukraine. Catherine the Great ordered to build this city driven by the ambition to create the most beautiful port city in the world. Whether she succeeded or not and how much of the flare of that period has remained you see for yourself. Today you make the first acquaintances with the city. With our cityguide you unveil the main attractions of Odessa – Prymorsky Boulevard with the Richelieu Monument which attracts every season not only tourists, but also city residents, the Potemkin Stairs with its 192 steps which lead you to the port, the Opera House, which is one of the most magnificent opera houses in the whole Europe, Derribasiwska street, the burgomeister ’s residence, the Assumption Cathedral, the Greek Trinity Church, the Orthodox Cathedral of Christ Transfiguration and the city center in style of art nouveau. A colorful mixture of people shapes the cityscape and gives it a southern flair. In the late afternoon, another highlight of our trip is a visit to the cognac distillery “Shustov” with cognac tasting.
The Pearl of the Black Sea
An outburst of emotions awaits you in the morning – the catacombs of Odessa – a long tunnel system and labyrinth, extending below the city and with the total length of 2500 km! Throughout its history, the catacombs sheltered crooks, robbers, hustlers and Soviet partisans. Today, visitors can go for extraordinary excursion. Inside the catacombs there is also a museum that tells the story of this tunnel system. The afternoon is at your disposal. But here are a few tips to make sure you do not miss anything interesting: you can enjoy the air and water at one of the beautiful beaches of Odessa; take a boat trip and admire the beauties of the city from the sea; visit the largest dolphinarium in Ukraine. In the evening, you may also dress the appropriate outfit and listen to an opera in the Odessa Opera House.
The white city
On this day we visit the “white city” Bilhorod-Dnistrovsky (or earlier: Akkerman), one of the oldest cities in the world. Both names are self-explanatory and refer to the white color (Akkerman means in Turkish “white rock”). What do Bilhorod-Dnistrovsky, Athens, Jerusalem, Rome and Beijing have in common? All these cities have history of more than 2500 years. Nowadays Akkerman is famous for its medieval fortress which was built in the 14th – 15th and has remained in good condition. Today it is the largest fortress on the territory of Ukraine and belongs to the 7 wonders of Ukraine. The fortress will amaze you with its 3 to 5 meters thick walls and numerous towers. With a little luck you will be entertained at a historic festival or a disguised knight tournament. Not far away from Bilhorod-Dnistrovskyi is situated Shabo village, the name of which has also a Turkish origin and can be translated as “Lower Gardens”. Centuries have passed away but the village still remains true to its name. Viticulture here traces its roots to the Greeks and Genoese. This tradition continues in the present days, as here is situated the headquarter of one of the most famous wine producers in Ukraine. In the village, we will visit the wine museum, where you will be warmly invited to wine tasting. In the late evening we come back to Odessa.
In the early morning we head to the Odessa airport. You have spent your time in Ukraine very intensively and eventfully, learnt about new culture, traditions, saw its nature and experienced something special. You take home unforgettable impressions and memories. We would be happy to become your travel companion once more in the future!