Highlights of Ukraine – Kyiv, Lviv and Odesa
Highlights of Ukraine in this eight-day program to Kyiv, Lviv & Odesa:
– acquaintance with three very different and fascinating cities in the (in 2020) emerging Ukraine
– the Pecherska Lavra Monastery in Kyiv
– National Historical Museum in Kyiv
– Lviv and its old center with its numerous architectural monuments in many different styles
– the Lychakivsky cemetery in Lviv
– famous Potemkin Stairs in Odesa
– Odesa’s extensive network of underground tunnels
– the boulevard and sandy beaches of Odesa, especially in the summer (but then it is busy!)
Country & Program
This is the most popular program for visiting the highlights of Ukraine. Of course, if you have more time, a visit to the Carpathians, the villages & castles in Western Ukraine is also recommended. And those who want to go off the beaten track could also visit the cities and industrial areas in the center and east of the country.
But Kyiv, Lviv and Odesa are the three major attractions of the country, and with good reason. Kyiv is dynamic, large, and has impressive monuments throughout the city. Lviv is compact and easy to visit on foot. Finally, Odesa is a port city with a grand appearance, but requires some maintenance to make the city shine again. In the summer months the beaches in and around the city are big attractions, but be ready for large number of visitors when you visit during that period!
A visa is not required for a visit to Ukraine. Ukraine International Airlines flies directly to Kyiv, also the Polish airliner LOT has connections via Warsaw to Odesa.
Read more about the highlights of travelling in Ukraine, plus practical advise, here.
Arrival in Kyiv, transfer to your hotel. Start of your tour to the highlights of Ukraine!
Leisure time and accommodation.
The center of Kyiv, in which your hotel is situated, is pleasant to walk around.
After breakfast you will be offered a three hour excursion in Kyiv.
This excursion will make you get acquainted with the most interesting and marvelous sights of Kyiv.
The Golden Gate. It was erected by Yaroslav the Wise to be the gala entrance to the city. Nearby there is the monument dedicating to Yaroslav the Wise with model of Sophia Kyivska on his hand.
Myhailovsky Cathedral was founded by Prince Svyatopolk (Myhayl). There had been the remains of holy Varvara, which were transferred to Vladymyrsky cloister after the destruction. During 1997-2000 Myhailovsky cathedral was rebuilt.
Khreschatyk Street is the main street of Kiev. Independent square is situated nearby and is the place for repose and entertainment. Every weekend it converts into the pedestrian area. There is the underground trade mall “Globus” with lots of cozy cafes.
The monument to Volodymyr who had baptized Kyiv Rus is situated on Volodymyrskyi hill. Rushing through the old park you stumble across the funicular-tram (3 carriages) which can lift you down and up to Volodymyrskyi hill.
After lunch, the visiting of St. Sophia Cathedral will bring fabulous impressions. It is the architecture monument of the XI century which remained its beauty and pomposity till now. The frescoes and mosaics are the indoor decorations of the cathedral which remained to inspire the artists. In 1990 Sophia Kyivska was included in UNESCO’s list of international heritage.
You end this day with a hike in Podil district, the oldest part of Kyiv.
One more day in Kyiv, with excursions and leisure time.
Kyiv Pechersk Lavra is the most famous sight-seeing object in Kyiv, which has been included in UNESCO World Heritage Register. Monastery Complex has been wonderful ornamentation and fame of Pechersk for ages. It is the object of worship of all Orthodox world. Monastery Monks Antony and Feodosiy founded it in 1051. This twenty-eight hector functioning monastery contains numerous churches, towers, a printing works. And miles of maze like underground tunnels containing numerous churches and some of Kyiv’s riches museums.
After lunch a visit to the National Museum of History of Ukraine in World War II and the Motherland Monument is planned. The main exposition is deployed in 16 halls and has more than 17 thousand exhibits. You will received a guided tour, telling about about the heroism, valor, sacrifice and tragedy of the people of Ukraine during the Second World War. It highlights global events of the war and detached historical facts
Leisure time for the rest of the day, transfer to your hotel and accommodation.
Today the transfer by train to Lviv is on the program. That train will probably leave early (the timetable may change) so that you will be transfered to the train station around 6 am to catch the 7 am train, with arrival in Lviv at 2 pm. Transfer to your hotel in the city.
At the end of the afternoon you will get acquainted with the city with a two-hour guided excursion.
Situated in the Western part of Ukraine, Lviv, the “City of Lions”, is its heart and soul. There are 50% of all architectural monuments of Ukraine in Lviv. That is why the centre of the city is considered to be historic and architect reservation. Variety and mixture of different styles of all epochs beginning from 13 century, find their reflection in grey stone buildings of Lviv. Gothic and baroque, renaissance and Roman style, rococo and Empire, modern eclectic and constructivism are combined in it architecture.
During its many centuries history the ancient Lviv has undergone many wars and floods, but each time the city came back to life. Those who was there once, come back here more and more to feel it magic force and to receive unforgettable impression. Lviv is a city-museum at the open air where each street has its legend and history full of different peripeteia from politics to love. During a four-hour city excursion on foot you will get to know much about this ancient city.
After lunch is planned a visit to Lychakivsky Cemetery & Museum. With the same sort of overgrown grounds and Gothic aura as the famous Parisian necropolis, Pere Lachaise, is the the final resting place for more than 400,000 people. A trip to Lviv wouldn’t be complete without a wander here. Initially opened in 1787 in compliance with an Austrian law to move burials from the centre of town, the cemetery soon became one of Europe’s finest. Generations of Lvovians were laid to rest here: intelligentsia, bourgeoisie and nobility.
In the evening you will be transfered to the railway station to catch the nighttrain to Odesa from about 22 PM, arriving there the next morning around 9 AM.
After arrival in Odesa you will be transfered to your hotel and have a rest. Then, a three hour excursion is planned
Today we enjoy a day city tour, including many architectural sites of 19th & 20th centuries, many of them designed by world famous architects and engineers. Most notable are the Opera House (resembling the Vienna Opera and the Dresden Court Theater) built in 1884-87. And then the Marine (Potyomkin) Stairway (1837-41) – one of the largest stairways in the world.
The heart of Odesa, and immortalized in Sergei Eisensteins’s 1925 film, Battleship Potemkin, is Deribasivska (Deribasovskaya) Street with plenty of shops, cafes and restaurants.
We will visit the five-domed Uspensky Cathedral, and drive out to the Shevchenko Park with its views of the Black Sea. During our sightseeing we will also tour inside the Fine Arts Gallery (formally Count Pototsky’s Palace), which houses Russian and Ukrainian paintings dating back to the 15th century.
Free time is scheduled in the afternoon. Odesa is an interesting city – with a harbor – for walking, you can feel the grandeur of the past in the streets. However, meanwhile – and unfortunately – quite a bit of restoration work is needed to revive that grandeur in full glory.
Especially with warm weather, a visit to the boulevard along the Black Sea coast is recommended, with many cozy cafés & restaurants and even a sandy beach in the center!
Accommodation in a hotel.
A remarkable excursion is planned for the morning, namely to the Odesa Catacombs.
Odesa underground tunnels (catacombs) were created nearly 200 years ago during mining of building materials that were used to build the city. Currently it is the maze of 2,500 km of entrances, exits, caves, and tunnels.
During the WWII campaigns, in 1941, when German and Romanian army occupied Odesa during the way, the Soviet Military headquarters gave the order to organized the partisan resistance. And Odesa catacombs were chosen as the camp for the unit of partisans. The provisions and weapons was enough there so the unit could stay underground for half a year. The partisan unit was fighting against the Nazi and Romanian army during the entire period of occupation.
Leisure time in the afternoon, accommodation in your hotel.
Transfer to the airport, end of your tour and we hope you have enjoyed the highlights of Ukraine!
The cost of this program to the highlights of Ukraine is €1,095 per person at two people, €845 per person at four people and €735 per person at six people. Please write to us for other group sizes.
Included in the price are:
– three nights of accommodation in a centrally located 4 * hotel in Kyiv in a standard double room incl. breakfast
– one night of accommodation in a centrally located 4 * hotel in Lviv in a standard double room incl. breakfast
– two nights of accommodation in a centrally located 4 * hotel in Odesa in a standard double room incl. breakfast
– all transfers per program. With two people you travel in a passenger car, with four people in a minibus and with six people in a larger bus
– train tickets Kyiv-Lviv and Lviv-Odesa in resp. a daytime express train and a night train
– English-speaking local guides according to program
– entrance fees for all museums and places of interest according to the program
– an additional breakfast on arrival at Odesa on day 6
– a small souvenir
The price does not include international flights, any early check-in on day 1, lunches & dinners, and the services not mentioned. Finally we withhold a contribution of €15 for the Dutch GGTO Guarantee Fund.
|Kyiv, Lviv and Odesa|
|€845-1.095 per person at 4-2 persons|