Kiev to the Black Sea
|Resort:||Kiev to the Black Sea|
|Operator:||Viking River Cruises|
|Price From:||Contact for latest offers|
Cruise the Dnieper River to the Black Sea, an ancient and splendid trade route lined with rich cultural treasures, onion-domed churches and rural folkways that recall the days of Vikings, Tatars and Cossacks. Visit Kievs Cave Monasteries. Marvel at the riding skill of Cossack horsemen. And trace the footsteps of history at Odessas Potemkin Steps.
Day 1: Kiev, Ukraine
Arrive in Kiev, capital of Ukraine, and transfer to your ship.* After boarding, take free time to relax before dinner, or join our welcome walk to stretch your legs and start getting oriented.
Day 2: Kiev, Ukraine
Tour Kiev, capital of Ukraine and one of Europes oldest cities, with a heritage of Viking, Cossack and Ukrainian peoples. See its historic buildings and monuments, and take a guided tour of the lovely St. Sophia Cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage Site crowned with 13 glimmering domes. Afterward, continue to the Monastery of the Caves, an extensive complex of domed churches and museums founded by monks in 1051. Its Ukrainian name, Pechersk, comes from the underground passages and chapels that have been dug into the rocks alongside it. You may spend the remainder of the day on your own or take an optional Jewish Kiev tour. In the evening, you may choose to enjoy dinner and a Ukrainian folklore performance at a local restaurant.
Day 3: Kiev, Ukraine
Visit the fascinating Pirogovo Folk Museum today, a remarkable collection of more than 200 wooden structures relocated and rebuilt here from regions throughout Ukraine. Each building reflects a particular region, style and historical period of the countrys past and is brought to life by exhibits of folk costumes, musical instruments and household articles.
Day 4: Kremenchug, Ukraine
After breakfast, enjoy a city tour of Kremenchug. With its riverside location along the trade route between the 16th-century duchy of Muscovy (todays Moscow) and the Black Sea, this town has grown into a wealthy Cossack center. Enter the home of a local family as they welcome you in for snacks, and gain a deeper understanding of the daily lives of Ukrainians on this enriching visit. Share your experiences and impressions of both your differences and your similarities this evening during our onboard dinner.
Day 5: Dnipro, Ukraine
Undulating hills, vast open landscapes and a bend in the rambling river lead to Dnipro, a former fortress settlement. The city was founded by Catherine the Greats lover as a summer residence for the tsarina. During a city tour, take in the long boulevards, green parks and provincial public buildings. After lunch, drive to the Petrykivka Folk Art Center, founded by the celebrated Cossack known as Petryk. This settlement is famed for its rich ornamental style of decorative floral painting that embodies the cultures connection to the natural world.
Day 6: Zaporozhye, Ukraine
After breakfast, tour Zaporozhye, ancestral home of the Cossacks. Drive along the 6-mile Cathedral Prospect; see the dam and the citys massive hydroelectric plant, including its massive turbines that are visible through the windows. After lunch, visit the Cossack Museum of Khortitsa. Enjoy a special Cossack horsemanship show full of daring acrobatics accompanied by folkloric music and dance. After dinner on board, enjoy onboard activities, including a Ukrainian tea party, while you begin your overnight cruise down the river.
Day 7: Kherson, Ukraine
Enjoy a morning of scenic cruising down the Dnieper River through a rich, fertile landscape of corn and watermelon fields before arriving in Kherson this afternoon. Disembark for a tour of this small city, founded in 1778 by order of Catherine the Great and named after the nearby ancient Greek colony of Chersonesos Taurica. Walk along the river embankment, see the monument to Prince Potemkin and visit St. Catherines Cathedraldecidedly Mediterranean in design. Visit the local craft market and discover colorful fabric, nesting dolls and decorative housewares. Dinner is served as we depart and make our way into the wide-open waters of the Black Sea.
Day 8: Odessa, Ukraine
After breakfast, enjoy a half-day city tour of Odessa, an elegant city of terraced hills and landscaped parks. Travel along Primorski Boulevard to the Italian-baroque Opera House and to Potemkin Steps, where one of the most famous scenes in cinema was shot by Sergei Eisenstein for his 1925 classic,The Battleship Potemkin. After lunch, tour the fascinating Odessa Catacombs. This maze of underground tunnels began as a sandstone mining operation but the abandoned mines were later used by smugglers and Soviet partisans fighting fascist invaders during World War II. In the evening, you may choose to travel to a local restaurant for dinner and a Ukrainian folklore performance. Or, enjoy dinner on board as we remain docked overnight
Day 9: Odessa, Ukraine
Begin today with a tour of Akkerman Fortress in Bilgorod-Dnistrovski, a mighty and imposing citadel dramatically overlooking the Black Sea. It is the largest and best preserved fortress in Ukraine. Later, spend more time exploring Odessas stately 19th-century architecture, a blend of its Russian heritage and Mediterranean sensibilities, or stroll along its miles of sandy beaches. After dinner, you may choose to attend an optional performance at the Odessa Opera Houseknown for its splendid acousticsor concert, in case the opera house is closed.
Day 10: Odessa, Ukraine
Visit the Odessa Art Museum in Potocki Palace, a treasure of 19th-century architecture and colorful, eclectic interiors. During your visit, browse a rich collection of Russian and European paintings, sculptures and decorative arts spanning centuries. This afternoon, use your free time to discover more of this remarkable cityperhaps visiting the Uspensky Cathedral, a vision of blue and white domesor join an optional excursion to Odessa to tour historic synagogues and monuments of Jewish heritage and significance
Day 11: Odessa, Ukraine
After breakfast, disembark and proceed to the airport for your return flight.