Bessarabian Adventure

Aliaga - kurgan Ismail - Monument to Suvorov Turkish mosque, Izmail Tree Sparrow, Yalpug White Stork, Kilia

Three days in the Danubian steppes, forests and wetlands

This tour is a sweep through the land of the medieval Wallachian Basarab Princes - hence the region's local name of Bessarabia. It covers a host of outstanding historical, cultural and natural sites including the Dniester National Park, broad Danubian lakes of Reni, Izmail city, and Danube Delta and Black Sea coast at Vilkovo. The region is famous for its beautiful landscapes, abudance of birds, and wanderful cuisine set in a variety of enhnic backgrounds.

Day 1

Depart Odessa; traverse Dneister National Park; Aliaga steppe; Lakes Yalpug, Kugurlui and Kartal; Stara Nekrasovka

About 45 minutes after leaving Odessa we will arive at Mayaki, a small town overlooking the vast sweep of the reedbeds in the Dneister National Park. Crossing the bridge across the Dneister River itself, we descend to the floodplain and wend our way through the reeds and meadows. Some of this area actually lies in Moldova - but we won't need passports. Two hours later, we arrive at Aliaga steppe, one of the most authentic steppe landscapes remaining in southern Odessa. At this point Traian's  Wall, which marked the northwest boundary of the Byzantine Empire, lies before us. It is a wide open valley in the bottom of which a small stream meanders to Lake Kitai, just visible in the distance. On the surroundings slopes there many ancient earth mounds (kurgans) where chiefs of the nomadic Scythian and Sarmatian tribes are buried dating back to the 5th century BC...More...