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Day 1: Arrive in Krakow, Poland
You are met on arrival at Krakow International Airport and transferred to our hotel in Krakow. The remainder of the day is free for you to explore on your own before meeting for dinner and our orientation meeting. Overnight in Krakow.
Day 2: Krakow Sightseeing
Krakow is often nicknamed the New Prague because of the architectural splendor, cultural significance and historical importance. Krakow, seat of the Polish kings for over five centuries, is without a doubt the most picturesque town in the country.
Day 3: Schindler Factory, Carpathian Ponies, Rural hike
Today we make our way to Wysowa. Our first stop is at Oskar Schindler's factory. Schindler, a German industrialist is credited with saving the life's of over a thousand Jews during the holocaust. Only the entrance office building is preserved in its original state.
Day 4: Beskid Niski Walk
Our walk today starts from our hotel and goes through the village of Wysowa. We follow a walking path through meadows and pastures with magnificent views. At the conclusion of our easy walk, we arrive to the tiny village of Ropki (just 30 people live here!) From Ropki we walk though one of nicest parts of Bekid Niski, through an abandoned area up to the village of Banica. Here, we visit 18th century wooden church. Enjoy a special invitation to the private family house of family Adam Kiewizc. Overnight in Wysowa.
Day 5: To Slovakia, Andy Warhol Museum, Snina
Today we cross the border as we leave Poland and enter Slovakia to the village of Regetovka. Visit the beautiful UNESCO town of Bardejov. After lunch we drive to the north east part of Slovakia to Medzilaborce to visit the Modern Art Museum of Andy Warhol, whose family came from the nearby village of Mikova.
Day 6: Wine region of Tokaj Region Slovakia, To Ukraine
From Snina, we drive down to the Slovak Tokaj wine area. We visit the largest and oldest Tokaj wine cellars at Mala Trna village. Here, we visit the largest (2 km) cellars from the 15th century. The cellars were originally used to hide villagers from the invading Turks. We enjoy a wine tasting and a picnic lunch.
Day 7: Mukatchevo Sightseeing
We travel to the village of Tybava, the start of today's hike. We start our trek up to the Nelipyno range with fantastic views before descending to the village Nelipyno, where we have a picnic lunch in a local village with fantastic draft kvas (local non alcoholic drink). Travel back to Mukatchevo, where we visit the famous Hungarian Castle. After a short rest at the hotel, we walk to the center of town for a typical Ukrainian dinner: Borsch soup and Pierogis with meat! Overnight in Mukatchevo.
Day 8: Village of Pylipets
We journey towards our next Carpathians base: a small town called Pylipets. Before we arrive, we enjoy a hike with great views before descending to Raztoka village. Raztoka is famous for it's wooden church from 17th century, if the priest is available this day in the village, we will have opportunity to see interiors. Overnight in Pylipets.
Day 9: Carpathians Scenic Hike
Today we enjoy a 12km moderate walk down hill which is one of the best Ukrainian Carpathian walks, starting at a WWI memorial dedicated to the Hungarian army. Enjoy the fantastic views of almost all the ranges of the Carpathians. Most of our hike is easy and slightly descending, finishing near the town of Velvets to enjoy a local Ukrainian koliba dinner. Overnight in Pylipets.
Day 10: Main Range Hike
Today, we travel by ski lift, almost to the main range. We walk up to Mt. Gemba at 1490M. We continue our walk to Mt. Magura (1530), again with great views before returning to the ski lift for our decent. In the afternoon we will have a short walk to the nearby Pylipets waterfall. Overnight in Pylipets.
Day 11: Village of Mizheria
Today, we get up early for our final walk near Volovets with marvelous views. After the walk, we journey to the town of Mizheria. We explore Mizheria on foot, including a meeting with the town mayor with opportunities to chat with him about history and present day life in Ukrainian Carpathians. Enjoy a picnic lunch beside a mineral water stream. We can visit the typically Soviet looking town of Mizheria and relax in the newly built Carpathian resort near the town with a swimming pool, typical Russian sauna and modern gym. Overnight in Mizheria.
Day 12: Sinevir Walk, Kolotchava Village
This morning, we have an easy walk from Sinevir saddle to Sineviar village. We will have lunch in Sinevir before traveling to nearby Kolotchava village to visit 'Skanzen', an open air Museum in old Kolotchava. Skanzen has original treasures from all periods of the village: Hungary, Austro-Hungary, Czechoslovak and Soviet. While in Skanzen, we also visit old Soviet and old Czechoslovak schools with all their original preserved equipment and desks and furniture.
Day 13: To Lviv
Today is a relaxed morning to rest our legs a bit. Later, we enjoy a short walk before our journey to Lviv, centre of Western Ukraine. Tonight we will experience a performance at either the Opera House or Ballet. Overnight in Lviv.
Day 14: Lviv Sightseeing
We explore Lviv (UNESCO), starting with the main square, Dominican Monastery and then the University. After lunch, you will have some free time to explore Lviv on your own. Overnight in Lviv.
Day 15: Kiev Sites
Today we make our way to Kiev, the capital of Ukraine by fast train. Kiev is more than 1,500 years old. Ancient and modern Kiev co-exist naturally.
Day 16: Exploring Kiev
Today, our walk will start near the Dnepr river. We walk up to the memorial of Mother of the Homeland Statue (the one of highest statues in the world). We visit Kiev's WWII museum. In the large park around the museum, we can see an excellent collection of WWII weapons. From the museum, we enjoy a 30 minute walk to the most important Kiev sites including Kiev Pechersk Lavra, the Spiritual Center of Ukraine with the most famous monastery in all Ukraine. Founded by monks in 8th century, lying on pictorial Dneper hills, it became a pilgrimage site for all Ortodox Christians. It combines majestic churches, built in classical, Byzantine and Baroque styles. We also visit the museum of Historical Treasures and Jewellery, the Museum of Ukrainian Decorative and Applied Art and the Museum of Miniatures.
Day 17: Departure Kiev
After breakfast, we say good bye to Kiev, Ukraine and your new found friends and journey back home.
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