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Natural sites in Kherson region, which you could have visited right now, if Russia hadn’t invaded Ukraine

Natural sites in Kherson region, which you could have visited right now, if Russia hadn’t invaded Ukraine

Kherson region is located in the South of Ukraine and is washed by the Black and Azov seas. It is the place of extremely beautiful nature and wonderful people.

The Kherson region has always played a significant role in the development of the Ukrainian state. Long ago, on the banks of the Dnipro river, where Kherson is now located, life was vibrant. It was a meeting place for sailors and merchants, Scythians and nomadic tribes. In the XI-XIII centuries the trade route “from the Varangians to the Greeks” passed through the territory of the modern Kherson region. There, in the city of Oleshshia — the main seaport of the Kyivan Rus existed. Kherson region is also the territory where Cossacks lived. The city of Kherson itself was founded in 1778 as a fortress, a seaport and the first base of the Black Sea Fleet. The fortress was named after the ancient Greek colony of Chersonesos, where Prince Volodymyr the Great was baptized in 988.

The modern territory of the Kherson region is a popular place for tourism among Ukrainians. There are dozens of natural sites there that never leave anyone indifferent. 

For six months now, almost the entire territory of the region has been occupied by Russia. Its residents and natural attractions are in danger from the Russian invaders. Residents of the Kherson region amazed the whole world with their resilience and courage. Despite threats and shellings from the Russian invaders, they went to protests and sang the national anthem of Ukraine in front of guns.

Residents of Kherson region are always happy to see tourists in their region and there is much to see there. Here is a selection of natural sites in the Kherson region, which you could have visited right now, if Russia hadn’t invaded Ukraine. But you will visit them for sure when Ukraine liberates Kherson!

Kherson region is a home to several pink lakes, the most famous of which is Lake Lemuria. The lakes’ pink color is caused by algae. It is also enriched with various useful components like bromine, magnesium, sodium, and other minerals. The hotter the summer — the more saturated color of the lake is. The entire gulf salt stock of Lemurian Lake exceeds 200 million tons and its concentration in water reaches up to 35%, making the lake even more salty than the famous Dead Sea.

The origin of the lake remains unclear. According to one theory, a Soviet bomber crashed in the area near the Syvash lake in 1969. To get the wreckage of the plane, the rescuers dug a large hole, which then filled with water and formed Lake Lemuria.

Byriuchyi Island is a spit in the northwestern part of the Azov Sea. Almost a hundred years ago Byriuchyi really was actually an island but now it is a spit. It extends 20 kilometers and is almost uninhabited. Until 1969, there was a fishing village on Byriuchyi island, in which at various times from 250 to 900 people lived. Now it is inhabited by people who take care of the area. 

For a long time, the Byriuchyi Island was closed to tourists as the presidential residence was located there. Since 2015, the spit has been open for tourists. The wildlife in Byriuchyi Island is absolutely unique and amazing. There are red deer, fallow deer, kulans, horses and mouflons, foxes, raccoon dogs, and pheasants. 

Oleshky Sands is the sand massif in the southern part of Kherson region. In some places it resembles a real desert, there are numerous dunes and bahrans, about 5 meters high (separate are up to 20 meters high), which move due to the wind. 

The desert appeared due to the grazing of huge flocks of sheep here in the 19th century. The sheep have destroyed all the grass in the area, leaving only sands that have been expanded by wind erosion. Today, the Oleshky Sands is considered the largest sand massif in Europe.

Askania-Nova is one of the oldest biosphere reserves on the planet and the biggest European steppe protected territory. Local ecosystems have more than 500 species of higher plants and more than 3,000 species of animals, Ukraїner reports.

Started as a German farming enterprise, it was then transformed into an extraordinary zoo by the colonist’s descendant Friedrich Falz-Fein (1863 – 1920) to preserve the unique wild nature of the area. Now it is a regime territory. Visitors can get in only with excursion guides. Askania’s dendrological park was made in a waterless steppe where it is almost impossible to grow woody plants. That’s why people compare it to an oasis in the desert.

In 1984, UNESCO added Askania to the World Network of Biosphere Reserves (WNBR)

Dzharylhach Island —  from Turkic “burnt wood” — is the biggest Island of Ukraine and in the Black Sea. Spreading out for 42 km from east to west and being totally uninhabited, it seems to be specifically created for adventures. It is a perfect spot for wildlife tourism. In the 20th century, the island almost became a desert due to grazing. Now any construction there is prohibited.

Stanislav Cliffs are 40-meter cliffs, which are located on the banks of the Dnipro–Buh Estuary. There is no clear explanation of how the cliffs were formed. The most common assumption is that their formation was caused by geological processes related to the activity of wind, rainwater and melted snow.

Tendriv Spit is a 65 km long, narrow strip of land located in the Black Sea. 

It is separated from the coast by the Tendriv Bay. In ancient times, together with the island of Dzharylhach, they formed one spit, which the Greeks called Achilles’ Run. This area is populated. It is also a nesting and wintering place for birds. A population of wild horses lives on the island too.


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