Grand Dniester Canyon

Duration 6 days
Date
Difficulty Normal
Route Nyzhniv – Rakovets – Ustechko – Zalishchyki
Distance 127 km
Price 110 € (3500 UAH)






OVERVIEWITINERARYDETAILSMAP

This tour includes 6 days and 127 kilometres of incredible landscapes of the Ukrainian Amazon. Dniester Canyon is in the list of 7 Natural Miracles of Ukraine.

We are sitting on an inflatable catamaran boat and floating past the villages, forests, fields and random fishermen. We’ll see the Dniester «walls» from the river: there are unique rocks of the Silurian and Devonian geological periods (over 400 million years old!).

There will be grottoes, caves, rocks and waterfalls.

The banks of the Dniester are very green: somewhere there is a soft carpet, and somewhere – impassable thickets resembling the jungle. There are many species of birds and rare animals. There even exists its microclimate: spring comes early, rains last for a short time, and the air temperature is usually a few degrees higher.

And in the end, we will see the very famous panorama of Zalishchiky town, which is encircled by the Dniester.

We spend the days on a boat; nights – on the bank of the river. A tent, fire crackling, sounds of a flowing river – sounds like an ideal plan for the summer evening!
In addition to nature, there will be a lot of historical and architectural sights on our way.
We’ll see still luxurious Renaissance palace of the early XX century of the earl Baden; Chervonohrad castle; some bridges designs.

 19 km


We meet in Ivano-Frankivsk (or Ternopil) and drive to the Nyzhniv village, which is a place of start.

Firstly we prepare our boat and learn safety rules. It’s unusual to row in the beginning. You need to find one rhythm with your boat neighbours. When it happens the catamaran will start to float smoothly.

After 3-4 hours we stop for the night camp.

In the evening, we do some camp routine (set up tents, collect firewood, prepare dinner), sing, talk and have a rest near the fire.

 17 km


Every morning starts at 7 o’clock. Then 2 hours for: exercise, nutritious breakfast, preparation and cleaning up camping spot.

In the morning, we stroll to the top of the right bank of the canyon to a place where a fight between the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) and Soviet the People’s Commissariat for Internal Affairs (NKVD) took place. There is a monument to that event.

There are also many grottoes and small caves in the vicinity, which we will look at.

In the afternon, we return to floating. 

There is a palace on our way on this day. The palace belonged to the Marshal of the Galician Sejm Stanislav Baden; constructed in the style of the Viennese Renaissance. Architecturally it reproduces the royal palace in Vienna, but its small version.

Till the evening we’ll see also a lot of caves, rocks and waterfalls.

At the end of the day, we’ll see a unique travertine waterfall near the village of Kosmirin.

 36 km


On this day we pass the Nezvizko village, which is known for finding one of the biggest archaeological sites of ancient Trypillya and Chernyakhiv cultures. They also found the remains of settlements that existed here twelve thousand years ago. This area is called «Archeological treasury of Ukraine».

 35 km


After breakfast, we walk to explore the ruins of the castle in Rakovci village.

On this day, we see the unique outcrops of the Dniester, which is protected by law as a botanical site. In this part of the Canyon, Devonian rocks, over 400 million years old, appear on the surface in the form of reddish rocks.

We’ll climb the highest point of the Dniester Canyon to see the river panorama. Chervona Hora (300 meters above sea level) rises to a height of more than 150 meters above the water.  

 20 km


We’ll see the highest plain waterfall in Ukraine – Dzhurinsky. There are also the ruins of the Chervonohrad castle nearby.

We float under the largest bridge across the Dniester: its length is 400 m, and the height is about 40 m.

Natural phenomena in this part are no less impressive: on the high rocks of the left bank, there is an outcrop of another geological age – the Silurian.

 15 km


On the last day, we float a few hours to the city of Zalishchiki. This city is well-known for its unique location. There is a famous panorama of this town from the southern slope of the canyon (look at the picture below). We’ll also make such photos by climbing the observation point.

Panoramic view from above to famous Ukrainian city Zaleshchiki in the Dniester river canyon at sunset. Ukraine, Ternopil region. Author: RoksanaBashyrova

START / FINISH

We meet at the railway station in Ivano-Frankivsk or Ternopil city in the morning. Then we are driving to Nyzniv village, which is the starting point. 

The finish point is Zalishchyki town. From here you can take a train to Kyiv or another big city in Ukraine, or drive to Ivano-Frankivsk with the guides.

WHAT TO EXPECT

  • At the beginning of the trip, the guide will tell you how to row and all the details of safety. Don’t worry about not having an experience, we’ll teach you!
  • We are floating on a catamaran during days, and camping on the bank of the river during nights.
  • All personal things are packed in hermetic bags and attached to the deck of the boat. The same way is for food, which we cook on the fire.
  • Unlike hiking, this tour requires more work not by the feet, but by the hands, sitting. So be prepared for some pain in the hands. During the day we will take breaks.

Note:

the guide can change the pre-agreed tour plan if the weather conditions become worse, someone feels bad or some other adventures happen. Your life and health in these few days is our responsibility, and we are very serious about it!

WHAT DO YOU PAY FOR

You pay in cash when meeting with a guide in Ivano-Frankivsk or Ternopil; prepayment is not required.

What’s included

  • meals;
  • use of boat, helmets, oars and life jackets;
  • guide’s job;
  • use of gas and group equipment (cooking gear, first-aid kit, etc.).

What’s NOT included

  • transport;
  • personal equipment (tent, sleeping bag, backpack are yours, but we can help).

WITH WHOM

The size of the group is from 4 to 10 participants. We prefer small teams: it’s easier to find a common language, more comfortable to go at one pace. And also it is a requirement of the ecological principle leave no trace in the wild!

WHAT ABOUT WEATHER

The weather in the Dniester River valley is warm enough. The local climate is different from the surrounding areas with less rainfall and higher average temperatures. It’s more subtropical than moderate, which is explained by the relief of the canyon, which holds the warm and dry air over the river.

In summer the rains occur approximately every 4-5 days. In the afternoon, the air temperature can range from +15 … + 35 C, at night from + 7 … + 15 C. The water temperature in the Dniester is about + 20 degrees in summer.

Contact us if you have any questions.