Odesa region is famous for its picturesque estuaries that extend along the entire Black Sea coast. There are 7 large estuaries in the region, which are in close proximity to Odesa city, and a few small ones, scattered not far from the sea coast.
These local estuaries are known for their endless health and beauty benefits. The therapeutic muds that cover the bottom of the estuaries are rich in sulphur and an array of other minerals. Limnic mud contains iron oxides, colloidal hydrates of sulphurous iron, minerals, etc. Due to this, black mud has a recognizable smell of hydrogen sulfide and sensational medicinal properties.
The health and beauty benefits of Odesa estuaries were known far beyond the region even in ancient times. Long ago, about 2 thousand years ago, the ancient Greek historian Herodotus mentioned the territories of the modern Odesa region as a place with a large number of small and large streams that offer remote estuaries with healing muds. Now these rivers have dried up, there are only a few strongest estuaries that have stood the test of time. In Ukrainian these estuaries are called "Lyman" . The word is translated from ancient Greek as "harbor" or "bay", that is, a certain bay in winding banks.
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The lowest geographical point of Ukraine is located in this lyman. It is located 5 m below the sea level. Salinity of the water in Kuyalnyk estuary is about 300 ppm, and the average depth is 1 m. The name, according to the scientists, derives from the Turkish word "dense" - «kuylyk». A unique feather-grass steppe with such plants as iris marsh, tulips and a variety of other rare plants formed around Kuyalnyk Lyman.
In winter, the estuary rarely freezes, so many birds come here for wintering. The reservoir is very close to the city, so it's quite easy to get here. Kuyalnyk lyman is very popular with photographers because of its unique flora and fauna species.
Hadzhibey Lyman is one of the most popular resort locations in Odesa region due to its therapeutic muds. Since the time of the Russian Empire, it was the largest mud resort. There are several settlements on the shores of the Hadzhibey estuary - the Great and Cold Beams, and also Usatovo.
This pond is less salty, so here the animal world is more diverse than in Kuyalnik lyman: shrimps, crabs, gobies, crucian carp, pelengas, pike perch, carp, perch, cupid and many other creatures can be found here. Many people visit Hadzhibey Lyman to soak their bodies in the healing muds .
This is the largest estuary of Odesa region. It is separated from the sea by the Bugaz Kosa (the narrow strip of land that houses popular Zatoka resort). There are also two ports - Ovidiopol and Belgorod-Dnestrovsky located by the Dniester lyman. Back in the days the estuary was called the Ovidia Lake. Lyman played a large role in military operations during WW2.
Such famous landmarks as winery Shabo, Ackerman fortress, excavations of the ancient city of Nikony are located on the banks of the Dniester estuary. Tourists are swarming this region as Zatoka and Karolino-Bugaz are beautiful resorts with developed infrastructure. In addition to natural resources, you can plunge into the world of architecture and history.
Tiligulsky lyman stretches between Odesa and Mykolaiv region. The name Tiligul is of Turkish origin and means "raging lake". The Turks nicknamed this place because of strong and unpredictable winds, which raged the area almost constantly. Once the estuary was part of a large river Tiligul, but over time the river was chopped and torn apart, as a result a lyman was formed, which is now a natural reserve. According to experts, the Tiligul estuary is the cleanest body of water in Ukraine, an important role in this is played by the lack of infrastructure here. The closest to the lyman settlements are Maryanivka, Cordon, Pshenyanovo, Kalinovka, Petrovka towns.
This estuary is a popular destination for camping, paragliding, kite and windsurfing.
Small Adzhalyk estuary is located 30 km from Odessa, next to port Yuzhny. Once the estuary was called Grigorievsky lyman.
Big Adzhalyk, which is located 10 km from the Small Estuary, locals call it Dofinovsky lyman. This is one of the smallest estuaries of the region. Picturesque villages New Dofinovka, Vapniarka, Alexandrovka are stretched along the shores of this pond.
Dry Lyman (Sukhyy Lyman)
Located in the immediate vicinity of Odesa, on the right bank of seaport Chernomorsk, Dry Lyman is connected to the Black Sea by a navigable canal. Previously, it was known as the Klein-Libantal estuary. In recent years, wild ducks, pelicans and swans began wintering here, driving the attention of scientists and ecologists. Most likely, the Dry Lyman has become popular with birds due to its warm waters, fish stocks and close proximity to people - holiday-makers gladly feed birds at all seasons.
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Among other picturesque estuaries of Odesa region are Tuzlov, Burnas, Alibey, Hadjider, freshwater Kuchurgan estuary, Shagans, Sasyk (Kunduk) and other small lymans.
As we can see, Ukraine is very rich in beautiful landscapes and wonderful places. Visit Odesa estuary region to plunge into the world of wild and fascinating nature.
Image source: shutterstock.com