Three mountains surround a home for 14 thousand people, Vorokhta: Hoverla, Petros and the second highest peak of Ukraine Brebeneskul. Many tourists are intrigued by local architecture, for instance, beautiful arch bridges also called viaducts, built in the 19th century.
Locals value their history and traditions that also concern cuisine — there’s no better place to try different kinds of traditional Carpathians dishes. In winter, Vorokhta becomes a mecca for lovers of skiing and snowboarding. There are numerous places to visit in the village and around it. Here are the most iconic ones:
The viaduct bridge is, without doubts, among the most-visited attractions in Vorokhta. It was built way back in 1895 when the region was a part of the Austria-Hungary. At the time, it was a part of the railway connecting Ivano-Frankivsk and Rakhiv. The engineers did an exceptionally good job — one of the longest stone railway bridges in Europe still stays intact to this day. Nowadays, however, Vorokhta bridge is out of service and simply remains a tourist location.
The Carpathian National Natural Park
Those who enjoy hiking and untouched nature may be interested in visiting the oldest and the largest national park in Ukraine, Carpathian National Reserve. The park located in the mountains of the Prut River basin occupies a territory of over 50000 hectares. The park embraces unique landscapes and is home for endangered animals and plants.
The Carpathian National Natural Park has about a dozen tourist trails. Not all of them are marked on the maps or tourist guides, so it's always better to have a local guide to get around. The surrounding villages and towns all have checkpoints that show the way to the park, so you won't get lost. The admission to the park is paid at the entrance checkpoints: currently, the adult ticket costs UAH 20 and the ticket for kids is UAH 10.
Many tourists who come to the Carpathians seek extreme leisure. In these terms, one of the most popular things to do in Vorokhta is riding the local zip line located not far from the Villa Skyta. The zip line has two tracks, 500 meters and 200 meters each, which form one of the longest descents of the region. The shorter line is available for kids, while adults may enjoy the full 700-meter descent. The zip line can be reached from Villa Skyta by feet, bicycle or taxi. The price of a single full ride is UAH 140 and UAH 70 for kids.
Nesamovyte, which means «furious» in Ukrainian, is situated on a large plateau on the slopes of Turkul Mount 1750 meters above the sea level. The lake is a popular hiking location, as it can be reached only by feet following the marked tourist trail. Local inhabitants, Hutsuls, have legends connected to the place. They believe that the souls of all those who commit suicide or take someone else life end up in Nesamovyte Lake. So, whenever someone throws a stone in the lake, they disturb the souls of the sinners.
Thanks to the low popularity of the hiking route, Kukul Mountain is one of the best places to see in Vorokhta when you want some alone quality time. The 1539-meter mountain is located not far from the Chornohora mountain range. While the mountain itself isn't very special, it provides wonderful views of Hoverla, Petros, Dovbushanka, and Vedmedzha Mountain. Apart from hikers, Kukul is beloved by cyclists. Locals and tourists made reliable bicycle routes for those who'd like to enjoy the Carpathians on a bike.
In case you want to take a break from nature, Ivano-Frankivsk often called the gem city of the Carpathians is a good option. The city is located in two hours from Vorokhta, reachable by buses, trains and private transport. Throughout its history, Ivano-Frankivsk became a home for more than 5 nationalities, which is quite typical for the Carpathians. It is evident in its architecture: the narrow winding streets and old solid buildings remind of many European cities.
One of the best souvenirs from Ivano-Frankivsk is a Carpathian balm, infused with the mountain herbs. History lovers might be interested in exploring the underground Bastion, which is a part of the fortress fortifications of the old city, Potocki palace with its original the 17th-century cobblestone and the 200-year-old Shevchenko park.
Where to stay in Vorokhta
As a popular hiking spot, Vorokhta has numerous accommodation options. The easiest way to choose is to look at what's available on Booking.com for the selected dates, as sometimes the most popular villas or sadybas are fully-booked a year before the high season.
Villa Skyta is the often-booked place of the region. It is located right near the Prut River and 5 minutes from the small zoo in Vorokhta. Skyta also lies in 3 kilometers from the Vorokhta train station, making it easy to reach. The villa has various accommodation options for families, groups of friends or solo travelers. Besides, there's a restaurant of the Carpathian cuisine for those who'd love to explore local culture.
Sports resort Zarosliak located 20 kilometers from Vorokta is another popular location. The resort lies at the bottom of Hoverla Mountain and is usually fully booked during the skiing season.
How to travel to Vorokhta
Thanks to the growing infrastructure of the Carpathians, Vorokhta can be reached quite easily by trains, buses, cars or car sharing like BlaBlaCar from many Ukrainian cities. The train is by far one of the most popular ways to travel to Vorokhta: they depart from Kyiv, Lviv, Ternopil, Ivano-Frankivsk and other cities. The most often booked ones are the train #457 Kyiv - Rakhiv and 606K Lviv - Vorokhta. The latter takes about five and a half hours to arrive.
Buses to Vorokhta regularly go from bus stations in Lviv and Ivano-Frankivsk. The schedule changes depending on the season, so it's always better to check beforehand.
As for the car, if you go from Kyiv follow H09 highway in the direction of Vorokhta. The trip will take about 4 hours. Alternatively, you can drive on the T2004 highway, which takes a bit longer - almost 5 hours to the final destination. Finally, BlaBlaCar is a popular transportation method in the region, which can be used to get to Vorokhta from the large cities or travel in the area.
Photo sources: Ruslan Lytvyn / shutterstock.com, guide.karpaty.ua, unsplash.com. All images belong to their rightful authors.