At this place, one of the most beautiful rivers in Europe breaks into several branches that form a sort of fork. It is from here that the village gets its name (‘vilka’ means ‘fork’ in Russian) given to the city by Russians and runaway Cossacks, who were the first to settle in these lands.
Due to many waterways that take up almost half of the town, Vilkovo was nicknamed the ‘Ukrainian Venice’. Unique boats, Ukrainian versions of gondolas, can be seen here much more often than cars. Vilkovo is a quiet, cozy town, hiding on the banks of the Danube. It is made up of dozens of picturesque man-made islands, formed out of silt and clay, that are surrounded by fabulously beautiful gulfs and backwaters.
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Vilkovo is called the town of fishermen and winemakers. The latter grow here a – Delicious eponymous wine is made from unique local grapes - ‘novak'.
However, Vilkovo’s main attraction is the Danube bio reserve, which takes up almost 50 thousand hectares and is considered to be the biggest swampland reserve in Europe! The Romanian part of the reserve is included on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. Hundreds of species of rare plants, exotic animals and fish, many of which are on Ukraine’s endangered species list inhabit area around Vilkovo. However, birds are as the reserve's main inhabitants, as this primeval nature creates a real paradise for them. You may see fantastically beautiful European white pelicans, geese, and white-tailed sea eagles here. The so called ‘zero kilometer,’ where the Danube flows into the Black Sea, is also located on the territory of the reserve.
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The most convenient way to Ukrainian Venice lays through Odessa, however, it is better to book tours to Vilkovo in advance, especially if you plan your visit on the weekend.