Carpathian Easter: the Colours of Tradition

Why this tour?

Discover Easter traditions of Eastern Christianity: celebrate the biggest holiday of the year in the desolate village in the Carpathian mountains together with the locals. Learn how to paint an Easter egg «pysanka» and bake a special Easter bread «paska» — those traditions go back to pagan times; take part in the solemn church ceremony; find out the symbolic meaning of the eternal resurrection in the small everyday rituals of the Easter week. Tour conditions might be somewhat challenging yet they are rewarded with the authentic atmosphere, peculiar traditions of the local Hutsul people, and breathtaking scenery of the Ukrainian Carpathians.

5 days

340 € per person

on request

Tour description

Day 1

  • Meeting point at the Ivano-Frankivsk Railway Station (8:00)
  • Kolomyya: a guided tour in the Museum of the Hutsul and Pokuttya regions
  • The Museum of Painted Eggs
  • Lunch
  • Check-in to the cottage in Kosmach
  • Preparations for Easter celebration (baking of «paska», a special Easter bread, and decorating Easter baskets)
  • Visit to the Museum of Sheep Breeding
  • Dinner in the cottage

Day 2

  • Breakfast
  • Painting of «pysanka» (Easter eggs)
  • Lunch
  • Making of cheese toys, one of the Hutsul Easter symbols
  • Free time
  • Dinner

Day 3

  • Breakfast
  • Mountain hike with a snack break
  • A visit to the local museum of the traditional Hutsul music instruments, musical demonstrations of trembita, drymba, tambourine and other instruments
  • Dinner

Day 4

  • Easter church service in Kosmach (6:00) and the ceremony of blessing Easter food basket: paska (Easter bread), meat and dairy products, painted eggs
  • Breakfast in the cottage with blessed Easter food
  • Free time
  • Festive Easter dinner
  • Dovbush Museum, dedicated to the local hero rebel
  • Dinner

Day 5

  • Breakfast and check-out
  • Visiting the makers of traditional Kosiv handmade ceramics
  • Return to Ivano-Frankivsk (16:00)

Price includes:

  • Minibus transportation, local transfers
  • Cottage (twin room; you can have single room for extra-pay)
  • Breakfasts and Festive Easter dinner
  • Easter basket food (eggs, various meat, sausages and ham, butter, decorative paska, salt, horseradish and cheese)
  • Guiding and translation services
  • Entrance fees to the museums and handicraft demonstrations
  • Travel agency commission
  • Insurance

Price Does Not Include:

  • Meals (lunches and dinners)
  • Extra services (souvenirs etc.)

Special terms

The tour is not physically challenging, but there are some short walks and the infrastructure is not always available. Thus, we ask you to have comfortable shoes.
Please note that deep in the mountains weather is usually cold and windy, and we’ll spend lots of time outside; dress accordingly.

Sightseeing to visit

Hutsuls are one of the Ukrainian ethnic groups who inhabited the Carpathian Mountains. Living in desolate mountain areas, they preserved their long-time traditions, handicrafts and way of life. We will visit Hutsul sheep shepherds, who still keep their ancestors’ lifestyle. We will see Hutsul traditional crafts such as pottery, blankets weaving and woodcarving, and traditional Hutsul wooden architecture.
Ivano-Frankivsk is one of the smallest regional centers of Ukraine and the gateway to the Carpathians. The city was founded by the noble Polish Potockis family; it is in commemoration of Stanislaw Potocki the city was called Stanislaw until 1962. It is known for its sparkling contemporary literature tradition (Stanislaw phenomenon).
Kolomyya is one of the oldest towns on Galicia, and is first mentioned in chronicles in the 13th cent. In the medieval period was known as a salt mining center. The famous local dance and songs called «kolomyyka». The Museum of Hutsul and Pokuttya region represents the traditions and everyday life of the local population. The Museum of Painted Eggs is the one of its kind and listed in the Guinness Book of Records.
Easter Eggs Museum is the only museum in the world devoted to Pysanka, a painted Easter egg. In 2000, the museum got its own venue, the original structure in the form of Pysanka 13 meters high. The exhibition contains 10 thousand exhibits from all regions of Ukraine and from the other countries of the world.
Hutsulshchyna and Pokuttya Folk Art Museum was founded in 1926. It is located in the central part of the city in the former building of People's House. Museum’s collection includes more than 50 thousand artefacts and represents all kinds of traditional folk art of Hutsuls since XVII century till nowadays. It is the richest and the most representative collection showcasing the region’s culture and lifestyle.
Kosmach is a remote village in the foothills of the Carpathian Mountains. It is one of the earliest Hutsul villages, with the first written mention of the village going back to 1412. Archaeologists have found traces of the Bronze age settlement, with the signs of salt mining and trade dated 3,000 years ago. Kosmach village has its own peculiar patterns in embroidery and in Easter eggs paintings, very bright and colourful, with the prevailing yellow hues.
Museum of Sheep Breeding was opened in 2013, to explore the transhumance sheep breeding in the Carpathians and to show the hard work of shepherds. Sheep breeding was the most important element of the Hutsul lifestyle, with their milk, meat, wool and skins being used on the everyday basis. Here, the visitors can see the traditional process of making sheep milk products which were essential for the local diet for centuries.
Kosiv is a small town known as a center of traditional Hutsul crafts, such as widely-known Kosiv ceramics, wood carving and sheep wool blankets weaving. The town grew in the Middle Ages as a place of the salt mining and trade. In the XIX-mid XX centuries, it became a famous resort and wellness center.

Accommodation

«Kosmatska Pysanka Lodge»
2- or 3-bed rooms with bathrooms on the floor. Extra charge for single room is 30 euro per 4 nights.

Meals

Breakfasts and Easter Holiday meal

We kindly ask you to follow our rules. They are for your safety:

  • no alcohol on the road or during mountain walks
  • please stick to the tour schedule and do keep up with the group
  • please follow guide’s instructions
  • children under 16 should be accompanied by adults

Language

English
Optional — German or Polish

Additional information:

If you arrive before the tour starts, we can also offer you additional accommodation and guided tours in Lviv/Ivano-Frankivsk. Just let us know!

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