June 27, 2006

Kiev to the Crimea

So, at last we are back from our cruise, and I have found that odd moment during which I can put some of my thoughts down on this media.

The Dneiper is the third longest river in Europe after the Danube and the Volga. What a river it is; at some points where it forms reservoirs between dams it is nearly five miles wide! For much of its length between Kiev and the Black Sea it is over a mile in width with wide reed beds on either bank. We visited several towns on the trip down to the Black Sea including - Dnipropetrovsk, Nova Kachovska, and Odessa. In the Crimea we saw Sevastopol, Balaklava, Balchiserai and Yalta. The return journey to Kiev included visits to Khershon, including Fisherman’s Island and Zaporozhye. On our last day in Kiev prior to our return, we paid an emotive visit to Babi Yar, the site of the slaughter of 200,000 Jews and Ukrainians in 1941; this figure includes 45,000 children.

I have decided to let pictures tell the story of this trip, and they will be available by clicking on the highlighted names of the towns in the paragraph above. Over the next few days additional pictures and titles will be added.

You will have to speak to me if you want any more information, but Nina, Janet and I thoroughly recommend this trip. Now enjoy the pictures: -

Nova Kachovka
Balchiserai & Balaklava
Khershon & Zaporozhye

You can also read my journal of the trip here.

Posted by jeff at 11:44 PM | Comments (1)

June 10, 2006

Ukraine & Black Sea

MS Viking Lavrinenkov

Well, at the crack of sparrow fart tomorrow morning we are off to the Ukraine for a trip from Kiev down the river Dneiper to the Crimea for the next two weeks. We shall be visiting historic places such as Sevastopol, Yalta and Odessa amongst many others. I do not know what facilities will be available on the ship, but for the benefit of Laura and Karen it could just be another outing to Beckton. So……just watch this space!

Posted by jeff at 12:24 PM | Comments (3)

June 08, 2006

Hythe & Saltwood Castle

High Street, Hythe

Today we went on a very special trip with the U3A to Hythe and Saltwood Castle. Hythe is a very quaint and unspoilt Kentish town. There were only 16 of us in the party and we spent a few hours walking through the town finishing up at a fantastic seafood restaurant on the front. We all celebrated our 48th wedding anniversary with a very passable Sancerre.
Saltwood Castle - from the walls

After lunch we drove on to Saltwood Castle, the home of the late Sir Alan Clarke and Lady Jane Clarke. This was a private visit and we were shown around the castle by Jane Clarke who finished by providing us with a cream tea. What an interesting lady she is.

Posted by jeff at 08:53 PM | Comments (0)