Duration: 5 hours
Tour Code: ylt-002
Unearth the historic treasures of the Ukraine during a trio of unforgettable castle and palace visits along the Southern Crimean Coast.
Depart the pier for the brief drive to Livadia Palace, the summer residence of the last Russian Tsar, Nicholas II, and site of the Crimean Conference in 1945. Built in 1911 for the imperial family, this Italian Renaissance-styled white palace is one of the most remarkable attractions on the Southern Coast of Crimea, and offers superb photo opportunities. During your visit, you will see the Great White Hall, where the fate of post-war Europe was decided in 1945. Feel the atmosphere of the rooms where the Tsar's family lived, and learn about the everyday life of Russian aristocracy in the early-20th century. Today, the Palace hosts political summits and presidents from all over the world. Before you leave, visit the souvenir shops in the Palace for local souvenirs and craft works.
Next, you will proceed to Vorontsov Palace in Alupka along the Southern Crimean coastal highway. En route, a brief photo stop will be made at the unusual Swallow's Nest Castle, majestically perched on a rock 125 feet above the sea. This romantic castle was constructed in 1912, and has since been the symbol of Yalta and the Crimea.
Next, it's on to Alupka Palace and Vorontsov's Palace. Upon arrival at the bus parking area, you will take a brief walk along a shady road overlooking the sea to the Tudor-style Northern facade of Vorontsov's Palace. The Palace belonged to 19th-century Russia's wealthiest individual, and hosted Winston Churchill during the Crimean Conference. Vorontsov's Palace took 20 years to construct, and was built from diabas, a local stone that's twice as hard as granite. English architect Edward Blore, one of the designers of Buckingham Palace in London, created Vorontsov's Palace by blending Gothic exteriors with Moorish elements. The southern facade, which was designed with an Oriental motif, is reminiscent of the temples of Alhambra. During your walk through the Palace's interiors, you will marvel at the finely-carved marble sculptures in the Winter Garden, and see many wonderful paintings by the likes of Hogarth, Hubert and Shchedrin.
Following your visit to Vorontsov's Palace, you will walk back to your coach for the return drive to the pier.
Please note: Guests are encouraged to wear comfortable shoes for this tour which involves over 2 hours of walking with multiple steps to climb. Please keep in mind that guides, though knowledgeable and the best available, are not as skilled as those found in the larger tourist centers of the Mediterranean, or other parts of Europe. The order of sights visited may vary to avoid congestion.