Grow in your appreciation for the faith and faithfulness of Anabaptist forebears as you explore the settlements of Mennonites in Ukraine on the final leg of the epic heritage tour. Reflect at important sites as you hear the stories of initial welcome of Mennonites by Catherine the Great in the mid to late 1700s and the hostility of other political leaders generations later. Visit the former Mennonite villages of Chortitza and Molotschna where some of your ancestors may have lived, as well as historical and cultural sites in Zaporizhia and Kyiv.
Epic European Anabaptist Heritage Tour – Far Country
Monday, June 21 Zaporizhia
Travel to Zaporizhia from home or after tour two.
Tuesday, June 22 Zaporizhia
Tour Zaporizhia, a city built by Stalin in the 1930s on top of Chortitza. Zaporizhia is known for being the epicentre of a revolution that unleashed great terror for Mennonites. See the great Stalinist dam, and visit the Island of Chortitza for lunch. Continue your tour of the city, stopping to admire the remains of the old oak tree (believed to be over 700 years old) that Mennonites once used as a meeting place.
Wednesday, June 23 Zaporizhia
Experience the Ukrainian countryside inhabited by Anabaptist ancestors as you tour former Mennonite villages on the north side of the Molotschna colony. Nothing can describe the special experience of visiting the land where your forefathers and mothers lived and died. Though few original buildings remain, seeing the land and hearing the stories is sure to give you new insights about Mennonites and your family. Enjoy a meal at the Mennonite centre in Halbstadt to add to a meaningful day.
Thursday, June 24 Zaporizhia
Today is a flexible day that can be used to arrange individual tours to see villages or sites important to your family. Or you can explore Zaporizhia —shop at the daily market, talk through the Voznesensky Park on the banks of the Dnieper River, see the MCC offices, take a boat tour around Chortitza Island.
Friday, June 25 Kyiv
Enjoy a restful rail trip to our next destination, Kyiv.
Saturday, June 26 Kyiv
This morning, see the Pecherskii Lavra, an orthodox Christian monastery that is also a UNESCO World Heritage site. Visit the impressive 100-metre Rodina Mat’ (Motherland) monument, then stop at St. Michael’s Golden Domed monastery. Take an optional evening stroll to St. Volodymyr’s Church, and Shevchenko Park, where you’ll see a monument dedicated to Taras Shevchenko, a Ukrainian, poet, artist, and political figure who lived in the 1800s. Continue onto St. Sofia’s Cathedral, the first Ukrainian site added to UNESCO World Heritage listings. Tonight debrief and reflect on your epic journey which has given insights and possibly new perspectives on the Anabaptist story across Europe.
Sunday, June 27 Home
With heads and hearts full—say goodbye to your fellow travellers and travel home with a retinue of memories.
For further information, please contact us. We would be happy to be of assistance.