From Ivano-Frankivsk to Lviv

May 25 was the last day of our 12-day journey through Galicia, Bukovina and Bessarabia in Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova. Our itinerary took us on the way back to Lviv to Tysmenytsia, Halych, Burshtyn, Rohatyn and Bibrka.

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From Mohyliv-Podilskyi to Ivano-Frankivsk

May 24 was the longest day of our journey. 400 kilometers on Ukrainian roads can be challenging for drivers and passengers but we were glad to find the roads in much better condition than expected. Our route included the impressive Jewish cemetery of Mohyliv-Podilskyi, Khotyn fortress and Jewish heritage sites in Buchach and Chortkiv. Originally not planned was a stop in Kamianets-Podilskyi – one of the largest mass killing sites from the time of the German occupation.

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From Bukovina to Bessarabia

Yesterday, we followed the traces of the Hasidic courts in Bukovina and neighbouring Galicia. We have been to the towns of Sadgora, Kuty and Vyzhnytsia – and the day before we saw how the renovation of the magnificent mortuary of Chernivtsi cemetery makes progress. Today, we went on to Bessarabia in the Republic of Moldova. Lipcani and Briceni were on our way to Bălţi, where we are right now. Now, in spring the Jewish cemeteries are beautiful enchanted gardens. Here are some photo impressions.

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From Lviv to Chernivtsi

Our journey through Galicia, Bukovina and Bessarabia goes on. During the last two days we went further south. Between the regional metropolises of Lviv and Chernivtsi we visited the towns and villages of Busk, Olesko, Brody, Skalat, Hrymailiv, Sataniv, Husiatyn, Chabarivka, Zalishchyky and Yuzhynets. What a trip!

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A new Experience

Today, a new journey to Jewish heritage sites has begun and it is different from all others before. I’m going to guide a group of 16 Germans through Galicia, Bukovina and Bessarabia in Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova. We started with day trips from Lviv – while one part of the group went to Drohobych and was guided there by the wonderful Tanya Firman, the other part went north to Zhovkva, Uhniv, Belz and Velyki Mosty.

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Transcarpathia is different

Yesterday was the last day of our 5 days trip through Transcarpathia. We visited Jewish and non-Jewish heritage sites in Bila Tserkva, Velykyi Bychkiv, Rakhiv, Yasynia, Halych and Bilshivtsi. On our way home we contemplated on what we saw and experienced. Transcarpathia differs in many aspects from Galicia.

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A long Way through the Carpathians

The first day of our new trip. Marla, Jay, Vasyl and I left Lviv in the morning. We had a first stop in Drohobych, continued via Boryslav and Skhidnytsia, and finally arrived in Uzhhorod shortly before sundown. We found a beautiful church, two beit midrash (Jewish study houses) and one of the last surviving wooden synagogues of Ukraine.

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Just a Forest

A new journey through Ukraine has begun. From tomorrow on Marla, Jay, Vasyl and I will be on the road to and through Transcarpathia. Today we had a first excursion from Lviv to the neighboring village of Lysynychi, one of the biggest mass killing sites in Ukraine and one of the most unknown. Estimated 90,000 people have been murdered here during the German occupation in World War 2 – mainly Jews but also Ukrainians, Poles and thousands of Italian soldiers. Except of a little memorial there are no visible traces of the crime. To visitors with no background information Lysynychi forest looks just like an ordinary forest.

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At low Light

Yesterday, it was raining all day long when my friends and I returned to Lviv. En route were the towns of Turka, Khyriv, Ralivka and Mykolaiv. I also took the opportunity to photograph the synagogues in Sambir and Staryi Sambir under different light conditions.

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South-West of Lviv – Between Hope and Depression

Marla, Jay, Vasyl and I were on the road again for another two days trip through Galicia during this weekend. From Lviv we headed south-west towards the Carpathian Mountains. Komarno, Rudky, Sambir and Staryi Sambir were our targets on Saturday. A trip between hope and depression.

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