Come back

2 min

22 Jul. 2023


Natural wonders of Ukraine destroyed by russia


Table of contents


Natural wonders of Ukraine destroyed by russia

The war destroyed about a third of Ukraine's nature reserve fund. Dozens of nature reserves, national and regional nature parks have been severely damaged by russian aggression. Read our article to find out what natural wonders of Ukraine were destroyed by the occupiers

A unique tour to Ukraine. Help Ukraine while travelling
A unique tour to Ukraine. Help Ukraine while travelling

War mercilessly destroys nature - water, land, plants and animals suffer. Ukraine is endowed with an amazing wealth of flora and fauna. Its territory accounts for 35% of Europe's biodiversity. But today, a huge number of plants and animals, many of which are rare or endemic, and the amazing natural wonders of Ukraine have been destroyed by russia.

We are going to tell you about the unique places in Ukraine created by nature, which have been irreparably damaged by russia.

Tuzly estuaries

This region in Odesa Oblast is famous for its endless sandy sands, warm sea and healing estuaries.

Millions of birds stop here in spring and autumn, as the largest bird migration routes pass through the park. And at night, you can watch the incredible August starfall.

Currently, there may be dozens of dead animals in the sea. The russian military uses sonar at high decibel levels, which harms the dolphins' hearing and kills them.

Stone Graves

The Kamiani Mohyly tract is a miniature mountainous country located in Donetsk Oblast. The unique granites, which are about 2 billion years old, have no analogues in the world.

Today, it is one of the four departments of the Ukrainian State Steppe Nature Reserve of the National Academy of Sciences, which is under threat of destruction due to the war.

Holy mountains

"Donetsk Switzerland" is located near the town of Sviatohirsk. The Cretaceous Mountains are a natural wonder of Ukraine, with 48 species of rare plants preserved on their white cliffs.  

The ermine lives in the river floodplain and gully oaks, and the owl, a rare bird in Europe, can be seen in the rocks of the chalk mountains.

Since the beginning of the war, 80 percent of the territory of the Donetsk reserve has been destroyed by fires. One of the reasons is russia's phosphorus bombs.

Volunteer tours to the de-occupied cities of Ukraine. Find out more.

Visit Ukraine on social media: Telegram | YouTube | Instagram | Facebook | Twitter | TikTok

Oleshky Sands

The Oleshky Sands are located 30 kilometers from Kherson. The massif is the largest desert in Europe with 200 hectares of hot sandy sea.

The sands are moving. By planting more than 100 thousand hectares of forest by hand, it was possible to stop the sand migration and also to make the world's largest man-made forest. There is also an oasis in the desert with an underground lake at its depth.

The landfills located in the Oleshky Sands have had a negative impact on this unique natural monument. Large-scale military exercises with the use of chemical weapons took place here.

Kurgan mounds of Kherson region

These hills are home to ancient ritual burials from the Bronze Age, Scythian and medieval periods.

The mounds play a huge role in the restoration of the Ukrainian steppes. They preserve the potential of a biological capsule for the restoration of pastureland.

The excavation of mounds and their destruction by the occupiers causes significant damage to the monuments from the archaeological point of view. Shell hits by russian aggressors also destroy plants, including those in the Red Book.

Dzharylhach Island

The "Ukrainian Maldives" is the largest island in the Black Sea. Dzharylgach is rich in estuarine lakes, which are famous for their therapeutic mud, high iodine and bromine content.

The island has become home to Red Book plants and animals, and white-sided dolphins and porpoises can be seen in the sea.

The russian registration documents state that "the main activities of the park are hunting, catching and shooting of wild animals, clay and salt extraction." The Ukrainian Ministry of Environmental Protection notes that this will lead to siltation and degradation of the ecosystems of the entire bay.

Askania Nova

The oldest steppe reserve in the world and one of the Seven Wonders of Ukraine.

It is the only steppe area in Europe that has never been cultivated. The reserve is home to African zebra, antelope, ostrich, Przewalski's horse, Turkmen kulan, and bison. There are also ancient mounds and stone statues of Scythian women.

This year, tourists will not come. Thousands of animals are in danger and need to be fed and cared for. All employees have decided to stay at their jobs and not go anywhere, because without them the reserve will die.

Lemurian Lake (Syvash)

The Pink Lake is located in the village of Hryhorivka, Chaplynka district, in one of the bays of Syvash. The water in this lake is so saturated with salt that it brings the body to the surface and does not allow you to dive. The salinity of this lake even exceeds the salinity of the famous Dead Sea in Israel.

The water of the lake is enriched with various minerals, acids, carbohydrates, nitrogenous substances and salts, mainly magnesium and potassium chloride, sodium iodide and magnesium bromide.

During the occupation, residents of nearby villages noticed that the pink waters had receded from the shore of Lake Lemuria. The healing mud dried up and became covered with a layer of salt.

Kinburn Spit

The unique Kinburn Spit is located on the border between Mykolaiv and Kelson.

It is a perfect combination of pine forests, endless meadows and the cleanest sea.  The Kinburn Spit has wide sandy beaches where you can see flocks of white herons, pelicans, swans, ducks and pink flamingos.

This natural area also suffers from constant bombing and fires. Local forest guards are unable to stop the fire because the russian army prohibits entry. All flora and fauna are under threat of destruction.

Bilosaray Spit

Between Mariupol and Berdiansk is the picturesque Bilosaray Spit, which runs for 14 kilometers into the Sea of Azov.

Thanks to its highly mineralized sea mineral waters and marshy meadows, the estuary is a paradise for wild ducks and hawks. Pheasants and swans also live on the lake. Flocks of migratory birds stop here twice a year.

Many species of animals and plants of this unique natural monument are dying under constant shelling. Sea pollution is another problem. Drifting mines, fuels and lubricants, and ammunition will entail very expensive cleanup work.

Cape Opuk

To the southeast of Lake Koyash in Crimea is Mount Opuk and the Cape of the same name. "The Cape's Aquatic and Coastal Complex covers a total area of 1,592 hectares.

Ten species of birds that live here are listed in the Red Book. It is also a nesting place for rare birds, such as pink starlings, hawks, crested cormorants, peregrine falcons and cranes.

The lake is a source of healing mud. The smell of the herbs near the lake is also good for the respiratory system.

At the same time, a russian military training ground is located on Cape Opuk. Every year since the annexation of Crimea, large-scale exercises involving aircraft, ships, and tanks have been held here. These exercises are accompanied by numerous explosions and rocket volleys, and jeopardize the safety of the Cape's fauna and ecosystem as a whole.

We remind you! Ukraine's exceptional natural wonders are striking in scale and beauty. They are shrouded in legends and mysteries that scientists are still trying to unravel. Learn more about the unique places in Ukraine created by nature in our article here.

You may be interested in:

Visit Ukraine Donation - make a good deed and an important contribution to the Victory of Ukraine;

Visit Ukraine Tours - the largest online database of tours to Ukraine for every taste;

Visit Ukraine Merch - choose patriotic clothing and accessories with worldwide delivery;

Visit Ukraine News - get the latest news and updates in our Telegram channel;

Cooperation - cooperation and advertising integrations with Visit Ukraine and Visit World projects.

Recommended articles

3 min

Entry rules Entering Ukraine: when do Dutch citizens need a visa to cross the Ukrainian border?

Entering Ukraine: when do Dutch citizens need a visa to cross the Ukrainian border?

Ukraine and the Netherlands have a visa-free regime, but in some cases Dutch citizens still need to apply for a visa to enter Ukraine. Find out all about the current rules for crossing the Ukrainian border and the peculiarities of planning a trip during martial law

20 Jul. 2023

More details

1 min

Entry rules Traveling to Ukraine: do Lithuanian citizens need a visa to enter Ukraine

Traveling to Ukraine: do Lithuanian citizens need a visa to enter Ukraine

Lithuanian citizens can enter the territory of Ukraine on the basis of a visa-free regime. However, there are cases when foreigners need to apply for a visa. Learn more about the rules for entering Ukraine from Lithuania and the necessary documents

21 Jul. 2023

More details

1 min

Transport New rules for drivers in Poland from July 1: what Ukrainians can be fined for

New rules for drivers in Poland from July 1: what Ukrainians can be fined for

Since July 1, updated traffic rules have been in effect on Polish roads. They are aimed at improving the safety of people, cargo and vehicles. Find out more about the changes and the new amounts of fines

21 Jul. 2023

More details

2 min

Popular Visit Ukraine continues to help animals affected by war: how to support

Visit Ukraine continues to help animals affected by war: how to support

Thousands of animals that were rescued from the frontline and flooded areas are now safe. Here's what they need, how we can help them, and how much we've raised thanks to your support

21 Jul. 2023

More details