- Where is Tendrivska Spit
- How to get there and where to live
- Most important sights
- Lighthouse on the spit
- Organized excursions to Tendra
- What to do on Tendrivska Spit
There is an amazing and wild place near Zaliznyi Port Resort, called Tendrivska Spit. This is a stunning natural sanctuary. Here you can swim, admire rare plants, and explore ancient structures!
Tendrivska Spit is a part of the protected Black Sea Reserve, so most of it remains untouched by humans. The landscapes of fescue-wormwood, the Black Sea steppes and solonchaks, (salt lakes) as well as nesting and migratory birds, are under protection.
A population of wild horses lives there, unique not only in Ukraine, but also in Europe. You can watch them for hours, which is fascinating. Just imagine how magnificent such a sight is! A calm vacation away from civilization defines the Tendrivska Spit. Please read further in the article to get information about how to get there and what else there is to do in the area.
Where is Tendrivska Spit
Only a few kilometres of water separate Tendrivska Spit from the mainland. It stretches for 70 km in the water along the territory of Kherson and Mykolaiv regions. Hence, the name "spit". From the side of Zaliznyi Port, the spit is only a narrow part of the land with almost no vegetation. A little further toward the sea (at the level of Babyn Island) there are numerous wild animals, hundreds of birds, lakes, and other places that attract tourists.
Tendra (as it is also called by locals) has a total land area of about 32 km², and the width in different areas varies from several hundred meters to 1.8 km. It is surrounded by the Black Sea from the South and by the Gulf of Tendrivska from the North.
How to get there and where to live
The spit is not connected with the mainland. It can only be reached by water.
The smartest and safest way to get to this wilderness is to rent a boat in Zaliznyi Port. For the transfer they will ask from 200 to 500 UAH; it depends on the remoteness and distance of the exact place on the spit where you want to go. Be sure to agree on what time you will be returning and indicate the meeting place.
There is absolutely no infrastructure (no shops, no pharmacies) and almost no mobile and internet service. If the location of your trip is Tendrivska Spit, accommodations here can be exclusively “wild” – meaning mostly in open air tents. There are no hotels, recreation centres, or even permanent camping facilities there.
Most important sights
The sea is very clean because there are neither enterprises, nor infrastructure, nor human settlements on the island. Nearly the entire beach is covered with white sea sand. In some places, there are pebbles of medium size and various beautiful shells are often found.
The entire territory of the spit is like one big attraction. We will highlight those places that cause the greatest interest among tourists:
- Tendrivskyi Lighthouse (read more about it below).
- It is believed that the Scythians and ancient Greeks settled on this island. The local soil holds many artifacts which can be found by archaeologists.
- Wild horses in their natural habitat is one of the main reasons why tourists visit here. This is an incredibly beautiful and exciting sight.
- Achilles’ Sanctuary is on the west coast. During the construction of the lighthouse on this site, many coins of different settlements, ceramics and marble slabs with dedication texts were found. All this is believed to have served as a gratitude donation for a safe passage.
- On the opposite side of the island from the lighthouse, you can see the remnants of several old buildings that once housed military personnel and surveyors.
There are many cold currents in the sea near the coast, so the water is usually cool. However, from the bay side, the water warms up quickly. Swimming in this area is easy and comfortable. There can be many jellyfish in the summer, but they are not dangerous and do not interfere with swimming.
Lighthouse on the spit
Your goal is Tendrivska Spit. We have described how to get there, but where exactly should you go? Most often tourists go to Tendrivskyi lighthouse - the main attraction of this island. It is located in the western part of the spit. It is believed that this is the oldest lighthouse in the South of Ukraine.
A 30-meter stone tower in black and white was built in 1827 under the direction of Rear Admiral N.D. Kritsky. The necessity to build a lighthouse was proven by the numerous stranded ships following to Odessa from the Bosporus. Many vessels were lost in the region until the “safe fire” appeared on the shore.
You can climb to its top by climbing 104 steps on a spiral staircase. The challenging climb is rewarded with breath-taking views from the observation deck.
Organized excursions to Tendra
A visit to the Tendrivska Spit reserve is an excursion that is popular with tourists vacationing in Zaliznyi Port. If you choose an organized tour, you should not have to book round-trip transport because the organized tours will provide the transportation. You will arrive at the right time, at the right place and you can simply enjoy the beauty of untouched nature on the island itself.
A guide on the organized tour will tell you about the most interesting historical facts and advise you on the direction for a walk. When choosing an organized tour, you do not need to study Tendrivska Spit on your own, scrutinizing it on a map in search of interesting and safe routes.
What to do on Tendrivska Spit
If you get tired of watching wild horses and swimming in the sea, you can look for other entertainment on the island. Walking along the coast, it is easy to accidentally become an observer of dolphins. They often organize amazing water shows in the Tendrivskyi Gulf, gracefully jumping out of the water near the coast. On small lakes and in the bay, you can admire swans.
Walking along the shore and while sun bathing, be sure to gather a beautiful collection of sea snails’ shells.
The concepts of “Tendrivska Spit” and “Fishing” are interconnected among many tourists. The western end of the spit is the widest and most habitable place. There is a fishing camp - a place where fishermen stop during the fishing season to repair boats and relax before going back out to sea. Mullet, horse mackerel, goby, stellate sturgeon, sturgeon, and beluga lay eggs in the bay.
Photos are especially beautiful from Tendrivska Spit. Just imagine how amazing a selfie set against a herd of horses will be! Also, bright colourful shots can be taken during the period when rare plants flower.