Fam trip aims to Yalta perceptions

Fam trip aims to Yalta perceptions

SEVERAL UK specialists are planning to introduce the Crimea into their 2000 programmes, following a successful educational trip to the region in May.

The trip to the Ukrainian republic took operators to the Black Sea riviera and the battlefields of the Crimea and was organised by Huntingdon-based Asla, a UK wholesaler for suppliers within the former Soviet Union.

Asla managing director Steven Penney said: "It was a fascinating trip.

"It gave people the chance to see a part of the world that was very popular with British tourists in the 1980s, but has been neglected since the collapse of the Soviet Union. It is an area that is being looked at quite closely by specialist interest operators - for example those who do battlefield tours or historical tours.

"It also appeals to independent travellers," he said.

Fregata managing director David Young took part in the educational and was impressed by what he saw.

"Yalta is a Russian seaside resort town comparable to the French riviera between Nice and Monte Carlo. It has a stylish promenade, with palm trees and pretty gardens, as well as endless open air cafes, bars and restaurants," he said.

"The coastline is very attractive - it has pine woods that slope down to the blue sea, and a backdrop of mountains."

The operator is looking at introducing an eight-day stay centered on Yalta and a two-centre trip combining Yalta with Kiev or Istanbul for next year. Outside the seaside resort of Yalta, the main draw is the battlefields of the Crimean war, where visitors can revisit the site of the charge of the Light Brigade and even take a metal detector and dig for souvenir bullets.

Specialist operators Interchange and Bob Sopel Ukrainian Travel both sent representatives on the Asla trip, and are now planning to include the Crimea in their programmes.

Interchange managing director Gordon Burnett said he would offer a five-day introduction to the Crimea, centred around the town of Yalta for next year.

"We are also looking at putting together a 10-night Chekhov tour that combines a visit to the playwright's birthplace in the port of Taganrog just north of Yalta, with a trip to his estate outside Moscow," he said.

Prices for the five-day tour will be around £595 including three-star accommodation and flights.

Bob Sopel Ukrainian Travel has been operating for ten years to Ukraine.

Founder and managing director Bob Sopel said: "I am very enthusiastic about trying out the Crimea next year.

"The region is sub-tropical so it could even be a winter sun destination.

"We are looking at chartering a Ukraine International Airlines aircraft and getting the other operators to share with us.

"We have had some frank discussions with hoteliers and if we can get seven-day package prices down to around the £299 mark, we could position the Black Sea riviera as a summer sun destination to rival Turkey and Croatia," he said.

TABLE: Yalta: specialists compare the region to the French Riviera

an area that is being looked at quite closely by specialist interest operators - for example those who do battlefield tours or historical tours.

"It also appeals to independent travellers," he said.

Fregata managing director David Young took part in the educational and was impressed by what he saw.

"Yalta is a Russian seaside resort town comparable to the French riviera between Nice and Monte Carlo. It has a stylish promenade, with palm trees and pretty gardens, as well as endless open air cafes, bars and restaurants," he said.

"The coastline is very attractive - it has pine woods that slope down to the blue sea, and a backdrop of mountains."

The operator is looking at introducing an eight-day stay centered on Yalta and a two-centre trip combining Yalta with Kiev or Istanbul for next year. Outside the seaside resort of Yalta, the main draw is the battlefields of the Crimean war, where visitors can revisit the site of the charge of the Light Brigade and even take a metal detector and dig for souvenir bullets.

Specialist operators Interchange and Bob Sopel Ukrainian Travel both sent representatives on the Asla trip, and are now planning to include the Crimea in their programmes.

Interchange managing director Gordon Burnett said he would offer a five-day introduction to the Crimea, centred around the town of Yalta for next year.

"We are also looking at putting together a 10-night Chekhov tour that combines a visit to the playwright's birthplace in the port of Taganrog just north of Yalta, with a trip to his estate outside Moscow," he said.

Prices for the five-day tour will be around £595 including three-star accommodation and flights.

Bob Sopel Ukrainian Travel has been operating for ten years to Ukraine.

Founder and managing director Bob Sopel said: "I am very enthusiastic about trying out the Crimea next year.

"The region is sub-tropical so it could even be a winter sun destination.

"We are looking at chartering a Ukraine International Airlines aircraft and getting the other operators to share with us.

"We have had some frank discussions with hoteliers and if we can get seven-day package prices down to around the £299 mark, we could position the Black Sea riviera as a summer sun destination to rival Turkey and Croatia," he said.

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