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Josaphat Valley

Karaim Graveyard
Operation: year round
Location: Bakhchisaray, Bakhchisaray
 
A small valley nearby the Chufut Kale Cave Town has been serving a cemetery for the Karaite people starting from the 13th century. Biblical name of Josaphat has replaced the old one of Balta-Tiymez, which meant “untouchable by ax” and referred to oak trees which were sacred for Karaites and abundant in the valley. The ancient necropolis is a holly place for this small and beautiful Crimean nation. Not many tombstones are left nowadays, and the oak trees are too few to make the erstwhile grove. But it does not take anything away from the beauty and emotional intensity of the place.
 
 
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I wish to thank you for all the arrangements. We had a interesting and pleasant holiday in your country. The hotels were ok, especially the one in Yalta. Our guides were really fantastic. They told us a lot about the history and the situation nowadays. Highlights were our visits to the submarine base, the cave city in the middle of beautiful nature, the little Tatarian restaurant and the Khan palace.

In Odessa we took the tram 5 to the beach and discovered a nice restaurant with quite a history: Fat Mozes. Furthermore we walked a lot in Odessa. The train facilities were also ok We managed to make a reservation in Kiev for the train to Warsaw. That was not an easy thing, because no one speaks English and we could hardly read the signs in the Russian or your own language. So it was a real adventure!

René, the Netherlands

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