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Bakota

A picturesque Saint Bay has a secret on the bottom—a drowned village

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Last updated: by Olha Savych
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Today the name of Bakota refers to Dnister reservoir, nestled among picturesque landscapes. But a few decades ago, it used to be a village and the center of Modern Podollia. The funny thing is that the settlement managed to survive numerous invasions, two world wars, and two famines, but collapsed during the Soviet times. The communist government decided to construct a hydroelectric power station on the Dnister River. Thus, in October 1981, the villagers were evacuated, and Bakota disappeared from the map of Ukraine for good.

Bakota's highlights

Not many people know about this beautiful place. But those who do, plan on visiting the site. Just imagine what it feels like to float above the village drowned deep on the bottom... Tourists come for a beach holiday with boating and fishing. Besides, you can explore Bakota's hidden treasures on a hike. The best panorama is revealed from the top of "Bila Hora," which means White Mountain. Other highlights include numerous caves, the remnants of ancient St. Michael's Monastery in the rocks, and three miraculous sources. Hence comes the reservoir's name of Saint Bay.

How to get to Bakota

If you decide on seeing Bakota, get ready for a challenging 30-mile (50-km) road from Kamianets-Podilskyi to Stara Ushytsya. The way is entirely dotted with pits, and what's more, the final kilometer is not even a road at all. Still, the reward is worth the efforts.

Where to stay at Bakota

Concerning accommodations, the most convenient option would be a hotel in Kamianets-Podilskyi. The possibilities are suggested on the map below. Similarly, all the shopping is to be done in the city—you won't find many food stalls at the reservoir. If you prefer to stay closer to water, rent a trailer at Bakota or bring your own tent.

Best time to visit Bakota

The best time to visit Bakota is summer. Mid-June to mid-August is the peak swimming period in most of Ukraine. But thanks to the surrounding mountains, Bakota boasts a more extended season from as early as mid-May well through mid-September.

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