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Kherson Watermelons

The favorite summer delicacy of the South of Ukraine


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Watermelon is the most famous crop and a symbol of the Kherson region of Ukraine. Starting in late July or early August, the juicy fruit becomes available in stores, at markets, and at special fruit stalls installed right on the streets of Ukrainian cities. Such an abundance is possible due to the plentiful cultivation in the Kherson region, which harvests about 300,000 tonnes of watermelons every year.

Vine-like plant, watermelon is a highly popular fruit worldwide, with more than 1,000 varieties. Kherson watermelons have become a geographical brand, as they are highly praised by foodies for their natural sweetness. Watermelons have been brought to Ukraine from Turkey. Thanks to the dry, sunny, and warm climate, Kherson has proved to be a perfect place for growing this fruit. The cultivation became massive in the 19th century when Kherson watermelons gained popularity in the nearby Odesa and other cities.

Hola Prystan, a town in the Skadovsk Area, hosts the annual Watermelon Festival, which is famous all over the South of Ukraine. Since the 1960s, the town has hosted a research facility working on new watermelon varieties. The Watermelon Festival is a perfect occasion to try different kinds of watermelons and indulge in watermelon-based desserts. The festival is usually held in early August, around International Watermelon Day, marked on August 3d. However, even if you can't make it to the Kherson region, you can indulge in juicy sweet watermelons even in the capital. Every year, a huge barge full of watermelons brings the delicious cargo from Kherson to Kyiv by the Dnipro River.

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