Ukrainian Christmas Giveaway

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Ukraine celebrates these holidays on January 7th and 14th respectively because the Orthodox Church follows the calendar proposed by Julius Caesar. Yes, we hold onto old traditions.

Nataliya of Experience Ukraine and I will lead a tour in Ukraine on June 2-9, 2020, and it will be a chance to discover more about Ukrainian culture, food, and of course, scents. I can’t be impartial, perhaps, but for the past few years I have been traveling extensively in Ukraine and every trip has been memorable. Nataliya feels the same way, which is why we’re so passionate in sharing these discoveries with you.

To give you a little preview, we’re hosting a #ukrainianscentandtasteadventure giveaway on Instagram: my prize will be an English translation of Nikolai Gogol’s The Night Before Christmas, handmade Ukrainian church incense, and linden blossom hydrosol and Nataliya will contribute an antique hand-loomed rushnyk, hand towel. We will select two winners randomly.

To enter:

1) Follow @boisdejasmin and @experienceukraineandbeyond on Instagram

2) Tell us about your dream travel destination and what you enjoy doing the most when you travel (trying local foods, visiting museums, sunbathing, etc.)

3) Tag a friend

The giveaway is open till the old-style New Year, January 14th. I will announce the winner on Instagram.



  • Matty Maccaro: Victoria and Nataliya,
    How very kind of you to offer this Christmas Giveaway. I’m hoping very much to win. Right
    now, my dream travel destination would be you Ukraine trip in early June. I have traveled very
    little in my life, yet find the description of this absolutely magnificient. Thanks for entering me. January 10, 2020 at 11:19am Reply

  • Peggy McMillan: Victoria and Nataliya,
    What a wonderful idea to make your Christmas giveaway on Old Christmas! My dream travel destination is Vienna someday. Museums and churches are my favorite places to visit. January 10, 2020 at 3:19pm Reply

  • Cyndi: This sounds like a nice give-away. It’s a little off-topic, but I am an American and my ex-husband was of Ukrainian descent. We were married in a Ukranian Catholic Church, and while the church was relatively small, I have to say it was the most beautiful church I’ve ever been in. Also, our wedding ceremony was completely different from anything I had ever seen before – the wearing of the crowns to signify the husband and wife as the “king and queen” of their household, and all the payers in Ukraine. Despite how things ended up, these are very beautiful and moving memories for me. January 10, 2020 at 9:33pm Reply

  • Sharon: What a lovely giveaway, Victoria and Nataliya! My dream vacation includes Eastern Europe, London and Paris. I am a foodie, so the local cuisine would be tops for me, also museums and art galleries. I also love just sitting in a park or cafe to people watch. Thank you so much! January 11, 2020 at 1:55pm Reply

  • jenni: What a special giveaway and fun way to jump into the new year.
    My dream vacation: I want to go to Fez and the spice markets in Morocco. Theb, I want to hike around Finland — but all after seeing the Transcarpathia region and learning to hone in my smelling skills. I love hiking, finding old and or community swimming pools to work out in, siting in cafes, finding new perfumes and tea salons. Also, I try to find a contemporary circus performance to see. I’m following both of you and will tag a few dear friends — new to perfume. I’m @poolsandperfume on Instagram January 11, 2020 at 8:00pm Reply

  • Kristi: Thank you for the thoughtful giveaway. I always admire the treasures you find and share. It’s hard to pick just one dream destination, though I have been curious about Lisbon for some time now. When traveling I love to find local markets and try new finds — elderflower and linden in Berlin a few springs ago, boletus mushrooms in Prague. One of my favorite ways to spend time is settling into my rented apartment and cooking, listening to the radio, feeling as though I’m truly living in this space. I also love long days of wandering, people watching and finding just the right book to suit the mood/season. Thank you again! January 11, 2020 at 8:31pm Reply

  • jenni: Beautiful giveaway and creative way to spark interest in the trip.
    Dream vacation would be to take a year and travel around the world. I would explore old and community pools, find interesting tea salons, hike or ride bikes to explore, and find new perfumes to sniff. Thanks.
    I’m @poolsandperfume on Instagram and will tag a friend or two. January 11, 2020 at 9:14pm Reply

    • jenni: It didn’t look like my first post went through… sorry for the double posts — and in between, I changed my mind on my dream trip. January 11, 2020 at 9:15pm Reply

  • spe: Thank you for the beautiful offer! Right now, my dream trip would be to Italy and Spain. I like equal amounts of exploration through hiking or biking and relaxation. January 12, 2020 at 2:06pm Reply

  • Aniko: Unfortunately now I have really bad arthritis that keeps me from traveling, because otherwise I would have seriously considered your Ukraine tour. It is next door (I live in Hungary) and your descriptions are always so perfectly vivid that I can practically smell and taste everything.
    When I was in a better shape (or my joints were) and I had a chance to travel I tried to divide my time between friends in the given destination, museums and other places of interest, and enjoying the local cuisine.
    Experiences ranged from the exquisite (seeing Flaming June by Sir F Leighton in Ponce, Puerto Rico, the van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam where I saw that he was a fan of Japanese art too) to mundane (getting almost kicked out of the Rijksmuseum due to a huge giggling fit over some modern art) to somewhat dangerous (whitewater rafting on the Arkansas River in unusually high water) to the somewhat adventurous (arriving in London just before Christmas without a reservation, I was lucky to find a good if modest hotel and spent 2 days sightseeing).
    My dream vacation would be seeing all the major medieval cathedrals.
    Thank you for the lovely giveaway!
    And thank you for providing such wonderful content on this site year in and year out. January 13, 2020 at 10:43am Reply

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