The official name of Askaniya-Nova is Askaniya-Nova Biosphere Reserve. It was founded in the 1880s by a German, Friedrich Falz-Fein as a preserve for the protection of wildlife. The Ukrainian government designated it a national park in 1919 and redesignated it a reserve in 1921. This reserve, occupying over 30,000 hectares (core area 11,000 hectares, buffer zones over 6,000 hectares, and transition areas over 15,000 hectares), protects a portion of virgin steppe, with characteristic fescue and feather grasses; some 40 different mammals, including the onager and Przhewalski's horse, and even ostriches which were introduced as part of a successful program of breeding endangered species.
Askaniya-Nova Biosphere Reserve is a representative of the Black Sea southern-steppe biogeographic province, situated 60 km south-east of the town of Kakhovka close to the Black Sea. Within this area, the Festuca and Stipa steppe ecosystem has been conserved like an island in the Dnipro-Molochnoe lowland, which has otherwise intensive land use practices.
Askaniya-Nova now is a major tourist attraction, not only a place where rare and endangered species are taken care of and given excellent opportunities to survive and propagate. Tourists come to Askaniya-Nova for several reasons ? just to relax, get from it all, or experience the wild nature. For some, coming to Askaniya-Nova is like getting to see a glimpse of the earthly paradise in its primordial beauty and majesty.
One can get to Askaniya-Nova by car, by bus or by train. The railroad stations from which it is most convenient to travel Askaniya-Nova are Novoalekseyevka, or Kakhovka or the city of Kherson itself. There is a hotel at Askaniya-Nova to accommodate tourists; the local restaurant serves meals which are not gourmet but wholesome and cheap. There is an entrance fee but it is only a couple of dollars. Among the tourist services provided is a ride in a horse-drawn cart.
Natural resources available in Ukraine