I highly recommend the Ukrainian Waterways “By Dnieper to Black Sea Pearl” journey for several reasons. First, the itinerary is unique and often unfamiliar to the average traveler. Cities like Kherson and Zaporizhye are well worth a visit, and the cruise further affords the visitor an opportunity to see the Ukrainian countryside plus the Dnieper Delta. Second, the cruise also visits two crown jewels: the scintillating capital Kiev and the Black Sea port of Odessa. Third, the cruise is a very affordable option. The costs are attractive, and the cruise experience provides a combination of unique services and local know-how. Fourth, the ship offers many services. There is a dining area with river views, gift shops with local arts and crafts, and two bars on the top floors. Panorama bar was my personal favorite, for it had a relaxed atmosphere, pleasant and knowledgeable staff, and a nice range of local wine. They also have an espresso machine! Fifth, the ship’s staff as well as local guides were all excellent. Natasha in particular took great care of us, and she provided a lot of local recommendations in each port. (I really enjoyed her perspective on her hometown of Zaporizhye.) Sixth, Imperial River Cruises partner with an extensive network of local guides, all of whom provide unique insights into the different ports of call. My favorite tours were in Odessa and on the island of Khortitsa, a visit which included an exciting Cossack horse show.