How we ended up in the tiny village of Krasnik was thanks to a chain of coincidences. First of all we were googling interesting places to visit in Ukraine. Pip Ivan caught our attention, a mountain in the Carpathians that has an abandoned observatory on the top. We had no idea if it was even possible to hike up there with our skills but searched anyway if there would be accommodation somewhere nearby. What we found was tipi style tents on someone’s backyard and it was just bizarre enough for us.
We didn’t know what size the village actually was since I only found information about Krasnik in Poland. So we thought better to be prepared and take a lot of food with us.
People often think it is impossible to find vegan food in many countries. I think it is that you don’t see what you don’t search for. If you don’t look for vegan food or restaurants it might seem that there is none. That is luckily not true!
Bio stores are always a safe bet but big supermarkets are no worse. In the store I often search for ecological or health product section to get for example plant based milks and sauces. Also regular products can be accidentally vegan just as back home. In Orthodox countries fasting period is the prime time to find vegan products in stores and we have found many also now outside the season.
Our problem was more that we didn’t know if we had a stove or not. Luckily we didn’t buy anything too complicated to cook since our water cooker was indeed a fireplace and we didn’t have a fridge. It was also good we had the food stock with us, since in Krasnik the only stores were small cabins selling everything from beach toys to tomatoes. Though we found there everything we were missing: some seasonal fruits and vegetables, bread and snacks to compliment noodles, pestos and other pastes. Coffee was provided by a tiny local cafe where we were able to just sit back and observe the village life. Or being observed since everyone else in the village knew each other.
When it comes to hiking Pip Ivan, we found out it really was possible to walk to the top. “Even kids do it.” I think those are some children who do crossfit after school since it was no easy Sunday stroll. After 5 hours in the most stunning views we were there, next to the ruins of the observatory, eating seitan sausages. Another crazy plan had turned into reality.
Speaking of seitan sausages: I never travel without a pile of Wheaty’s Spacebar sausages. (We went a bit overboard at the store this time. You might notice that in the picture below that has only a part of our sausage supply.) They don’t have to be stored in cold and they are really tasty. Perfect snack for train ride, hike or whenever your hunger turns into hanger. And when you really don’t want to see another date snack bar.