Founded around 160 years ago,
Sochi city is one of the biggest Russian cities at the Black Sea.
The city population is about 300,000 people, but each year it hosts
more than 3 million holidaymakers. The city spreads out 145 km along
the Black Sea coast and therefore is among the most stretched cities
in the world.
Sochi is called the summer capital of Russia. It consists of the
resort settlements of Adler, Hosta, Matsesta, Dagomys, and
Lazorevskoye. Mineral springs, attractive coastal and mountain
scenery, long beaches, and the warm climate have made Sochi large
and popular resort. The city is located on the same latitude as
Toronto, Nice, and the Gobi Dessert, north of the border with
Situated in the midst of lush, subtropical gardens on the Black
Sea's most stunning stretch of coastline, Sochi provides the ideal
destination for leisure visitors.
No matter what time of the year you come here, you find the same
picture - sunshine and greenery all over. There are few cities in
the world as rich in greenery and flora as Sochi. Three-quarters of
its territory are under parks and gardens with 85 percent of
The city is blessed with 300 days of sunshine. Squeezed between
the Caucasus Mountains and the Black Sea, Sochi boasts a mild
subtropical climate with the average summer temperatures of 25
Celcius. Very often the Black Sea temperatures in the summer are
even higher than those of the air and swimming is enjoyable from May
Full of greenery and open space, Sochi is the perfect place to
relax. The opportunities for recreation and relaxation are endless.
Over 250 hotels, health and spa centers offer their facilities to
numerous guests the whole year.
It's a unique Russian city where the lush subtropical vegetation
and the warm sea are close neighbors to snow-capped mountains.
Within 2 hours of Sochi center with its pebble beaches and inviting
waters of the Black Sea, you can be skiinig mountain ranges,
enjoying some of the most beautiful and unspolit countryside - the
ski resort of Krasnaya Polyana.
Come and savour many magical moments in Sochi, an easy-going,
friendly resort city, offering a great many pleasures in ints
subtropical warmth. A city which will suprise, delight and entertain
all those who are prepared to enjoy every corner of it. Whatever
your age, you'll never be short of something to do or see in Sochi.
It's time to relax, explore and adore the wonders of this
City telephone code is 8622.
Time: Moscow time + 3.
The Black Sea city of Sochi has been a popular
Russian resort area for nearly two centuries. Located approximately
1,500 miles due south of Moscow, the city is famous for its favorable
climate, beautiful landscapes, beaches, parks, health resorts, spas,
and hotels, as well as mineral springs, which have prompted the
development of spas, such as the renowned Matsesta. Tourism is the
leading industry of the city and provides growth for other sectors,
such as health care, hotel services, construction, restaurants, and
food processing. During the last decade, the popularity of Sochi has
waned as Russians, granted new travel freedoms, began vacationing
abroad. However, as a result of the economic crisis that began in
1998, including the devaluation of the ruble, Russians have redirected
their attention back to the area. During summer 1999, the number of
visitors registered at hotels, health resorts, and other facilities
reached 1.5 million, up from 569,400 in 1998. However, the city does
not offer an adequate supply of high-quality restaurants, hotels, and
leisure attractions to meet the great demand.
is accessible by air and sea. It has an international airport that
offers air connections with most major Russian cities, as well as
Western Europe, through Moscow. Currently, a new modern terminal is
being built to extend the airport`s capacity. Modern airport
management, as well as funds to complete construction, is needed to
finalize this project. Sochi`s seaport provides a direct sea
connection with Turkey, Greece, Georgia, and Ukraine. A new trading
port in Sochi is currently under construction.
Tourism is the most promising and developed sector in Sochi. Visitors
are attracted not only by the pleasant summer weather and Black Sea,
but also by skiing and sports competitions and other attractions,
business events and trade fairs, and health spas and medical treatment
Although most tourists flock to the city in the summer, the winter
season also attracts skiers to the Krasnaya Polyana resort, which was
founded by Alpika Service. The firm, which constructed ski tracks and
provides equipment rental, instruction, and ski lifts, is currently
seeking partners or investors to help expand the complex into a
high-quality, all-season tourist complex with hunting, fishing, and
mountain climbing. A candidate to host the 2002 Winter Olympic Games,
Sochi hosts many sports competitions that attract thousands of
athletes and spectators each year.
has some 200 hotels and sanatoria (health spas) that offer a range of
services and standards. Among the best hotels are the Radisson SAS
Lazurnaya a nd Dagomys, both owned by Russian gas monopoly Gazprom.
Another four-star hotel also run by Radisson, the Lazurnaya Peak, is
located outside the city center at the Krasnaya Polyana ski resort.
Several of Sochi`s sanatoria are located in centuries-old villas, all
in need of renovation and interior modernization as well as improved
hospitality management. The most striking such sanatoria are the
Ordzhonikidze, Rus`, and Sochi. Many sanatoria and hotels were built
in the second half of the 20th century, with modern architecture.
During the Soviet era, they belonged to different large Soviet
organizations that sent their employees to Sochi for vacations. Now
all sanatoria are privatized. Many of them are partly renovated and
receive visitors throughout the year. For example, hotel Zhemchuzhina
(Pearl) is gradually renovating its rooms to international standards.
Zhemchuzhina`s management seeks an investor for further renovations
and preparations to acheive international certification as a four-star
Sochi has a very long history. The area was
inhabited about 400,000 years ago. The local Akhshtyrskaya Cave is
the northernmost point southeast of Europe in which Cro-Magnon men,
the first ancestor of Europeans, lived. Even the name of the city
comes from antiquity. Procopius of Caesurae of the Byzantine Empire
made note that the natives of the empire’s Black Sea coast were
called Sachi in Latin.
Sochi was established in 1896 on the site of the
former Navaginskoye fort and began developing as a resort town in
The territory of Sochi became a part of Russia at
the end of the Caucasian War. Officially founded in 1898, Sochi was
set-aside as a resort area. It’s fate was decided when salubrious
hydrogen springs were discovered throughout the area. Since then it
has been developed as a health resort that is now the best in
Russia. The first hotel called Kavkaz Riviera was opened in Sochi in
1909. As the area became popular before the revolution, many wealthy
people from St. Petersburg and Moscow came down and built splendid
In the 1940s and 50s sanatoriums, spas, and resorts
rose by the hundreds. Most sanatoriums were built to treat
bronchial, lung and nervous disorders. Now there are over 250
stretched along the shores and hidden in the mountains. In the
Soviet times, Sochi was the most popular resort in Russia.
The end of communism not only brought an increase in
prices. In addition, Russians got the opportunity to travel
overseas, so some have gone off to see the rest of the world. The
crowds have thinned. However it is still popular and many people
come to Sochi beaches and sanatoriums in summer.
Climate and Nature
Sochi is a region of many contrasts, which is
especially true in respect to landscape and climate. Sochi is
located between the sea and lies on the early Caucasian Mountain
The climate in Sochi is semi-tropical. The average
temperature in winter is 8-10 C and it rarely rises above 30 C in
summer. There are about 200 days of sunshine a year. Similar to
Northern California, it is possible to swim in the sea from April
through October, and ski on slopes from October into May.
Palm, banana, and citrus trees, and an ever-blooming
parade of flowers can be found in the region. More than 80% of the
territory is part of a national park or the Caucasian State
The City Today
The best Soviet architects constructed Sochi
architectural ensemble in the 1930s and the 1950s, but the major
attraction of Sochi is the natural beauty of the region. Today Sochi
is called the Russian Riviera. It’s black sand and pebble beaches
stretch over 20 miles along the Black Sea coast.
A must-see is the city’s beach. A short stroll from
the beach, over the Sochi River, is the Park Riviera. Located in
Sochi’s most popular park are art galleries, cafes, games, and
amusement rides. Russian astronauts and celebrities have planted
magnolia trees there.
To see a whole diversity of different plants,
Dendrary Botanical Garden should be visited. Not far from Dendrary
is the Friendship Park with its Trees of Friendship and museum.
Not far from Sochi — about an hour into the
mountains — is Krasnaya Polyana. It is where the ski slopes are
located. On the way to Krasnaya Polyana there is the largest trout
farm in Russia.
Throughout the area strange structures from a little
known dolman culture are scattered. An ancient local legend says
that these ‘Dolman houses’ were built by giants for the dwarfs who
rode hares. However, the current theory is that they are sacral cult
constructions with sun orientations. They were built at the same
period as the Egyptian pyramids, and it is thought, using the same
Traveling to Sochi
There are several flights a day from different Moscow airports:
Vnukovo, Domodedovo, and Sheremetyevo-1. Flight time between Moscow
and Sochi is about 2 hours. Visitors from outside Russia can fly to
Sochi through Istanbul (Turkey), or UAE (Dubai). There are also
flights from most big cities in Russia.
Aeroflot: Sochi (8622) 94-40-97 Moscow/ (095) 753-55-55/
Flights to Istanbul by Chernomor Avia - representative in Istanbul
There are several daily trains from Moscow. Train travel from Moscow
to Sochi takes from 26 hours (the fastest train) to 32 hours. (Cost
By Ferry or Hydrofoil
The seaport of Sochi is located in the city and serves both passenger
and cargo ships. There is direct sea connection with Turkey and
Georgia. There is a ferry to Trabson (4-5 times a week) and a ferry
and a hydrofoil to Istanbul (about 12 hours) once or twice a week. The
ferry (and hydrofoil to Georgia) three times a week.