Sochi was founded around 160 years ago. It is one of the biggest cities at the Russian coast of the Black Sea. Sochi is characterised by many contrasts, especially when it comes down to landscape and climate. Sochi is located between the sea and Caucasus Mountains.
The city of Sochi is called “Russia's summer capital”. This resort city and park takes up 150 kilometres of coastal area, consisting of such health-resort towns as Adler, Khosta, Matsesta, Dagomys and Lazarevskoye, where the first health resort appeared in 1838. Over 200 hotels and health resort centers are located in the area. As with any sea resort, there is something here for everyone, from scuba diving, windsurfing and water-skiing to yachting, fishing and underwater hunting.
Sochi is also famous for its mineral water springs and mud-baths, especially in the valleys of the Matsesta, Agura and Khosta rivers. It is said that the Athenians, Romans and Byzantines would make the journey to this part of the world from their countries to receive such treatments. The sulphide-chloride-sodium saturated waters of Matsesta were discovered in 1902.
The wild, severe and majestic atmosphere of the Caucasus Mountains makes a strong impression upon locals and visitors alike. The height of the mountainous peaks, covered with eternal snows, reaches about 2 kilometres in the area of Krasnaya Polyana. This is also a favourite gathering place for mountain-skiers and hang-gliders. One may also take a ride from here in a hot-air balloon, in order to admire the fantastic panorama of the mountains from a bird's-eye view. In addition, local rafting is very popular among tourists, with water routes designed for different levels of skill, including routes for children, beginners and skilled sportsmen.
|Mountain skis in Krasnaya Polyana.
In the mountains, the air temperature goes down to 6 °C as one goes up every 1,000 metres: so, if it is 25 °C at the seaside, it is as cold as 7 °C at an altitude of 3,000 metres. In this way, Krasnaya Polyana offers its visitors a unique “package” of mountain-skiing and sea-bathing all in one. After enjoying first-class skiing, one can drive down to the coast and then, in about half an hour, can enjoy a swim in the warm sea. There are not very many places on the planet where such contrasting climatic conditions are combined so organically and comfortably.
The city's proximity to the Black Sea moderates the climate, so Sochi is the only area in Russia, where tea, persimmons, pomegranates and citrus fruits are cultivated.
The airport of Sochi / Adler is located some 40 kilometers away from Sochi's city centre. Sochi has connections with nearly all Russian cities, including Moscow and St. Petersburg.