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Difference between revisions of "Sukhumi"

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[[Image:Sukhum1.jpg|thumb|350 px|Typical war remains in Sukhumi]]
 
[[Image:Sukhum1.jpg|thumb|350 px|Typical war remains in Sukhumi]]
  
Although most of the major sights of the city were destroyed by the war, Sukhumi's principal attraction remains intact:  an almost tropical climate with beaches, mountains, lakes, palm trees, and the like. Also the ruins of the buildings, most famously the old government building, are an attraction of a sort unto themselves.
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Although most of the major sights of the city were destroyed by the war, Sukhumi's principal attraction remained intact:  an almost tropical climate with beaches, mountains, lakes, palm trees and of course the warm welcoming of locals, always mixed with a curiosity towards westerners. Since 2008, when Russian trade embargo was lifted, Russian tourists returned to Abkhazia once again and during summer invade the Abkhazian seaside; the influx of new money permitted the reconstruction of the main sites, and progress, albeit slow, is visible everywhere.
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*'''Promenade''': Sukhumi's seaside promenade stretches some 4 km long westwards from the government buildings. Summertime it is always full of life: locals as well as Russian tourists scroll along, chat, eat ice cream, drink beer and enjoy the sun. Several restaurants are found to the West from hotel Ritsa, this is the area where bathing in the sea is permitted, and if you need accommodation, here you'll find many babushkas sitting on plastic chairs with "komnata" ('room') sign who are more than happy to assist you.
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*'''Botanical gardens''': three corners away northwards from hotel Ritsa, this nice park is incredibly popular with tourists who are keen to take pictures with the odd-shaped trees. Be prepared for queues. Entry fee RUR 140 (summer 2012).
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*'''Monkey park''': just behind the Botanical gardens, across the railway line; it's impossible to get lost if you follow the line of old ladies and gentlemen who sell cucumbers, peaches and other delicacies intended for the animals. Once a research centre and alleged training place for the monkeys sent to the space by the USSR, now it's a pretty sad zoo around a huge monkey sculpture. Be prepared for queues. Entry fee RUR 140 (summer 2012).
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*'''Old soviet buildings and remnants of war''': for those who seek for this, Sukhumi is a paradise. Among all the abandoned, destroyed and sadly dilapidated buildings that you still find literally everywhere, the most famous one is indisputably the gigantic old government building of the Abkhaz Autonomous Republic (two corners westwards from the Botanical gardens), sacked and burnt out two decades ago. The railway station at the western edge of the town is also worth a look; the huge building seems to have had enough space for all the travellers of an entire metropolis like Moscow. (These days travellers are served by a much smaller, reconstructed building to the west of it.)
  
 
==Do==
 
==Do==

Revision as of 12:12, 23 August 2012

Seafront at Sukhumi

Sukhumi (Abkhaz: Аҟəа Aqwa, Georgian: სოხუმი, Russian: Сухуми) is the capital and principal city of Abkhazia. It has for the better part of the last century been famous throughout the Former Soviet Union as a prominent subtropical beach resort, complete with palm trees, botanical gardens, and citrus plantations, backed by the high alpine peaks of the Greater Caucasus Mountains.

Contents

Get in

All persons visiting Abkhazia must arrive in Sukhumi to receive a visa from the Ministry of Foreign affairs.

The direct sleeper train from Moscow have finally returned, there are departures atlest twice a week with more connections added during the holiday seasons. Depature time from Moskva Paveletsky station is 5:20PM, arriving in Suhkumi 1:07PM two nights later. A local train also connects with the Russian summer resort of Sochi across the border, journey time is five hours with fares starting at 200 RUB.

Get around

Most can easily be done on foot. Book stores sell quite decent maps. Frequent Marshrutkas and lesser frequent trolleybusses ply the roads. To get to the bus/train station ("voksal") take a marshrutka/trolleybus from ul. Aiaaria (parallel to pr. mira). You must change vehicles at the central market.

See

Typical war remains in Sukhumi

Although most of the major sights of the city were destroyed by the war, Sukhumi's principal attraction remained intact: an almost tropical climate with beaches, mountains, lakes, palm trees and of course the warm welcoming of locals, always mixed with a curiosity towards westerners. Since 2008, when Russian trade embargo was lifted, Russian tourists returned to Abkhazia once again and during summer invade the Abkhazian seaside; the influx of new money permitted the reconstruction of the main sites, and progress, albeit slow, is visible everywhere.

  • Promenade: Sukhumi's seaside promenade stretches some 4 km long westwards from the government buildings. Summertime it is always full of life: locals as well as Russian tourists scroll along, chat, eat ice cream, drink beer and enjoy the sun. Several restaurants are found to the West from hotel Ritsa, this is the area where bathing in the sea is permitted, and if you need accommodation, here you'll find many babushkas sitting on plastic chairs with "komnata" ('room') sign who are more than happy to assist you.
  • Botanical gardens: three corners away northwards from hotel Ritsa, this nice park is incredibly popular with tourists who are keen to take pictures with the odd-shaped trees. Be prepared for queues. Entry fee RUR 140 (summer 2012).
  • Monkey park: just behind the Botanical gardens, across the railway line; it's impossible to get lost if you follow the line of old ladies and gentlemen who sell cucumbers, peaches and other delicacies intended for the animals. Once a research centre and alleged training place for the monkeys sent to the space by the USSR, now it's a pretty sad zoo around a huge monkey sculpture. Be prepared for queues. Entry fee RUR 140 (summer 2012).
  • Old soviet buildings and remnants of war: for those who seek for this, Sukhumi is a paradise. Among all the abandoned, destroyed and sadly dilapidated buildings that you still find literally everywhere, the most famous one is indisputably the gigantic old government building of the Abkhaz Autonomous Republic (two corners westwards from the Botanical gardens), sacked and burnt out two decades ago. The railway station at the western edge of the town is also worth a look; the huge building seems to have had enough space for all the travellers of an entire metropolis like Moscow. (These days travellers are served by a much smaller, reconstructed building to the west of it.)

Do

Buy

Abkhaz brandy, (Ainar 5 years)

Eat

There is a fair share of restaurants in Sukhumi, which cater mostly true to Caucasian style dining. Most of them are at the coast next to Hotel Ritsa. The restaurant/bar at the pier is the poshest and even has Sushi. It's also a good place for a drink. No English menus. There is also a truely authentic cafe on the parallel street to pr. Mira, next to a bookstore. Authentic (Mokka type) coffee, great for breakfast.

Drink

Plenty of places along the coast. Walk along the coastline and take your pick. The places on the pier are great for a sundowner.

Sleep

  • Hotel "Aytar"

Hotel Aytar is situated on the seafront near Sukhumi Dendropark. Until mid-2009 the hotel as a base allocation of the UN mission. The territory of the hotel is more than 5 acres of subtropical park with artificial lakes, which are well blended into the landscape between shady pine alleys. It is cool even in summer heat and all the features for a pleasant relaxing stay.

  • Hotel "Atrium Victoria"

Hotel Atrium Victoria "is situated near the center of Sukhumi, 100 m from the famous Sukhumi quay. The nearby major attractions and best restaurants in town. The hotel is designed in elegant, respectable style, its rooms and the interior features high comfort and cozy atmosphere. On the fourth floor of the hotel is a large outdoor terrace, which overlooks the sea and surroundings. In the cozy patio - an oasis for relaxing and socializing guests.

  • Hotel "Inter-Sukhumi"

Hotel Inter-Sukhumi is located in a park resort area of Sukhumi on the coast. Conveniently located in the central city waterfront, the hotel has a developed infrastructure and excellent rooms and apartments.

  • Pension "Kyalasur"

Pension "Kyalasur" is located in the resort town Sukhumi (near the famous beaches of Sinop), next to the arboretum, on the shores of the Black Sea, in its own park area with tropical plants, pines and oleanders. Nearby flows the purest mountain stream - Kyalasur from which to start the Great Wall of Abkhaz, the remains of which can still be seen today.

  • Hotel "Ritz"

Hotel Ritz one of the most romantic and beautiful in Abkhazia. It is located on the central promenade of Sukhumi, a few meters from the Black Sea. Luxury three-storey building of the hotel operates all year round. Most rooms with sea views.

  • Hotel "Sinop"

Hotel Sinop is located on the territory of the former government residence in a unique arboretum, practically on the shore of the Black Sea. Cozy and comfortable hotel offers maintenance and service of high quality. Hotel - four-story. On each floor there are lounges with sofas and TV. Comfortable rooms equipped with modern furniture and appliances. The cafe is organized meals.

  • Mini-hotel "Sukhumi"

Mini-hotel "Sukhumi" is located in the historic heart of the capital Sukhumi on the famous promenade, a place immersed in the palms and eucalyptus. Modern 3-storey hotel building stands on the right bank of the river near the Basley Red Bridge. With an open terrace offers stunning views of the sea. Near the hotel is the famous restaurant "Ertsahu" and a ten minute walk - the Botanical Garden. The hotel features a cozy atmosphere and unusual interior design.

  • Pension "Eucalyptus Grove"

Pension "eucalyptus grove" is located in the village Kyndyg 20 km from the city of Sukhumi, and is in its closed protected territory on the coast in a relic eucalyptus grove. On the territory can visit the cafe, restaurant with national cuisine, disco and lots of sports fields.

  • Hotel "Yasemin"

Hotel Yasemin - a modern city hotel, built in 2004. It is conveniently located in the center of Sukhumi on the street Lakoba - a 15 minute walk to central market and 300 meters from the beach and promenade. The road to the beach passes through the park.

Get out

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