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Travel Warning WARNING: Sevastopol, and Crimea generally, is currently in a massive stand-off between Russia and Ukraine. On 16 Mar 2014 those that cast a ballot in a hastily organised referendum in Crimea and Sevastopol voted overwhelmingly to secede and join Russia. Most countries in the world do not recognize Crimea and Sevastopol as a part of the Russian Federation, despite the vote.

Access to Crimea and Sevastopol has been made difficult by both pro-Russian and pro-Ukrainian forces. As the current heated situation in Crimea continues, many governments have warned travelers not to visit unless essential. If you must go, be sure to exercise extreme caution, as the situation could quickly escalate. DO NOT, in any, case wear clothing with EU, Ukrainian or US insignia.

Sevastopol, also known as Sebastopol is a disputed federal city that is near Crimea between Russia and Ukraine.


Sevastopol is an important and historical port on the Black Sea. Founded in 1783 as the base of the Black Sea Navy of Russia, it was besieged by the British in the Crimean War. In the 20th century it was the home port of the Soviet Navy's Black Sea Fleet, and the city retains a significant Russian naval presence.

The population is still largely ethnically Russian and the population's sympathies still lie largely with Moscow rather than Kiev. City residents have strongly protested the visit of American naval ships and Ukrainian interest in joining the NATO alliance. Russian politicians, including the President have agreed that Crimea and specifically, Sevastopol, should join the Russian Federation. The political orientation towards Moscow, continues to define Crimea and Sevastopol.

The major features of the city are on two streets, ul. Lenina and ul. Bolshoya Morskaya; there is a hill between them, on which is ul. Sovietska; there are numerous steps to get up and across the hill. Marshrutki tend to go up one of these streets and down the other; at the south end of ul. Lenina you can turn left to get to the train station and the bus-station.

Get in

Currently, you cannot enter Sevastopol due to an ongoing conflict. However, here is way you could get in BEFORE hand.

The small Sevastopol International Airport has connections with Dnipropetrovsk, Kiev and one international service from Moscow. The international airport in Simferopol is much better connected.

Sevastopol is rather poorly served by long-distance train but the nearby city of Simferopol is well-connected with many major cities in Eastern Europe and western Russia. With up to twenty connections each day between the two cities and a journey time of only two hours it's easy to get here by train. However, there is still a few direct long-distance overnight services. Moscow (24h) have one daily train as well as Saint Petersburg (35h). Domestic services are daily from Kiev (16h) via Dnipropetrovsk (9h), there is also a daily train from the eastern city of Donetsk (11h).

Not only are there few trains from/to Sevastopol, but they are almost always full or there are only tickets left in the (expensive) first class. This is partly due to corruption, since the train staff buy the cheapest tickets themselves and then resell them with profit. You can try buying a ticket directly from a train steward. You shouldn't pay more than the price of the ticket, plus €5-10.

Get around

Getting around Sevastopol, on a day to day basis, is much like getting around many Ukrainian cities -- by foot, by mini-bus (marshrutka), and by city bus. Given the hilly terrain and circuitous routes created as Sevastopol grew around its bays and shoreline, walking is less likely to be efficient, especially after one leaves the city centre.

Note that English maps and schedules for buses do not appear available (based on internet searching) and that one may need to depend on the word of citizens, operators, and fellow passengers to find the right route and stop. Buses and marshrutkas are economical, though often crowded, with marshrutkas being faster and slightly more expensive. Some travel sites (e.g., contain comments recommending boats/skiffs that will take tourists to beaches and islands. Note that its much harder to get off boats if you realize you are on the wrong one and it is also difficult to leave a dicey location if the only transport is by boat.

Good road maps of the town (with street names in both Latin and Cyrillic characters) cost 7.5UAH from press kiosks.

Renting a car is a great way to experience Crimea without dealing with the often late and uncomfortable public transportation. Car rental is possible at many places, but the cheapest appears to be at Number 43 Proletariarskaya ulitsa at the southern end of the city. For UAH200 per day (250km included) and a refundable USD200 deposit, it is fairly easy to rent a car and enjoy the southern coast this way.


Sevastopol is a good jumping-off place to see some of the sites from the Crimean War.

  • There is an amazing museum called Panorama, which depicts the siege of Sevastopol (from the Russian point of view) with a display a little like a diorama, but much more impressive - there is a huge circular canvas of about 2000 square metres as a backdrop, and then lots of props such as cannons and models of redoubts in the foreground. It's narrated in Russian but you can hire an audio guide in English or French. Admission UAH40 +UAH25 for camera.
  • There is a park with war memorials on Sapun Gora nearby, though it focuses on the battles of the World War Two siege of Sevastopol.
  • You will also find, at 11 ul Lenina, the Museum of the Black Sea Fleet. It is open Wednesday to Sunday and closed for cleaning on the last Friday of every month; there is a small exhibition of Russian and Soviet weapons outside the building. A couple of doors further down ul. Lenina is the Church of the Black Sea Fleet.
  • You can visit the "Valley of Death", where the famous "Charge of the Light Brigade" occurred
  • There are many Soviet war memorials - Sevastopol is one of the thirteen Hero Cities of the Great Patriotic War. There is a large statue of Lenin, with soldiers, peasants and workers, on ul. Sovietska which is the spine of the main section of the city. There is a statue of Nakhimov, who defeated the Turkish fleet and masterminded the defence of Sevastopol at the time of the Crimean War, in a square at the head of the main part of the city.

Apart from war theme:

  • The Greek city of Chersonessus is located about three kilometres from Sebastopol, near the city centre; admission is 40UAH for Ukrainians plus UAH15 for a camera, and UAH60 for foreigners. There is a good guidebook available from the ticket office for UAH15. This is where Volodymyr, the first leader of the Kievan Rus to convert to Christianity, was baptised; there is a large cathedral at the spot, rebuilt in 1999 after being closed down by the Soviets in the 1920s and blown up by the Nazis in 1944. Also on the site are various Byzantine basilicas, including a famous one with marble columns, and the 'foggy bell', made of melted-down Turkish cannons in the late 1700s, which was taken to Paris after the Crimean War and returned in 1914. Tourists swarm all over the ancient monuments with little respect for their antiquity. Few signs tell you what is what. Still, the atmosphere is nice. Consider bringing your swimming gear - the locals do, because there's a narrow but beautiful beach located in the grounds.
  • You can also visit nearby Balaklava, site of another famous battle, and an interesting little town, formerly a Russian submarine port.
  • Inkerman [6]. A suburb town 5km of Sevastopol where you can find cave monastery of St. Clement and medieval fortress Kalamita.


  • Ride the ferry boats crossing the bay. Common routes include those to a number of locations on the North Side (Severnaya) of town, where the best white sand beach and small airfield are. Locals use these north/south ferries to commute to and from work. Price of the ferries is only 2.5UAH (~$US.30) and they travel all over the city and it is a good way to get photos of the various landmarks.
  • In the summer, there are numerous tented beer bars on the waterfront. It's great for watching the ships entering the bay and the beautiful and skinny scantily clad Ukrainian and Russian girls prance the boulevard in their high heels.


There are lots of boutiques on Bolshoi Morskoe if you want fashionable clothes. Debit and credit cards are accepted in most shops in the city, but not accepted in markets. There are a lot of ATMs.


  • The restaurant 'Rybatsky Stan' on the West side of Artillery Bay has excellent fish dishes; it's a bit expensive, perhaps 200UAH per head for a meal without wine.
  • Ukrainiski Shinok is an excellent authentic Ukrainian Restaurant on the basement level of the Hotel Sevastopol in the Center.
  • Ostrov Sushi (Island of Sushi) is quite the landmark in the center where the ferries dock at Artillery Bay. They are also one of the few wifi spots in the city. Meals usually cost over USD20.
  • McDonalds in the center is probably the most popular restaurant in the city and a hangout for many teenagers.
  • You should try original and real "Baklava", which is different than the Greek or Turkish versions. European soldiers fighting in the Crimean War coined the term "Baklava" while fighting in Sevastopol and neighboring Balaklav from the local fried bread coated in honey popular in the region. Hence, the name, Baklava, was imported to the West. It's a thin unleavened fried flour bread covered in honey and sold in small stores and on beaches by vendors.
  • The popular Pizza Celentano located in the city centre serves cheap and delicious pizzas, fruit salad, pancakes and drinks. There is a vast range of toppings to be chosen for the pizzas and pancakes. If you're lucky the staff will speak some English.
  • Veliky Kombinator, Ochakovtsev 34 (close to the city Center). Adorable restaurant dedicated to Ostap Bender, the cult character of a Soviet conman from the books of Ilf and Petrov. The food is tasty and as a bonus you can take a picture in one of the "12 Chairs"


This is a major naval port, there are lots of places selling beer and other drinks scattered around the city.


Sevastopol has a few clubs, and most of them only work during the summer.

  • White People Club, Айвазовського вул. (Ayvazovskogo) 7. This is a fancy club, with a very strange name. Foreigners are usually let in even if they don't adhere to the dress code. Also for foreigners there doesn't seem to be an entrance fee. The club only serves Mexican beer and expensive drinks like champagne.
  • Хорошо (Good), пляж "Парк Победы" (the beach named "Victory Park"). An open air club, which plays a mix of music genres. Obviously works only during the summer, and near the end of the tourism season (around September) it's usually empty. Entrance fee is around UAH50.
  • Night club “Black Orange” ( Cherniy Apelsin), Qualitatively new facility in the club area of the city. Great sound, European cuisine “24 hours” Two halls: “Cocktail Disco” and “Lounge Cafe”Shows, booking parties, children’s and adult parties. Address: Alexander Marinesco 21.
  • Club Premier, is considered one of the most respected nightclubs Sevastopol! “Premier”, Capacity of 200 seats, with a total area of 400 m2, with a capacity of up to 500 people.Navigation: The club is located in a building Gidrofiza, on the second floor. Entrance side of the building, up the stairs to the red carpet. At the entrance meets security and facecontol. There is also a dressing room.Interior: The club is an area of artistic innovation. The original interior of the club, combining various directions and styles of design art, high-quality music – all this creates a pleasant atmosphere for relaxation. Address: Capitanskya Street 2


  • Atlantika Hotel, 22 Geroev Stalingrada Street, Sevastopol, Ukraine 99014, 00 38 0692 41 12 19, [1]. Located near Kamishovaya Bay and it offers rooms equipped with balcony/deck, private toilet, bath and a telephone. They also have a café, which serves Ukrainian and Russian cuisine; a conference room that can can accommodate up to 80 guests; and two banquet halls that can accommodate 30 and 70 persons, respectively. from EUR 26.
  • Bolshaya Sevastopol Hostel, Bolshaya Morskaya 38, +380938508609. Great accommodation in a small Backpacker/Traveller hostel with quiet courtyard and garden on one of the main city streets opposite the Post Office and next to the Cathedral. English-speaking staff with great local knowledge on premises 24/7. Free WiFi~Linens~Coffee&Tea. 24hr Hot water. Safe & Secure. Top rated Sevastopol hostel on Hostelworld every year. Open only during the summer season (June1-October). [2]. Dorm from 12euro Private Room 35euro.
  • Funny Dolphin Hostel, V.Kychera 5, ap. 2 (in the historical city center of Sevastopol. One bus stop from the train station and 2 bus stops from the bus station. You can take any bus number (bus #7, 17, 20, 25, 25, 107, 109, 110, 112) to the bus stop Suvorova ploschad'= Suvorov's square. When you get off the bus you are going to see the monument to suvorov - the grey column with the bust, come to it and take the steps nearby ( you will definitely see it, its near the currency excange). The steps will take you to v. Kychera street. After that turn to the left, walk down the hill 20-25 meters and you will see the building #5 (it looks quite old), get into brown door (the door code is 139, please press all numbers at the same time)--- on the first floor you will see the brown door- apartment # 2.), +380955013343 or +380501464194 (, fax: +380 692 547508), [3]. Quite central and most staff speaks English (also Russian, Ukrainian and French). Visa invitation service for ones that need visa. 2 mins walk to Nachimov and lazarev square, where most of the clubs and bars are. 1 min. walk is the nearest police station and a hospital. 1 min. walk to the biggest Sevastopol souvenir market + supermarket. 5 mins. walk to Panorama and Black see fleet museum. They help you out in buying train and bus tickets. Rooms: 28euros/night, Dorm: 12euros/bed.
  • Hotel Ukraine, (across from the Panarama Park). The rooms are quite standard. $US35-100/night.
  • Hotel Olymp. Only about 100m from the Hotel Ukraine on a quite street, it's a nicer and newer hotel, but lacks an elevator, which is useful if lugging heavy bags up four floors. Rooms range from $US75-120/night.
  • Private Sevastopol Apartments, [4]. checkin: 13.00; checkout: 12/00. Luxury type Sevastopol Apartments, Centrally located, next to the sea, nightclubs, restaurants, bars. Travel Services and Help. from 60$-120$ night.
  • Sevastopol-Apartments, +380506469158 (), [5]. checkin: after 14.00; checkout: before 10.00. Studio, 1-2-3 bedroom apartments, situated in the center of Sevastopol and Balaklava also at beach areas etc. Travel services, excursions, transfers, diving, help in English, Russian, Ukrainian, German and Dutch language. Dutch/Ukrainian managed. Rooms range from US35-250/night.


Ostrov Sushi in the middle of Artillery Bay has wireless. The Greenwich Coffee House at #15 Admiral Oktyabraskaya (c. 300m West of Bolshaya Morskaya) also has Wi-Fi in a Starbuck's-like atmosphere.

The main post office in the center of Bolshaya Morskaya has a large Internet café. The Hotel Crimea (Gostinica Krim) has an Internet café that is open 24 hours a day.

None of these locations have English-speaking staff.

Get out

One of the nicer beaches is located approximately 30 minutes from the city in the village of Lyubimovka. It is a sandy beach with hundreds of tourists in the summer. Another nice beach is Uchkuyevka. You can get there by taking the ferry (parom in Russian) from the city centre to Severnaya and then a short ride by marshrutka. The beaches are relatively crowded but frequented mainly by locals {and Russians who feel like locals too :)

The city of Balaklava is approximately 45 minutes away and popular for its underground submarine port that is now a tourist site.

Leaving Sevastopol to Ukraine is hard at the moment, due to both Russian and Ukrainians guarding both sides of the Black Sea. You could get in trouble if you try it.

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