Abkhazia

Have you ever heard about Abkhazia?

If not, of course, you cannot even imagine, what you have lost.

Small country lost between the mountains and the sea, between Russia and Georgia. Unrecognized. But free. ‘A Soul Country’ – calls every local their beautiful home. And that’s totally true.

Because of mountains located so close to the sea, Abkhazia has unique mild climate. Here grow many kinds of plants. Abkhazia is mandarines and oranges paradise. Tons of orange fruits are grown here and are exported to Russia.

You can see also a lot of vineyards in Pitsunda cape in the middle of country, and beautiful tea plantations in the mountains.  

The capital of Abkhazia – Sukhum. It was beautiful city before the war conflict between Abkhazia and Georgia. Now the city looks strange… Some new buildings and modern cafes are mixed with buildings, destroyed by bombs and demolished during the time.

The territory is so old, archaeological findings indicate the people staying here even 2 million years ago. Just wow!

Anyway any tourist here can look at ruins of ancient fortresses and temples which were built in V-VI centuries.

It's a small country, you can drive from south to north in only 3-4 hours but to see all sights and beautiful places you will probably need more than two weeks.

What can you see?

That’s really hard to choose one, or two, or three…. or even four places. But I will try to find the best.

‘Gagripsh’ Restaurant in Gagra

 This is the beautiful symbol of Gagra-city. This wooden building, with clocks, was purchased by Duke Alexander von Oldenburg, founder of Gagra resort, at the World Exhibition in Paris in 1902. Since that time this is local’s favorite place.

Noviy Afon
This small city is famous for awesome monastery, which was built in 1875 by monks from old Afon monastery in Greece. Now this monastery is the most attractive touristic sight in Abkhazia. From here you can take excursion to the Novoafonsky cave, the biggest cave. The length of cave is 3000m, the depth – 183m.

If you need more beauty, go to the top of Iversky Mount nearby to see the ruins of Anakopian fortress, which was built in V century.

Pitsunda

If you want just relax on the beach, go to Pitsunda.  

No 5-stars hotels, no vip-service. Only you and the nature.

Along the coast you can meet the amazing grove of Pitsundian pine. The age of some trees is about 200 years. Here you can smell healthful sea air with the scent of pine needles and resin.

In the center of the city you can find the Patriarchal Cathedral.

It was built in the beginning of X century and now it is a museum. You can also listen to organ here twice a week.

Lake Goluboe

Do you want to see pure nature, the power of mountain rivers, huge rocks and maybe one of the most beautiful lakes in the world?
Your way is definitely to the Ritsa Relict National Park.

Stop at cheese factory and a winery next to the road. You don’t need to buy anything. Locals are so welcome that offer to try more than one sort of wine just for free. Be careful! You can feel drunk soon.

If you see large crowds of tourists nearby – you are near Goluboe Lake.

This is karst lake has unique and very bright blue color. There are no flora and fauna inside the lake and it’s small but this is really beautiful.

If you still have some doubts if you need to visit Abkhazia or not, just come and feel the soul of country.

The answer is ‘you need to see it with your own eyes’. Orange trees, wineyards, wild mountains, beautiful nature and hospitality of locals… All of this will make your stay here unforgettable.

Follow the writer through her instagram account - @mountain_lake

Stephanie Jane

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