The 25 best sights of Krasnaya Polyana
It’s time to go on a sightseeing tour to the picturesque village of Krasnodar Krai called Krasnaya Polyana. Although this place can not boast an abundance of attractions, every tourist here will find entertainment and activities to his liking.
Some guests will be happy to conquer the slopes of the ski resort “Rosa Khutor”, others will enjoy the exposition of the Ethnographic Center “My Russia”, and others will include in their cultural activities. Some will include a visit to the “Galaxy” center, created by the Gazprom company, in their cultural and entertainment program.
Krasnaya Polyana has a lot of historical, cultural and natural sights, which should be visited by every self-respecting tourist. Writers and public figures of the Soviet Union once loved to spend all their free time here, celebrities were treated and just came to admire the picturesque nature residents of the immense country from different parts of it.
We will tell you about the main sights of Krasnaya Polyana, where to go and what to see on your own.
Perhaps, the oldest attraction, to the creation of which had their hands ancient settlers, are dolmens. They are unusual structures of stone in the form of wells or dugouts, which consist of multi-ton slabs and rocky statues. By the way, scientists have not yet come to a definite conclusion regarding the purpose of unusual structures.
Krasnaya Polyana dolmens are located in the tract Krestenyukova, to get to which is not so easy. Experienced guides offer to combine a visit to the stone structures with hikes in the mountains.
If you are planning only to visit this monument of ancient civilization, go to the stop on Zapovednaya Street. From there you will need to walk about 3.5 km along the dirt path, and then turn around and walk another kilometer to the forest.
The house-museum of A.H. Tammsaare
All fans of the works of the Estonian writer should visit this place. The museum is located in the village of Esto-Sadok and tells not only about the writer, but also about many local literary and cultural figures of the past century.
The very design of the house-museum is truly interesting, as if with its atmosphere it plunges everyone who has entered that epoch and makes them reflect on many things. Here everywhere you can find rare photographs, including some of the events of the settlers’ lives, about a long time ago.
You can find the museum on Estonskaya Street, where it occupies house number 35. Visitors are welcomed there from Friday to Sunday from 10 to 17 hours.
The Emperor’s hunting lodge.
Especially for Nicholas II a hunting lodge was designed at a height of over a kilometer above the sea. Although the house does not resemble an exciting imperial residence and does not hint at the fact that Nicholas II spent a lot of time here, it does pique the interest of tourists.
A three-story building in the style of a British villa was created in just a couple of years. Near the house there were other buildings intended for hunting and preparing for it – the house of gamekeepers, structures for the guardhouse, a wall for protection. The groves in the vicinity were forbidden, were under protection and only members of the royal family had the right to hunt in them.
Unfortunately, it was not until Soviet times that order was maintained on the hunting grounds. As soon as the property was transferred into private hands, the palace and other structures were ruined and abandoned.
Only in 2013, restoration works were started and tourists were able to visit another interesting historical object of Krasnaya Polyana. If you plan to hike without a guide, your route will pass through the recreation center of the same name.
From the resort you will need to climb the hill and follow the signs. There is no transport to the house, there is no road, so you should count only on your own strength.
Museum of Local Lore
The initiator of the museum of his native land “Krasnaya Polyana” was historian and local historian B. Tskhomaria. It is worth noting that he was not just a public figure with an active life position, but also a concerned citizen, a patriot of his country and a honored teacher.
That is why the collection was originally a school collection, but later expanded with items from private collections and the results of archaeological excavations. Today the collection includes at least 18,000 items of various historical and cultural value.
Many teaching staffs and schoolchildren are involved in creating the collection.
The most popular among visitors is the Hall of Military Glory, which displays military artifacts, weapons, as well as personal belongings of commanders, privates, officers and even heroes who defended the city.
The museum’s merits include winning the competition for the title of the best patriotic museum in Russia, which the exposition was awarded in 1998. It is easy to find the museum. It is located in a recognizable building in Turchinsky Street at number 42. You can get there both by public transport and on foot (if you stay near the site).
Cultural and ethnographic center “My Russia
This is the name by which the cultural and ethnographic center is known in Krasnaya Polyana. After the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, the center was temporarily closed and even forgotten about for a while.
But in 2015, interest in it was revived, tourists could once again visit the well-groomed territory, the restaurant, to study the structures, the construction of which used different architectural techniques and directions.
It is here that one can see and appreciate copies of such iconic structures as the Moscow and Kazan Kremlin; a courtyard with a wicker fence and thatched roof of a house, which seems to transport all visitors to the Kuban hinterland; the Urals brick factory; the Buryat datsan and many other structures and constructions characteristic of different regions of the country.
To get to the center, tourists should get off at the Rosa Khutor public transport stop. There is also a parking lot here for those who travel by private car.
Then you need to walk along the left embankment for about 10 minutes. But for a visit to the attraction will not take money.
What to see in Krasnaya Polyana in winter and summer
Krasnaya Polyana is a unique place, there are no analogues in the world, it is the only natural complex that has collected a record number of natural and man-made monuments.
It is impossible to come to Sochi without visiting Krasnaya Polyana. It is located near Adler at an altitude of 600 meters. Krasnaya Polyana is a whole complex of lakes, mountain ranges, rivers, meadows and the beautiful Black Sea. The climate is mild and pleasant. Temperature in summertime is on average +24 °, and in winter the temperature drops to 0 °. Under such conditions wonderfully grow rhododendron, beech, maple, chestnut, ash, azalea, etc. The animal life is also diverse. The forests are home to deer, wolves, badgers, bears and numerous birds. Water bodies are teeming with trout and salmon mostly. Krasnaya Polyana is also rich in numerous natural and historical monuments.
Holy Trinity Convent of St. George
To find the monastery is very easy. You will drive through the village Golitsyno, and almost immediately get to the monastery. Despite its young age, it has become one of the most popular places in the area. To get to the temple you can either take a sightseeing bus or public transport from Sochi, though, in this case, you must warn the driver about where you are going, so he stopped before turning.
The history of its origin is unique and amazing. It all began in 1999, when three nuns came to the sanatorium of the local factory. As it turned out later, they were natives of Russia, Ukraine and Belarus. After remaining here forever, they began to try to obtain a plot of land to establish a nunnery. The women succeeded and even found a sponsor, who helped build the sanctuary. And now tourists are welcomed by a complex of several buildings.
The first temple was built in 2000. It was named St. Vladimir’s Temple, the second was named after Serafim of Sarov, and the third was dedicated to the monks of the Kievo-Pechersk monastery. The complex is also unique because of the fact that there are the relics of 83 Pechersk Fathers and even Seraphim of Sarov.
Three years later the temple of the martyr Uar was built. It is the only place in Russia where it is possible to pray for the unbaptized and suicide victims. It was erected at the expense of a woman whose son had died. The poor woman sold everything she owned and gave the money to the church. This act inspired many believers to charity and good deeds. Some more temples were later built with the new donations. One of the most famous was the Church of the Icon of the Mother of God. Today weddings are held here.
While the complex has a chapel for the unbaptized, a chapel was established in 2005 to pray for any baptized person. Sometimes burials of the deceased are held there.
If you decide to visit the monastery, do not forget to take a small container. Near the complex there is a holy spring where you can drink water and take some with you.
It is also called Monashka Mountain. It rises several kilometers from Krasnaya Polyana on the banks of the Mzymta. It got its first name in honor of geologist, geographer, and scientist Yuri Efremov. He was eternally fond of these places, and used to glorify Krasnaya Polyana and its magnificent landscapes. He even published his book “Above Krasnaya Polyana”. Before his death the writer wanted to be buried on Krasnaya Polyana. Mount Monashka became the guardian of Efremov’s ashes. Why this mountain? Despite its height (709 meters), from the top there is an amazingly beautiful landscape of the surrounding countryside. In memory of the man, the Writers’ Union established a memorial of stones and a small stele.
The lakes are part of the Sochi National Park. Being at an altitude of 1750 meters, they can be reached only on foot or by off-road vehicle. On the mountain near the reservoirs there are observation decks, which offer an unusual view of such famous mountain ranges as Fisht and Bzyb, which is generally in Abkhazia.
In the summer of 2012, hiking trails of the lakes were restored and slightly changed. Now it is even more comfortable here. There are comfortable stairs with railings and there are signs for the lost. The observation decks have been changed completely, making them even more comfortable and safer. For hikers there are places for tents. The area of the lakes is known among tourists as one of the jeeping routes. The best time to visit is July and October. The rest of the time the area is literally buried in snow.
Krasnaya Polyana is known not only as a ski resort, there are also a lot of springs with a healing effect. There are especially a lot of them gathered in this place. One of the most famous are considered Matsesta waters, named after the village where they are located. These springs are famous for their therapeutic properties, beneficially affecting virtually all systems of the human body. Even desperate parents come here, as there is a belief that the Matsesta waters cure infertility. No less often vacationers visit the springs of Kudepsta. In this village there are more than 20 springs of waters rich in iodine and bromine.
Chugush originates at the Belaya River and is considered the highest mountain of the Republic of Adygea. From Adygean the name is translated as “top of the earth”. The mountain is formed by shale and granite. Almost at the top of Chugush grow fir forests, a little lower located alpine fields. On the eastern slopes formed huge glaciers with an area of over a kilometer. The mountain is popular with tourists and collects thousands of people every year. It is visited during excursions to the Caucasus Biosphere Reserve, of which Chugush is a part.
The waterfall got its name for a reason. Its two parts are equally bent to each other as if they were relatives. Such a spectacle surprises and enchants at the same time.
The waterfall is located at an altitude of 2,000 meters above sea level in the gorge of Mount Achikhsho. The waterfall is fed by melted glaciers. That is why the most spectacular view of the Brothers opens during the melting of the glaciers. It happens between May and July. Driving a car, you will not see all the beauty of the waterfall complex, so the best option is not to be lazy and walk through the territory. It is not for nothing that all the walking tours in Krasnaya Polyana necessarily pass through the waterfall. Some tourists, who love hiking, often stop at the waterfall. There are two reasons for this: proximity to water and the majestic beauty of falling waters, which can be observed forever.
Pear Ridge is one of the most unique and interesting sights of Krasnaya Polyana. It is located right in the middle of the rivers Mzymta and Pslukh. The ridge simultaneously belongs to the Main Caucasus Range and the national park. When you come here, you find yourself in a wonderful alpine fairy tale with green grass and a lot of flowers, fragrant for many kilometers. From the observation deck of the Pear Ridge there is a wonderful view of the Mzymta, Pslukh and the Narzan springs. Creative people like to come here, drawing their inspiration from the endless meadows. It is this ridge that has inspired many poets to create the most beautiful poems.
Lake Dzitaki Valley
These amazing lakes are located in Mostovsky district. If you look from a high altitude, you can see that they are close to each other, forming a long winding ribbon. A watershed ridge runs along the bottom of them. The Dzitaki Lakes are located high above sea level. They have an unusual trough shape with a perfectly flat bottom. It was formed as a result of the action of a glacier that was here almost ten thousand years ago.
Of the whole system of reservoirs, the lake, which is called “Big”, stands out because of its size. Its area is 20 thousand square meters at a depth of 10 meters. It is very appreciated by divers and come every year, again and again to observe the rich underwater world. The other lakes are much smaller, but still a delight to the eye and gather many tourists to the coast.
Psaho River Canyon
This place is by right considered the most visited in Krasnaya Polyana. The canyon is famous for its tisosamshit forest and sources of long-extinct rivers. It is located near Adler on the way to Krasnaya Polyana. To get to it is possible on foot and by car, but it is worth to go on jeeps or all-terrain vehicles, otherwise you can get stuck. Before the canyon Psakho created a recreational area with a cafe. From here begins the excursion trail to the adobe forest.
Dzyhra Gorge will delight hiking lovers. This natural wonder was created by the Dzyhrinka River, which had been digging its way through the river with its powerful streams for many years. And now we have a unique gorge, so lovingly created by nature.
In some places, its depth reaches 10 meters, and somewhere it does not exceed one meter. Along the way, tourists are sure to be interested in the steep cliffs around with a height of over a hundred meters. Traveling further and further along the gorge, you can notice how often the landscape changes. There are huge streams of water, flying towards you, and suddenly quiet, calm ponds, and beckoning vacationers to take a dip in the crystal clear water. Tourist route through Dzykhrinsky gorge will be appreciated by everyone and will give you a sea of emotions for many years to come.
The Achishkho Massif is the closest to Krasnaya Polyana and is considered the most picturesque. Its name is translated as “horse. And, indeed, if you look at the mountain massif from below, you can see the outlines of a horse. One of the excursion routes passes through a special place at the top of the mountain. At the beginning of the 20th century there was a meteorological station here for a long time. Still on the territory of Achishkho, you can visit the Mirror Lake, located near the former meteorological station. From that point you can enjoy a fantastic view of the Black Sea, Sochi, Abkhazia and the Caucasus Mountains.
It is part of Sochi National Park. It stretches 20 kilometers along the whole Krasnaya Polyana. It is famous for its pointed peaks. The most popular is considered the peak of the Black Pyramid, which has an unusual shape and therefore famous among climbers. Climbing to the very top, you can see the river Mzymta and mountains Chugush, Pseashkho.
In the northern part of the mountain is a magnificent waterfall Polikar. Three ski resorts were created here: Alpika-Service, Mountain Carousel and Rosa Khutor.
A little away from Mount Aibga is the village of the same name. Its peculiarity is that it is situated exactly on the border between Russia and Abkhazia. A visit to this natural monument will please not only the fans of mountain climbing, but also connoisseurs of the beauty.
My Russia Ethnographic Park
It was opened before the start of the 2014 Olympic Games. The park is famous for Russian sights, reproduced in miniature. Just like the whole country, the park is divided into regions and edges, in which, in fact, there are real monuments of architecture. After a walk through the park, you can eat at a local restaurant, where they cook only Russian cuisine. Despite the fact that the ethnopark has been working for two years, it is not very popular. But the park founders hope that it will soon become the trademark of Krasnaya Polyana.
The Bronze Soldier Monument
Some time ago this monument was in Tallinn, but it was moved. An exact replica of the soldier has been installed in Krasnaya Polyana. The monument represents a soldier with a helmet in his sleeve, with his head bowed. As you have already understood, it is dedicated to the victims of the war with the Germans. The idea to install it in Krasnaya Polyana is not accidental. During the war the Germans tried to enslave the whole Caucasus from here, but were broken by the proud people.
The cave was discovered in 1903 by the scientist Martel. The cave was named after the village Akhshtyr, on the territory of which it is located. It is situated at 185 meters above sea level and goes deep into the depth of 160 meters. Once inside and passing through a small corridor, you find yourself in two rooms. Then after them begins a smooth ascent and a dead end. After a number of studies the cave was recognized as a unique object of primitive architecture and banned visits. In 1999, it was reopened to the public, installed steps, stairs and lighting.