Winter in the Krasnodar region is unpredictable, but that's no reason to lock yourself at home. Now is the time to walk through protected forests in search of medieval fortresses, enter museums that are not cared for in the hot summer, and explore all the new sights. This route will appeal to fans of history and archaeology, as well as connoisseurs of rare and hard-to-reach beauty. If it seems to you that you have already seen everything in the Sochi region, then this option is definitely for you.
Start your journey by walking to the Kudepstinskiy cult stone and visiting the temple fortress near the village of Monastery, and then go in search of the dolmens of Krasnaya Polyana. In the afternoon, try climbing the ruins of the Achipse fortress (it won't be easy!), and you can consolidate information at the interactive archaeological museum at the Rosa Khutor resort.
The Kudepste cult stone (or Circassian stone) is the same age as the Egyptian pyramids and dolmens. It is believed that the megalithic monument appeared here in the II millennium AD. A block of sandstone 5x5 meters in size hid in the heart of the Colchis forest. Historians assume that the stone was used for sacrifices and ritual ceremonies. On the way to the stone you will see a beautiful forest lake, sequoias and giant hornbeam, and nearby there is a cork grove.
Not far from the village Monastery is a very curious sight, the ruins of the temple-fortress of the IX-X centuries (coordinates 43.581864, 40.012027). The 5-meter-high walls of the hall temple and the fortress defensive wall made of roughly worked stones have been preserved to our days. The trail to the temple is difficult, especially in winter. Be careful: after rain, the path can be slippery with metal rods sticking out of the ground somewhere. The reward will be wonderful views and an important historical place, which is protected by the state. The car can be left at the observation deck overlooking the Mzymta River Valley, and the way to the fortress can be covered on foot. Cross the river along the old railway bridge and go downstream, along the combined road. A little to the right of the booth, which collects money to visit the temple during the season, there is a barely discernible path - it leads to the top of the mountain with the ruins of an ancient structure.
The dolmens of Krasnaya Polyana are located in an amazingly beautiful place: a severe forest, a river, snowy mountain tops. Dolmens here are not very impressive in size, but the atmosphere itself makes a lasting impression. In addition to dolmens you will find small burial mounds and temples with labyrinths of stones. Entrance to the park is paid: 100 rubles.
To warm up after the walk among dolmens and to fortify yourself go to "Gostidze" restaurant which will please you with fragrant dishes of Georgian cuisine. There's not so much hype here in the daytime as in the evening, but it's worth reserving a table anyway (phone 8 (862) 295-65-44).
Before sunset you will have time to explore another attraction of Krasnaya Polyana, Achipse fortress of 7-9 centuries - the most significant and largest fort of that era. The fortress itself is poorly preserved, there are only parts of the walls and towers 1.5-2 meters high. But even in this condition the citadel is interesting. You bet: it is believed that it is located on the site of one of the branches of the Silk Road. It was the shortest road leading to Rome and Transcaucasia from India. Start climbing from Berezova Street, in front of house 134. First you will follow the old staircase, then the steep forest path. To climb, choose comfortable shoes with good tread and do not climb if it rained recently.
Continue to study the region's history and heritage at the Museum of Archaeology. The new interactive museum at Rosa Khutor Resort offers a journey into the past that comes alive with modern technology. Explore the museum's exhibits with a simple and intuitive app that you can download at the entrance. The museum is open every day from 9:30 to 19:00. For more information, please call 8 (928) 854-98-91.
For dinner, stop by the tavern "Triconi". The menu includes seafood delicacies, grilled meat dishes, homemade pasta and vegetarian masterpieces. And be sure to order apple strudel for dessert, which the absolute majority of facility's guests like. The restaurant is in great demand, so be sure to book a table on +7 (918) 000-12-73.
On the second day of your trip you will visit the mysterious Agua Temple and the private museum of retro cars in Dagomys. In the afternoon the way lies to the ruins of Loosky temple and to the unique Volkonsky dolmen. An excellent end of the day will be a visit to the Tuapse Retro Cinema "Russia", the only and unique.
On the outskirts of Sochi in Khostinsky district is a mysterious temple Agua, from which there are only ruins. The exact date of construction is difficult to determine: most likely, the temple was erected before the XIV century. Archaeologists are particularly interested in unusual design and laying of river cobblestone walls that resemble temples of small settlements of Abkhazia in the later Middle Ages. Rumor has it that countless treasures are buried in this place. The treasure hunters have already dug up everything around the temple, but they never found any jewelry or gold coins. You can leave your car at the entrance to the eco-park "Azek" (entrance is free) and walk along the path to the large parking lot, where the temple is located.
In Dagomys is one of the largest private museums of retro cars in Sochi. It was opened by collector Sergey Abramchuk, who bought and repaired cult cars of the USSR, USA and Germany, army equipment, buses, motorcycles and even cars from cult Soviet films. In particular, the museum keeps a Stirlitsa car from the "Seventeen Moments of Spring", a car from "Operation Y" and much more. In winter you can visit the museum from Tuesday to Sunday from 9:00 to 16:00 by calling +7 988 147 66 77.
For lunch, check out Barmalini kafe, one of the best places in Loo. Excellent service, large portions, excellent menu. If you want to save money, order a business lunch for 270 rubles. For more information, please call 8 (862) 252-70-60.
Five minutes drive and you're at the ruins of Looskiy temple. Researchers believe that the temple was built in the X-XII centuries, later it was used for liturgical purposes, and then it was converted into a fortress. The temple is severely destroyed, but still represents a grand spectacle.
Volkonsky dolmen is located at the bottom of a river valley in Lazarevsky forestry. It is the only full-size dolmen of monolithic type, which has been preserved in its original form. Leave your car in a small parking lot near the sign "Volkonsky dolmen" and bus stop "Glinishche". It is difficult to go further by car, you have to walk - the way will take maximum 10 minutes.
Restaurant "Veranda Grill" offers your favorite dishes of European and Caucasian cuisine, as well as Japanese rolls, a large selection of seasonal dishes, pizza and dishes on the grill. Bonus - wonderful panoramic sea view. Book a table by calling +7 (918) 900-20-01 or +7 (928) 441-64-62.
Cinemas like "Russia" in Tuapse are already a rarity for our country. The cinema is housed in a 1956 building, built in the style of the so-called "Stalin Empire". The building has been restored, but retains the warm atmosphere of the old theatre. It is noteworthy that the poster often includes "movies for not everyone" (right from some famous festival). And every Wednesday tickets to all the sessions cost only 170 rubles. Details by phone 8 (861) 672-27-36.
Take a morning stroll through Tuapse and explore an abandoned military unit at Cape Cados. On the way back, visit the airplane monument and the remains of the fortress wall in Lazarevsky, as well as the fortress of Bagou, known since ancient times.
Early in the morning, go for a short walk around Tuapse. Opposite the Seafarers' Palace of Culture there is a control tower of the seaport administration, looking like a lollipop on a "Chupa-chups" stick. The tower has become an integral part of the urban landscape. Tourists are not allowed inside the tower, but you can be photographed against it at any time.
At Cape Kadosh in Tuapse, there is a destroyed camping site and the ruins of a military unit. In the 40s, an underground defensive system was erected here, where warehouses and a training "infirmary" were dispersed. In the post-war years, Kadosha contained missiles with nuclear charges. Several single-level underground structures and dungeons are available for inspection. The place is unusual, in its own way beautiful and intriguing, interesting for history lovers.
On the way back on the A-147 you'll have a great viewpoint. Stop here to get some mountain air and see the beauty of Yuzhny from a high altitude.
Not far from the sanatorium "Smena" you can see the monument-plane L-410. It is said that an unusual gift was presented to the sanatorium by musician Joseph Kobzon. The aircraft model was developed in late 1960s in Czechoslovakia. The aircraft were supplied mainly to the Soviet Union, but also among the main customers were Brazil, GDR, Libya and other countries.
You can have lunch at the restaurant "Caucasian cuisine". As the name already suggests, the menu includes shashlik, khinkali, satsivi and other Caucasian treats loved by everyone.
Even if you have been to Lazarevsky, you could easily pass by its important attraction: the fortress wall of Fort Lazarev. In 1839 the Russian landing troops landed in this place, which erected a powerful fortification made of wood. After the attack of Shapsugs and Ubykhov (who had been pushed into the mountains by Russians before) it was decided to strengthen the walls with stone. During the Crimean War in 1854, Fort Lazarev was abandoned and pre-blown up. Later, Greeks began to settle around the fortress, and since 1880s, Russian settlers. Thus was formed Lazarevskoye village, now a popular resort.
The triangular fortress of Baghu (or Godlik) is located on the left bank of the Godlik River. This amazing structure of the V century AD has been preserved since the Byzantine Empire. Once it was inhabited by Geniochi pirates, later the fort was used by Byzantine sailors, and then by Genoese. Until the 15th century, Baghu was a major trade center (including slave trade). For the last couple of centuries the fortress became famous for the bloody battle of Russian troops with ubykhami.
Finish your trip at Umami Asian grill-restaurant in Adler. Meat and seafood, all sorts of sushi and noodles - the prices here are slightly above average, but you won't regret your choice. The restaurant is open daily from 18:00 to 01:00.