Literally translated, the word "Abkhazia" means "the country of the soul." Abkhazia is a small, partially recognized independent state in the Caucasus. Tourists love this place very much due to the access to the Black Sea and the presence of picturesque places with mountains. The population of the republic is only 240,000 people. The official language here is Abkhaz, but the majority of local residents also know how to speak Russian. Honey, wine and tangerines are highly valued here, and the local climate promotes health and longevity.
There are many reasons why many tourists visit Abkhazia every year. Beautiful and picturesque places, attractions, seaside vacations, delicious cuisine and inexpensive prices - all this attracts people here.
But where there are pros, there are also cons. The disadvantages include the lack of a high level of security, dirt on the streets and not particularly high-quality service.
For residents of the Russian Federation, it is possible to stay in Abkhazia without a visa up to 90 days. For residents of Kazakhstan and Belarus up to two weeks. For other countries, it is possible to visit Abkhazia without a visa only for 24 hours, as part of a group tour. For all others, a visa is required.
There are two borders to enter Abkhazia: with Russia and Georgia. The border crossing period can take from 15 minutes to several hours, depending on the season and the influx of tourists.
Do you want to feel yourself in the fantastic world of nature? Then be sure to visit the Gudauta Pass. There is a dense forest along the edges of the pass; there is no water anywhere nearby. At the pass itself, along the edges of the trail, there are thickets of rhododendron, and on the side of the sea - fog.
If you are a fan of urban recreation, we recommend visiting such places of Abkhazia as Gagra and Sukhum. If you want to relax both in civilization and in nature, then Pitsunda with its grove of relict pine is ideal. For lovers of attractions, New Athos is suitable.
Hello dear readers!
After visiting the Republic, I open a new section where all the information will be collected: Abkhazia for tourists.
In this article I will acquaint you with the Republic, tell you about the population, weather, resorts and attractions. And also, I will touch on the topic of security and visa regime.
Today the situation in Abkhazia is calm, but not everyone likes to relax here. Reviews of tourists are contradictory and everyone is right in their own way. To whom the rest in the republic will seem "paradise", and who will leave here upset - you will find out at the end of the article, where I allowed myself to express my opinion.
You have the right to disagree with me, leave comments, it is interesting to know a different point of view.
For a long time, Abkhazia was a prestigious resort for the Soviet people. Many wanted to spend their holidays here. However, with the collapse of the USSR, hard times came. There was an open armed conflict with Georgia, where Abkhazia defended its independence. This greatly affected the tourism business of the Republic.
Many sanatoriums, boarding houses, tourist centers of the Soviet period have been destroyed. The infrastructure of the cities was badly damaged. Because of this, for many years, Abkhazia was inaccessible for tourists.
Now the political situation has stabilized. The infrastructure that suffered in those years, of course, is still far from the world's resorts. However, amazingly beautiful nature, numerous empty beaches, relatively low prices for accommodation and a mild climate make Abkhazia attractive to visit.
I take my laptop in hand, leaf through social networks - a pandemic, a closed border, the collapse of the tourism industry of Abkhazia. Everything plunges into despondency, writes columnist for Sputnik Ruslana Gergedava.
I close my laptop, with a feeling of indescribable apathy: "Well, what should I do now? Resign myself? Will I really be left without my favorite job this year?"
If tourism is primarily about people, what difference does it make where they come from. Why wait for foreigners - the border will open when I can offer my services to our citizens. And then a spark of hope begins to flare up in my soul. In spite of everything, in defiance of the coronavirus.
"If only I do not change my mind now, just not to cool down to this idea, - I wind myself up. - Ruslana, do not be afraid to take risks."
I monitor what is on the Internet, making sure that no one in Abkhazia is organizing excursion services for local residents. As a child who was presented with a box of chocolates, I begin to jump with happiness - the niche is empty, thereby giving my mother a reason to assume that her daughter still could not cope with the burden of pandemic shock and the lack of tourists - she went crazy.
Not responding to inquiries from my family, without consulting colleagues, I post on social networks - the minimum prices for my services, barely covering travel costs. My business colleagues start to forward my publication to me with the words: “You have nothing else to do?”
I have written more than once about how I work with foreign tourists - what are the pros and cons. She has repeatedly cited examples of her many years of experience and various embarrassments during excursions.
Well, now is the time to tell you and share how I develop domestic tourism in Abkhazia and what it is like to work with the local contingent.
What documents are needed to enter Abkhazia, why insurance is needed, does the Abkhaz dutyfree work, which hotels will not open this summer, and in which ones - the concept of food has changed. The Dolphin tour operator has prepared answers to these and other popular questions of tourists about rest in Abkhazia.
What you need to know for Russian tourists planning a vacation in Abkhazia, Anastasia Apatikova, head of the Dolphin tour operator, told the webinar.
Tourists, going on vacation to Abkhazia, must be absolutely healthy - without symptoms of acute respiratory infections and fever. Thermal imagers that respond to body temperatures above 37 ° C are installed at Sochi airport and Adler railway station, as well as on the Russian-Abkhaz border.
In addition, temperature measurement awaits tourists in Abkhazia when they check into the accommodation facility. If you suspect a disease, the hotel has the right not to check in the guest. In this case, the tourist, at his own expense, will be sent to the Adler hospital for testing for COVID-19.
It is worth stocking up on medications (those that are used routinely, and may also be needed in an emergency), masks and gloves (for at least 3 days).
If there are no masks and gloves, they can be purchased at a hotel, pharmacy or shop already in Abkhazia. In all crowded places and on excursions in Abkhazia, it is recommended to observe social distance and mask regime. In addition, masks are required for transfers.
As before, it is better to come to Abkhazia with a supply of cash. The republic's ATMs are now experiencing interruptions in issuing banknotes.
According to the Dolphin tour operator, restrictions on crossing the Russian-Abkhaz border have been lifted for citizens of Russia, DPR and LPR, as well as citizens of Ukraine who have a residence permit in DPR and LPR.
Abkhazia is a country with beautiful nature, ancient culture, mild climate and hospitable people. In the past ten years, Abkhazia has begun to actively develop the tourism sector: every year new hotels, comfortable boarding houses, sanatoriums and dispensaries are being built here. This place is ideal for families with children, for youth companies and those who appreciate active tourism and sports entertainment. In addition to the gentle sea and the purest mountain air, here you can enjoy the taste of national Abkhaz cuisine, drink real Georgian wine and improve your health at the world famous mineral water resorts.
Rest in Abkhazia will give everyone an amazing experience!
The most popular holiday destinations are in Gagra, Pitsunda, Novy Afon, Sukhumi and the Tsandripsh resort. The modern tourism industry offers both individual tours and the opportunity to organize a trip for a group of vacationers. You can stay in economy-class hotels, in the private sector or in villas with truly royal conditions - it all depends on your desire and budget.
Gagra (or Gagra) is a resort known throughout the post-Soviet space, and also one of the most picturesque cities in Abkhazia. Mount Mamdzishkha rises above it, at the top of which you can stroll through the marvelous alpine meadows and admire the opening panorama of Gagra and Pitsunda. Thanks to its mountainous surroundings, this resort has an unusually mild climate.
The well-maintained coastline will provide you with an evening exercise along the embankment, along which there are majestic plane trees, exotic oleanders and eucalyptus trees. The coastal zone has a developed entertainment infrastructure - the doors of cozy national cafes and European restaurants are open for guests, and with the onset of night, dance music of numerous clubs and discos sounds, inviting everyone to have a good time.
This ancient city is divided into two parts. Old Gagra was founded on the site of the ancient city of Triglyph, built in the second century BC. ... In this part of the city, you can stroll through a beautiful 6-kilometer park and look at various exotic plants: bizarre agaves and palms, cypresses, orange and lemon trees. In total, almost four hundred species of plants have been planted here.
All conditions for tourists are created in hospitable Gagra!
In the depths of the park there is a stage from which the most famous writers, artists and poets performed before the audience. Here you could hear Igor Severyanin and Konstantin Balmont, Ivan Bunin and Maxim Gorky, Vladimir Vysotsky often visited here with concerts. The park breathes with the spirit of Soviet cinema, because it was in its open spaces that everyone's favorite "Merry Fellows" and "Winter Evening in Gagra" were filmed.
New Gagra is a comfortable resort with wide streets and avenues, markets, tennis courts, supermarkets, fashionable boutiques and even a water park. There is also a balneological center with a healing hot hydrogen sulphide spring. Fans of active sea recreation will be offered scooter riding, diving and the opportunity to try themselves in aeronautics on a paragliding.