Yalta, Massandra, Nikita

Lenin in Yalta

Yalta is the most famous city in Crimea, one of the most scenic and beautiful cities of the Ukraine. After receiving the status of a town in 1838, it has made a remarkable transformation from a small fishing village into a popular, fashionable, and elite health resort.

The very heart of Yalta is the Embankment, lined by palm trees, with numerous bars, cafes and restaurants along its length. The architecture of its buildings is an incredible combination of ingenious styles.

The Roman Catholic Church on the banks of the Uchan-su River was built in 1914. Its architects were Komornitski and Krasnov. The Armenian Church is of equal interest, as well as a number of smart orthodox temples, in particular, the Cathedral of St. Alexander Nevski .. This contains a beautiful mosaic by the artist Salviati, who also decorated many other famous buildings in Europe, for example, the parliament in London.

The architect Tarasov designed the former Emir’s of Bukhara’s palace. It was constructed in Yalta between 1907 and 1911 in a moresque style.

The Yalta Reserve was established to protect the mountain forests that supply the fresh curative air to this part of the coastline. Seven kilometres from Yalta, on the left of the main road, a path leads to the bottom of the Uchan-su Waterfall (the name means “ Flying Water ” ), the highest waterfall in the Crimea. Water tumbles down from a height of around 100 meters, and the falls are particularly potent following periods of melting mountain snow, or heavy rain storms. At other times the flow can become little more than a trickle.

“ The Fairytale Glade ” (phone: 39-64-02), situated at the foot of the picturesque Stavri-Kaya mountain, is a museum containing attractive sculptures and flora studies. Also here is a zoo “ Skazka ” .

In Upper Massandra, the palace of the Emperor Alexander III is located, a fascinating, fairytale like place. In Soviet times it was used as summerhouse by the authorities, so not very many people knew of its existence. Now it is a popular tourist attraction. (phone: 32-17-28).

The “ Massandra ” wine cellars (phones: 35-31-73, 35-02-47) and the “ Magarach ” Institute of Viticulture and Wine making enjoy worldwide popularity. They are excellent place to go and taste the fine wines produced there, and to enjoy the surroundings.

The Nikita Botanical Gardens (phone: 33-54-68) were founded in 1812. Amongst all the parks of the southern coast, these are the ones that best bring together the nature, history, art and science of the region, and are rightfully the best known and most popular of them. Their collection includes more than twenty eight thousand plants from all over of the world. There is also a little patch of untouched nature — the Cape Martyan Reserve .

In Nikita, besides the Nikita Gardens, the Nikita Crevice is worth seeing. It is located besides the main road, a romantic gorge of reddish chalk stone precipices and stunning vegetation. Its has been used by film makers for numerous adventure and fantasy movies.

Livadia, Oreanda, the Swallow’s Nest

West of Yalta are a succession of excellent parks and beach resorts. It feels like a kind of country settlement, consisting of palaces and castles whose luxury has been set by their creators’ imagination and taste.

In 1834, Count Pototski purchased Livadia. He had a house built for him here and a grand park was laid out for his use. In 1860, the Province Department acquired Livadia for the Emperor’s family. Already by that time, the Romanovs possessed the “ Oreanda ” Manor, with its palace and park.

For 60 years Livadia was used as the summer residence of the Russian Emperors Alexander II, Alexander III and Nicholas II. Livadia’s Great White Palace was constructed between 1910 and 1911, following the design of the architect N. P. Krasnov. It was here in February 1945, that the governmental heads of the three allied powers -USSR, USA and Great Britain — held the Crimean Conference . Along with decisions about Germany’s future and settlement of the other European nations, the leaders decided on the creation of the United Nations Organization. The Livadia Museum (phone: 31-55-79) is one of the most popular attractions. Apart from the main exhibitions, other temporary ones are present as well.

The “ Oreanda Lower ” health resort was constructed in 1948 to the design of the outstanding Soviet architect, Professor M. Ya. Ginsburg, and became the main vacation place of the Political Bureau of the CPSU. Next to it, an architectural monument stands, the Temple of Virgin’s Protection . It was constructed in 1885 in a Georgian-Byzantine style following the design of the architect, and academician, A. A. Avdeyev.

The romantic «Swallow’s Nest ” castle perched on the Avrora cliffs of Cape Ai-Todor, dominates the surrounding coastline. It was constructed in 1912 from the designs of architect A. V. Sherwood for Baron Von Shteingel, a Baku oilman. In 1901 — 1902 L N. Tolstoi and A. M. Gorki frequented Oreanda. Here the marine artist I. K. Aivazovski painted Yalta.

The “ Oreanda Lower ” has had a number of famous visitors, including the father of the Soviet nuclear bomb I. V. Kurchatov , the head of space exploration program S. P. Korolyov , plus some foreigners, like the singer Paul Robson, and the cartoonist Herluf Bidstrup.

The guides and guide books say nothing about the visits of Leonid llyich Brezhnev . He used drive round the Crimean hair pin bends in a car with darkened windows, shocking his own guards. He was a worthy “ inheritor ” of the Emperor’s hunting premises in Crimea.

Yalta, Livadia, Oreanda, Gaspra, Mishor, AlupkaYalta, Livadia, Oreanda, Gaspra, Mishor, Alupka

 -> Big Yalta. Tourism center — 2. Gurzuf
-> Big Yalta. Tourism center -3. Alupka, Simeiz, Foros

Yalta, Musson, MalachitYalta, Musson, Malachit