Tourist information about Abkhazia for independent travel

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General information

Abkhazia (Abkhazia, Republic of Abkhazia) is a state in the North-Western part of the southern slope of the Caucasus mountains on the Black sea coast. Community, the UN and most of the world community is not officially considered an independent state (unrecognized state), but still refers to Georgia as one of the regions, but in fact for many years, this territory is an independent state with its own President and government. A very small country, has an area of 8 665 square kilometers, which is five times smaller than Moscow region, and the population is slightly more than 240 thousand people. Abkhazia is a popular place to visit from Russia because it is South of the city of Sochi lies on the Black sea as well as between Abkhazia and Russia is visa-free travel and entry for a regular Russian passports.

Abkhazia is small in size, has a rich history and cultural heritage. Picturesque landscapes and snow-capped mountains, deep caves and wild river streams attract tourists from many parts of the former Soviet Union. However, for citizens of other countries (except the Russian Federation) visit to this site may be associated with further problems when visiting Georgia (see more on this in the section about visa to Abkhazia).

Our travel guides to the resorts of Abkhazia:

A bit of history and geography

Abkhazia is located in the northwestern part of the Caucasus. Its main neighbours – Georgia and Russia. The territory combines the plain the coast and the main ridge of the Caucasus mountains.

Indigenous people are the peoples of the Western Caucasus. There are Abkhazians, Georgians, Russians and other nationalities. In ancient times this territory was the Greek colony, after which the dominance was intercepted by Rome. The center of the whole country at that time was Sebastopolis on the site of which is now the capital of Abkhazia – Sukhum.

In the 4th century BC settled here three principalities, which were forced to unite in order to reflect the impact of the Arab troops. Thus arose the Abkhazian Kingdom, which has given rise to the emergence of modern Abkhazia.

But the most important historical events that most affect the current state of the country and the tourists have occurred recently. In 1992-1993 took place here, the armed conflict with Georgia. After the collapse of the USSR, Georgia has not recognized the independence of Abkhazia, and attempted to establish control over the territory, which began a bloody conflict (is called Georgian-Abkhazian war), which managed to be stopped only after the intervention and the invasion of Russia. Today here everything is calm, the border guard, including the Russian military, but the echoes of the conflict greatly affected the tourism sector. The country is still not recognized by most of the international community, has no economic relations with other countries except Russia, and has still not recovered from the destruction. On the streets, even the tourist areas you can see the destroyed buildings and bullet marks on the walls of houses.

Монумент Независимости, Гагры, Абхазия Independence monument and to the fallen soldiers in 1992-93 in the centre of Gagra

Holidays in Abkhazia

Those who decided to spend vacation in Abkhazia, tend to come here primarily for a beach holiday. There are several resort towns and villages, where tourists enjoy the clean warm sea and deserted beaches. The sea here is much cleaner than on the Russian side in Sochi, Anapa, Gelendzhik, etc., and on the beaches even in the height of the season in the most popular resorts enough room for everyone. Almost all the beaches in Abkhazia pebble, only here and there found in grey sand, but it is covered with a layer of pebbles when entering the water. So be sure to bring here a special beach Slippers, otherwise go into the water is not very convenient and even painful. Children's beaches with shallow waters and fine sand here. An exception, perhaps the only sandy beach in the East Bay of Pitsunda, but there was sand everywhere. In General, almost everywhere the depth is quite large, in three or four meters from the shore an adult waist-high, and children do up to the shoulders. But in developed resorts try to equip special places for children, surrounded by a grid in the water.

Гагры, Абхазия Relax on the beach in Gagra

Besides beaches, attractive Abkhazia and a number of natural and cultural attractions. This is a very beautiful mountain region, and the most interesting places here are traditionally natural beauty. A very popular guided tour of the Ritsa national Park, during which you can see not only the famous Ritsa lake, but several of the waterfalls, gorge, mountain river, the Museum is Stalin's dacha, Alpine meadows. On this route package tours are available even with the resorts of Sochi. If you are willing to ride this route yourself, you will be able to see much more. For example, in NAT.Park you can hike into a highland lake Mzy or in the valley of the seven lakes. However, keep in mind to see the nature of Abkhazia is not enough just to come to any resort in the country and to spend time there, so any beauty you will not see.

In Abkhazia there is also a historical and cultural sights, but for the most part they are abandoned and disregarded by the state are gradually destroyed.

Голубое озеро, Абхазия Blue lake in Abkhazia

But unfortunately, with the holidays in Abkhazia is not so good, as it is written in guidebooks selling tours to the country. Tourist infrastructure is hardly developed and modern, rather the contrary. Many tourist facilities such as hotels and attractions are in disrepair and have not been repaired since Soviet times, and the new facilities are being built very little. The same applies to the environment: streets, parks, entertainment, beaches require updates and maintenance. Therefore, stay in Abkhazia will appeal only to the most unassuming tourists who are not accustomed to the comfort of the "star" hotels with "all inclusive" and beautiful festive atmosphere of resorts. Even when compared to Abkhazian resorts with the Russian, they look like they really were in Soviet times.

Another feature which should be prepared is the attitude of local people to the Russian tourists. Unfortunately, do not always expect the residents of Abkhazia warm welcome of Russians on holiday, especially at popular resorts. The attitude of the tourists often exclusively consumer: as soon as the guest ceases to generate income, the attitude could change dramatically in the direction of outright negative. Deceptions of tourists with accommodation, excursions, food has become the norm. However, consumer attitude manifests itself in relation to its tourism infrastructure and natural resources of the country: everything is mercilessly used to profit from tourists, but almost nothing is invested for recovery. Read more about how to prepare and not to spoil your vacation in Abkhazia, see here - Security in Abkhazia, tips

Where to travel in Abkhazia

The most popular is the resort of Gagra. The city is valuable not only for its picturesque surroundings, but the warm sea. Here you can relax and recuperate in boarding houses and hotels located on the coast. There are hotels of different plan where pricing can vary greatly. The long pebble beaches and clean, but at the height of the tourist season is too much, that in some way can affect the quality of rest.

Near Gagra is another popular city of Pitsunda. It is much cleaner and more comfortable than Gagra. The best place for tourists here is "Pitsunda Resort" – a complex, which unites several boarding houses. Tourists love this place because of the nature clean sea, pine groves and relict lakes.

Excellent place to stay can become New Athos. It is located on the shore of the Black sea and is best suited to people who prefer silence and solitude. Most tourists love this place because of the opportunity to climb new hills to admire the orange trees, magnolias and eucalyptus.

Popular and Gudauta. It is a quiet place with green streets and clean beaches. Tourists come here for the healing springs and seascapes. It is worth noting that the infrastructure here may not be the newest, but there is restoration work to improve the appearance of hotels, lodges and resorts. The beaches can appear wild and sparsely populated, but there are Central beach, which is relatively improved.

Weather and tourist seasons in Abkhazia, when to go

Abkhazia is not a year-round resort, the tourist season lasts only from may to October. You can visit the country in winter, but of no beach holiday is not out of the question, except that this time, you can visit on your own some of the attractions or to go Hiking in the mountains. The entire tourism infrastructure, and even the majority of attractions are open for visits only in summer.

  • May. The first tourists come here for the second half of may. The air at this time, already well heated, it is possible to sunbathe, although the sea is still too cold for comfortable swimming. Still keep in mind that not all tourism infrastructure works at this time: many cafes and entertainment are only being prepared for opening.
  • Jun. In June, especially in the second half, the sea is well warmed up, the heat becomes in the evenings and at night. At this time, you can go on a vacation, even with children.
  • In July and August. The most comfortable season for holidays is July and August, but it is the large influx of tourists. Prices rise, on the beaches tourists will be significantly longer, but not so much to avoid visiting this time.
  • In September and October. This is the so-called velvet season. End the holiday season and school holidays, and most of the rest goes. The price would fall. But the weather is still warm even in the evenings until the beginning of October. It's the perfect time to stay in Abkhazia, but in the second half of October is already cool.

Seasons in Abkhazia months, when is the best time to go

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

* best time to visit;
appropriate time to visit;
not a recommended time to visit

Current weather in Abkhazia/Gagra and forecast

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Sights and activities in Abkhazia

As a country with a rich history and culture of Abkhazia can offer some interesting places to visit. Tourists who will go to Gagra, you should definitely see lake Ritsa, waterfalls, water Park and eucalyptus avenues. In the Northern part of the city is located in the Abaata fortress, the castle of Prince Oldenburg and the Colonnade. Here also is the famous restaurant "gagripsh" with the story.

Once in Pitsunda, is to visit the nature reserve "Great Pitiunt" and the Patriarchal Cathedral, founded in the reign of the king of the Bagrationi dynasty, and enjoy the river Bzyb and relict lake Inkit, which served as a harbour for the ships of Alexander the great.

Tourists who come to New Athos, must see new Athos cave monastery, survived a lot in his lifetime. It is also worth a stroll in the tangerine gardens, visit the waterfall and enjoy Swan lake.

You should pay attention to the capital of Abkhazia. Apart from the beaches and mineral springs, there is a major Botanical garden, the Great Abkhazian wall, the ruins of the monastery of Kelasur, bridge of Queen Tamar.

As for entertainment in Abkhazia, it does a special country and none of its resorts are not surprised, but rather disappointed. Yes, in all the popular resorts there are traditional beach activities, you can find the most simple children's rides like carousels, trains and shooting galleries, inflatable trampolines, but no more. Any modern interactive rides, walking areas and promenades, there is nothing. Perhaps, we can only mention two decent places: in Gagra water Park and Dolphinarium in Pitsunda.

Approximately the same situation with evening and night entertainment. It seems they are, but like all infrastructure, is stuck somewhere in the 90s. Nightclubs here, you can dance only in discos or in bars in larger hotels. A variety of restaurants and cafes is also not impressive in Abkhazia, you will not find any Irish pubs, Thai cuisine, Chinese delicacies, etc., only the usual cafes, restaurants and the ubiquitous kebabs.

A little better in Abkhazia is the case with active forms of entertainment and recreation. Rafting and riding on a passenger jeep (jeeping) during excursions to Ritsa lake. If you love Hiking and the mountains, you can go trekking Hiking eco-tourism or Hiking. Equestrian lovers are waiting for the trip to thoroughbred horses. But if you prefer to eat and not to actively relax, you can go on a gastronomy tour.

See more:

Time in Abkhazia

The time difference in Abkhazia and Moscow is +1 hour in winter and summer.

The current time in Abkhazia*
The time difference with the cities:
Moscow: +1 Samara: 0
Kazan: +1 Nizhny Novgorod: +1
Ekaterinburg: -1 Novosibirsk: -3
Irkutsk: -4 Vladivostok: -6
* - if time is incorrect, refresh the page Ctrl+F5:
Comments / recent posts on the topic on the forum
BBB 11 April, 2019
Rest in Abkhazia often. Yes, there are bugs, lots of chaos, etc. But if you choose a good hotel then You will have a private, clean beaches and guarded Parking and service. I don't know which service people count 300 p a day!?
Never conflict with the local was not all very friendly. Even were I in the market in Gagra parked in not put place. Our cops would have long put, and where the local policeman just asked me to move the car. That's it!
And in Gagra the cleanest beach on the black sea coast from Anapa to Sukhum! And nature is so impressive that I could ...
Bogdanka 13 April, 2019
For beginners : In Gagra the dirty sea, because there is no sewage system and "good" of the entire city directly goes into the sea. Generally Gagra travel the city, if we talk about the beautiful nature, clean sea, air treatment etc - it's only a month. Pitsunda is located on ravnina, the sea in the Bay where dolphins normal, tree groves, many of the attractions and other entertainment. The attitude of the local population is very friendly. We are for 16 years and traveled all over Abkhazia, but in Pitsunda come back for 6 years. ...
admin 13 April, 2019

Yes, if it's a good hotel to choose, you soon and the sidewalks will be built, and the waterfront will do, the streets will clean up all the destroyed buildings quickly recovered while you have a rest, and nature is beautiful and not trash around organizes, and people are good and kind smiling on the street will bring to you.
You do not confuse the hotel reservation and the country. And besides Nenad about 300 rubles to tell. I was in Abkhazia in such barns stayed for 2000-3000 rubles per night for two adults and two children, that Mama do not cry. For the money in a normal warm countries (I mean Europe and Russia, just saying) can chic environment to stay. Actually I have noticed that Abkhazia is touted only by those who have not been anywhere else to compare with. ...
admin 13 April, 2019

And I you 10 examples how he deceived the money, threw the housing, lied in the face. So ...
Silver APR 13, 2019
Sea nice and clean, but pebbles are very large, the children uncomfortable. ...
admin, April 15, 2019

Special shoes for swimming kupuyte, no problem at all, everything will be okay. ...
Taisiya April 27, 2019
Was in Abkhazia 5 times and still going. No bad attitudes from the local population did not notice. Delicious food,clean sea and wonderful nature. People,when are you going to Abkhazia,you have to understand that this is not Egypt and Turkey,where everything is included!!!The determinant that you want to get on holiday, and then write bad reviews. If you want, what would you "dust particles blown", you in other countries!!! ...
admin 28 April, 2019

Still, it is necessary to understand that this feedback is not about "population", and those who provide services to tourists. Ordinary people are mostly quite friendly, but the negativity comes from those who interact with tourists, and the taxi drivers, tenants of apartments, sellers of travel services. But most importantly, you yourself admit that it's not Turkey and Egypt, and in my opinion very far not even the resorts of the Russian Federation. And, you know, not all travel and leisure is reduced to all-inclusive, if that.
And yet, all constantly write about some of the beauty of nature in Abkhazia. I would like to understand the criteria that is that you under that beauty implies. Ritsa lake and sanctuary I agree, but where you there is still beauty seen? What is there more beautiful than on the other side of the border, give examples or transcript. I'm no beauty there I see, on the contrary all the spoils of ruin and dirt around. ...
Алена5107 May 7, 2019
Good day )advice please ,as is the case with the omission of the debtors in 2019,but if the availability of debt ,there is a risk that the husband for non-payment of taxes for the vehicle will not let ... ...
admin 7 May, 2019

Check for travel ban due to debt, not actual debt. If the bailiffs have been red-flagged, then it will not be released. Read more here all painted - ...

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