For more details, see the overview on the Crimean Travel Portal.
There are hundreds of different sights in Crimea: architectural and natural, ancient and modern, monumental and small, popular and little-known, easily accessible and hard to reach… We have compiled the top 25 objects that, in our opinion, every tourist should visit. They show all the versatility and originality of Crimea and its entire centuries-old history.
The Swallow's Nest Palace-Castle
Location: Yalta municipality, Gaspra town, 9a Alupkinskoyeh Highway
Visiting card and the most recognizable symbol of Crimea. The palace, resembling a knight's castle, crowns the 40-meter high Aurora cliff. It acquired the look of a castle in 1912 thanks to the architect Alexander Sherwood. The building site is of a modest size − only 10x20 m. You can get here by 1200 steps stairway. The Castle and breath-taking vistas are waiting for you, a gorgeous panorama of the coast: from there you will see Yalta, the Sail Rock and Mt. Ayu-Dag.
Web Address: https://замок-ласточкино-гнездо.рф.
Count Vorontsov’s Palace
Location: Yalta municipality, Alupka town, 18 Dvortsovoyeh Highway,
The palace was built in the first half of the 19th century for Count Mikhail Vorontsóv, the Governor-General of the Novorossiya Territory. The northern façade is in the Tudor style. And when creating the southern terrace, which is "guarded" by marble lions, the architect used oriental architectural elements.
The main halls of the palace were decorated in the style of a traditional English interior and have almost completely retained the original decoration. The paintings and sculptures by Russian and Western European masters are exhibited there, as well as pieces of arts and crafts.
The 30 hectares park with rare and exotic trees is a real adornment of the palace. There are ponds, fountains and a tea house.
Web Address: https://worontsovpalace.org.
Location: Yalta municipality, Livadia town, 44a Baturina St.
This is an architectural masterpiece of the early 20th century, created by the famous architect Nikolai Krasnov. The building was completed in 17 months and was the last palace built in the Russian Empire for the Romanovs dynasty. In 1945 the Palace hosted the Yalta Conference of the Allied Powers of the anti-Hitler coalition − the USSR, the USA and Great Britain, headed by the leaders: Joseph Stalin, Franklin Roosevelt and Winston Churchill. There they made the decisions that were crucial for the whole world.
Several rooms are open in the palace for visitors, were the interiors of the tsars’ time were reconstructed. There are exhibits telling about various milestones of the Russian history.
The palace and the park ensemble occupies more than 36 hectares. In addition to the palace itself, it includes the Retinue building, the house of Baron Frederiks, the Cross Exaltation Church, as well as a park with gazebos, fountains and relic trees preserved from the tsars’ times.
Location: Bakhchisaray, 133 Rechnaya St.
This is a unique example of the Crimean Tatar palace architecture. The construction of it started at the beginning of the 16th century during the reign of Khan Sahib I Geray, and initiated the construction of Bakhchisaray itself. For many years, it was there that crucial political decisions were made that influenced the fate of hundreds of thousands of people.
The palace complex includes more than 20 objects: the northern and southern gates, the palace square, the harem, the stable, the Falcon Tower, the Khan's cemetery, etc. There is also the “Fountain of Tears” poetized by Alexander Pushkin.
Web Address: https://handvorec.ru.
Location: Yalta municipality, the GPS coordinates: 44.452354, 34.059176
It is in the western part of the Main Range of the Crimean Mountains and includes several heights. The highest point of the plateau is Mount Rok with a height of 1349 m. And the most popular is Mount Ai-Petri (1234 m). On the slopes of the mountain there are Three-eye, Geophysical and Yalta caves. A 1000-year-old yew, the “Airplane” pine, and Steven maple grow on the top. Recognizable are the merlons of Ai-Petri, consisting of four large and a number of small ledges on the ridge.
And if you go up the mountain by car, on the way you can see the highest Crimean waterfall Uchan-Su and the lake with red-eared turtles.
Location: Alushta municipality, Luchistoyeh village, the GPS coordinates: 44.754348, 34.409704
The mountain range has two peaks − Northern Demerdzhi (1356 m) and Southern Demerdzhi (1239 m). The second one is the most popular among tourists. It is there that the Valley of Ghosts is located – the stone slabs and blocks of a bizarre shape, some reaching a height of 25 m. There is also a huge weathered stone, which is called the "Profile of Catherine II" because of its peculiar shape, the ruins of the Funa fortress − the eastern outpost of the medieval Principality of Theodoro.
The White Rock
Location: Bielogorskiy District, White Rock village, the GPS coordinates: 45.112144, 34.611742
The picturesque rock is popular with photo amateurs and is often referred to in travel blogs. A vertical wall of limestone and sandstone soars over the valley of the Biyuk-Karasu River − this landscape resembles the American prairies.
The rock, also known as Ak-Kaya, reaches a height of 325 m. Several sites of primitive people were excavated there. Archaeologists have found flint points, knives and scrapers, as well as the remains of extinct animals. And at the foot of the White Rock there is a cave in which Sarmathians lived.
Location: Sudak, Noviy Svet town, coordinates: 44.823251, 34.908597
The trail was laid in 1912 by order of Prince Lev Golitsyn for the arrival of Emperor Nicholas II. The length of the trail is about 5.5 km, part of it passes along the 300 meter long cape Kapchik, which resembles a frozen stone lizard. It is washed by two bays: Golubaya, whith the famous Tsarsky Beach, and Sinyaya, where there are many underwater caves, in which, according to legend, robbers kept their plunder.
The second branch of the trail was carved along the seashore on the slope of Mount Koba-Kaya. By that trail you can reach the grotto of Chaliapin. It is believed that the famous opera bass singer performed in it. Also, a wine cellar was once there, and earlier in the Middle Ages there was a monastery. The height of the grotto is about 30 m, the width is about 17 m.
Another highlight of the Golitsyn trail is a relic juniper grove.
Golden Gate Rock
Location: Karadag Nature Reserve, the nearest settlement is Kurórtnoyeh village in Theodosia municipality, coordinates: 44.914662, 35.231466
The basalt rock in the form of an arch stands in the sea near the Kara-Dag volcanic massif. The height of the Golden Gate is 8 m, the width is 6 m. Many believe that if you sail through this arch on a boat, your inmost desire will come true.
You can also see the Golden Gate while walking along the Big Kara-Dag ecological trail. The route is laid along the Coastal Range.
Nikitsky Botanical Garden
Location: Yalta, Nikita village, 52 Nikitsky Down Rd.
The Garden was founded in 1812. Today, the largest collection of trees and shrubs is collected there − more than 2 thousand species. The Upper and Lower parks, jointly called the Arboretum, are open for visiting. The first is famous for the Green Labyrinth, pools, palm trees and annual flower shows: in spring — tulips, irises and daylilies; in summer − roses and cannes; in autumn − chrysanthemums.
The NBG includes the Montedor park with a cactus greenhouse and the Garden of Eden exposition, as well as the Primorsky (Seaside) park with the Lost World dinosaur exhibition. And you can also visit the smallest natural reserve in Russia − Cape Martyan.
Web Address: https://nikitasad.ru.
Location: Simferopol District, Mount Chatyr-Dag, coordinates: 44.797126, 34.279447
The Marble Cave is one of the most beautiful caves in the world. The length of all explored halls is more than 2 km, the depth is 63 meters. The air temperature stays at +8…+9 degrees all year round. The cave was discovered in 1987 on the lower plateau of Chatyr-Dag.
For example, there are the Palace, the Clay and Pink halls, the Gallery of fairy tales and the Tiger passage, the halls of Perestroika, Nadezhda and Chocolate. The underworld is decorated with crystals, sinter mineral formations: stalactites, stalagmites, cave flowers − caroliths.
Web Address: https://peshchera-mramornaya.rf/peshchera-mramornaya.
Location: Bakhchisaray District, 5 km from the village of Sokolinoyeh, coordinates: 44.517290, 33.984261
It is a huge crack at the tectonic fault point between Mt. Ai-Petri and the Sedam-Kaya and Boyka mountain ranges. The depth of the canyon is more than 320 m, the length is 3.5 km and the width in some places does not exceed 3 m. The most visited places of the Great Canion are: 2-meter deep Blue Lake, Pania water spring (an offspring of the Auzun-Uzen River) and a small pool called the Bath of Youth. There are also Storozhevóy and Sosnóviy cliffs, Apple Ford, waterfalls and several little-known springs.
Tauric Chersonese Museum-Preserve
Location: Sevastopol, 1 Drevnyaya St.
Chersonese is called the cradle of Russian Christian Orthodoxy. It is believed that Prince Vladimir was baptized there at the end of the 10th century. Today, at the place where this supposedly happened, there is a font. In the 5th century BC the ancient Greeks founded a colony on this land. The policy lasted until the end of the XIV century. At various times, Chersonese was under the Mongols and Genoese, was part of the Byzantine Empire.
Not only monuments of ancient history have been preserved on the territory of the museum, but also artefacts and buildings of the XIX-XX centuries. For example, the Chersonese bell, the monastery complex and St. Vladimir's Cathedral.
Web Address: https://chersonesos-sev.ru.
Chufut-Kale cave town
Location: Bakhchisaray, coordinates: 44.7414362, 33.923780
The most accessible of the 20 cave towns of Crimea is in the outskirts of Bakhchisaray, on a 558 m high flat-top mountain. The area of the settlement is 46 hectares. The South Gate, the middle defensive wall, the Karaite kenassas, the mosque, the mausoleum of Janykeh-Khanym, warehouses, barracks, living quarters, etc. have survived to this days.
According to some sources, the settlement appeared in the 6th-7th centuries, according to others − in the 9th-10th or 10th-11th centuries. It was inhabited until the middle of the nineteenth century.
Genoese Fortress in Sudak
Location: Sudak, 1 Genoese fortress St.
The Genoese founded the fortress in the 14th century as their stronghold. Parts of fortifications have been preserved there to this days: fortress gate, more than 20 medieval towers, the consular castle and the gate fortification. On the territory there are also several interesting temples and barracks of the Kirillovsky regiment, dating back to the end of the 18th − beginning of the 19th century. The area of the fortress is 30 hectares.
Web Address: https://sudak-museum.com.
Monument to the Scuttled Ships
Location: the center of Sevastopol, coordinates: 44.618334, 33.524320
The most recognizable monument of Sevastopol: it is depicted on the emblem and flag of the city, Russian coins and banknotes, postage stamps. The monument is a granite rock with a pedestal on which a triumphal column stands with a double-headed eagle facing the sea. The bronze eagle spreads its wings and holds a wreath with an anchor in its beaks. Over the heads of the eagle there is the imperial crown, fixed on the St. Andrew's ribbon.
The 17-meter monument stands in the sea not far from the embankment of Primorsky Boulevard. It reminds the events of the Crimean (Eastern) War, when from September 1854 to August 1855, the ships of the fleet were scuttled across the fairway in the Sevastopol Bay. This was done in order to prevent the English and French ships from entering the bay. The ships "buried" on the seabed and the fire of coastal batteries made the bay inaccessible to the enemy. The monument was opened in 1905 − on the 50th anniversary of the first defense of the city.
Adzhimushkay Quarries Memorial
Location: Kerch, 34-36 Malchenko Bros St.
From May to October 1942, about 13 thousand Soviet soldiers held a long-term defense in the quarries against German troops. Along with the fighters there were civilians, including women and children. Only a few survived − some were captured, others were able to break through to the partisans. In 1966, a museum was opened in the quarries.
Visitors are told how people lived and defended themselves under ground, how they got water and performed medical operations. The entrance to the quarry is decorated in the form of a huge monument, which consists of two parts: figures of Soviet soldiers, sailors, partisans are carved on one, and civilians of Kerch are carved on the other.
The 35th Coastal Battery memorial complex
Location: Sevastopol, Cossack Bay, 7 Alley of the Defenders of the 35th Battery
The complex created at the place where in 1942 was the last line of defense of Sevastopol. At that time tens of thousands of Soviet soldiers died there.
Visitors can see 305-millimeter gun mounts, casemates, cockpit, wardroom, galley, medical block. You can also climb to the observation deck with a view of the sea. On the territory of the museum there is a common grave and a necropolis where the remains of the killed soldiers were buried, parapets with a list of units that took part in the defense of the city, a cast-iron relief map of the Sevastopol Defense Area and a chapel.
In the Pantheon of Memory − a structure stylized as a tower split by an explosion, there are galleries with the names of the Sevastopol defenders, and their photographs are projected on the dome in the central hall.
Web Address: https://35batery.ru.
Balaklava Submarine Museum
Location: Sevastopol, Balaklava, 11 Tavricheskaya embankment
The Balaklava underground museum complex is in the tunnels of the former underground submarines repair and maintenance works, which in Soviet times was in Mount Tavros on the shore of Balaklava Bay. The museum complex is dedicated to the top secret military bases of the Cold War period. It includes the underground channel, repare and maintenance facilities of the Object 825 GTS and the nuclear arsenal of the Object 820 RTB (repair and technical base). Visitors are shown models of warships, samples of military equipment and weapons, expositions about the history of the Navy.
Web Address: https://muzey-sevastopol.ru.
Location: Yalta, Massandra town, 9 Yegorova St.
This is one of the oldest wineries in Crimea. The first wine of its own production was made there in 1898. One hundred years later, in 1998, the winery entered the Guinness Book of Records as the largest in the world. Today the company produces more than 80 wine brands. Guests are invited to visit the cellars where vintage wines are stored and aged, and to the enoteca gallery, where rare collection wines are stored. You will be introduced to the long history of the plant, the technology of wine making and the process of aging.
Web Address: https://www.massandra.su.
Noviy Svet House of Sparkling Wines
Location: Sudak, Novy Svet, 1 Chaliapin St.
Another of the oldest wineries in Crimea. It was founded in 1878 by Prince Lev Golitsyn. There the wines are produced using the classic French champagne bottling method.
The Noviy Svet Winery offers wine tours with excursions and tastings. The routes include a visit to the rock tunnels in which the drinks are matured. These vaults were cut down over 140 years ago in the Koba-Kaya mountain. Guests will be told the history of the winery, interesting facts about the life of Lev Golitsyn, as well as the first champagne "born" in the Russian Empire.
Web Address: https://nsvet-crimea.ru.
WINEPARK Wine Tourism Center
Location: Yalta municipality, Ponizovka village, 22 Primorskaya St.
The Center is a multifunctional space with an area of 30 hectares.
A vineyard was planted in the park on an area of about 8 hectares. Also in the WINEPARK there is a gravity winery where terroir wines are matured. The winery is a 4-level tower with a height of 54.5 m. Three levels are underground and reach a depth of 26 m. At the top of the tower there is a platform with a panoramic view and a 330-degree view.
The WINEPARK has a cheese factory and a restaurant, cactus and fruit orchards, a rose garden and a glass “hovering” bridge.
Web Address: https://winepark.ru.
Taigan Safari Park
Location: Belogorsk, 1 Lavender St.
Taigan occupies more than 60 hectares in the Crimean foothills. This is: There are about 60 lions in the first lion park in Europe. Other representatives of the feline world also live in it: tigers, leopards, jaguars, cougars, etc. The uniqueness of the park is that these predators do not live in cages, but in natural corrals. And to make their observation safe for visitors, an observation bridge of more than 1 km long has been installed.
In addition to predatory cats, in Taigan you can see also giraffes, zebras, raccoons, elephants, primates and birds.
Web Address: https://park-taigan.ru.
Crimea in Miniature Parks
Locations: Alushta, 7 Gorky St.; Eupatoria, 16 Gorky promenade; Bakhchisaray, 4 Lenina St.
There are three parks in Crimea, which exhibit copies of the peninsula’s landmarks on a scale of 1:25: museums, palaces, temples, open-air monuments.
The largest park is in Bakhchisaray. There you can also visit a mini-zoo. In a rope park there are trails of various levels of difficulty − for adults and children.
All parks have a playground with heroes of home and foreign cartoons.
Holy Dormition Monastery in Caves
Location: Bakhchisaray, 1 Mariampol st.
The monastery, part of which is carved into the rock, is in the Maryam-Dereh gorge. The exact time of the shrine foundation is unknown. According to different versions, monastic life there could have started in the period from the 6th to the 15th centuries AD. The Assumption Skete was visited by the Russian tzars Catherine II, Alexander I, Alexander II and Nicholas II. During the Crimean and Great Patriotic Wars, the territory of the Monastery hosted a hospital. The Monastery was revived in 1992.
There are several temples and chapels on the territory of the Monastery. Among the most revered religious objects kept in them is the icon of the Assumption of the Mother of God, copies from the miraculous icon of the Panagia Mother of God, the icon of the Savior with 84 holy relics of various saints of God.