Housed in a former school building with neoclassical architecture, the Muzei Istorii Goroda-Kurorta Sochi is a culturally important institution with thousands of items on display. Among the exhibits are documents and important artifacts related to the city's history, including photographs and archeological objects. You will learn about the ancient history of the area, the foundation of Sochi in the 19th century, the Civil and Great Patriotic Wars, and Sochi's past as the resort capital of the Soviet Union. The museum organizes excursions for schoolchildren, dedicated to topics such as "Astronauts in Sochi," "The Black Sea and Its Inhabitants," "Nature of the Western Caucasus," and "The Archaeological Sites of the Sochi region."
Built in 1979, the Festivalny Concert Hall is one of the most important concert venues in the city. It hosts a variety of events ranging from operas and ballets to musical performances and cultural festivals. With a capacity to accommodate 2,500 spectators, Festivalny is always buzzing with activity. State-of-the-art lighting and acoustics ensure that all spectators enjoy the spectacular shows sans any hassle.
The Organ and Chamber Music Hall is a state-of-the-art music venue that hosts concerts, musicals, and other performances. The hall has great acoustics, which is why it is the venue of choice for highly esteemed classical performers. The outside foyer is often used for workshops, exhibitions, and various cultural events. The garden within the complex adds charm to the place with its lush green stretch and beautiful flowers all around.
This museum is housed in a former Communist Party City Committee building. Established in 1971, the institution boasts a collection of around 5,000 objects that illustrate the evolution of art and culture in Russia. Permanent exhibitions are dedicated to Russian and Soviet art of the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries, Russian crafts, and the 2014 Sochi Olympics (the latter features plans and maquettes). The painting collection includes works by beloved masters such as Ivan Shishkin and Ivan Aivazovsky.
Founded in 1898, the Riviera Park counts among Sochi's most beloved tourist attractions. Here, you can feast your eyes on rare and exotic plants, see a rock or pop gig at the Zeleny Theater, or relax at one of the park's many bars and cafes. For children, there is a variety of amusement rides. Located close to the sea, Riviera Park truly has something for everyone.
If you are really into Russian literature, the Ostrovsky museum is a must-visit. Part of this museum is dedicated to the life of Nikolai Ostrovky, a famed socialist realist writer who wrote one of the quintessential literary works of the Soviet period, the novel "How the Steel was Tempered." The street the museum is on is named after the novel's protagonist, Pavel Korchagin. Another part of the museum tells the story of Sochi's literary life. In addition to all that, the museum organizes fine art exhibitions. Please visit the museum's website for the opening hours.
Regarded as the ‘Summer Capital’ of Russia, Sochi boasts a coruscating coastline bejeweled with beaches and swaying palm trees. Gracefully sprawling for miles along the Black Sea, this bright and beguiling city once served as a summertime retreat to the ancient Russian elites, while today, it beckons citizens from every part of the country and tourists from across continents, with wide, open arms. Having especially burgeoned after hosting the prestigious 2007 Winter Olympics, Sochi proffers an unparalleled wealth of beach activities, upscale shopping and a scintillating nighttime revelry. However, the city is as historic as it is contemporary, harboring a wealth of ancient landmarks within its aegis. The Tsentralny City District comprises the city's historic district, its winding thoroughfares brimming with restaurants, nightclubs and boutiques. The heritage Sochi Rail Station, the Cathedral of St. Michael the Archangel and the Sochi Winter Theater are some of its most prized landmarks, whereas Krasnaya Polyana is the newest addition to the city’s urban landscape, a massive Olympic snow-sport park that offers an outstanding infrastructure to sports enthusiasts. Nature abounds at the Sochi National Park, a verdant oasis that is mottled with waterfalls, wildlife and enchanting forests, while the teeming Port of Sochi, with its assemblage of charming historic buildings, is the very locus of the city’s marine transportation system.
Like most cities in Russia, Sochi has a monument dedicated to the soldiers who died in World War II. Long stairs dramatically lead to a spacious square where the eternal flame is burning. People often leave flowers or wreaths there. The monument is located by the Sochi Railroad Station.
Built in 1955, Morvokzal (the Seaport Building) counts among Sochi's most famous architectural landmarks. It has long been one of the summer capital's most recognizable symbols. The Morvokzal is also a functioning sea terminal, from which you can take a short sea cruise or a trip to Gagra in Abkhazia, Batumi in Georgia, or Trabzon in Turkey.
The Cathedral of St. Michael the Archangel is Sochi's main Orthodox church and an architectural landmark. It was built in the 19th century and closed its doors in 1931 to become a warehouse (a fate typical of many Russian churches in the Stalin era). In 1944, the cathedral reopened its doors, and after the fall of the Soviet Union it was reconstructed.