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Ecotourism in Sochi: Matsesta Waterfalls
January 26, 2020 17:00


One of the fantastic places in the Krasnodar Territory, recommended for visiting, are Matsesta waterfalls. The resort city of Sochi can delight its guests not only with the warm sea, the hot rays of the southern sun, but also with a rich natural culture that has found expression in amazing sights.

Picturesque landscapes filled with riot of colors of flowering plants, coolness from rapidly falling water, incredible fresh and healing air - all this awaits tourists who dare to visit a secluded corner in the Sochi National Park.


The Matsesta waterfalls got its name because of the eponymous river, which flows in the Khostinsky district of Sochi. The history of its origin is connected with the legend of a brave girl who sacrificed her life for the health of her parents.

Many years ago, a valley with springs was considered a haven for people who were guilty before God.   It was simply called rotten. Everything changed when a daughter, a girl of fabulous beauty, Matsesta  (the name in translation from Shapsug-Ubykh means “fire water”), was born in the family of the mountaineer of Kerenduk.

Wanting to cure mom and dad, the girl went for healing blue water to the spirit of the bowels and at the cost of her own life gave the villagers a saving liquid. Since then, the area has been renamed the Valley of Health, and the feat of Matsesta is considered a true personification of love and self-sacrifice.

Natural features

The natural ensemble includes 18 waterfalls and streams, each of them  is given a sonorous name. Here you can see the "Egyptian pyramids", "Oyster mushroom", "Horse tail", etc. On the way you will meet “Gnomes”, “Uncle Styopa”, and the journey will end with a magnificent view of the Uncle Stepa's Mustache.

The tourist path originates in the village of Semenovka and passes through the Volnitsa complex. Guests can be greeted by local residents - representatives of the fauna. Fearless nutria and snow-white swans are happy to meet  the guests.

The richness of flora is also impressive. The river gorge literally drowns in the thick of boxwood, laurel cherries, needles, and holly. The trunks of trees felled by natural elements are densely covered with velvety moss, which gives the landscape a special, magical atmosphere.

There is no way to go directly to the valley of waterfalls along the water's edge, since a rapid stream, breaking through a narrow gap in the rocks, forms a natural three-meter bath.

The first waterfall awaits tourists on the stream Semenovskaya gap. Getting to it is not difficult. The approach is equipped with a bridge and a staircase leading from the lower lake. After about 2 kilometers, you can notice another stream, noisily falling down from a height of three meters.

The third waterfall is called Rainbow. The path to it runs through a wooded area, where in season you can admire the flowering of wild peonies.

There are other cascades beyond Rainbow, but the road to them is already much more complicated. Nature carefully concealed part of the waterfalls from prying eyes in a secluded place, protecting it with steep mountain slopes. For this reason, at the moment this direction is not very popular among tourists.

The healing  Matsesta Valley

Waterfalls of the Matsesta Valley attract visitors not only with wonderful landscapes. Many people come here to improve their health and enjoy an amazing healing atmosphere.

Local residents and guests of the region heard about the healing mud baths and mineral water saturated with hydrogen sulfide and contributing to the resorption of inflammation in the joints, bones, tendons, and vertebrae.

On the territory of Matsesta there is a unique balneological complex that welcomes people all year round. In addition to hydrogen sulfide baths and mud therapy, patients are offered iodine-bromine mineral water from the Kudep spring, which has regenerative properties.

A visit to the Matsesta River Valley will be beneficial for people with respiratory problems. Mountain air filled with aromas of needles and moist moss will have a beneficial effect on them.

How to get there

Matsesta waterfalls are located in the Khostinsky district of the resort city of Sochi, near the village of Semenovka. You can get to the valley of falling waters by bus number 120 or minibus number 180. You need to get off at the Izmaylovka terminus and follow the direction to the Matsesta river.

You can also take a taxi to the waterfalls, for example, using the Yandex service or the services of local companies. If you travel by car, you should drive along Kurortny Prospekt, and then along Cheltenham Avenue to the intersection with Chekmeneva Street. Then, from the stop  you will have to walk to the waterfalls.


Author: Anna Dorozhkina

Tags: Sochi ecotourism travel to Russia Russian regions Krasnodar Region 

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