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Ecotourism in Sochi: Yew-boxwood Grove in Khosta
February 20, 2020 17:01


Yew-boxwood grove in Khosta is a unique nature conservation site located in the part of the Caucasus Biosphere Reserve named after H. G. Shaposhnikov. Until recently, relict forests spread in this territory have remained practically unchanged since the pre-Ice Age -   these plants   covered Europe about 18–25 million years ago.

The area of the Yew-boxwood grove is 300 hectares.

The main representatives of the grove flora are yew berry, growing up to 10–20 meters,  nicknamed mahogany according to the color of wood, and evergreen Colchis boxwood (from 2 to 12 meters high). In the green thickets of the grove there are more than 70 species of trees, the oldest of them are more than 2000 years old. In total, over 400 plant species grow in this zone of the reserve, taken under the protection of UNESCO. The fabulous fern-liana landscape is complemented by tropical flowers, rocks and faults, the turquoise-blue waters of a mountain river.

Animals in the yew-boxwood grove are rare, with the exception of lizards, hedgehogs and birds. Informational posters in the park say that representatives of the fauna of the Caucasian Biosphere Reserve live on the territory: foxes, wild boars, roe deer, jackals and Kuban wolves. Naturally, in the vicinity of the hiking trails wild animals do not appear.

When visiting the Yew-boxwood grove, you should carefully choose a place for a picnic - there are snakes in the reserve. 

It is interesting to visit the object at any time of the year, even in winter: in February, the first spring flowers - wild cyclomens - bloom in the Yew-boxwood grove. In the summer,  you can swim in the Khosta River. Velvet autumns and mild springs are especially pleasant to arrange long picnics - the weather at this time is not hot and not cold.

Prices in Yew-boxwood Grove 2020

Entrance tickets (routes "Small Ring", "Big Ring", "Into the Ages"):

Adults (from 14 years old) - 300 rubles;
Children 7-14 years old - 150 rubles;
Children under 7 years old - free of charge.
Additionally, the services of an audio guide (optional) are paid - 200 rubles.

Routes along the Yew-boxwood grove

For tourists, there are three ready year-round walking routes along the territory of the Yew-boxwood grove in Sochi.

“Big Ring” - 5000 meters (for 3-6 hours);
"Small Ring" - 1600 meters (for 30 - 60 minutes);
"Into the Ages" - 1800 meters (for 2 - 3 hours).

Ring routes begin and end at the entrance to the grove.

Attractions on the route

The grove is beautiful in itself, but the sights make the walk through the ancient forest similar to an expedition, making the route entertaining and informative at the same time.

Ancient Fortress. The ruins of the walls today are overgrown with moss and boxwood, and look like cities lost in the jungle. In the 8–10 centuries, the fortress served as a security point on the road to Khosta. Fragments of 4 towers and walls have survived to this day.

Devil's Gate Canyon. In the Yew-Boxwood grove this is one of the most popular sites. It is pleasant to arrange a halt here, and on a hot day to plunge into the icy waters of the Khosta River. Near the canyon there is a recreation center with a Russian bathhouse, barbecue facilities and a cafe.

Cave. Entrance to the nameless cave is forbidden, but most tourists cannot resist the temptation to go there.  There is nothing remarkable inside - almost always damp and dirty. Some tourists claim that bats live in the cave.

Other attractions include numerous beams (the name of the log with sodded slopes) with picturesque vegetation and mini waterfalls, unique examples of perennial trees, and suspension bridges like from adventure films.


Author: Anna Dorozhkina

Tags: Sochi ecotourism travel to Russia Russian regions  

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