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Crimea Hike - Trekking in Crimea

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ROUTE №2

"A HIKE TO THE CAVE TOWNS OF CRIMEA"

DAY 1

We will meet at the Simferopol Railway station in the inner yard near fountain at 12.00. We distribute products (bought by the instructor) among the backpackers. Then, on train, we will reach the town Bachchisaray - ancient capital of tatars country, from which actually our hike begins. Here at first we will visit the Khan's palace with the renowned Fountain of Tears. Further we will go to the Orthodox Uspensky Monastery, founded in the VIII century which was build inside the rock.  Then we will go to the cave city Chufut Cale, which had change a lot of hosts during 15 centuries of its existence: Sarmatians, Alans, Khazars, Tatars, Karaites. From the walls of the city we will see breathtaking views of the white limestone cliffs of the mountains of the Crimean Inner Ridge.  Descending to the  Jehoshaphat Valley, we will walk through the sacred oak grove in which is located the ancient Karaite cemetery. The camp will place near the mountain Beshik-Tau, inside which, according to the legends, hidden golden cradle - sacred for the Karaite people.

DAY 2

 This day, by the path winding among the juniper bushes, we will go to the cave town Kachi-Kalion. We will visit its shady grottos, entwined with wild grapes growing here for two thousand years. In a steep limestone cliff of Kachi-Kalion, into the five floors, was carved dozens of premises connected by a staircases and a terraces.  In one of the caves, the former at first pagan temple and later church of St. Anastasija, we will drink water from healing springs, spouting under the rocks. Another attraction of this area, church of St. Sophija, carved into the boulder with a cross on the dome.  Descending from the mountains and crossed the Kacha river, we will continue our route along the forest path which will lead us to tourist camp Alimova Gorge, named in honor of the Tatar "Robin Hood" whose   name was Alim. Here we will spend the night.

DAY 3

The first half of the day we will go by hilly terrain, covered with old thujas and junipers. Then, going down through the Bear Gully and crossed the river Belbek, we will appeared in the abandoned Cornel Garden. After it we will rise to the rocky headland Kule-Burun, dominating the surrounding terrain. At its end we will see the remains of the fortress walls and dilapidated tower with loopholes. This is Syuyrenskaya Fortress, destroyed by troops Nogai Chan during the Mongol-Tatar invasion. Having admired  by expanse of the Belbek Valley, we will descend to the cave monastery Chilter-Koba. In contrast to previously seen cave settlements, some of local caves are occupied by new tenants-hermits. Our camp, we will  placed in a half of kilometer away, on the glade near the spring.

DAY 4

 This day, after a few of hours going on the pine-clad plateau, we'll come to the Karalez Sphynxes Valley- rocks fancifully carved by nature.  Two miles south of us we meet the lake and towering over it, one of the most famous mountains of the Crimea - Mangup. After relaxing at the lake, we have a long rise (height of the mountain 588m), but the efforts is worth it!  At the top of Mangup lie the ruins of the medieval capital of the principality of Theodoro - a fragment of the Byzantine Empire. Across the plateau we could see the remnants of its former greatness. The town walls, twined round by ivy, withstood a Turkish siege and the ruining effects of Time, and the treasures of Theodoro Princes still hidden in one of the caches of the mountain. Perhaps because of the coins buried in the ground, water is one of the two springs on Mangup, saturated with silver ions. Today this place is popular among the legal and illegal  archeologists, ufologists, hippies and just romantics. We will have plenty of time to get around the plateau, before arranged for the night at one of the capes of the mountain.

DAY 5

 Descending from the opposite side of the Mangup, we will go to a nearby plateau. Walking up the trail to the top of the mountain, we see a number of caves and towering above them a stone tower with a shining golden dome. It is an ancient monastery Shuldan - former residence of the Metropolitan of Gotiyskaja diocese. Take water in one of the monastery springs, we will continue the route.  Passing through the picturesque ravine with a powerful spring and two ponds we go to the mountain massif Bally-Coba.  One kilometer and we have goals - the cave town  Eski-Kerman. Near the foot of the mountain we will meet the Temple of the Three Horsemens, carved into a rounded limestone boulder. Eski-Kerman (translated from tatar language as the Old Fortress) - one of the best preserved towns, was built by the Byzantines still in the VI century. We'll walk by the ancient streets with broken carts track, look at the "homes" and temples, loopholes and a Siege Well. Maybe we meet someone from a local living creatures: rabbits, foxes and roe deer are frequent visitors on the mountain.  We're going to spend the night at the tourist camp the Fifth Gully.

DAY 6

 On the last day we descend to the village Ternovka where'll go on a bus to Sevastopol. Then you can continue to rest on Sea: rent a house in the Sevastopol or move to any of the towns in South Coast. Or you can stay at camping on the seashore. About the best locations, how to get there, where to get food, firewood and water, we will tell you!

Round cost: 100$ (All inclusive!)

Price includes:: registration in the Mountain Rescue Service of Crimea, journey to the beginning of the route, payments of all camping places, all recreational payments, entrance fees for all reserves and natural parks, three meals a day on a route, services of instructors, visiting of all sights.


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