- The future of the Olympic City 5. The sports festival
- Where the name comes from 6. A Russian resort
- Mentioned in myths 7. Getting ready for the great sports event
- Suitable for summer and winter sports 8. Famous for its collection of plants
A. Sochi is the second longest city in the world stretching for 145 kilometers along the shores of the Black Sea. The city is located at the same latitude as the world famous resorts of Cannes, San-Remo and Nice, and has the same weather conditions, that’s why it’s also called the Russian Riviera. Sochi is one of very few cities in Russia where you can see real palms, eucalyptus, magnolias and fruit, such as figs and grapes, which is not typical of the average cold Russian climate.
B. Sochi is a relatively new name for the city. It was first called Sochi in 1896. The first Russian settlement on the site was called Fort Alexander. Historians say that the word Sochi has two possible meanings. It could be a variation of the term sshatche which was used by the local people to mean place by the sea. It is also believed that Sochi comes from shacha which locals used to mean sell a head because it used to be where slave markets were held.
C. Sochi is situated between the sea and mountains which creates a very favourable climate. The sea warms the coast, and the mountains protect the city from the cold north winds. Sochi’s summer is associated with the long swimming season. Winter temperatures are not often below 12 ºC, and ice hockey, figure skating, curling and speed skating are usually arranged as indoor events. However, up in the mountains it is much colder and there’s lots of snow, especially in February and March.
D. For several years Sochi and its citizens carefully prepared for the Olympic Games. The competitions were organised in two clusters: a coastal cluster for ice events in Sochi, and a mountain cluster located in the Krasnaya Polyana Mountains. The mountain cluster hosted skiing and sliding sports. It took around 30 minutes to travel from the coastal to mountain cluster. Construction of the Olympic clusters took 7 years.
E. Ancient Rome and Athens aren’t the only places where Greek gods lived and performed their remarkable feats. It is known that Odysseus, a legendary Greek king of Ithaca, met his enemy, the one-eyed Cyclops, in Sochi. The city was also the site where Prometheus was chained and tortured. He was punished for granting fire to humans. Today a statue of Prometheus is placed on the top of Eagle’s Rock.
F. The Sochi botanic garden history goes back to the end of the 19th century. It is believed to be one of the most beautiful gardens in Russia. Over 1800 kinds of unique plants grow there. You can see the flora of various regions: China, Australia, South and North America, the Caucasus etc. The garden is located on a hillside and has two levels, from the top of which an impressive view can be seen.
G. The XXII Olympic Winter Games, a major international multi-sport event, were held in Sochi in 2014. It was the second Olympics in Russia after the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow. The Olympics in Sochi were distinguished primarily by the fact that these were the first winter games carried out in a city with a sub-tropical climate. 2780 athletes from different countries took part in the 98 events of the Games.