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Old 04-06-2012, 02:43 AM   #37
asilindean OP
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Joined: Jul 2009
Location: Bucharest, Romania
Oddometer: 132
Day 5 - Sevastopol - Balaclava - Yalta Ė Sudak 260 km

Getting out of Sevastopol in the morning was an easy job and in no time we were on the road to Balaklava. There was the one piece of recent history which I wanted to see: the former soviet base for atomic submarines and Naval Museum from Blalaklava.

Once you get there you enter the huge nuclear-blast-proof doors and walk some part of the 600m long repair docks, rooms, depots and the now empty arsenal. The submarine base is located inside the rock on the western shore of the bay and has access from the sea on both sides. The base has been designed to resist a direct hit of an atomic bomb up to 100 Kt, and it in case of war it could accommodate up to three thousand people. The base was built also to accommodate 8 small class atomic subs or 6 medium class. The place was abandoned in 1994 when last soviet submarine left the base. A few years ago it was bring back to life and transformed in a museum.

On the other side of the bay, opposite to the submarine base there is the Genoese Fortress of Cembalo. The settlement is about 2500 years old and is even mentioned in Homer's Odyssey as a pirate's bay. It looked good from the distance, but we decide not to climb up there in full riding gear, even if the view could be promising.
Back on the bike we went to discover the wonders of Crimea. The road surprisingly good and was almost deserted in this area, since we have not entered yet the tourism busy places near Yalta.
First stop was on Cape Sarych which is a wild beach (less sand and more rocks) on the sea side. Very nice place if you want camp. One of the boys charging some fee for entrance (we did not paid since we were not staying) told us that one of the houses we could see in the back, the one with red roof, belongs or belonged to Gorbachiov.

The next place on the road which we wanted to see was Vorontsov Palace. It is a hard place to get since the tourism resort where it is has many busy, narrow one way streets. We did not see it. We made a stop a few km further down the road in a parking place to take a look at the Swallows' Nest
a symbol of Southern Crimea found on every postcard. The palace was built in 1912 for a oil magnate. In present days I understood that Swallow's Nest is a restaurant. Made some pics from distance and off we go.

Next we turned left and ride up a narrow road to Mountain Ai Petri. It's a 23 km up twisty narrow most excellent road and another 23 km down Very cool road! Of course for those who donít like to drive in such wonderful conditions they can climb out of Yalta on the funicular railway, but it's no fun.

Up the mountain you will find the usual touristic kitsch, plus restaurants, and a bit overcrowded but views are absolutely magnificent.

Destination of the day was Sudak. I order to get there one must pass Yalta which is probably the most famous and expensive city of the southern Crimea, famous people like to have a rest there. The roads around Yalta are very, very crowded. On the other hand once you got past the crossroad with the highway from Simferopol, the road quiets down, the traffic is more relaxed and you can again enjoy their view of the sea on the right and the mountains and hills on the left. So, the last 80 km to Sudak were an excellent ride!

In Sudak we found manage to find accommodation in the end at Sudak Youth hostel, since our initial hostel (
Moving Bubble Hostel) was closed down and they did not bother to announce us (even if we had reservations). So after a few calls we manage to get to the next one.
The price was 400 Grv a night and a courtyard where we can safely park the bikes.

After dinner we took a walk on the beach and manage to find Sudak Biker Pub which is an excellent place (with an English speaking waitress). We did not try it, but according to other reports you can spend the night there on the benches. There was live music with a cover band and on the screen one can see Easy Rider. All this assorted with beer and a little vodka (which will come with a price, but that's for later on). Around midnight we took a cab and went to sleep (we were too lazy to walk to the hostel).
The Biker Pub is around here 44.841306, 34.964753.

asilindean screwed with this post 04-06-2012 at 08:13 AM
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