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Getting there & away




From the bus station (646 435, ul Gorkogo 56a) two or three buses per day travel the coastal route to Novorossiysk (R240, eight hours, three daily) via Gelendzhik; at least one continues to Anapa.

For other long-distance destinations in the central Northern Caucasus region you’re better off on a train, although infrequent buses do serve Rostov-on-Don, Krasnodar and the Mineral Waters area


The train station (609 009; ul Gorkogo) has a service centre (924 459; 9am-1pm & 2-8pm) outside the south exit for enquiries and line-free ticket sales. At least six trains go to Moscow (from R3800, 24 to 35 hours), more in summer. Most Moscow-bound trains go via Rostov-on-Don, or take direct train 642 (R1600, 11½ hours). There’s at least one daily train to St Petersburg (R4900, 48 hours). Train 644 goes to Kislovodsk (R1500, 14½ hours, odd-numbered days) via Mineralnye Vody and Pyatigorsk, and train 690 goes to Vladikavkaz (R1760, 17 hours, daily) via Mineralnye Vody.

All Moscow-bound trains go via Krasnodar, or take the daily fast elektrichka (R230, five hours, 3.34pm).

Elektrichky departing every hour or so hug the coast north to Tuapse (fast/slow R120/40, 1¾/2½ hours) and south to Adler (fast/slow R40/15, 30/45 minutes). The regular elektrichky stop frequently at beaches and coastal towns along the way, the fast (skory) ones less frequently.

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The sea terminal has an information office (609 603; 8am-8pm) and a ticket office (609 617; 10am-6pm Wed, Sat & Sun).

The fastest way to get to Novorossiysk (and back) is the seasonal hydrofoil (raketa) from the Seaport (Novorossiysk office: 607 066; 9am-5.30pm). The departure time for the three-hour journey from Novorossiysk is 9am from mid-June to mid-September (economy/business R1300/2600). The return trip from Sochi departs at 6pm.

Trabzon, Turkey

There’s no schedule for these boats but they sail practically every day all year round (Pullman R2000, 12 hours). Show up a few days in advance to check the schedule and purchase tickets.

Batumi, georgia

A fast hydrofoil (raketa) sails on Tuesday to Batumi (R2600, five hours, noon), and returns at 1pm on Friday

A slower passenger ship leaves Friday for Batumi (R2270, 12 hours). Boarding is at 6pm.

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Sochi’s airport (tel: 400 088) is at Adler, 25km away. There are dozens of flights daily to all the major airports in Moscow. Sky Express and S7 offer the best value (from R3300). In summer there are flights to most other major Russian cities. Austrian Airlines has twice weekly flights to Vienna (return €820).

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