Top things to do

Top Choice Nature Reserve in Kislovodsk

Kurortny Park

Founded in 1823 and covering 1340 hectares, this hillside park is among the largest in Europe. It's riddled with walking trails past rivers, ponds, forests and formal gardens. The park ascends southeast from a plaza…
Top Choice Museum in Black Sea Coast

Stalin's Dacha

Stalin's dacha, Zelenaya Roscha, is a fascinating place, built specifically to accommodate a small, private and paranoid man. Tours are in Russian but some of the patriotic guides speak a little English. From Sochi …
Top Choice Mountain in Elbrus Area

Mt Elbrus

The two peaks of Mt Elbrus – the western at 5642m and eastern at 5621m – bulge nearly 1000m above anything else in the vicinity. This volcanic cone has upper slopes reputedly coated in ice up to 200m thick; numerous…
Top Choice International in Kislovodsk

5642 Vsota

Moscow's Novikov group ups the dining standards in Kislovodsk with this new three-part venture. An excellent bakery-cafe and burger bar (both decorated with murals by street artist Misha Most) flank the restaurant, …
Top Choice Russian in Krasnaya Polyana

Vershina 2200

Sup a warming soup as you sit by the toasty fire and watch the snow fall on the ski slopes outside. Located at 2200m (the highest point in Gorki Gorod), this classy two-floor restaurant has fantastic views and serve…
Top Choice Public Art in Sochi

Lenin Mosaic

How about this sparkling, red, 8m-high head shot of Ilyich as a backdrop for your holiday photos? This beauty was unveiled in 1980 to mark the 110th anniversary of the birth of the father of the Bolshevik Revolution…
Top Choice Mountain in Pyatigorsk

Mt Mashuk

There's a fantastic view of Pyatigorsk, and all the way to Mt Elbrus on good weather days, from the 993m summit of Mt Mashuk. You can reach here either by hiking up a tree-shaded road or – easier – riding the cable …
Top Choice Caucasian in Nalchik

Tau El

This wooden complex, set on the Cherek Balkarsky River, faces the ruins of largest of the 18 village cleared of Balkars in 1944. They serve delicious shashlyk, salads and the buttery flat bread khichiny.
Top Choice Museum in Pyatigorsk

Lermontov Museum

Many Pyatigorsk attractions revolve around larger-than-life writer, poet, painter, cavalry soldier, society beau and duellist Mikhail Lermontov. Chief among them is this museum, a walled garden compound containing f…
Top Choice Hot Springs in Kislovodsk

Narzan Gallery

This graceful, well-preserved 1850s building recalls the spa town of Bath in England. Inside, the rich, carbonic Narzan Spring bubbles up inside a glass dome and spits out mineral-rich water – both hot and cold – in…