Its name meaning New World, the beautiful bay of Novy Svit used to be the realm of Prince Lev Golitsyn, an idealistic aristocrat turned winemaker. Obsessed with changing Russian drinking culture, he spent all his fortune selling wine and champagne at cheaper prices than vodka. This was a noble but rather hopeless cause – innovative drinkers soon realised they could achieve stunning results by mixing champagne with vodka. The resulting killer cocktail became known as Northern Lights.
Financially broke, Golitsyn was rescued by Tsar Nicholas II, who appointed him the royal winemaker and commissioned him to build the Massandra winery.
Today buses and marshrutky (minibuses) wind regularly across the slightly hairy but breathtakingly gorgeous mountain road connecting Sudak with this popular satellite. Each bus is jam-packed with day trippers coming to do Golitsyn's favourite walk and sample some bubbly from his winery.