Abkhazia - Russia or not: the limit does it include and need a visa?
Despite the proximity and accessibility of Abkhazia, the Republic remains largely a mystery for Russian tourists.
In Soviet times Abkhaz ASSR was considered to be one of the main tourist centers of the country, the collapse of the Soviet Union and further historical events for a long time struck Abkhazia from the number of places suitable for tourism. Nowadays Russian tourists rediscovered the country.
- Information about the country
- The Georgian-Abkhaz conflict and the Declaration of independence
- The capital and regions
- Currency, population and language
- Does it include other countries?
- The Abkhaz Republic is Russia or abroad?
- The country's relations with the Russian Federation
- Refers to Georgia?
- Do you require visa for Russians?
- Do I need a passport?
- Rules of entry
- Travel by car
- How to get the Abkhazians in the Russian Federation?
- What is the travel component?
Information about the country
On the world political map the Republic of Abkhazia appeared recently, despite this history of Abkhazian statehood more than a thousand years, and the first towns and settlements appeared here in ancient times.
The Republic of Abkhazia is located on the Eastern coast of the Black sea, on the slope of the main Caucasian ridge. It borders with the Russian Federation and Georgia.
Abkhazia has a very ancient history. The first Greek settlements appeared in the second half of I Millennium BC. Its heyday of the colony had reached in the Hellenistic period in the III-I centuries BC. In the first centuries of our era the coast was strengthened by the Romans, at the same time began the formation of local tribal education.
In the X century, Abkhazia became part of feudal Georgia. In Georgia, and later the breakaway Kingdom of Imereti, Abkhazia held 400 years.
At the end of the XV century of the coast of the country was conquered by the Ottoman Empire, and a significant part of the local inhabitants were converted to Islam.
In 1809, the Abkhazian Prince Safar-Bey appealed to the Emperor Alexander I with a request for acceptance of the Abkhazian Principality in the Russian Empire, which was accepted. In 1864, the Principality was dissolved and in its place formed the Sukhumi district of Kutaisi province.
After 1917, was established the Abkhazian Soviet socialist Republic. After 1931 the status of the SSR Abkhazia was lost and it became part of the Georgian SSR as a normal Autonomous region (Abkhazian ASSR). These legal niceties and the incidents formed the basis for later Georgian-Abkhaz conflict and the Declaration of independence.
After the hostilities on the territory of Abkhazia all the airports stopped working. Read here, there is now operating terminals in the country.
The Georgian-Abkhaz conflict and the Declaration of independence
On the background of gradually increasing collapse of the USSR in 1990, the Supreme Council of the Abkhaz ASSR declared the region a sovereign Republic within the USSR. After the collapse of the USSR, coming to power in Georgia, the nationalist government of Zviad Gamsakhurdia and the Georgian-Ossetian conflict, the Abkhazian Supreme Soviet declared the Constitution of 1978 declared void and the restoration of the Constitution of 1925, by which Abkhazia was part of Georgia on a contract basis.
Amid continuing in Georgia, the civil war between the troops retired Zviad Gamsakhurdia and the forces of the Central government under the leadership of Eduard Shevardnadze, Tbilisi leadership has made the decision to send troops to Abkhazia. Began the armed conflictthat led to the deaths of about 10 thousand people and the displacement of about 250 thousand residents.
During the first Georgian-Abkhaz conflict, Russia officially remained neutral, not actually discouraging many volunteers fromRussia, and especially the republics of the North Caucasus to fight on the Abkhaz side.
In 1994, the conflict was stopped, it was signed "the Agreement on ceasefire and separation of forces", which freeze the conflict indefinitely. In the region introduced the CIS peacekeeping force. 26 November 1994 Abkhazia declared its independence.
The conflict has been frozen for 14 years, and Abkhazia retained actual independence and unofficially supported by the Russian side. In 2008, after the aggravation of the Georgian-Ossetian conflict and the ensuing Russia-Georgia war, Moscow announced the recognition of the independence of Abkhazia, Georgian troops left the position, which existed in the territory of the Republic.
The capital and regions
The capital of Abkhazia is the city of Sukhum (Sukhumi) — the country's largest city with a population of 62 thousand people. The capital allocated to the separate city of national importance. In addition to Sukhumi, the administrative division of the Republic includes:
- The Sukhumi district (the capital, Sukhum, is not part of the district);
- Gagra district (capital — Gagra);
- Gudauta district (the capital city of Gudauta);
- Ochamchirsky district (Ochamchyra);
- Gulripshsky district (the capital village of Gulripsh);
- Tkvarchelsky district (G. Tkuarchal);
- Gali district (Gali).
In neighboring Abkhazia to get not as simple as, for example, in a nearby town. Read our articleon how to get to Republic from Moscow.
Currency, population and language
The population of Abkhazia, according to 2011 census is 240 thousand people in comparison with 1989, it decreased more than 2 times. National composition of the population heterogeneous, the Abkhazians: there are 120 thousand people, which is 50% of the number of inhabitants. Other major Nations are:
- The Georgians (47 thousand inhabitants or 19% of the population);
- The Armenians (41 thousand, or 17% of the population);
- Russian (22 thousand inhabitants or 9% of the population).
Also live Greeks, Ukrainians and others.
At the religious composition of the population of Abkhazia is divided into:
- Orthodox Christians (64%);
- Muslims (14%);
- Atheists (8%) and others.
Despite the different types of religion, the Abkhazians are not religious, rarely attend religious institutions and do not observe religious requirements.
The official language of the Republic is Abkhazian, Russian has official status and is the language of state and other institutions.
As the official currency of the Republic uses the Russian ruble.
Does it include other countries?
A small Republic borders with only two countries: Russia and Georgia. When crossing the border, there are rules specific to independent States.
The Abkhaz Republic is Russia or abroad?
The Republic of Abkhazia is not part of the Russian Federation, had it not claimed, in contrast to the Republic of South Ossetia, and is unlikely to ever become part, as it is not committed to it. Russia recognizes the independence and sovereignty of the Republic and is not seeking to Annex it.
The border of Abkhazia and Russia passes on the river Psouthat divides Krasnodar Krai of the Russian Federation and the Gagra district of Abkhazia. Further, the boundary passes in the Caucasus mountains. The border of Abkhazia and Georgia passes on the Inguri river in the Gali district and the highlands in the Ochamchire district of Abkhazia.
At the same time, because of the proximity of Adler to the border with Abkhazia, some mistakenly believe that the Adler district belongs to the Republic, not Russia. Dispel doubts: Adler is part of the city of Sochi, the Russian, is not and never was part of Abkhazia.
If you are going on holiday to the sea, then you will be interested in this articlewhere you will find a complete list of essential travel items.
The country's relations with the Russian Federation
In modern political science Abkhazia recognized by the state customer of the Russian Federation. Russia ensures the security of Abkhazia, protection of the Republic in the international arena, has political, cultural and economic influence in Abkhazia.
Budget revenues of the Republic is largely provided by subsidies from the Russian Treasury. Open in Gudauta, the Russian military base, Russia and Abkhazia have more than 90 interstate and intergovernmental agreements.
At the same time, the internal political life of the Republic differs in many respects independent, direct pressure on it from Russia is missing.
to content ↑
In international law there are 2 principle, contradict each other is:
- The right of people to self-determination;
- The principle of the integrity of the state.
Thus, the independence of the state of Georgia in the international arena can not unambiguously be determined by the law and established by the UN documents and confirmation of the independence of the countries belonging to the organization.
Abkhazia's independence from Georgia was recognized internationally recognized 4 States:
Recognized independence, but withdrew its decision Tuvalu.
The government of Vanuatu has repeatedly recognized the independence of Abkhazia and repeatedly refused his decision, so that the position of this country in Abkhazia are not clear and not consistent. For the international community and most influential countries of Abkhazia remains part of Georgia, uncontrolled by the Central authorities and occupied by Russia.
Thus, it is possible to call Abkhazia, a partially recognized state, its recognition has strong limitations, the only influential state or the neighboring country to recognize the independence of the Republic, is Russia. Passport of the Republic of Abkhazia are not recognized in the world, to visit other countries to residents of Abkhazia have to use the passport of the Russian Federation.
According to the laws of Abkhazia from April 1, 2016 set a visa regime for citizens of countries with which the Republic has concluded intergovernmental agreements on visa-free regime.
What in Abkhazia the climate, what the flora and fauna of the region, where better to relax? The answers to these and many other questions you will find here.
Do you require visa for Russians?
Such agreements Abkhazia concluded with Russia and some unrecognized States.
Without visa permission Abkhazia can visit residents:
- Of the Russian Federation;
- South Ossetia;
- The Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic;
Citizens of CIS countries and other States for crossing the border need visa permit.
Thus, when visiting the Republic are Russian citizens cost without a visa. This sets the time limit in the size in 90 days, after which the citizen of the Russian Federation must leave the territory of Abkhazia and, if necessary, repeat the entry.
Do I need a passport?
Passport when visiting Abkhazia for Russians is not required, but skipping it can be. In this case, in the passport a mark about the visit to Abkhazia. If you are planning onward travel to Georgia this stamp could be subject to a fine, arrest or other trouble, so it is recommended to visit Abkhazia on the internal passport.
Rules of entry
A feature of the visit to Abkhazia for Russian citizens is that they open the pass on the river Psou, cross the border with Georgia at the Ingur crossing of citizens of Russia is prohibited.
Required birth certificate:
- Children under 14 yearscrossing the border with both parents;
- Persons under the age of 18travelling unaccompanied or with one parent.
The certificate shall contain an indication of the nationality of the child.
For children over 14 years old and crossing the border with both parents, you must have passports of the Russian Federation.
When crossing the border is compulsory health insurance of foreign citizens. The insurance amount is 30 thousand rubles, and the insurance premium depends on the duration of intended stay in Abkhazia:
- Up to 3 days — 30 rubles;
- Up to 30 days — 250 rubles;
- Up to six months — 750 rubles.
Travel by car
When visiting Abkhazia by car you need:
- Driver's license;
- Technical passport for the vehicle.
Entering someone else's car require power of attorney on the car with a separately specified item authorizing travel outside of the Russian Federation.
When crossing the border by car, the driver needs to pay a fee, not exceeding 150 rubles, also issued insurance, the cost of which depends on the period of stay in Abkhazia:
- Up to 3 days — 200 roubles;
- Up to 30 days — 500 roubles;
- Up to half a year — 200 rubles.
How to get the Abkhazians in the Russian Federation?
Rules that apply to citizens of the Russian Federation with the Republic, and mirror image are at the citizens of Abkhazia of the Russian Federation. Residents of Abkhazia with the local citizenship can travel to Russia without visa permission, the trip is possible in the presence of the internal passport of the Republic.
In this caseestablishes a 90-day period of possible stay of the citizen of the Republic on the territory of the Russian Federation, after which the citizen must leave Russia.
In case of violation of this term, citizens can be denied entry into Russia for a period up to 3 years.
What is the travel component?
Despite the modest size of the territory and population of Abkhazia, the country remains very interesting to visit due to its numerous historical monuments and unique nature of the Western Caucasus.
The main natural attraction of Abkhazia is, of course, the sea coast, in no way inferior to Sochi, and purity of the sea and the temperature of water and air superior to it.
In addition to the sea coast, attracting many tourists with opportunities for beach recreation, nature of Abkhazia is different picturesqueness and singularity.
As a rule, tourists are attracted by the following natural sites of Abkhazia:
- Lake Ritsa, located in the highlands in the Gudauta district, considered the most beautiful in the country. The lake is popular due to its beauty and the purity of the water, whose temperature, even in summer does not exceed 10 degrees;
- Valley of seven lakes, located near rice in the mountainous terrain of Abkhazia;
- Numerous waterfalls: Gega, Lekarski, "Maiden tears", "Male tears" and many others. Just a small country has several dozen natural waterfalls and man-made single — new Athos, created by the monks of the monastery;
- Bzyb gorge is considered the most beautiful in the country and you'll be relict forests.
- Pitsunda-Mussorsky reserve and other natural parks and nature reserves of the Western Caucasus, located in Abkhazia.
- Mountain rivers of the Republic, distinguished by its rough temper, and picturesqueness.
In Abkhazia it is possible to experience the real flavor of the Caucasus, and to leave memories, you can buy Souvenirs. Read in this articlewhat can you bring from this country.
In addition to nature, in Abkhazia there are many interesting attractionscreated by human hands.
The oldest man-made attractions on the territory of Abkhazia are the dolmens — megalithic cult structures created over several thousand years BC. These structures belong to the so-called "dolmen culture", common in the Western Caucasus in the bronze age. In Abkhazia there are several dozens of dolmens, which serve as sanctuaries or burial tombs, the most famous is the dolmen Isanski.
The monastery in Novy Afon is the main center of Orthodoxy not only in the Republic but in the whole of the Western Caucasus. The monastery consists of 6 temples and attracts pilgrims and tourists from all countries of the Caucasus region.
The village of Coman is the second most important religious centre of Abkhazia. In addition to the Comana monastery in the village are several active churches and the ruins of a Byzantine Church. Addicts are considered to be Holy for Orthodox Christians place because of the buried relics of the Saint Basilisk and found the head of John the Baptist.
Anacopia fortress is one of the numerous Genoese fortress on the black sea coast.
Located within the New Athos, the fortress is well preserved and has great historical and cultural value.
The new Athos cave, opened in the mid-20th century, impresses with its numerous halls and their beauty. In 6 halls of the conducted tours, the rest is reserved for research. Inside the cave there are 2 underground lake.
Abaata fortress , located in the main tourist center of the Abkhazian town of Gagra and created more than a thousand years ago.
Great Abkhazian wall (Clasura) was founded by the Byzantines in the VI century ad and stretches along the coast of the Black sea, 160 kilometres from Sukhumi to the Inguri source on the border with Georgia. Nowadays Kelasuri wall is in ruins, preserved some of its elements, the most interesting of which is Karasunskaya tower five kilometers from the capital of the Republic.
Of great interest are the numerous churches of the Byzantine and early time of the Abkhazian Kingdom:
- Drandsky Cathedral;
- Patriarchal Cathedral in Pitsunda;
- Bedia Cathedral;
- Lykhny temple;
- The Church Of St. Hypatia Gagra;
- Church of the Holy Apostle, the zealot.
See a fascinating film about Abkhazia: