The best ten souvenirs from Sochi
In Sochi currently the most popular souvenirs are those with symbols of Olympic games. You can find them literally everywhere, and not only pendants, cuddly toys and magnets, but also totally non typical souvenirs, such as snowboards, skis, skates, helmets, clothes and so on. All Olympic souvenirs are produced by licence and in all shops they are sold at the same price. But Sochi aren’t only Olympic game. Long time ago before Olympic games came to this tourist town, it developed its unique souvenir offer.
Mussels and clams from the breed Rapan are specially nice and local craftsmen gladly use them in production of hand made souvenirs. If you like the things made of natural materials, you can look for them on the beaches around Coastal street. And after every storm there are more of them then usual.
Laurel is frequent in shadow small town streets (for example Rose street 63), and you can meet it either as evergreen fence of trimmed bushes, like tall, branching tree. Apart being the symbol of peace, new life, eternity and frame, laurel has practical use as well. In Russian cuisine is popular in preparation of meals of meat and vegetables and different soups. Bring home few fresh sprigs of laurel. They will for long time stay in vase (without water) and remind you of your trip. And when the sprigs get dry, you can put the leaves in jar and add one by one to your cooked dishes or with roasted meat few times before the end of preparation.
Eucalyptus is also some kind of souvenir of Sochi. During the whole year on town markets ( in Moscow’s street 22 in Sochi or in Democratic street 38 in Adlersk rayon) you can buy big bunches of eucalyptus branches. Tea made of eucalyptus branches helps against many disease. Apart from that the branches of eucalyptus are unavoidable in steam baths or saunas. According to folks advice it is good against the flu, the room where you stay should be filled with herbal steams of eucalyptus leaves soaked into boiling water.
Caucasus is famous not only for unusual cuisine, but for herbs as well, which give special taste to food. Tourist take it home and additional to meals which can be bought on every market (in Moscow’s street 22 in Sochi or in Democratic street 38 in Adlersk rayon). The most unusual addition to meals is the combination of herbs “Adžika”. It is usually sold in three types, as “strong”, “medium” or “mild”. Adžika can last for long time since it is made of real strong red peppers, salt and herbs. The right content is kept as a secret. Adžika is added to the most different meals, from local specialities to international spaghetti.
Nice gift can also be basturma. It is in special way salted and dried beef covers in spicy mixture of aromatic spices from Caucasus . It is great snack with beer. It can stay for a long time and it will not go bad on long trips. Basturma can be also found on town market on stands of private traders.
“Krasnodar tea” is the most north kind of black tea in the world, of unique taste and colour.It is best to drink it with čurčkela, Caucasus sweet, which is also called “Armenian snickers”.This domestic sweet is prepared in the way that on the thread the core walnut is lined, and than this necklace is soaked for few times in boiling and thick grape mixture (type of pudding). The mixture is cooling down gradually and it forms sweet “cover” around the walnut. Čurčkela can stay for long time as well, and children love it.
Black sea with its richness of colours and shades is real inspiration for local artists, who create pieces of different quality and styles. You can see their works and buy in Art museum (Kurortni prospect 51), on the main street along the coast ( Coastal street) and in the park Riviera (Egor’s street 1).
Unfortunately, today in Sochi is hard to find traditional Russian souvenirs, like Matrjoške or fur cap. But relatively cheap you can get unique things which have historical value. Every weekend in the centre of Sochi, on the square at Art museum, the collectors gather in order to meet each other, hang out together and exchange the objects from their collection. Some of that is on sale as well. Usually these are coins and currencies from Soviet period, badges and stamps, books, postcards or decorative items. If you want to visit this collectors gathering you should come in the morning, because after the lunch they usually go home.
Very often in souvenir shops in Sochi you can see handicrafts made of bamboo which grows in surroundings of the town. These souvenirs are the works of local masters and every part is hand made. From bamboo in Sochi they make real dishes, decorative boxes,ash trays, picture frames, asure, kitchen cloths and many others. One of advantages of these souvenirs is that they are light so they will not burden your luggage.
It is worth to see the making of art pieces of glass, which is in Adlesk rayon, in Forleys street 41-A, along Trout fish pond. In this studio you can meet with traditional making of objects of glass in world and Russia, look at presentation and on the spot buy souvenirs. Glass blowers will in few minutes in front of you create flower bouquet, the vase for it, and with every product you will get certain certificate. In any case, for sensitive souvenir like this it is necessary to look for additional package.
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