The Akhshtyr Cave is located on the rocky bank of the Mzymta River between Sochi and Krasnaya Polyana. The distance from Sochi Olympic Park is 17 km, and from Krasnaya Polyana - 35 km. The cave is of great interest to scientists who study the life of primitive people, but ordinary tourists should not expect any incredible sensations or emotions here. If you are not accompanied by a guide, then you will see the whole cave in 10-15 minutes.
After buying tickets at the ticket office (price 200 rubles), you will go to the observation deck over the steep cliff of the Akhshtyr gorge. There are very beautiful views here. After that, you need to go through the through grotto to the entrance to the cave. The narrow passage was easy to defend against any wild animals, and large animals simply could not pass through it. This natural safety explains why people have lived in this cave for tens of thousands of years.
Before entering the cave, read the information. Here you can learn about the cultural layers of the cave, which archaeologists have been excavating for decades of scientific activity since 1936. The cave became accessible 350 thousand years ago. The first people settled in the Akhshtyr cave about 112 thousand years BC. They were Neanderthals. Then the cave was uninhabited for some time and again people returned to it about 70 thousand years BC. Scientists draw these conclusions from the presence of traces of bonfires and objects of their weapons and everyday life in the cultural layers.
Archaeologists have found in the cave more than 6 thousand bones of prehistoric animals, various stone tools, stone arrowheads, and many other artifacts that are usually found in the sites of ancient people.
The length of the cave reaches 120 meters. The arches at the entrance to the cave are low (1.5-2 meters), but then they become higher. It happened because more soil from later eras accumulated at the entrance. Inside the cave, there are no stalactites or other beauties that can be seen in deep caves, for example, in the nearby Vorontsov Cave.
Going inside the cave, you will see small niches, and in the very depths, there is a fairly large hall. The height of its arches reaches 10 meters. Inside the cave there is no evidence of the presence of primitive people. Also, there are no museum expositions about them. You can read information about the excavations only at the stands at the ticket office. There is another path near the ticket office, where you can go down to a small cave where the icon of the Akhshtyr Mother of God is located.
The Akhshtyr cave is located on the right side of the Akhshtyr gorge, at an altitude of 120 meters above the Mzymta River. It is located in the upper part of the cliff, which rises 150 meters above the river.
If you look at the map, it looks like the Akhshtyr cave is located on the bank of the Mzymta River, next to the Trout farm. It is true, but the Trout farm is located directly on the riverbank, and the Akhshtyr cave is on the top of a steep cliff, at an altitude of 120 meters. Some navigators even draw the possibility of walking between the cave and the Trout farm. Hypothetically, this is possible, but it is better not to take risks, and drive around the cliff in the direction of the extreme park SkyPark.
To get to the Akhshtyr cave, turn from Krasnoflotskaya Street to the village of Cossack Ford and continue to the Sky Park. At the turn, before reaching 500 meters to the SkyPark, you will see a small sign "Akhshtyr cave". Here you need to turn right onto a dirt road that goes downhill to the side of the Mzymta River. It takes 600 meters to drive along a dirt road. This is the only road by which you can get to the Akhshtyr cave.