With this post I am starting a series of descriptions of Crimean beaches. Right on time if you plan some vacations in Ukraine after the final of the Euro Cup 2012 😉 Crimea is the main tourist destination in Ukraine with rich history and diverse nature, as well as several nudist beaches.
Cape Fiolent near Sevastopol provides some of the best beaches in the area thanks to the beautiful scenery and clear waters. Several years ago it was treated as a protected area, so the number of visitors was limited and one had to arrive in the morning and get tickets in a nearest pension or hotel, but in 2010 it was no longer the case, which I found rather unfortunate, even though it made it easier in terms of reaching the beach.
In any case, prepare to go down by hundreds of stairs, as the beaches are down by the steep cliffs.
If you go to the beach on the western side of Cape Fiolent, aka Tsar beach, you’ll be stunned with the vast views over the Black Sea.
At sunset, the colors are only more dramatic.
The nudist section is behind that big rock that you see in the center of the photo, but it is actually even marked as such (probably by its visitors themselves).
This beach is mostly pebbled, which is not the best option for sunbathing, so there was only more reason to go swimming. Luckily, I had my waterproof camera too, I was surprised to find rich underwater life.
Most of the rocks are covered by green, red and brown algae and moss animals (bryozoans).
And I’ve never seen that many hermit crabs as there.
Of course they were hiding in shells and were not eager to pose before my camera whatsoever.
But I was able to get a comb jelly photographed, also a relatively rare but beautiful sight; while moving, it created shiny multicolor waves at the edges of its body.
If you go to the beach on the eastern side of Cape Fiolent, aka Yashma [jasper] beach, the views are even more picturesque,
with a small monastery on the left.
Probably it was them who put a big cross on the small rocky island right in front of the beach.
Given a conservative stance of both Russian and Ukrainian Orthodox Churches (I don’t know to which one the monastery belongs), I hope they don’t mind that part of the beach is by default clothing-optional. Actually, I was so inspired by the view with the cross, I felt like I could walk on water!
OK, I’ll have to tell you my secret, there was a barely submerged rock a few meters away from the shore.
And this is how the beach looks like from that island with the cross.
The unofficial nudist again
hides is protected by the rocks and has a sign.
Unfortunately, it wasn’t the only sign there. I saw also another custom-made sign, or rather obscene homophobic warning (this time not only in Russian but in English as well), which was apparently painted, erased and repainted a few times. Hope it didn’t represent an ongoing ‘battle’ between different beach visitors and was rather a flick by a single
In any case, whenever I was at that spot, it all seemed very peaceful.
Further behind another set of rocks, accessible only by water, there was a place where fresh water was coming down by the rocks covering them with a thin layer. Useful if you decide to camp there, or at least to refresh.
But I wasn’t the only one who leaned against the rocks there.
Even further away from the beach, there are rocks of contrasting colors,
that look especially spectacular from and underwater.
Algae, moss animals and mussels appear highlighted on the white background of chalk rock.
Then I saw two bright animals side by side: a blenny fish, and a big prawn,
that was actually transparent but had some bright blue, orange and white spots.
This kind of prawn is like the next level of nudist, with most of its body parts being transparent 😀
The blenny fish first appeared somewhat sad but then flashed with its bright colors before swimming away.
That was definitely a memorable swim; I’d love to come again in search for sea life posing on light background of chalk rocks.