Crimea is a peninsula of Ukraine located on the northern coast of the Black Sea with the Autonomous Republic of Crimea occupying most of the peninsula. It was often referred to with the definite article, as the Crimea, until well into the 20th century.
The territory of Crimea was conquered and controlled many times throughout its history. The Cimmerians, Greeks, Scythians, Goths, Huns, Bulgars, Khazars, the state of Kievan Rus’, Byzantine Greeks, Kipchaks, Ottoman Turks, Golden Horde Tatars and the Mongols all controlled Crimea in its early history. In the 13th century, it was partly controlled by the Venetians and by the Genovese; they were followed by the Crimean Khanate and the Ottoman Empire in the 15th to 18th centuries, the Russian Empire in the 18th to 20th centuries, Germany during World War II and the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic and later the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, within the Soviet Union during most of the rest of the 20th century.
Most of Crimea has a temperate continental climate, except for the south coast where it experiences a humid subtropical climate, due to warm influences from the Black Sea. Summers can be hot (28 °C/82.4 °F Jul average) and winters are cool (−0.3 °C/31.5 °F Jan average) in the interior, on the south coast winters are milder (4 °C/39.2 °F Jan average) and temperatures much below freezing are exceptional. Precipitation throughout Crimea is low, averaging only 400 mm (15.7 in) a year. Because of its climate, the southern Crimean coast is a popular beach and sun resort for Ukrainian and Russian tourists.
The development of Crimea as a holiday destination began in the second half of the 19th century. The development of the transport networks brought masses of tourists from central parts of Russia. On the border of the centuries began a sensational developing of palaces, villas and dachas all saved till today. They are one of the main icons of Crimean urban characteristics and tourist destinations.
A new, phase of the tourist developing began when soviet government realised the potential of the healing abilities of the local air, lakes and therapeutic muds. It became a “health” destination for all Soviet workers, hundreds of thousands of the tourists visited Crimea. Nowadays Crimea is more of a get away destination than a “health-improvement” destination. Most visited areas are: the south shore of Crimea with cities of Yalta and Alushta, the western shore – Sevastopol, Yevpatoria and Saki, the south-eastern shore – Feodosia and Sudak.
Crimea possesses significant historical and natural resources and is a region where it is possible to find practically any type of landscape; mountain ranges and plateaus, grasslands, caves. Further Saki poses unique therapeutic mud and Yevpatoria has vast empty beaches with the purest quartz sand.
According to National Geographic, Crimea is among the top 20 travel destinations in 2013.
Professional travel and language assistance guides are available from specialized local agencies providing such services to English speaking travelers to Crimea, Ukraine, such as SunCity Travel, LLC or others.
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