Sochi has been called the Russian Riviera. It is a bustling city adjacent to a sweeping rocky coastline. The Winter Olympics comes during the off-season, so visitors should find travel acceptable in and around the city. Although there is plenty to do in the Olympic Park, those looking to take a break from the Olympic festivities should find many enjoyable activities available with few crowds.
During your stay, you don't want to miss the cultural program that Russia has assembled.
The cultural program highlights the variety of Russian art, music and dance representing eighty-three regions in six separate locationa.
What to Do
The central event of the Games Cultural program is the Winter Arts Festival, which takes place February 6-20 in Sochi.
The Gala Concert will take place in the Zimny Theater and will highlight leading soloists of the Russian Ballet and performances by the State Ensemble of National Dance.
The Exhibition of the Russian Regions allow guests to view the ethnic and cultural diversity of Russia.
At the heart of the Olympic Park, you will find the Medals Plaza. Here, from 1pm – 5pm, spectators can watch live video feeds from Olympic events. Starting a 7pm, the evening show of Russian performers, followed by the Awards Ceremony and a headliners concert. Get there early, as crowds of 20000 are expected nightly.
During the day, spectators can take a break from the Olympic views and enjoy the Theme Park located within the Olympic Park complete with two roller coasters.
If traveling with young children, you may want to visit the Residence of Drd Moroz (the Russian Santa Clause). His house is expected to be a major attraction for the youngest spectators.
Sochi is a smoke-free city. All Olympic venues and public gathering places are also smoke-free except within the designated smoking areas.
Excessive noisemakers are prohibited, including vuvuzelas.
The U.S. State Department reminds Olympic spectators that Russian Federal law allows the monitoring, retention and analysis of all data that crosses Russian communication networks. This includes Internet browsing, email messaging and telephone class.
Even though it is cold outside, remove your gloves to shake hands in Russia. If not you will be considered rude.
The Russians believe that one should give only odd numbered flowers during happy times, so skip the dozen roses.
Whistling inside is considered a curse of poverty to everyone around you.
If you drink while in Russia, do as the locals do and give a toast, "za vas (to you)."
Enjoy partaking in all Sochi has to offer. Whether it is watching an event or riding a rollercoaster, here's za vas!