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ABKHAZIA
THE LAND OF SOUL
It is closer than you think
Abkhazia
 covers three thousand square
miles between the eastern
shores of the Black Sea and the
Caucasus mountains. It is
bordered on the north by Russia,
and on the south by Georgia.
About three-fourths of Abkhazia
is mountainous. The region also
has excellent seacoast resorts.
The short distance between the
coast and the mountains creates
a landscape of striking contrasts.
Abkhazia
 Abkhazia is divided into seven administrative
districts: Gagra, Gudauta, Sukhum, Ochamchira,
Gulripsh, Tquarchal and Gal. Due to its
mountainous nature, Abkhazia has many rivers
and lakes, and rich fertile soil. The climate is very
mild, averaging around 15 degrees Celsius.
Higher elevations experience a more varied
climate, with significant snow and even glaciers
in some parts. The capital city is Sukhum (Aqw'a
in Abkhaz) which lies on the Black Sea coast.
The flag of the Republic of Abkhazia was created in 1991 by V. Gamgia.It was
officially adopted on 23 July 1992.The design of the red canton is based on the banner
of the medieval Abkhazian Kingdom. The open right hand means the strong Abkhazian
Statehood, and “We are opened to the whole world!” but at the same time “Stop to
Enemies!". The seven stars in the canton have since been reinterpreted to correspond to
the seven historical regions of the country - Sadzen, Bzyp, Gumaa, Abzhywa, Samurzaqan,
Dal-Tsabal and Pskhuy-Aibga.
The seven green and white stripes represent the tolerance that allows
Christianity and Islam to cohabit.

Climate and Weather
Abkhazian natural heritage is magnificent and diverse, unique in its
fascinating, harmonious combination of the scenery of the Caucasus
Mountains and the Black Sea coast. A stretch only fifty kilometers wide
between the shoreline and the Greater Caucasus Mountain Range
encompasses all existing climactic zones, from rainforest to perennial
snow and glaciers.
The average annual temperature is +15°С. Abkhazian winters are the
warmest in all of Caucasus. Snowfall is rare, and the average
temperature in January rarely falls below +7°С. In the summer, the
average temperature is +27 to 28°С. At Gagra resort, the highest
average temperature during the hottest month of the year is +24.5°С.
Average annual rainfall is approximately 1400 mm. Average relative
atmospheric humidity in Sukhum is 72%. The number of hours of
sunshine in the republic's capital is 2238 hours a year, with maximum
hours in the summer (812) and minimum in the winter (317).

Abkhazia's Mountains and Caves
Nearly all of Abkhazia's territory is occupied by tall mountain ranges. Greater Caucasus mountain
range on Abkhazia's northwestern border, near the source of Auadhara River, rises 2500 meters
above sea level, while on Abkhazia's eastern border, the altitude of the mountain ranges reaches
3500-4000 meters. The highest point in Abkhazia is Mount Dombai-Ulgen, reaching 4048 meters
above sea level. In order of receding height, other impressive mountains in Abkhazia are Gvandra
(3984 m), Ertsog (3909 m), Psysh (3790 m), Ptysh (3465 m), Agepsta (3256 m), and Khimsa (3032
m).
There are 14 mountain passes in the Greater Caucasus range that lie within Abkhazia's borders, at
altitudes ranging from 2300 to 3000 m above sea level. Most of these passes are difficult to access,
and are closed for travel most of the year. In centuries past, travel routes through Klukhori Pass,
situated on the Sukhumi Military Road, and Marukh Pass were actively used as a link to countries
on the other side of Greater Caucasus.
Two vast limestone massifs on Abkhazian territory are especially significant: Gagra mountain
range (highest elevation: Arabika, 2656 m) and Bzyb mountain range (highest elevation: Napra,
2684 m). The limestone bulk of these ranges is home to Earth's deepest known caves: Krubera
(Voronya, or Crow's) Cave, with explored depth of 2080 m, Sarma Cave (1543 m), V. Pantyukhin's
Cave in the Gagra mountain range (1480 m), Snezhnaya (Snowy) Cave in the Bzyb mountain range
(1370 m), and New Athos (Novoafonskaya) Cave, with a colossal volume of 1.5 million cubic
meters.
 Abkhazia is recognized as a country that has the world
largest water resource and no one can equal with the high
quality of potable water of Abkhazia. The content of
oxygen in the air is very rich and free from industrial
emissions, sea water amazes by its unique purity and
transparency, and you can easily swim in the sea the whole
year round.

Abkhazia's Rivers
The perennial snows crowning Abkhazia's mountaintops year-round are spread
out over an area of 77 km. sq. Over the summer, the snows melt partially, filling
the river beds of Abkhazia's many streams with the purest water. There are
approximately 120 rivers, 186 mountain lakes, and 170 mineral springs in
Abkhazia. It's an interesting fact that, despite Abkhazia's small size, all of its
rivers in their entirety, from source to mouth, together with their basins, and
with the exception of the two border rivers, are completely contained within the
country.
Abkhazia's most famous mineral water is Auadhara, flowing from a spring in
Auadhara river valley. Hot springs in Primorskoye village (Gudaut District) and
Kyndug village (Ochamchyr District) are also widely popular.
Abkhazia's portion of the Black Sea coast is renowned for its wide pebble and
sand beaches and pure sea water. The coastline is 210 km long. The composition
of the sea water is rich and diverse, containing approximately 60 various mineral
salts, although Black Sea water salinity is half that of the Mediterranean. The
Black Sea is home to approximately 250 species of seaweed, 180 species of fish,
more than 200 species of crustaceans, several species of jellyfish, shrimp, crabs,
and three dolphin species, a list that doesn't begin to sum up all of its animal and
plant life.
 Mineral waters of Abkhazia
 Drinking mineral waters are groundwaters, waters from
melted snow or artificial waters, comprise saline and
compositions of matter. In contrast to pure drinking water
mineral water has the high level of salinity.
Approximately 170 sources of mineral waters are known in
Abkhazia. Better than others studied Auadkhara mineral
water, Primorskaia mineral water, Markhiaul mineral water,
Sukhum mineral water, Atsgara and Sakian mineral waters,
located in the different districts of republic. Mineral waters
of Abkhazia are known as health-giving steal waters, and
also popular at sanatorium-and-spa treatment.
 In Abkhazia you can find the most ecological net
production that helps to live a healthy and long
lives. Abkhazia was often visited by scientists
from all over the world, who were trying to
investigate the phenomenon of longevity.

During the Soviet times, Abkhazia was famous for its centenarians (aged
100 years or more). If the whole Soviet Union had 100 centenarians per
million population, the Abkhaz population of 500,000 there were about 250
people
 In modern Abkhazia is home of nearly 4000 people whose age has
exceeded 80 years.379 people older than 90 years, 114 people older than 95
years, 39 people age over 100 years.
Of the inhabitants of such venerable age dominated by women (88%).

The secrets of long life
Inhabitants of the mountains live longer.And
though today Abkhaz villages are located
mostly at an altitude of 300-600 meters above
sea level.In the past, most Abkhazians lived in
the highlands.
 Long life can be explained by the favorable
climatic and environmental conditions
 Inhabitants of the mountains live longer.And
though today Abkhaz villages are located
mostly at an altitude of 300-600 meters
above sea level.In the past, most Abkhazians
lived in the highlands.
 Long life can be explained by the favorable
climatic and environmental conditions
One of the most popular theories is that the secret to long life is
in one's diet.
 Abkhazians eat
homegrown and homeprocessed foods. Their
everyday diet
includes plentiful raw
fruits and vegetables
yogurt and
cheese, some meat,
and little fish. Instead of
bread we eat a bland
cornmeal mush.We dip
it and other foods into
spicy sauces made with
Abkhazian salt
(ajika).This is a tasty
mixture of ground red
peppers, up to a dozen
herbs, and salt.
What effects the longevity
And…
1) climatic conditions
(Mild, relatively stable throughout the year climate)
2) Diet
3) Good sleep
4) Behavior in stress situations
5) Spend a lot of time in the mountains
6) Sedentary way life
7) get up early
8) work in the fresh air
9) hunting, walking, naps
10) National Instruments
11) singing folk music
12) Dancing
13) natural wine

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