The Caucasus We Know
Adventure.Dream.Team. is here to show you the way we look at the Caucasus. We want you to try and see it through our eyes just for a moment and really understand why we are so passionate about this spectacular region, and what you should know before traveling here. We assure you this is one of the world’s most exotic and thrilling destinations to visit which will amaze you by over 50 distinct ethnic and linguistic groups and the landscapes from dry steppes or deserts to everlasting glaciers and mountains. This all is just in a territory roughly the size of Portugal and Belgium.
The region’s diversity is stunning and it’s pretty hard to know where to start exploring it, so we will provide you the most essential information about the Caucasian region. Once you’ve visited this magical place, we’re sure you’ll be back for more! So let’s begin!
Geography of the North Caucasus
Why do you always talk about the North Caucasus in particular? And what’s the difference between saying just “Caucasus” and “the North Caucasus”?
If we simply have a look at the map — there’s a large mountain range (over 1000 km) called the Greater Caucasus ridge. It goes from the Caspian sea to the Black sea, so from the East to the West. Obviously it divides the North and the South. So the South Caucasus or co-called “Transcaucasia” is basically the area shared between Georgia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan. Whereas the North Caucasus is the Russian part of the overall Caucasus territory.
What else you should know about the North Caucasus is that it’s a historic and cultural district of Russia that actually consists of the other administrative units. As a Federal District it includes Stavropol Krai and 6 Republics: Kabardino-Balkaria, Karachai-Cherkessia, North-Ossetia-Alania, Chechnya, Dagestan, and the smallest one Ingushetia. The capital of the district is Pyatigorsk where most of our tours begin.
What is the best time to travel to the North Caucasus?
The region is located in different climatic zones which is why the weather varies widely from area to area: from the hot and largely arid Dagestan with its sand dunes; dry steppes in Stavropol Krai; to the highlands with low temperatures which are also combined with high humidity and what makes it feel even colder.
In general the winters aren’t that cold, the temperature usually varies between 0°C and -15°C (naturally, in the mountains it’s colder). In summer it’s around +25 or +30°C.
So if you’re choosing the best time to come to the North Caucasus we can say: it’s fascinating in every season and there’s always something to do!
Activities in different seasons
In winter you can make your dreams come true by skiing or snowboarding at the highest ski-resort “Elbrus”, the most dangerous one “Cheget”, or the coziest one “Arkhyz”. Combine it with some interesting day-trips on the cool off-road cars or an unusual New Year celebration “in the middle of nowhere” and get an unforgettable vacation!
Spring and autumn are the best seasons to explore the cultures of the North Caucasus and lifestyles of the local peoples. Would you like to taste a traditional pie in Ossetia or even make it by yourself? Or ride a horse in Karachai-Cherkessia? or maybe you want to milk a real highland cow in Dagestan? What an experience instead of rainy days! Hint-hint: we also have wine and cognac factories here 😉
No need to guess that summer in the North Caucasus is made for adventure activities such as hiking, trekking, or paragliding! Being miles away from all villages and human-beings makes it truly wild and romantic at the same time. Just think of the myriad of stars you’ll see above your head every night and the sound of a strong mountain river. Whether you do a trek around Elbrus or day-hikes in Dombay, Bezengi, or Adyl-su valley the landscapes will amaze you every minute!
It’s up to you when to come. Each season makes your adventure unbelievable and unique! Furthermore, it’s much easier to get to the North Caucasus than you think. Budget flights have made the Caucasus more accessible than ever before.
We keep discovering the Caucasus with you guys and really looking forward to showing every curious and complicated wonder of it. If the North Caucasus still isn’t on your bucket list, it definitely should be! Here is why!
6 reasons to come to the North Caucasus
- You have to enjoy magnificent landscapes of Mount Elbrus that is the highest peak in Russia and Europe and is also one of the Seven Summits of the world. The literal hinge of the Caucasian border between Europe and Asia. What can be said about Elbrus that hasn’t already been said?
- Have you ever dived into thermal mineral water? No? You definitely should! Here you can improve your health at the mineral springs in Pyatigorsk or Kabardino-Balkaria.
- Take a challenge and go for incredible multiple-day treks with backpacks to the Caucasus mountains.
- Take a ride through breathtaking valleys in the morning, ski in the afternoon, and overindulge on mouthwatering Caucasian cuisine in the evening in Karachay-Cherkessia.
- You can’t miss the chance to visit the land of ancient watchtowers and the incredible untouched nature of Argun gorge — all this picturesque in the “land of mountains” in the Republics of Chechnya and Dagestan.
- And finally to become a part of a lifetime journey with people from all over the world!
No doubts, the North Caucasus is a 100% must-visit place! You’ll be totally blown away by the warm local hospitality and rare natural beauty of the land. The Caucasus has long been considered a troubled region riddled with ethnic conflicts, but that’s in the past. Now it’s changing and transforming itself anew.
Adventure.Dream.Team. is here to capture the raw beauty and authentic character of this region and show how a visit to the North Caucasus promises a trip of a lifetime!
We hope this blog gives you some inspiration and handy tips to go and chase your own adventures to the North Caucasus. Travel is the best kind of education so go get lost, even if it’s just outside your own doorstep!