The City of Sevastopol and its port are intertwined. Having been home to the Russian Navy's Black Sea Fleet for over a century, it has a Russian look and feel. Most of the population is ethnically Russian, and many of the people sympathize with Moscow rather than Kiev, Ukraine. They have even protested Ukrainian membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization alliance.
The Port of Sevastopol is a peaceful and stable city, but it is decidedly more Russian than Ukrainian. The city has strong memories of the Crimean War, and it is home to a wonderful museum and Panorama depicting the siege of Sevastopol as well as many war memorials and monuments. During summers, visitors find many tented beer bars at the waterfront where they can watch the ships in the bay and enjoy the local scenery. Not many people in the Port of Sevastopol speak English, and visitors are recommended to learn a few words of Russian before traveling there.
The Port of Sevastopol has the subtropical climate of the southern Crimean coast and a moderate-continental climate in the foothills. The coldest month of the year is January when the temperatures fall to about 1 °C (34 °F). The driest and warmest month is July when temperatures rise to 23 °C (74 °F).
The Port of Sevastopol is famous for its Panorama Museum, also called the Heroic Sevastopol Defence. Founded in 1905 on the 50th anniversary of the Siege of Sevastopol during the Crimean War, the panorama includes a 1600 square meter canvas by Franz Alekseevich Roubaud that illustrates the assault, and the building contains busts of the heroic city defenders.
Visitors to the Port of Sevastopol will not want to miss the Russian Black Sea Fleet Museum in a wonderful historic building. The Black Sea Fleet was created during the reign of Catherine II (the Great). The museum contains five more paintings by Franz Alekseevich Roubaud depicting the early fortifications and harbor as well as other paintings and photographs telling the story of the Black Sea Fleet's adventures in the Crimean.
The Sevastopol Fine Arts Museum is one of the city's architectural treasures that survived World War II. The collection contains masterpieces from nationalized private collections around the southern Crimea, including pieces from the Tsar's summer residence in Livadia. The museum contains over eight thousand pieces of artwork (including paintings, drawings, sculptures, engravings, and decorative and applied arts). The collection includes paintings from 16th to 19th Century Italy, Flanders, Holland, and 17th to 19th Century France. While the collection of Russian paintings is small, it contains excellent works from the 19th Century to modern days. The Soviet Art section contains works by masters from the outstanding period of Soviet patriotic and realistic themes and styles.
The National Reserve of Chersonese of Taurida preserves the remains of the ancient Greek city that was settled near the Port of Sevastopol in the latter half of the 5th Century BC. Today, the remains lie within the modern limits of the Port of Sevastopol and include the city's defensive walls, houses, public places, wells, basements, and cemetery. Excavations have been underway for some 200 years, and the site has provided a rich collection of art, sculpture, coins, and tools. The Middle Ages Museum holds many of these treasures. Visitors particularly enjoy visiting the antique basilicas and the well-preserved mosaic floors that have been found there. Within the area is St. Vladimir's Cathedral, traditionally thought to be the baptismal site of Price Vladimir. The site also includes a theater thought to have been built in the 3rd Century BC where Roman gladiators fought during that era.
Travelers who want to visit the Port of Sevastopol and the southern Crimea by sea can find a list of scheduled cruises on the Cruise Compete website.
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