Mountain Ai- Petri is the highest mountain on the
Crimean Peninsula at an elevation of 1234 meters (4049 feet). It is
towers over municipality of Alupka and Yalta.
Name of Ai- Petri mountain is translated from Greek
language as Saint Peter (Άγιος
Πέτρος) after a Greek Orthodox
monastery that once stood on Ai- Petri plateau near its peak. It was
dedicated to Christ's apostle Saint Peter. The easiest to get here
is by cable car from Alupka. Its total length is 3.5 km taking all
the way to the base of the peak. Two kilometres of this cable
between Ai- Petri mountain and station Pine Forest (Сосновый
Бор) has support, which is considered the longest in Europe.
Another way to get to the top is by taking a taxi. It is about 20-
30 minutes of drive, but you have no chance of being stuck in a
cable car as it happened in August 2013 when several people were
stuck for hours there.
Once you will get to the parking lot you will met
numerous restaurants and several stables with horses, ponies,
donkeys and even camels. Although I would suggest skipping taking a
meal here, you can take a rent horse to explore the plateau around
Ai- Petri. Short climb to the top of the Ain Petri is not very long
or too steep. However the rocks were well polished by thousands of
tourists (including last Russian emperor Nicholas II with his
family) over a course of decades so they might get fairly slippery.
So watch you feet. Once you will get to the top you can do base
jumping if you risk it from the peak. Ai- Petri is very steep on its
South side offering a fantastic view of the Black Sea below. The
north side of the mountain is a different matter. It is a plateau
that is virtually flat covered with low pines and patches of broad
Ai- Petri peak is one of
the most windiest in Crimea. Wind velocity on top reaches a speed of 50 m/s
(110 mph). Despite that the plateau on the Northern part is well
protected from the nature's wrath. People settled this area since
the Stone age. Their tools and weapons were discovered here. In
addition there are several caves that keep temperature cool all year
long. Today these caves are open to the public. The trails are
fairly well marked. The largest cave is known as Trechglazka (Трехглазка)
or Three eyed cave.