Thursday, 18 June 2015

Crimea's summer palace of the Tsar

Decorative tiles inside Livadia Palace. Yalta, Crimea. Photo by Simon Raven
With breathtaking views of the Black Sea, Livadia Palace is located on the cliffs a few miles west of the Crimean seaside resort of Yalta. This beautiful Italian Renaissance-style white mansion house was built in the 1860s as a summer retreat for Tsar Nicholas II. It later hosted the Yalta Conference in 1945 when the victors of World War II, Winston Churchill, Franklin Roosevelt and Joseph Stalin confirmed decisions on the carve-up of Europe.

Crimea first became part of the Russian Empire in 1783, when Russia conquered the Crimean Khanate (a Turkic vassal state of the Ottoman Empire). In 1954, the Crimean peninsula was peacefully transferred from Russia to Ukraine by decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union. Following recent tension sparked by the Euromaidan protests in Kiev, the internationally recognised Ukrainian territory of Crimea was once again annexed by the Russian Federation in March 2014.

Livadia Palace. Yalta, Crimea. Photk by Chris Raven
In the shadow of rising tension in Ukraine, UK authors and road trip travel writers, Simon Raven and Chris Raven, seized a rare opportunity to drive full circle around the Black Sea. Read about their epic journey in 'Black Sea Circuit: An Adventure Through the Caucasus'.

by Simon Raven, Chris Raven

Order your copy online from Amazon and all major book retailers. ISBN 9780954884284.

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