Coastal area of Odessa starts from Shevchenko Park. This is the coastal strip of public beaches. Strictly near Black sea there are city beaches, restaurants, bars and other resort infrastructure. Above is a pedestrian route with a length of 5 km, surrounded by greenery. This walking area called Health Route. It goes along seaside, and is open for skaters and bikers, and simple walkers. In summer months, Health Route is a very lively place that locals choose for a pleasant walk for breathing fresh air, away from city dust and exhaust fumes.
History of Arkadia
Coastal zone as special Odessa attractions was not always as it is now. In XIX century on these slopes there were farmsteads and garden plots of famous people of the city. Owners who buy land here had 27 hectares of field plus “inconveniences” – the same slopes that the Health Route passes. At one time, this lands belonged by governor-general, Count Alexander Langeron, governor-general of the region, this is a name of the first city beach, Langeron. From time to time people resold this territory for a century and eventually, moved into the possession of city. Soviet regime began to strengthen the slopes in 1960. After all they created Health Road. It is interesting that originally this route was designed as a bypass road for emergency cases, so that you could quickly pass through city streets and get from Arkadia to centre of Odessa.
To get to Health Route, you need go down from Park Shevchenko (Odessa) towards a beach. Here you will meet the famous arch, which in XIX century served as a front gate-entrance to villa of Governor-General Langeron. Pity, but now left only one element of that elite structure. In 2013, it was restored by found engravings and photographs. At the beginning of the beach there is a dolphinarium and an oceanarium. This place is called Langeron. It is easily recognizable by two concrete spheres on the sides of stairs.
Behind Langeron there is a succession of wild beaches and yacht clubs. If you walk about two kilometers along Route of Health and go down, you can find Otrada beach. It’s hard not to notice it thanks to a special distinctive detail – a huge yellow stone. There are beaches with restaurants and bars.
Another specific part of Otrada beach is passenger cableway, which cabs slowly float above the trees. This is a very convenient way to get down, escaping many stairs. Cableway takes you from French Boulevard (Odessa) straight to Otrada beach in about 5 minutes. Total length of cableway is 425 meters. There is a cableway already 40 years old, and looks rather old, as it was built during Soviet Union. Interesting fact is that the first draft of the cableway on these slopes was in XIX century. The idea was next – to build a hydraulic lifting machine for the same purpose – to get people down to the beach. But that project was never implemented.
After going through entire Health Route to its end, you get to Arkadia zone. Due to its convenient location, it was one of the first Odessa resorts, which appeared in the end of XIX century. In those days, to get to Arcadia beach zone, people need to get through many cliffs and descents. But Arkadia has a natural outlet to sea due to local landscape – a narrow road between two slopes. It was convenient to come here by carriage right to the sea, and that’s why the first tram line from the city led here. Soon here appeared various cafes and baths, and since that time Arkadia became a favorite resting place for Odessa audience.
Now Arkadia is the center of nightlife of Odessa. There are numerous coastal hotels, nightclubs, restaurants, bars, etc. In summer this is quite a noisy place, so it should not be chosen by those who want to spend a holiday in silence. There is a different city transport: buses, trams, trolleybuses directly from the city center. At night, only a taxi.