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One of the first modern terrariums on the Black Sea coast, the Adler Terrarium opened in 2000. Despite its small size, it boasts not only reptiles, but many other inhabitants of the tropics. In spacious cages, visitors can see playful monkeys and lemurs. The cries of parrots and toucans can be heard nearby; the sloth and the Nile crocodile rest, turtles and toads enjoy the water, as snakes and lizards slither by. Visitors can go on an excursion to learn more about the biodiversity of the Southern hemisphere and get a chance to feed the animals. The terrarium’s experts can also offer advice on keeping reptiles and amphibians as pets.

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The Monkey House is the popular short name for Russia’s only Institute of Medical Primatology, which houses a monkey breeding centre. The only facility in the country to breed primates for scientific purposes, the centre was opened on the outskirts of Sochi in 1981 as a branch of the famous Sukhum monkey house. In 1991, it became independent. The breeding centre is well-known for its scientific work, which includes testing new medical products and therapy methods. One of its areas of work is the fight against HIV/AIDS.

Another achievement that has brought the centre fame is its breeding and training of primate cosmonauts. The Monkey House has a special memorial complex with figures of monkeys in a space capsule. Visitors can go on two types of excursion here. The traditional version includes a walk around the premises, during which guests get to meet more than 200 animals, and to find out about their habits and lifestyle. Altogether, the centre is home to around 4,500 monkeys. Feeding the animals is strictly prohibited as they are taking part in experiments. For those who hold a deeper interest in primates and science, the centre offers excursions to the laboratories, where visitors can even take part in experiments.

Ticket office: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Sergei Bobyliev/TASS

The uniqueness of Sochi is not only due to its Black Sea coast. The Caucasus mountains with their rare animals and plants are also full of beauty. The Caucasus State Biosphere Reserve was founded to protect the natural riches of the region. In 2004, a special complex was created near Krasnaya Polyana, bringing together the animals of the Caucasus. Here, relictual and rare animals and birds from Russia’s Red Book of endangered species can roam wild in large enclosures in the woods in an environment almost identical to their natural habitat. Children and adults alike are charmed by the Caucasian wisent, the noble deer, roe and chamois, the wild boar and the aurochs. The predators of the reserve include wolves, foxes, lynx and forest wildcats, as well as the entertaining raccoons and badgers. Visitors will also see a range of birds of the Caucasus such as the falcon, black vulture, eagle and mallard. The reserve’s very first inhabitants were wounded and sick animals rescued by the staff.

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One of the sanatoriums at the resort has its own small zoo, which boasts an astonishing array of animals. Visitors are especially fascinated by the exotic inhabitants such as the albino kangaroos, ligers (a cross between a lion and a tiger), black jaguar and white Bengal tigers, the cheetah and African white lion. All the animals breed well, which is not always the case in larger zoos. Each year sees the arrival of new tiger cubs, who are then raised by dogs. The Sochi zoo has also seen the birth of liger cubs and baby llamas. Besides its more unusual inhabitants, the zoo is also populated by the traditional lynx, camel, leopard, lama and fox. The zoo is open not only to guests at the Oktyabrsky Sanatorium, but to all visitors wishing to experience its magic.