Nuri Lake

Cover image © Lasha Purtskhvanidze

Located in Batumi, Adjara, near the Black Sea coast, Nuri Lake, also known as Pioneer Lake, Nuri-Geli, or Gel-Bashi, stands at 0.2 meters (0.66 feet) above sea level, mostly fed by groundwater. In the 19th century, the area was swampy, but transformations began in 1933, turning the city's garden into a children’s park, with renovations to both park and lakeshores. The canal connecting the lake to the Black Sea was established, and in 1947, the ship "Pioneer" was launched, followed by "Ace" in 1988. The lake is rich in various fish species and surrounded by legends and historical facts.

Boating is an option at Nuri Lake; you can even try steering the boat yourself. The encompassing “May 6 Park” or “Central Park of Batumi” offers leisure spaces, children’s entertainment areas, and a small zoo.

Delving into legends, Nuri-Geli was once called Gel-Bashi, named after a tragic event where a child named Nuri drowned, her mother’s calls of "Nuri, Geli" echoing daily. The governor, General Smekalovsky, aimed to turn the area into a garden, hiring Prussian gardener Rasler for the task, though he passed away in 1884, three years into the project. A French gardener took over, and by 1888, the Russian emperor’s visit led to its renaming as "Garden of Alexandrov". The area was 78,000 sq. m at the time. In 1993, it became “Children's Park,” and later “Pioneer Park,” also witnessing the addition of a zoo.

Over two decades later, renovations expanded the zoo to 20 hectares, divided into sectors for birds, marsupials, and ungulates. Plans include opening a contact zoo. Since 1936, the park has hosted children's programs and clubs, with the addition of a dolphinarium in 1975, which became a major attraction. However, it closed in the early 1990s, reopening later with the support of Batumi City Hall and “Cartu” charity fund. The dolphinarium is part of a scientific research center, housing 14 dolphins from the Red Book for rehabilitation. The adjacent aquarium, opened in 1966, hosts around 100 species, including the Japanese carp.

Renovations in 2006-2007 led to the park’s current state, now named "May 6 Park," spanning 165,000 sq. m. Today, it stands as a prime leisure complex in Adjara. Activities include picnicking, boating, and exploring the dolphinarium, aquarium, and zoo. The lake is home to fish species like mullet, carp, and bream, and in 2018, a subspecies of otter, unseen since the 1920s, was discovered in the lake, adding to its rich history.

Nearest to Nuri Lake

Distances shown are straight-line, calculated automatically from coordinates, and may not reflect actual travel distance. They do not account for altitude, terrain, or obstacles. Not suitable for itinerary planning or emergencies. For entertainment use only.

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