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Monument of Nature (1947). Towers (440 m) a few kilometers to the south-west of Alushta. In the old days a fortress was located on the mountain top, hence the name (“Castel” in Greek means fortress, reinforcement). 

A Crimean legend tells about fierce battles over the last refuge of Queen Theodora flaring up here. Large, rounded boulders border the mountain foothills like a necklace. You can come across interesting minerals sparkling in the sun (calcite, pyrite), beautiful shapes of weathering among stone blocks. 

Not accidentally, these places have long attracted the attention of geologists and geographers. Coastal slopes of Mount Castel are covered with dense thickets of evergreen shrubs of butcher, cistus, jasmine. 

And unique habitats of relict plants – strawberry tree (the north-eastern population in the world), juniper, fine-leaved fern – help deeper understanding of the history of the formation of the flora of the mountainous Crimea. 

In 1979, reserve “Castel” is established nearby, where folded snowdrop, medicinal herbs grow under the protection... 

Literature: V.G. Yena. Protected landscapes of the Crimea. – Simferopol: Tavriya, 1989.

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