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Fans of the traditional Russian bath gather at Sochi festival

Wednesday, June 14, 2017 - 01:34

A festival of the traditional Russian bath, also known as banya, attracted thousands of steam lovers to the Black Sea resort city of Sochi. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).

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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: Spa lovers were drawn to a traditional Russian bath festival - also known as banya - in Sochi, Russia. On the shores of the Mzymta river surrounded by the Caucasus mountains, festival visitors had a chance to enjoy 10 unique types of baths. Those interested in the traditional Russian bath were encouraged to start their session by staying in a room filled with hot air where they were beaten by birch twigs as a part of the Russian-style treatment. "It's hot to breathe there, in the bath," said festival visitor Konstantin, from Moscow. "And when I got out of there, I felt giddy on the way to the swimming pool. A bath attendant told me that blood surges to the head. I like it afterwards, but during the process I think of how to survive." Visitors then dipped in cold swimming pools. Russians believe a hot steam bath and a dip in cold water right after are good for the health. One could also undergo relaxation sessions where bowls, sticks and drums were used on their bodies. Russian ethnographic center hosted the festival with almost 500 participants and attracted 10,000 visitors, according to the bath festival director.

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Fans of the traditional Russian bath gather at Sochi festival

Wednesday, June 14, 2017 - 01:34