About This Festival
A Sexy Beach Bash
Parallel festival universes do exist, with a twist. Take Burning Man, turn its dusty playa into a sun-dappled beach, this time on a Cambodian island. Throw in some raw Eastern European energy and some sexy style, and you have one hell of a beach bash. Kazantip Republic (aka Z) is a tour-de-force, a party with principles that goes on for 24 hours a day for about two weeks.
Kazantip Republic: Surfing Gone Nuclear
Humble beginnings? Not so much. Kazantip Republic started out as a windsurfing competition combined with an underground rave held in an abandoned nuclear reactor (still unfinished as construction stopped after the Chernobyl meltdown). Last year it outgrew its home and moved to the idyllic beachfront locale in Anaklia, Georgia, attracting over 100,000 ravers annually to this slice of the Black Sea coast. In 2015, the party moved yet again to the tropical jungle beaches of Cambodia – to the tiny island of Koh Puos – until it was shut down by the Cambodian government over "sexy activities" and "indecent tourism." After this stroke of bad luck, it was announced that the gathering would once again return to its beachside home of Popovka, Crimea.
The Republic of Z
It’s not a festival, it’s a moment-in-time party republic. This imaginary country exists only for a while. It was born with the color orange, a splash of creative freedom in a former Soviet satellite.
The beach is two square kilometers of pure party paradise, where summer lovers and creative souls unite to worship the sun, sand, and sexiness that is Z. This land has its own constitution, religion, and rules. You are definitely no longer in Kansas anymore — you have arrived at Kazantip Republic. There are waterfront bars, underground lairs, large-scale art installations, and a series of rituals sure to keep you guessing and saying, “Where am I?” and “What does this all mean?”
Ruled by a “ruthless” self-proclaimed party PreZident, Nikita Marshunok, Kazantip Republic was his response to the world around him, and his followers are fanatical and fantastical. In his words, it’s “summer year round” and “life with no pants.”
Getting a ViZa
It’s not a ticket, it’s a ViZa. The borders of this rogue republic are guarded by a small army. And when we say army, we mean it. There are armed guards, and the gates have facial recognition ticketing. Needless to say, you’ll want to play by the rules when visiting this republic. That means being respectful of other people (don’t be creepy) and not urinating in public. A ViZa costs about 211 Euros for the two official weeks.
The Constitution of Z
The event is governed by the “Constitution of Z,” a jabberwocky-esque amalgamation of “rules” that include:
- The Kazantip Republic is movable state, which has borders, but no stable area and can occasionally change its position in space.
- Corn on the cob and fried sunflower seeds are the national food of the Kazantip citiZens.
- A piece of music able to give the PreZident goose bumps is deemed the National Anthem of the Republic.
Read the full version here.
Not So Fast
Despite the Vice documentary “Raving on the Black Sea” and more gorgeous people than you’ve ever seen your whole life, don’t expect you’ll be getting much of anything besides eye strain if you don’t speak Russian, Georgian or Ukrainian (or given this year's location, Khmer). In the past, Kazantip has been a party stop of the Russian elite and a who’s who of partiers in the know (you’ll see their mega yachts parked right off shore). However, if by chance you do meet the girl or boy of your dreams you can get a fast marriage at Z, which means your love will be recognized inside of the Republic, but please come dressed for the part. The ceremony is as much about fashion as circumstance.