Posted On Thursday, 02.13.2014 / 7:18 AM

By Corey Masisak - Staff Writer / - Sochi Travel blog

Olympic Park tour part of grand day of sightseeing

SOCHI -- Good afternoon from the 2014 Summer Olympics!

I kid, but the weather continues to be paradise-esque in Sochi. We read about lots of dreary, rainy weather in the days leading up to the start of the 2014 Sochi Olympics, but to this point it has been a lot of sunshine and temperatures that feel more like May than February.

On Wednesday, I had some time before the hockey games started to explore the Olympic Park. It was a great morning/afternoon to embrace the Olympic spirit, something I've probably been cynical about in the past but have experienced here. (This is the first Olympics that I’ve been to.)

The big takeaway from yesterday is the Olympic Park is massive, significantly bigger than we thought after just walking between the Main Press Center and the two hockey arenas for the first couple days. All of the venues are laid out in a big circle, but that is actually only about half of the park.

Posted On Thursday, 02.13.2014 / 7:04 AM

By Dan Rosen - Senior Writer / - Sochi Travel blog

Sochi offers breathtaking settings as well as sports

SOCHI -- For the past three days I have ventured maybe a quarter-mile from our hotel to the Black Sea coast, where we have shot some videos previewing the games. If you've watched them (you should), you've probably noticed the unbelievable setting behind me of the water glistening in the glow of the powerful sun.

The setting today was more breathtaking then even the past two days and it featured a collection of elements you likely won't find in most places.

Posted On Wednesday, 02.12.2014 / 3:34 AM

By Shawn P. Roarke - Senior Managing Editor / - Sochi Travel blog

Bus ride shows it's a small world

SOCHI -- It really is a small world!

Woke up for Day 3 of my Olympic adventure feeling a bit out of sorts and disoriented. The adrenaline of coming to a foreign country and finding my way had turned into a routine. In my travels, the 72-hour mark has been the usual demarcation line for me when the novelty gives way to the tasks at hand, so I wasn't too surprised that Wednesday dawned with me a bit off-kilter.

But on the morning bus ride to the Bolshoy Ice Dome for another full day of hockey, a random encounter set me right.

Posted On Tuesday, 02.11.2014 / 6:22 AM

By Shawn P. Roarke - Senior Managing Editor / - Sochi Travel blog

Russia team draws great interest in warm Sochi

SOCHI -- Welcome to Day 2 of the Sochi Olympics!

A little sleep was had by all after a day that stretched past 24 hours for the crew here, and things look much brighter after a little shut-eye.

It's really warm here in Sochi with temperatures hitting 54 Fahrenheit by 2 p.m. In fact, it is so warm that Sochi organizers have tapped into the emergency snow supply that has been hoarded for the past year to groom some of the mountain courses.

You are not supposed to sweat at a Winter Olympics, but there is a lot of that going on. Not that I'm complaining. In fact, the weather in the Coastal Cluster is very similar to the weather four years ago in Vancouver.

Posted On Monday, 02.10.2014 / 3:20 PM

By Shawn P. Roarke - Senior Managing Editor / - Sochi Travel blog

Exhausting but fun Day 1 in Sochi

SOCHI -- Well, Day 1 is in the books -- almost.

It's midnight here as Monday bleeds into Tuesday. We arrived almost 14 hours ago and took off from the United States almost 24 hours ago. We are all running on fumes at this point.

All that is left is to find the right bus back to our Ruskiy Dom hotel (the T3 is the hope) and we can grab some much-needed shut-eye. We are all a little punch-drunk now. Sleep never looked so promising.

Despite the demands Monday placed on us, it was a great day. We conquered so many challenges, met so many old friends and made even more new ones.

Posted On Monday, 02.10.2014 / 8:07 AM

By Shawn P. Roarke - Senior Managing Editor / - Sochi Travel blog

Welcome to Russia

SOCHI -- Welcome to Russia, readers!

The staff (myself, Corey Masisak, Dan Rosen and Arpon Basu) made it here this morning and will be here for the next two weeks, bringing you all the news from the biggest international hockey tournament of them all.

We will be sending these digital postcards each day. In them we hope to give you some insight into the Olympic experience away from the ice rinks.

Despite some trepidation, getting to Sochi was a snap. Our plane left at 1:30 p.m. ET Sunday out of Newark, N.J. It arrived at 9:30 a.m. ET Monday. I caught a few hours of sleep and woke up just in time to see the sun rise as we cut across the Black Sea before landing.