The Caucasian Black Sea coast between Sochi and Sukhumi was visited in July 1976 during a symposium organized prior to the XXIII International Geographical Congress held in Moscow. Beaches of this resort area are presently affected by a severe marine erosion. This fact is partially linked with man's impact on fluvial and coastal dynamics. Natural factors, home- ver, also account for the retreat of shingly beaches. Ut to 80 % of the coastal sediment flow is lost in numerous submarine canyons whose heads lie close to the coastline. Costly artificial structures (groynes, breakwaters) are used to protect the Caucasian beaches against further erosion.