Georgia - from the mountains to the sea

This trip takes you to discover almost all essential places of this beautiful land. Visit the capital Tbilisi - a pleasant, charming and vibrant city, explore panoramas which are absolutely breathtaking. In 12 days, you visit historical and natural sites and discover the most beautiful landscapes of Georgia, from the Caucasus Mountains to the Black Sea. You have the possibility to experience a sincere hospitality of its inhabitants in the magnificent towns and very authentic villages which are often dominated by imposing fortresses and medieval monasteries.

ITINERARY

 

Day 1

Arrival - Tbilisi

Day 2

Tbilisi

Day 3

Tbilisi - Ikalto - Alaverdi - Tsinandali - Telavi

Day 4

Telavi - Signagi - Bodbe - David Gareja - Tbilisi

Day 5

Tbilisi - Tsalka - Paravani Lake - Poka - Vardzia

Day 6

Vardzia - Borjomi - Tkibuli - Ambrolauri

Day 7

Ambrolauri - Batumi

Day 8

Batumi - Gelati - Kutaisi

Day 9

Kutaisi - Gori - Uplistsikhe - Ananuri - Kazbegi

Day 10

Kazbegi - Mtskheta - Tbilisi

Day 11

Tbilisi - Bolnisi - Dmanisi - Tbilisi

Day 12

Tbilisi - Departure

Day 1
Arrival - Tbilisi

Arrive in Tbilisi, meeting at the airport and transfer to the hotel.
 

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 00h30, 20 km.
Overnight in Tbilisi.

 

 

Day 2
City tour of Tbilisi

Discover the capital of Georgia – Tbilisi, explore the old town with its paved streets and traditional houses with wooden balconies, at the bank of Mtkvari river. Visit Metekhi church and the panoramic plateau which unfolds a superb view of the old city, visit Narikala Fortress - the ancient symbol of the city, the district of baths (Abanotubani) known for its Sulphur hot springs. 

In the afternoon continue to the National Museum and its collections of “golden treasure” from the ancient period. 

At the end of the day visit Mtatsminda, enjoy with the views over the city from Funicular cable car.

Walking hours: around 3h.
Overnight in Tbilisi.

 

 

Day 3
Discover the Wine Region Kakheti

Departure to the East part of Georgia, Kakheti region via Gombori pass, 1600 m, with the picturesque landscapes. The region is appreciated for its wine traditions and richness of historical sites.

Then we explore Ikalto Monastery founded by St. Zenon, one of the 13 Assyrian Fathers, in the late 6th century and the ruins of Ikalto academy where was studied the eminent poet Shota Rustaveli in the 12th century, an author of the great masterpiece of Georgian literature "The Knight in the Panther's Skin “.

We continue our trip to the local house with an old wine cellar, get known more about traditional method of making Georgian Qvevri Wine which is recognized by UNESCO as an Intangible Cultural Heritage. Wine degustation.

The next step allows us to discover the 11th century Alaverdi Cathedral. It is erected in the middle of the plain Alazani, surrounded by the chain of the Greater Caucasus.

Visit Chavchavadze Family Estate in Tsinandali including the memorial house, beautiful garden, historical winery and wine cellar. The estate once belonged to the 19th-century aristocratic poet Alexander Chavchavadze. The winery keeps the oldest bottled wine dated to 1814 – this is the first wine which was bottled in Georgia by Al. Chavchavadze.

Arrive in Telavi - the historical city of Kakheti.

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 3h, 150 km
Walking hours: around 1 h.
Overnight in Telavi.

 

Day 4
Panorama of Alazani Valley and desert landscapes of David Gareja

We continue our discovery of Kakheti region.

Visit a charming town Sighnaghi overlooks the Alazani valley and creates a splendid panorama, stroll through the cobbled and narrow streets with pastel houses. 

Continue to Bodbe monastery originally built in the 9th century and remodeled in the 17th century. The monastery in connected with St. Nino - the 4th-century female evangelist of Georgians. This visit allows us to learn the history of the holy evangelizer, very important figure of Georgian religion.

Continue to the monastery complex of David Garedja located in a desert area, near the border of Azerbaijan. This monastery was created in the 6th century by St David, one of the thirteen Syrian fathers who came to Georgia to strengthen the Christianity. The monastery consists with two parts: the 1st is Lavra, where the main sanctuary is located, and the 2nd - Udabno, perched on the hill of Azerbaijani slope, richly decorated with frescoes. This last part is currently closed for visitors.

Return back to Tbilisi.

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 5h30, 180 km
Walking hours: around 2 h.
Overnight in Tbilisi.

 

 

Day 5
Visit the South of the country: the alpine lake and Vardzia Cave town

Departure to Samtskhe-Javakheti region via Tsalka, on the way it is possible to visit Poka monastery located at the edge of the lake Paravani surrounded by the Lesser Caucasus.

Visit Vardzia Cave Town, located at the left bank of Mtkvari river. The monastery complex caved into the rock, is XII-XIII CC Georgian picturesque monument, high mountains and rock cliffs, special kind of architecture. Visiting this site requires a good physical shape - the multi-storey caves are connected by narrow tunnels, carved into the rocks.

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 4h10, 210 km
Walking hours: around 2 h.
Overnight in Vardzia.

 

 

Day 6
Visit balneological resort Borjomi and mountain region Ratcha

Arrive in Borjomi famous for its natural mineral water. 

Departure to Ambrolauri - Ratcha region via Nakerala Pass, on the way enjoy with the views over Tkbuli reservoir and Shaori Lake. Ratcha is the mountain region which is known for its specific wine due to its terrain. Visit the 10th century Nikortminta Church, a pearl of Georgian architecture with its lapid carvings. 
 

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 3h30, 175 km.
Walking hours: around 1 h.
Overnight in Ambrolauri.

 

Day 7
From mountain region to the Black Sea coast

In the morning we start our day with the visit of Barakoni Church dated back to the XVIII century.
 
Visit an industrial wine cellar which produces famous and very pleasant semi-sweet red wine Khvanchkara, a famous local appellation. Wine degustation.

Continue to Batumi, a modern city at the edge of the Black Sea - attractive European and Asian architecture, churches, cobbled streets, active night and day life, especially during the summer. Evening walk in the city.
 

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 4h20, 240 km
Walking hours: around 1 h.
Overnight in Batumi.

 

 

Day 8
Discover Black sea coast and Kutaisi with Bagrati Cathedral and Gelati Monastery

In the morning, visit an archaeological site - Gonio Fortress and its museum. 

Continue to Batumi Botanical Garden, located on the beautiful coastal hills.

Departure for Kutaisi - the second city of Georgia. Visit UNESCO sites: Gelati monastery, which is the illustration of Georgian culture since X century until the XVIII century, the masterpiece of the Golden Age, the center of science and education of medieval Georgia. Visit recently renovated Bagrati cathedral – the symbol of the city, dated back to the X century.

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 3h330, 180 km
Walking hours: around 3 h.
Overnight in Kutaisi.

 

 

Day 9
To the central part of Georgia and the Greater Caucasus

Early departure to the central part of Georgia, Gori which is the hometown of J. Stalin, where you can visit the house-museum of Stalin and its armored car.

Then we discover an abandoned rock-hewn town Uplistsikhe, the complex is dug into the rocks dates back to the 2nd century and overlooks to the river Mtkvari.

On the way of Kazbegi we stop at Ananuri Fortress with the picturesque views over the Jinvali Reservoir. Cross the legendary Georgian Military Highway, one of the world’s most beautiful roads in Georgia, through the valleys, ravines and finally over the 2300-meter Cross Pass

Arrive in Stepantsminda, Kazbegi
 

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 6h, 365 km
Walking hours: around 2-3 h.
Overnight in Kazbegi.

 

Day 10
Explore Kazbegi and the UNESCO sights of Mtskheta

Visit 14th century Gergeti Trinity church perched on the mountain at an elevation of 2170-meters under Mount Kazbek. Option: it is possible to organize hiking up to Gergeti church (2 h, 6 km).

Road to Mtskheta – an ancient capital of Iberia kingdom, visit Jvari (Cross) monastery (IV C) set on a hill and overlooking the confluence of the Aragvi and Mtkvari rivers. Visit Svetitskhoveli Cathedral ("Life-giving column") dated back to the 11 century. The monuments of Mtskheta are listed among UNESCO World Heritage Monuments.

Return to Tbilisi.

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 3h30, 160 km
Walking hours: around 2 h.
Option: elevation of hiking +/- 450 m 
Overnight in Tbilisi.

 

Day 11
Georgians as the 1st Europeans – visit Dmanisi and Bolnisi

In the morning departure towards the orthodox church of Bolnisi Sioni dated back to the V century, where the first Georgian inscription was founded.

Continue to an archaeological site Dmanisi which is registered on the tentative list of UNESCO world heritage. The excavations of this site are particularly precious for the world’s history: here was found the fossils of hominids of 1,800,000 years old, which is the statement that Georgians are the first Europeans.

Road to Tbilisi and fee time for strolling around the city.

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 3h40, 200 km
Walking hours: around 1 h.
Overnight in Tbilisi.

Day 12
Tbilisi - Departure

Transfer hotel-airport and departure.

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 00h30, 20 km.

Georgia - from the mountains to the sea

12 Days

Mariam Papunashvili

Head of the receptive department

Maryam is graduated from the Faculty of Tourism Management at Ilia Tchavchavadze State University and after she did he...

Ana Gvalia

Travel Advisor

While studying in France Ana traveled extensively around Europe and realized that travel-related discoveries pleased her a lot. Graduate...