Georgia - Sea and mountains

This trip will take you to discover almost all essential places of this beautiful land. Visit the capital Tbilisi - a pleasant, charming and vibrant city, explore landscapes which are absolutely breathtaking. In 12 days, you will visit historical and natural sites and discover the most beautiful landscapes of Georgia, from the Caucasus Mountains to the Black Sea.  You will experience a sincere hospitality of its inhabitants in the magnificent cities 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.
 

Overnight in Tbilisi.

 

 

Day 2
Visit the capital of Georgia

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

In the afternoon we visit the National Museum and its collections of “golden treasure” from the ancient period. At the end of our day we visit Dry Bridge - place which attracts visitors with its flea market.

Walking hours: around 3h.
Overnight in Tbilisi.

 

 

Day 3
Discover the Wine Region

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 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, where the locals show us their traditional methods of winemaking, very different from European practice. Degustation of wine.

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.

We visit Tsinandali - palace and historic winery-estate which once belonged to the 19th-century aristocratic poet Alexander Chavchavadze, the palace combines Georgian architecture with Italian inspiration.

Arrive in Telavi - the capital and 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

We continue our Discovery of Kakheti region.

Visit a small and charming village Sighnaghi, stroll through its cobbled streets and along the wall, admire the splendid panorama of Alazani Valley and the Caucasus.

Short break at Bodbe monastery where St Nino stop of rest during spreading the Christianity in Georgia, this visit allows us to learn the history of the holy evangelizer, very important figure of Georgian religion.

Continue to the monastery complex 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 Christianity. The monastery consists of two parts: the first is Lavra, where the main sanctuary is located, and the second - Udabno, perched on the hill of Azerbaijani slope, richly decorated with frescoes. This last part is currently closed to visitors.

Return back to Tbilisi.

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

 

 

Day 5
Visit the region of lakes and fortresses

Departure to Samtskhe-Javakheti region via Tsalka, on the way visit Poka monastery located on the edge of the alpine lake Paravani. 

Visit Vardzia Cave Town, located at the left bank of Mtkvari river. The monastery complex caved in a rock, is XII-XIII CC Georgian picturesque monument, high mountains and rock cliffs, special kind of architecture. We visit this site which still 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 and mountain region Ratcha

We arrive in Borjomi, remarkable with its natural mineral springs. 

Departure for 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 church, Nikortminta, 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 Visit Barakoni Church – XVIII C. 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 - the seaside city on the Black Sea coast, with 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 2 h.
Overnight in Batumi.

 

 

Day 8
Discover Black sea coast and the 2nd city of the country

Visit an archaeological site - Gonio Fortress with its museum. Then we visit 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 the Georgian culture since X C until the XVIII C, the masterpiece of the Golden Age of medieval Georgia, the center of science and education during that period. After we 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 Greater Caucasus

Early departure for the central part of Georgia, Gori – soviet city and 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 (about 1h30), dug into the rocks dates back to the 2nd century, is overlooking to the river Mtkvari.

On the way of Kazbegi visit Ananuri Fortress offers picturesque views over the Jinvali Reservoir. Cross the legendary Georgian Military Highway, one of the world’s most beautiful roads, 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 3 h.
Overnight in Kazbegi.

 

Day 10
Visit the Greater Caucasus and UNESCO sights

Visit Gergeti Trinity church situated 300 m above the village. Option: hiking up to Gergeti church (2 h, 6 km).

Departure for Mtskheta – an old capital of Iberia kingdom, visit Jvari (Cross) monastery perched on a hill and overlooking the confluence of the Aragvi and Mtkvari rivers. Visit Svetitskhoveli Cathedral ("Life-giving column") dated back to the 11tcentury. Shopping of Georgian national handmade souvenirs. Possibility of buying national handcrafted souvenirs.

Return in Tbilisi.

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

 

 

Day 11
Georgians as the first Europeans

In the morning departure towards the south of Georgia, in direction of the orthodox church of Bolnisis Sioni dated back to the V century, where the first Georgian inscription was found.

Continue to the 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, during the archaeological excavations, which is the statement that Georgians are the first Europeans.

Return to Tbilisi.

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

 

Day 12
Tbilisi - Departure

Transfer to the airport, departure.

Georgia - Sea and mountains

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...