Christmas in Georgia

ITINERARY

Day 1 - 21/12

Arrive

Day 2 - 22/12

Kutaisi - Gelati - Borjomi

Day 3 - 23/12

Borjomi - Bakuriani - Borjomi

Day 4 - 24/12

Borjomi - Vardzia - Akhaltsikhe

Day 5 - 25/12

Akhaltsikhe - Gori - Uplistsikhe - Mtskheta - Tbilisi

Day 6 - 26/12

Tbilisi 

Day 7 - 27/12

Tbilisi - Bodbe - Sighnaghi - Tbilisi

Day 8 - 28/12

Tbilisi - Kutaisi - Departure

Day 1
Arrive

Arrival in Kutaisi. Kutaisi is the second largest and the most important city in Georgia - in the West part of the country. Here is one of three international airports of Georgia, mostly low cost airlines operate in Kutaisi airport. Transfer to the hotel.
 

Night in Kutaisi.

Day 2
Discover UNESCO sights

Visit the city Kutaisi and its 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.

We depart to Borjomi, remarkable with its natural mineral springs, visit Borjomi park, take taste to Borjomi sour springs.
 

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 2h30, 130 km.
Walking hours: 2 h.
Overnight in Borjomi.

 

Day 3
Bakuriani – ski resort

Departure to Bakuriani – ski resort located at 1700 m above the sea level.  On the route visit Timotesubani church with the beautiful mural paintings of Golden Age. Enjoy our free time in the snow. 

Return back to Borjomi by a little train called “Kukushka”. 
 

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 00h30, 25 km.
Walking hours: 2 h.
Overnight in Borjomi.

 

Day 4
Region of medieval fortresses and Christmas Eve

Morning departure for Vardzia Cave Town, located in Javakheti region 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.

Option: Visit Sapara monastery (X C) near Akhaltsikhe (12 km from Akhaltsikhe). 
Return to Akhaltsikhe. Christmas dinner with local family.

It is possible to attend the Holy Christmas Mass in the church.
 

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 2h, 110 km.
Walking hours: 2 h.
Overnight in Akhaltsikhe.

 

Day 5
The region with its history since the 1st millennium BC till XX C

Departure for Gori – soviet city and the central part of Georgia, 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.

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

Arrive in Tbilisi – the capital of the country.
 

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 4h, 240 km.
Walking hours: 3h30.
Overnight in Tbilisi.

 

Day 6
Visit the capital of Georgia

Discover the capital of Georgia – Tbilisi, explore its old district with cobbled 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, here you can find everything with a minimum price: furniture, crockery, medals, caps of the Soviet army, antiques and paintings.

In the evening, it is possible to take famous Sulphur bath, which is great place for skin problem treatments, it helps arthritic joints, digestion problem, insomnia or just for relaxation.
 

Walking hours: around 3h.
Overnight in Tbilisi.

 

Day 7
Discover Wine Region and the Panorama of the day: Alazani Valley

 We depart to discover one of the most beautiful sites of Kakheti region, the East part of the country.

Short break at Bodbé 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.

We continue our trip to the small and charming village Sighnaghi, stroll through its cobbled streets and along the wall, admire the splendid panorama of Alazani Valley and the Caucasus. Visit Ethnographic museum of Sighnaghi with the exhibition of famous Georgian painter Niko Pirosmani.

We continue our trip to the local wine cellar, where the locals show us their traditional methods of winemaking, very different from European practice. Degustation of wine.

Return back to Tbilisi.
 

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 3h30, 220 km.
Walking hours: 2h.
Overnight in Tbilisi.

 

Day 8
Departure

Transfer to the airport of Kutaisi, departure.
 

Transfer: Private vehicle, around 3h50, 265 km.

Christmas in Georgia

8 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...