The Best of Georgia 15 Days -2021
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One of our most popular holidays, involving some of the country’s top destinations. The itinerary gives an excellent insight into Georgia, its ancient history, medieval churches, culture, and diversity of landscape, From the wine-growing countryside of Kakheti to the heart of the Caucasus Mountains. The climax is the trip to Svaneti province in the heart of the Central Caucasus surrounded by mighty 5000 metre peaks. We explore the remote villages lying at their feet and admire their unique towers and discovery of ancient local cultures preserved for thousands of years.
We journey down to the Black Sea and stay in Batumi for two nights exploring its old city and enjoy walking in the nice boulevard.
Other Highlights of the Tour
Georgian cuisine is the result of the broad interplay of culinary ideas carried along the trade routes by merchants and travellers alike. The importance of both food and drink to Georgian culture is best observed during a feast called supra, when a huge assortment of dishes is prepared, always accompanied by large amounts of wine, and that can last for hours. In a Georgian feast, the role of the tamada (toastmaster) is an important and honoured position.
Georgia is one of the oldest homelands of viticulture in the world. It is proved that winemaking in Georgia has been practiced 8000 years ago. From 4000 BC Georgians were cultivating grapes and burying clay vessels, “kvevri”, in which to store their wine ready for serving at perfect ground temperature.
Georgian ancient traditional wine-making method using the “Kvevri” clay jars is included in the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage Lists.
the mythical western province of Georgia, the land of the ‘Golden Fleece’ (where locals still pan for gold through sheep skins) lies high up in the Greater Caucasus. Several 5000 metre plus peaks thrust glaciers down into this beautiful and remote region, where amazing stone towers rise beside homes, dating back to the 12th century. Never far away is one of Svaneti’s numerous, richly frescoed churches, focal points for lively communities where traditions have been preserved for nearly two thousand years.
Unique icons and manuscripts are on display in Mestia’s museum. Mestia, overlooked by huge hanging peaks, is a well-known climber’s starting point and the beginning of dramatic trekking trails for the adventurous traveller. The villages of Ushguli, ‘the highest permanently inhabited settlements in Europe,’ give a stunning view of Mt. Shkhara (5201m) the highest peak in Georgia. Its ragged stone tower villages have been designated a World Cultural Heritage Site by UNESCO. There are many myths of ancient Svaneti preserved in popular folklore. According to one, Svaneti, formerly rich in gold, was the source of the Golden Fleece. Gold was extracted from the sands of the Enguri River and its tributaries. Strabo, the Greek geographer, and historian of the first century BC, described a gold-prospecting technique carried out by putting a sheep’s fleece into the river to trap the gold particles. Probably, such a gold covered fleece was brought by Svans as an offering to Aeetes, the King of Colchis that Jason and the Argonauts journeyed to obtain.
Duration: 15 Days 14 Nights
Tour type: adventure, discovery, romance, vacation, honeymoon
Departure/Return Location: TBILISI
Departure Time: Every day during the year 2021 (coordinate with us)
- As specified in the itinerary:
- Complimentary water bottle per person per day.
- Wine tasting at one of the wineries.
- Complimentary wine at lunch on Day 3.
- All land transfers. For 2 persons we use a comfortable jeep style vehicle for 3 – 4 persons we use a comfortable minivan or “Mitsubishi Delica”. For 5 – 6 persons we use a comfortable minibus as Mercedes Sprinter or similar with about 14 seats + space for luggage.
- English (or German, French, Spanish, Italian) -speaking guide as per itinerary.
- All entrance fees to the sites and museums.
Tour Price Does Not Include:
- Other services, meals or alcoholic drinks unless specified in the itinerary.
- Tips for the guide and driver.
- Luggage porterage in the hotels.
Dear respected visitor
DAY 1: Arrival in Tbilisi.
Arrive in Tbilisi airport. Transfer to Hotel. No meals included.
DAY 2: Tbilisi.
Tbilisi, capital of Georgia from the 5th century AD, has a long and fascinating history. Founded in the 4th century by King Vakhtang Gorgasali on the site of its warm mineral-water springs – it developed into the main city of the Caucasus. By the 12th century Tbilisi was one of the most important political, economic, and cultural centres of the Middle East. It stood as a key stop on the famous Silk Road – right on the border between Europe and Asia (west and ast).
Tbilisi’s Old Town, the most ancient part of the city, is renowned for its wonderful mix of cultures. The mosque, the synagogue, the Armenian and Roman Catholic churches mingle harmoniously with the splendid Georgian churches and architecture. The wooden houses with open, carved balconies seem to welcome every visitor. The balmy sulfur baths have hosted poets, writers, musicians, kings down through the centuries.
Full-day city tour of Tbilisi with visits to the Old Town, Metekhi Temple, 12th c. “Abanotubani” – the baths area, The Mosque; Narikala, – The main fortress of Tbilisi. Walking through narrow streets, along which some carpet and souvenir shops are situated. We will continue excursion in the old town. We visit the Sioni Cathedral 11th c. Visit the “Peace Bridge”, Anchiskhati Church 6th c. Welcome lunch. Visit the National Museum (Closed on Mondays and public holidays). Visit Freedom Square and Rustaveli Avenue, the main street of Tbilisi. We take cable train to the Funicular for panoramic views of the city. Overnight in Tbilisi.
Breakfast and Lunch included.
DAY 3: Tbilisi – Sighnaghi – Tsinandali – Telavi (190km)
Today we start two-day trip in Kakheti, Georgia’s famous wine district dotted with fine old churches and vineyard after vineyard. First, we visit Bodbe Monastery of St. Nina. Then we arrive in Sighnaghi a beautiful hill-town providing panoramic views of the Alazani Valley and the Eastern Caucasus Mountains. Explore the town. Time for lunch in Sighnaghi and continue the tour in Kakheti. We visit Tsinandali Estate, the residence of the 19th century noble family. Today we also visit one of the wineries to taste some of the best sorts of Georgian wines (included). Arrive in Telavi town where we have excursion. Stay overnight in the hotel in or around Telavi / or Tsinandali / or Kvareli. Please, see below options.
DAY 4: Telavi – Gremi, Nekresi & Alaverdi – Tbilisi (200km)
Morning visit Gremi arhitectural complex of the 16th century. Then we visit Nekresi Monastery. For extra charge you can visit one more winery. Visit Alaverdi Cathedral (11th c). Travel back to Tbilisi via forested mountains of Gombori. Time permitting visit Shuamta Monastery. Arrive in Tbilisi. Hotel.
DAY 5: Tbilisi – Mtskheta – Stepantsminda (Kazbegi). 170km
We start our trip by driving to Mtskheta. Mtskheta, the ancient capital of Georgia is situated 20km from Tbilisi. Historians date the town back to the 2nd millennium B.C. Mtskheta was the capital of Georgian Kingdom of Iberia during 500BC – 500AD. Here Georgians accepted Christianity in the beginning of the 4th century. The town and its architectural monuments are listed as the World’s Cultural Heritage sites by UNESCO.
We continue our tour north along the Georgian Military Road.
En route we visit Ananuri architectural complex of the 16th century.
We cross the Greater Caucasus at the Jvari Pass (2395m) down to Kazbegi (Now official name is Stepantsminda). Kazbegi (1700m) is a picturesque settlement overlooked by the biggest of all – Mount Kazbek (5047m) – one of the six 5000 metre peaks of the Caucasus.
We take uphill trek (1h 15min) or drive to Gergeti Sameba Church beautifully located on the hill (2150m). Walk down (or drive) to Kazbegi. Stay in the hotel. Breakfast included.
DAY 6: Kazbegi and surroundings (50km)
After breakfast we drive to Sno Valley and reach village Juta (2150m). We offer a 2-to-4-hour hiking to/from the Chaukhi Mountain circuit. Return to Juta. Drive back to Kazbegi. After lunch free time for leisure or drive down to Dariali Canyon and take some more hiking to the Gveleti gorge. Return to Kazbegi. Hotel.
DAY 7: Kazbegi – Gori & Uplistsikhe – Borjomi (340km)
We travel south and We arrive in Gori, a historical town. Today the town is mainly known for its huge Fortress and as a birthplace of J. Stalin. Drive to Uplistsikhe cave town dated back to the 7th c. BC. It contains a large central hall for pagan rituals, living rooms as well as a church of the 9th century. We arrive in Borjomi resort, surrounded by the Lesser Caucasus Mountains. Dinner and overnight in Borjomi.
Breakfast and Dinner included.
Day 8: Borjomi –Vardzia - Akhaltsikhe – Kutaisi (360km).
Today we have a long trip. First, we drive along river Kura Valley to the cave town Vardzia (12th c). On the way have a photo stop at Khertvisi fortress. Vardzia, the unique example of Georgian Renaissance is the place associated with Queen Tamara and Shota Rustaveli, the author of the legendary poem “The Knight in the Panther’s Skin”. Time permitting stop in Akhaltsikhe town and visit the Castle. Drive to western part of Georgia and arrive in Kutaisi. Hotel.
Breakfast and Lunch included.
DAY 9: Kutaisi – Gelati – Mestia, Svaneti (290km)
Morning short sightseeing of Kutaisi. Kutaisi, dated back to the Argonauts times (13th-12th cc. B.C), was the capital of old Colchida and later of Western Georgia. Then we visit Gelati Monastery, founded by the most famous Georgian King David the Builder (1073 – 1125). Gelati Monastery is in the List of Cultural Heritage of UNESCO. In town of Zugdidi we will stop for lunch and then continue driving up to Svaneti through the river Enguri valley. We arrive in Mestia. Check in our hotel where we have dinner. Overnight in Mestia. Breakfast and Dinner included.
DAY 10: Mestia & surroundngs.
Mestia is a small provincial settlement surrounded by huge Caucasus Mountains, the most impressive of which are Mountains Ushba (4710m) and Tetnuldi (4975m) some of the most severe and beautiful summits of the Caucasus. Walking in and around Mestia and visit the towers, traditional Svanetian House and Mestia Museum (Closed on Mondays and public holidays).
We also plan to go to Hatsvali by a car or cable car and time permitting visit Heshkili Huts to enjoy amazing views of the surrounding summits.
Return to Mestia. Hotel. Breakfast included.
DAY 11: Mestia – Ushguli – Mestia (90km).
Morning take 4×4 vehicles and drive to village Ushguli (2400m), one of the highest permanently inhabited villages in Europe. Visit the village, its medieval towers, and Lamaria Church. Enjoy the views (in good weather) of Mt. Shkhara (5201m), the highest summit in Georgia. Those who wish, we offer from 2 to 4-hour hiking in the valley leading to the foot of Mt. Shkhara. Return Ushguli. Drive back to Mestia. Dinner and overnight in Mestia at the hotel. Breakfast and Picnic Lunch included.
DAY 12: Mestia – Batumi (290km).
After breakfast drive to e offer optional trips on the way to Batumi: Visit Okatse Canyon (Hiking) or Martvili Canyon (Boat ride through the river in the canyon). Or visit the Botanical Gardens of Batumi. (Entrance fee is for extra charge) Then we journey to the Black Sea coast to Batumi. Hotel. Breakfast included.
DAY 13: Batumi
Set in the south-western corner of Georgia, against the eastern coast of the Black Sea, Ajara spans a wide variety of land- scape, from high forested mountains to lush subtropical hills – all set beside the balmy Black Sea coast. Batumi, the capital of Ajara region is a major seaport with a glorious boulevard beside the Black Sea. The city is changing dramatically and now has a many of international class hotels and hosts many cultural events. Morning city tour of Batumi to visit its major sites: old town, Batumi Piazza, Theatrical and Europe Squares, Rustaveli street. etc. Walk in Batumi Boulevard. Visit Alphabet Tower (for extra charge). Afternoon for leisure or independent explorations. Stay in Batumi. Hotel. Breakfast included.
DAY 14: Batumi – Tbilisi (380km).
After breakfast we travel back to Tbilisi (about 6 hours). Arrive in Tbilisi. Hotel. Breakfast included.
DAY 15: Departure.
Transfer to airport. End of the tour
Tbilisi International Airport, Tbilisi, Georgia
Gremi Village, Georgia
Nekresi Estate, Kvareli, Georgia
Uplistsikhe, Gori, Georgia
Svaneti Range, Georgia