The Bakuriani Resort is world-wide famous and popular winter resort. They opened the first skiing school here in 1935. What makes it so attractive? First of all, it’s the location itself. This small fairy-tale land, surrounded by mountains, has visitors all year. The air here is almost magic – it boosts health, and is especially good for lymph, blood and breathing. There is even a botanical garden, which can boast a multitude of Caucasus high-altitude alpine plants. There is the River Bakuriani flowing through it, and it’s easy to reach by transport. The most attractive component of Bakuriani in winter, of course, is snow. Skiers and snowboarders have a lot of possibilities in Bakuriani. The joint length of the tracks is 29.1 km. The tracks are divided into Kokhta, Mitarbi and Didveli parts. There are 23 tracks all in all, with different levels of difficulty. Anybody can find a track that suits them – from a beginner, trying the sports for the first time, to the skilled professionals. 11% of slopes have maintenance of artificial snow, and the tracks correspond to international standards.
Whether you’re skiing, snowboarding, or just appreciating the views, you can enjoy the gondolas of Bakuriani. There are 8 of them, and a funicular, in addition. They can be used to go to various places, to ski, skate/snowboard down, or to use them to get back afterwards.
Bakuriani can be part of a more diverse adventure in Georgia, but many people enjoy the resort for weeks. While staying there, we can organize trips to the Borjomi Valley, Cavetown Vardzia, Fortress Rabati, and many other interesting places.
Meeting with our guide in Tbilisi international airport. Transper from airport to hotel. If you will have time and energy, we can offer Tbilisi walking tour.
Overnight in Tbilisi
Tbilisi is the capital of Georgia. It is one of the best cities in Georgia to visit! Tbilisi lies on the banks of the Mtkhvari River and is surrounded by hills and mountains.
Tbilisi tour starts from Freedom square, it is main square of the capital, walking down to Baratashvili street called as a street of contrast, we will see konka, Gabriadze Theatre and clock tower, Anchiskhati Basilica (VI century), Patriarcate of Georgia , Bridge of peace, Erekle II street (royal street), Chardin street, Maidan square, will take cable car ride to Narikala fortress, (IV century), where you can enjoy the stunning panorama over the city. Also see huge statue of Mother of Georgians – Kartlis Deda, walk in narrow old streets and feel the soul of old Tbilisi, see Legvtakhevi small canyon with waterfall, explore brick-domed underground sulfur baths, the district of naturally hot mineral waters (17th century) – Abanothubani. Sulphur baths in Abanothubani, in the midst of the old town in Tbilisi are famed to be the source of the city’s existence.
Overnight in Tbilisi
The first sight we are going to visit is Jvari. It has a beautiful view of Mtskheta itself – the ancient capital. It is an active monastery, with the 6th century church. Afterwards, we can drive towards Mtskheta. We will walk the cozy streets of the town. It used to be the capital and is still the religious center of Georgia. Here, we will have a wonderful boat trip on the river Mtkvari and Aragvi. Our next stop will be church Svetitskhoveli, which situated in the old district of Mtskheta.
Now we are ready for a delicious lunch and a wine-tasting in a local wine-cellar. We can explore the Georgian way of wine and dishes making and learn more about its grape and wine varieties.
An interesting place to visit after lunch could be Uplistsikhe. It is a town carved into rock. Its history counts thousands of years. The town used to be a pagan religious center.
Next stop is city Gori, you will see Castle of city and Stalin State Museum. The town where Stalin was born was Gori. In the house, where Stalin was born, the memorial museum was opened in 1937. The complex of the museum includes the memorial house, Stalin’s carriage and the two-storeyed exhibition building. In front of the building Stalin statue is situated (sculptor Silovan Kakabadze). Unique displays: memorial things, presents, canvases, photo and film documents are gathered in the museum. A permanent exposition telling about Stalin’s life and activities is presented in six halls.
After that, we can drive toward Borjomi and Overnight here.
Important Note: if you want to enter the churches, dress appropriately! Men aren’t allowed to wear shorts or hats while women have to wear a long skirts and cover their hair with a scarf.
Borjomi is famous resort town in south-central Georgia. It is famous for its mineral water, which is especially good for health. Here you will see Borjomi national park, from here you can go on the top of hill by cable which overlook Borjomi.
After Borjomi, we continue our way toward Green monastery. It was built presumable in VIII century. The Chitakhevi St. George's Monastery is located in a picturesque place in the Borjomi valley. People called it lovingly “The Green Monastery”, because all the trees in the valley are of a special green color. The stones, with which the church is built, are also green, but some are dark and some are light.
Next stop will be Likani. Here you can see a three-nave basilica church (8th-9th centuries) and the Romanov Palace (1892-95). Which located on the bank of the Kura River as a summer mansion of Grand Duke Nicholas Mikhailovich of Russia. In the Soviet times, the Likani residence passed into the property of the state and was frequented by key Soviet officials, including Joseph Stalin.
Aftetward, our tour continue in Akhaltsikhe, were we will visit major see sighting place –Ratbati castle. Originally it was established in the 9th century as the Lomisa Castle, it was completely rebuilt by Ottomans. Most of the surviving buildings date from the 17th and 18th centuries. In 2012 there was held a large reconstruction after which Rabati fortress in Akhaltsikhe turned into a town within the town. It has become not only a historical monument, but a real cultural city center. There are church, mosque, synagogue, small park, History Museum, various shops, hotels and even civil registry office inside the fortress walls.
Going back in Borjomi, overnight here
Incredibly beautiful medieval cave city Vardzia, which was built in the 12th century by Georgia’s greatest ruler -Queen Tamar, is located in Georgia’s southern Samtskhe-Javakheti region. Vardzia monastery is simply amazing and breathtaking, with unusual location. Most of the city museum is open to the visitors and you can visit the caves and the main cave church with well-preserved frescoes. It involves some walking on the steps, in the dark tunnels too. You should carry some water in the summer.
After Vardzia, we will visit Vanis Kvabebi, it is located just 2km-s from Vardzia, across the river, and offers tourists unforgettable experience. It’s quite green and exotic. It has lots of caves, tunnels. Here we will visit small white-domed church on the cliff. Currently there is a monastery at the entrance so there is no key needed.
Next stop will be khertvisi fortress, which is quite well-preserved complex on the road to Vardzia. It is impressive especially from the outside and it takes short time to visit it.
Traveling to Bakuriani, overnight here
This one more day you can use for skiing, snowboarding or just for walking. Bakuriani also offers a wide range of other winter experiences, like skating, driving snowmobiles and horse-ridden sledges, paragliding and breathtaking walks in the nature. This will be day to feel every moment.
Check-out from the hotel, Drive back to Tbilisi or Kutaisi. Free time till transfer to the airport, which you can use for shopping or walking in the city.