Liz has just returned from a trip to Georgia...read her blog below!
Georgia is a country famous for its Caucasus mountain villages and the Vardiza cave monastery dating back to the 12th Century. It is also famous for its wine region with lots of lovely wineries to visit and you can even get wine ice-cream :).
There were so many highlights to the trip - it is such an amazing way to experience everything Georgia has to offer.
We did a walk around the capital town of Tbilisi which is known for its amazing architecture and cobblestone streets. We visited local churches and cathedrals and took a cable car up to Narikala Fort with stunning views over Tibilisi.
For all you wine lovers a visit to the wine region of Kakheti is a must. We got to experience wine making and the famous Georgian sweets called “Churchkhela” at a local farmer’s house. We had Lunch at a local family home and tasted the famous (Khachapuri) - perfect if you are a cheese lover! We had dinner that evening in a lovely restaurant in Telavi. We also got to try our first Chacha which is the local Georgian firewater.
We took a scenic journey close to the Turkish border to the region of Akhaltsikhe.
On route we did a stop at Gori to see the famous Stalin Museum. Before arriving in Akhaltsikhe we visited the Great Silk Road Cave town of Uplistsikhe. This was one of the highlights of the trip for me with breath-taking views after a climb to the top and spotting some friendly lizards along the way.
We had dinner and overnight in a local guesthouse. The guesthouse was so homely with spacious rooms and even a little shared living area so the group could sit and relax after a day on the road. The hosts were so welcoming and the food was amazing and very plentiful. We had dinner in their beautiful garden which was so peaceful and relaxing.
We visited the local cave town of Vardzia - this was another highlight of the trip for me. Exploring the caves of over 3000 dwellings with bakeries, secret tunnels and churches and just experiencing the amazing views from the top. We had lunch at a local restaurant by the river where we tasted the famous beautiful fresh trout. It was so tasty and fresh – amazing!!
We headed back to Tbilisi enjoying views of the Khertvisi and Rabath Castle.
Our last day was by far my favourite day of the trip.
We took the most breath-taking drive up through the Caucasus snow capped mountains with winding roads, passing through a ski resort which nestles below Mount Kazbegi – Georgia’s 3rd highest peak. We took 4WD jeeps up to the Gergeti Trinity Church which is 2170m above sea level with breath-taking views.
Georgia has so much to offer with amazing scenery and food and the local people are so warm and welcoming. The local guides are so knowledgeable it definitely has something for everyone. Small group tours are the perfect way to experience a trip like this as not only do you get to experience the amazing culture but you make so many amazing friends along the way.
ClimateThe wettest periods generally occur during spring and autumn, while winter and summer months tend to be the driest. Much of eastern Georgia experiences hot summers (especially in the low-lying areas) and relatively cold winters.
VisaIrish and EU nationals do not need a visa to enter Georgia.
HealthRabies is common in Georgia so make sure you have the relevant vaccinations.
PassportsMake sure that your passport is valid for a minimum of six months after your departure date from Georgia.
Time ZoneGMT + 3 hours