Discover Western Georgia – Why to travel in Western Georgia

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Western Georgia – Famous as the destination of Jason and the Argonauts in their search for the golden fleece, western Georgia is home to Georgia’s second-largest city, Kutaisi, and is full of historical, architectural and natural riches. The region has always acted as a conduit for influences from the west, from the Ancient Greeks to St Nino to the Ottoman Turks. It was for long periods ruled separately from eastern Georgia, but was also where the great united Georgian kingdom of the 11th and 12th centuries made its start. Nowadays for travelers there are dozens of must see destinations in Western Georgia such as Batumi with the seaside, Kutaisi, numerous caves, canyons, botanical gardens and etc. We will try to cover most important places which are must to visitin the western Georgia regions: Abkhazia, Adjara, Guria, Samegrelo/Zemo Svaneti, Racha-Lechkhumi and Kvemo Svaneti, Imereti, Samtskhe-Javakheti, as it is impossible to fit all the information about Western Georgia’s interesting places in this website.

Now we will try to list the places which are most famous and possible to visit in few days while staying in Western Georgia.

Batumi – Adjara

Batumi is the city with nice walking area, long boulevard, new glass and fashionable and old 19th century buildings and elegant squares which will make you feel in Europe, green parks – nice relaxation areas with lakes, fountains, availability of all range of services if you have some money to spend, starting from restaurants and hotels ending with numerous casinos and nightclubs, aqua-park, diving club and yacht club. Batumi sightseeing: Old Batumi area, Batumi Boulevard, Piazza Square

Ali and Nino Monument – Adjara

Ali and Nino Monument – metal structure of man and women who meet and love each other beautifully lit at night. Ali and Nino were Azeri-Georgian couple from Kurban Said’s famous novel.

Batumi Dolphinarium – Adjara

The first dolphinarium was opened in Batumi in 1975 and was re-opened in 2011. The Batumi Dolphinarium provides a show for up to 700 spectators and offers visitors the opportunity at trying their hand as dolphin trainers. The show is performed in Georgian, English and Russian. There are three shows per day at 14:00, 17:00 and 21:00. There are special facilities for disabled people.

Batumi Botanical Garden – Adjara

The lower, upper and seaside parks are located on the main route of the garden. Currently, the garden consists of nine floristic sectors, those of Caucasian humid subtropics, East Asia, New Zealand, South America, the Himalayas, Mexico, Australia, and of the Mediterranean. The garden collection comprises 2.037 Taxonomic units of ligneous plants, including 104 of Caucasian origin. The rests are the representatives of the other phytogeographic flora.

Panoramic views/Argo cable car – Adjara

Batumi Cable Car & entertainment Center Argo is a sightseeing attraction located on Anuria Mountain in Batumi, 250 meters high from the sea level. The complex offers spectacular views of the town, The Black Sea and the surrounding mountains. The center comprises in itself restaurants, cafes,Garden, Illusion & Ames Room,Gift shops, Wine House, open air halls, and podium and roof terraces as well.

Gonio Apsaros Fortress – Adjara

Gonio’s fortress, an impressive piece of Roman-Byzantine military architecture, covers 47,000 sq metres within a rectangle of high stone walls with 18 towers. Built by the Romans in the 1st century AD, it was occupied by the Byzantines in the 6th century and by the Ottomans in the 16th century. An interesting little museum sits in its midst, with a cross outside marking what’s believed to be the grave of the Apostle Matthias.

Makhuntseti Bridge and Waterfall – Adjara

Makhuntseti waterfall is located near the town of Keda, at 335 meters above sea level. Near the waterfall several picnic sites are available for visitors. While visiting the waterfall it is also possible to visit nearby tourist attractions, including the ancient arched stone Makhuntseti Bridge, Adjarian wine houses, and private wine cellars scattered throughout Keda Municipality.

Adjarian Cousine – Adjara

You can taste Adjarian Khachapuri and some other Adjarian dishes. The most popular local dishes are: borano (cheese melted in butter), chirbuli (breakfast with eggs and walnut) and sinori (a dish with cottage curds and dough plates. Varieties of local sweet pastry are also famous, especially baklava and shakarlama (sugar pastry).

Kutaisi – Imereti

Capital of several historical kingdoms within Georgia, Kutaisi is today being revitalised after years of post-Soviet decline. Georgia’s parliament was transferred from Tbilisi to brand-new quarters here in 2012, and Kutaisi’s airport has become a destination for international budget airlines. There are several interesting natural, historical and architectural attractions within day-trip reach of the city. Kutaisi sightseeing: Bagrati Cathedral, Kutaisi indoor Market, Gelati Monastery, Motsameta Monastery

Sataplia Nature Reserve (Caves) – Imereti

Sataplia caves 3.3-sq-km reserve are a couple of dozen 120-million-year-old, fossilized dinosaur footprints (well displayed in a protective building), and an attractively lit 300m-long cave with a small underground river. The reserve is covered in thick, subtropical Colchic forest and has a couple of panoramic lookout points. It takes about an hour to walk round the main visitor route.

Prometheus Caves – Imereti

This 1.4 km-long cave at Kumistavi, 20km northwest of Kutaisi, is a succession of six large chambers followed by a 400m-long underground lake. Sections are truly impressive, and the guided visits along a well-made concrete path are enhanced by discreet colored lighting and a little background classical music. Children under six years are not allowed in the cave.

Okatse Canyon and Kinchkha Waterfall – Imereti

An exciting 700m-long walkway, new in 2014, projects from the edge of this 100m-deep canyon and culminates in a viewing platform that hangs right out over the middle. It’s a 2 km hike from the visitors centre near Zeda Gordi village, 42km northwest of Kutaisi. After the canyon you will be able to visit nearby Kinchkha waterfall.

Tobavarchkhili – Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti

The picturesque, remote mountain lakes of Tobavarchkhili, at around 2650m altitude, are best visited on a camping trip, as they’re reached by a 33km jeep drive north from Mukhuri, followed by a 12km walk to the lakes. A natural staircase climbs to the top of Mt Tsashqibuli (3017m), 4 km southeast of the first lake. Legend has it that if you disturb the water of this lake, or make a noise near it, a thunderstorm will ensue.

Martvili Canyon – Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti

This wonderful place is located in Samegrelo-ZemoSvaneti region, in Georgia. Small city of Martvili. Martvili district is truly one of the greatest places in Georgia – combining unique natural environment with historical monuments. It is a place with lots of waterfalls and sky blue water! You will be able to swim up the river for 350 meters within a canyon with a inflatable boat and have an unforgettable journey.

Ushguli – Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti

Set in the topmost reaches of the Enguri valley beneath the snow-covered massif of Mt Shkhara (5193m), Georgia’s highest peak, Ushguli is an unbelievably picturesque spot. With more than 20 ancient Svan towers, it has been on the Unesco World Heritage List since 1996. This community of four villages, a 47km, 2½-hour drive southeast from Mestia, reaches up to 2100m above sea level and has a claim to be Europe’s highest permanently inhabited settlement. Ushguli’s main Ethnographic Museum, with a superb collection of gold, silver and wooden icons and crosses dating back to the 12th century from Ushguli’s seven churches.

Ushguli – Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti

The ‘capital’ of Upper Svaneti, Mestia is a conglomeration of at least 10 hamlets, dotted with picturesque Svan towers. The oldest of the hamlets, with most of the towers, are above the river on the northern side of town: Lekhtagi in the northwest, and Lanchvali and Lagami to the northeast. Recent government-sponsored tourism development has seen Mestia’s central square Setis moedani rebuilt, and an airport and a rush of guesthouses and hotels (around 90 at last count) opening up.

Ushguli – Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti

The ‘capital’ of Upper Svaneti, Mestia is a conglomeration of at least 10 hamlets, dotted with picturesque Svan towers. The oldest of the hamlets, with most of the towers, are above the river on the northern side of town: Lekhtagi in the northwest, and Lanchvali and Lagami to the northeast. Recent government-sponsored tourism development has seen Mestia’s central square Setis moedani rebuilt, and an airport and a rush of guesthouses and hotels (around 90 at last count) opening up.

These are the main destinations which are must see in Western Georgia. Unfortunately due to not enough time, of course it is impossible to cover all the places in one visit. You can contact us and we will be glad to offer special packages for your desires and help you to have unforgettable vacations.

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