It has been a quiet few weeks for me on the blogging front. I just got back from a short and sweet trip to Georgia, the country, not the state in the USA. Georgia is a small country tucked away in the beautiful Caucasus region of Europe and Asia and offered me a perfect introduction to Europe with a flavour of Asia.
From the cities to the towns, high mountains to the country side and across the rivers even to the sea, I got immersed into the historically intertwined Caucasian culture, cuisine, traditions, religion, language, people and personalities and also made some new friends from across the globe.
I backpacked to 6 major regions of the country, covering roughly 1800 km on foot, by road and rail and all solo. Over the next few weeks I will be blogging down my experiences and how I went about travelling around the country (well, not all of it) in 11 days. Georgian hospitality will forever live in my heart.
Here is a photo walk through Georgia, the balcony of Europe and maybe the next reason why you must visit Georgia, “The Country of Life“.
Roam around the beautiful streets of Tbilisi the Capital City of Georgia where history meets the present
Catch the Tbilisi Metro and travel across the length and breadth of the entire city
Get to the Aerial Tramway and to the top of the Narikala Fortress to capture the magical view of Tbilisi in the night
Visit The Bridge of Peace
And walk over to the other side to view the Dancing Fountains
Take a day trip to the Old City of Mtskheta and visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Svetitskhoveli Cathedral
Witness a Georgian Christian Orthodox wedding inside the cathedral
Take a short taxi ride to the historical Jvari Monastery up on a hill and across the river.
Climb up the hill and enjoy the breathtaking view of the Confluence of the Mtkvari and Aragvi Rivers overlooking the ancient town of Mtskheta
and watch the orange Georgian sunset from the old town
Taste the traditional Georgian pizza, the Adjarian Khachapuri
Make a trip to the countryside
to the wine capital of the world, Telavi, in the Khaketi region
Visit a wine cellar to taste some exquisite Georgian wine topped with Georgian cheese and bread
and learn how the Georgian candy ‘churchkhela’ or the Snickers of Georgia is made
Explore the surrounding areas of Khaketi and visit the churches and forts in the area. If history makes any sense to you, it is now
Get enthralled by the magnificent frescoes and paintings inside these ancient structures
Find a vineyard and learn how grapes is cultivated in Georgia
Head north to the Caucasus mountains and stop at the Ananuri Castle on the banks of the beautiful Aragvi River
Go to Kazbegi, near the border of Russia and trek up to the Tsminda Sameba Church on a hill with Mt. Kazbek in the background
soak in the spectacular view of the mountains and watch flocks of sheep graze the meadow below you
Head back down the Georgian Military Highway to Gori, the home town of the most ruthless dictator of all time
and visit the museum dedicated to the man
When that’s done, take a short ride to Uplistsikhe, an ancient cave town that is almost 4000 years old
Watch the clouds from the rocky landscape beside the Mtkvari River
Board the Georgian Railway for a trip to Zugdidi near the west coast of Georgia
and visit the Damiani Palace Museum and the Queen’s garden
Head northwards from there to the historic Svaneti region of Georgia
To the high mountain town of Mestia, deep in the Caucasus Mountains
Trek through the mountains and valleys and get baffled by the defensive stone towers of Mestia and Ushguli
When you are done with all that, catch a last glimpse of the Georgian sunset behind the mountains of Svaneti