During my trip to Georgia, I got to know what Kakheti has to offer quite well, as I had a chance to go on a great roadtrip around the region. I’ve seen so many churches, monasteries and other heritage sites that after a while some of them began to look exactly the same to me. It’s never a good sign to lose sense of excitement while travelling, so I created a list of my favorite places which are most worthy of your visit, to my mind.
Kakheti region, which was an independent kingdom once, consists of eight municipalities and covers an area of 11,311 km². It is often called “the cradle of wine” because wine grapes have been cultivated here for around 8000 years. Unique wine making traditions were passed on to generations of Orthodox monks through the ages, so wine tasting in Kakheti is a must.
Churchkhelas – natural, nutritious and delicious sweets made from different nuts and thickened grape juice, have also originated from this region.
It is a small, charming medieval town, otherwise known as the Town of Love as many couples come here to get married. This peculiar place has a very romantic vibe with its cosy streets brightened with pastel colors.
Nevertheless, the main reason to visit Sighnaghi is spectacular panoramic views of both Alazani Valley and the Caucasus mountain rage.
To see the landscapes, you should walk around the city walls/fortifications, which were built in 18th century. That was my favorite part of the trip!
Sighnaghi is a great destination for a day trip as you can explore this town in a couple of hours. Try some traditional food in one of the restaurants and some wine in one of the cellars to make your travel experience tastier.
Situated only a few kilometers away from Sighnaghi, the Monastery of St. Nino at Bodbe awaits you with its beautiful architecture, amazing surroundings, old history and, if you are willing, a one-in-a-lifetime experience. Originally it was built in the 9th century and now it is one of the most important pilgrimage sites in the country.
A complex consists of three places you should take notice of – the monastery, a newly built cathedral and, if you decide to climb a countless number of stairs, a Chapel of St. Zabulon and St. Sosana, which houses a St. Nino’s spring. It is believed that the spring has healing powers, so many people come here to get into freezing water. In complete darkness, by the way. You can buy a white robe at the site and try this experience – you will not forget about it, that’s for sure.
Kvareli Lake Resort
One of the most beautiful nature’s corners I’ve ever been to, plus an ability to comfortably have a glass of wine or a cup of coffee admiring the view from a restaurant terrace. This resort is located beneath the southern slope of Caucasus mountains, rewarding you with wonderful sceneries. You can stay there (but it’s really expensive) or you can come just for the views – either way it is totally worth it. And for an extra excitement – take a water motorcycle or a boat ride in the lake.
To be continued…