A Practical Georgia Itinerary for 7–10 Days (the country!)

> July 25, 2023
A Practical Georgia Itinerary for 7–10 Days (the country!)


Are you wondering how to plan a trip to Georgia, the country that baffled me in both good ways and bad (and very bad)? Well then, you’ve come to the right place. I’m gonna give it to you straight—Georgia can be as frustrating as it is beautiful. As a general rule, the further away you stay from cities, the better. Tbilisi is the sole exception. Luckily, the nature in Georgia is where it’s at. The cows you’ll meet in the mountains are way lovelier than the locals in the towns.

I’ve put together a solid one week itinerary for Georgia and an extended version for 10 days. This trip plan includes practical information such as maps, prices, opening times, restaurants and hotels that I recommend. Pay close attention there, because finding a decent place for a decent price isn’t easy. In one hotel that I had the misfortune of staying at, they not only didn’t change the sheets from the previous guest, they didn’t even bother to care when I brought it up. They were annoyed I wanted a clean bed and insisted I pay for the night (I left).

You might also be interested in reading:

How many days do you need for Georgia?

You’ll need a week in Georgia to see the highlights, but if you’re a keen or at least wannabe hiker, go ahead and give it 10 days—the Caucasus Mountains really deserve your attention. Two weeks in Georgia would be pushing it—this isn’t a country where you need that much time.

A quick warning

If you’ve read any of my other Georgia articles, you know I have a love-hate relationship with the country. More hate though. Because holy heck the customer service in this country is so crap it’s hard to explain even by the Soviet mentality, which, unfortunately, is still very much alive and kicking. I have no problem proclaiming that Georgians are some of the meanest, unfriendliest and scammiest people I’ve met during my travels, but lucky for them, they still have Tbilisi and the mountains.

What’s the best Georgia itinerary for 7 days?

Map showing route of Georgia itinerary 7 days

This is the route of your 7-day Georgia itinerary (see it on Google Maps)


Here’s how to plan the best week in Georgia:

Day 1: Tbilisi (sleep in Tbilisi)
Day 2: Drive Georgian Military Highway to Stepantsminda (sleep in Stepantsminda)
Day 3: Kazbeg hike (sleep in Stepantsminda)
Day 4: Truso Gorge, drive to Borjomi (sleep in Borjomi)
Day 5: Borjomi, Vardzia, Rabati (sleep in Borjomi)
Day 6: Gelati Monastery, Martvili Canyon, Kutaisi (sleep in Kutaisi)
Day 7: Katskhi Pillar, Chiatura (sleep in Tbilisi)


Georgia travel tips

Here’s my two cents-worth of the very basic rules and expectations to have in Georgia:

  • There’s a dress code in all churches and monasteries. Keep your knees and shoulders covered. Ladies are expected to wear a long skirt and to cover their hair.
  • All of Georgia’s churches are free to enter, and almost all have beggars at the door asking for money, sometimes pretending it’s an entrance fee. How you solve the situation is up to you.
  • Parking lots, on the other hand, are almost always paid. The price can differ depending on how the guy likes your face.
  • Restaurants in Georgia are generally crap. Tbilisi and Stepantsminda are the two cities where you’re certain to eat well. Otherwise, it’s hit and miss. I give recommendations at the start of each day in the itinerary below.
  • The locals drive like madmen, so expect driving times to be longer than Google Maps wants you to believe. And just... be careful! Also, a high-clearance 4x4 (like our amazing Suzuki Vitara) will make your life easier.
  • The beaches in Georgia leave a lot to be desired, so I haven’t included any on these 7- and 10-day Georgia itineraries. That said, I’ve put together an article about the best stretches of sand (or pebbles) that I found on the Black Sea Coast in Georgia.


Day 1 of Georgia itinerary: Tbilisi

The city of Tbilisi—day 1 of Georgia itinerary

Let’s start in Tbilisi!


Main sites visited on day 1:  Mother of Georgia, Narikala Fortress, Leghvtakhevi Canyon, Sulphur Baths, Metekhi St. Virgin Church or Queen Darejan Palace, Bridge of Peace and Rike Park, Anchiskhati Basilica, Gabriadze Theater tower, Sameba
Restaurant tipsOrganique Josper | Blue Fox Restaurant and Bar Tbilisi | Shin Restaurant
Hotel recommendations: Hotel 21 | Blue Balcony Hotel
Further reading: Tbilisi 2-day itinerary | Georgia's beautiful monasteries and churches | Best places in Tbilisi

You could spend 2 days in Tbilisi if you had extra time in your itinerary, in which case I’ll just send you over to my Full 2-Day Tbilisi Itinerary. Tbilisi is the one and only city in Tbilisi that I loved and would happily return to a second time, so if you can spare the time, go ahead and use it there.

But if you just have 1 day in the capital, here’s how I think you should spend it:


Day 1—Tbilisi—stop 1: Mother of Georgia and Narikala Fortress

Mother of Georgia and Narikala Fortress—day 1 of the Georgia itinerary

Mother of Georgia, which stands next to Narikala Fortress, is tasked with welcoming friends and repelling enemies


Time spent here: 45 minutes

For a fantastic first look at Tbilisi, head up to the hills to some of Georgia’s most well-known landmarks. Narikala Fortress and the Mother of Georgia statue are very close to each other to the south of Old Town Tbilisi.

I recommend getting your blood pumping in the morning by taking the Betlemi Street Stairs to reach the top of the hill through a maze of little alleys and staircases. You’ll see lots of traditional houses up close (ignore the occasional garbage).

If you can’t or don’t want to take the stairs, go to Rike Park and take the cable car up instead.

Right at the top of the Betlemi Stairs is big mamma Mother of Georgia—a 20 m (65 ft) aluminum woman that stands above Tbilisi, bowl of wine in one hand, sword in the other. Take a look and then keep walking 8 more minutes to Narikala Fortress.  

Narikala Fortress had me fooled, so I’ll say this right now: don’t expect a fortress. To avoid disappointment, know that you don’t visit Narikala for the ruins, it’s the views of Tbilisi that are the show stopper. There’s nothing left of Narikala Fortress except for some parts of the walls. The only structure there that hasn’t been eaten by time is St. Nicholas’s Church.



Day 1—Tbilisi—stop 2: Leghvtakhevi Canyon and Sulphur Baths

Leghvtakhevi Canyon in Tbilisi, Georgia itinerary

A canyon in the center of a city? Sure, why not! (Notice the location of the Orbeliani Baths on the bottom left photo.)


Distance from previous stop: 200 m/0.1 miles, 5-min walk
Time spent here: 45 minutes

Walk down from Narikala Fortress taking the path on the other side from where you entered and head downhill. Once it starts to get a little smelly, you’ll know you’ve made it to Tbilisi’s Sulphur baths

There are something like 15 individual bath companies and some of them are bad even for Georgian standards. There is one especially pretty bath house called Orbeliani Baths where you can admire the blue tile work on the façade.

When you find Orbeliani Baths, you’ll notice it stands right on the edge of Leghvtakhevi Canyon. I like me a good (little) canyon right in a city center, don’t you? You can descend onto the wooden walkways and bridges that traverse the almost-dry river bed and get more superb views of traditional houses that stand on the cliff’s edge above it all. You only need 15 minutes to walk to the other end of the canyon where the waterfall is.



Day 1—Tbilisi—stop 3: St. George Cathedral

Saint George’s Cathedral in Tbilisi, Georgia

Follow the turquoise roof in Tbilisi and you’ll get to the Saint George’s Cathedral


Distance from previous stop: 300 m/0.2 miles, 5-min walk
Time spent here: 5 minutes

You’ll see a lot of churches and monasteries during your week in Georgia—like a lot a lot. It’s one of the main reasons to even visit the country, right after the amazing mountain hikes. Here’s an article where I listed the most beautiful holy sites in Georgia.

First of the churches on the itinerary today is St. George Cathedral. What sets St. George Cathedral apart from the rest of them on this itinerary is its turquoise roof and the turquoise accents in the interior. It’s also one of two Armenian churches in Tbilisi. The church is small, you’ll be done with your visit within minutes.  



Day 1—Tbilisi—stop 4: Metekhi St. Virgin Church or Queen Darejan Palace

Metekhi St. Virgin Church and Queen Darejan Palace in Tbilisi—Georgia itinerary

The Metekhi Saint Virgin Church on the left and the Queen Darejan Palace on the right


Distance from previous stop: 300 m/0.2 mi, 5-minute walk 
Time spent here: 20 minutes 

This next church comes with a bonus: a view of Tbilisi from the opposite side of the Kura River (which you have to get to by walking over the Metekhi Bridge). This time, you’ll be staring at Old Town from Metekhi St. Virgin Church. Actually, the view is again the main draw of Metekhi Church, so don’t spend too much time searching for your spirituality inside. You can even say hi to the statue of King Vakhtang Gorgasali, Tbilisi’s founder, in the courtyard.

If you feel like seeing so many churches in one day is going to hurt your brain, I have an alternative for you: Queen Darejan Palace. It has an iconic blue balcony and... drumroll, please... Views! The palace is just a short walk from Metekhi Church. The palace was built as part of the city walls in 1776 for Erekle II’s wife, Queen Darejan (and just in case you start missing churches, there’s one on the grounds at the palace, too).

To get to Queen Darejan Palace, look for the stairs leading to Bricks Hotel. It’s pretty straightforward after that. Don’t be deterred by the generally rundown state of the alleys that you’ll be walking through. Everything’s ok, this is Georgia.



Day 1—Tbilisi—stop 5: Lunchtime!

Walking through the Jan Shardeni Street in Tbilisi, Georgia

Jan Shardeni Street—let’s get some food!


Distance from previous stop: 300 m/0.2 mi, 5-minute walk 
Time spent here: 1 hour 

You’re now walking in the close vicinity to the popular Jan Shardeni Street. It’s a street full of cafes, overpriced restaurants, and some shops, and if you visit at night, it’ll be full of people.  
There is one spot on Jan Shardeni where you can eat well and people watch without being ripped off—Organique Josper—order a burger or salad and follow it with their fantastic crème brulée and you’re in for a treat.  

You could also just visit Jan Shardeni like a good tourist, but then get your meal a couple of blocks down at Shin Restaurant. This is a Georgian restaurant with a cool, modern interior, which I enjoyed because Georgian restaurants are usually dark, rustic, style-less, or all of the above.  


Day 1—Tbilisi—stop 6: Bridge of Peace and Rike Park

Bridge of Peace and Rike Park in Tbilisi—day 1 of the Georgia itinerary

Bridge of Peace and Rike Park right beside it


Distance from previous stop: 300 m/0.2 mi, 5-minute walk 
Time spent here: 30 minutes 

Don’t linger too long with that post-lunch espresso, it’s time to head to Rike Park for a breather!

Tip: If you aren’t all churched-out yet, you can peak inside Zion Cathedral that’s right at the end of Jan Shardeni. Or, if you like your religion diversified, the Great Synagogue of Tbilisi is also just a few steps away.

Rike Park is a park full of some weirdly out of place modern structures, and it’s because of it that Tbilisi can say that it blends the old with the new... though it’s more like the new was shoved down the throat of the old.

The Bridge of Peace is one of the most recognizable landmarks of the capital, and you can clearly see why when you walk on the LED light-infused bridge. I dare you not to Billy Jean your way across it when it starts lighting up under your feet!  

Across the bridge, in Rike Park, is the even stranger Rike Concert Hall. It’s... very big and shiny and strange. Once you’ve decided on what it reminds you of, take a look around the park. You get great views of Narikala Fortress, Mother of Georgia and the Presidential Palace from the park.



Day 1—Tbilisi—stop 7: Anchiskhati Basilica

Anchiskhati Basilica in Tbilisi, Georgia  
The oldest church in Tbilisi—Anchiskhati Basilica


Distance from previous stop: 500 m/0.3 mi, 8-minute walk 
Time spent here: 10 minutes 

Next up, further north in Old Town (and very close to one of the two hotels I recommend in Tbilisi—Blue Balcony Hotel)—is Anchiskhati Basilica, the oldest church in Tbilisi. This is the type of old church where you can really tell it’s old. Exposed bricks on the columns and hard-to-make-out frescos, probably as gloomy back in the 6th century as they are now, add an extra touch of intrigue.    

If you’re visiting Tbilisi on a weekend, you may want to rearrange your itinerary a little: This little old church is the home base of the Anchiskhati Choir, a world-renowned Georgian polyphonic choral. You can hear the chilling sound of these men singing in the historical church every Sunday at 10 am



Day 1—Tbilisi—stop 8: The Clock Tower (Gabriadze Theater) 

Gabriadze Theater in Tbilisi, Georgia

Gabriadze Theater and its clock tower straight from a twisted storybook


Distance from previous stop: right next to Anchiskhati Basilica
Time spent here: 5 minutes 

Ok, one quick last stop on this side of the river. Right next to Anchiskhati Basilica is the clock tower of the Gabriadze Theater. A crooked puppet theater tower? It sounds random, it is random, but hey, this is Georgia and you can’t expect any type of logic here.

It’s a funny-looking tower built in 2010 by noted Georgian theater and film director and award-winning puppeteer, Rezo Gabriadze. The tower looks like something right out of a children’s book that fell into a warp tunnel and came to real life. Gabriadze himself painted the couple hundred tiles that are at the bottom of the tower. 

If you’re here at 12 pm or 7 pm, you’ll also get to see the marionette show called “Circle of Life” up in the tower, but I wouldn’t go out of my way to see it if you know what I mean.



Day 1—Tbilisi—stop 9: Sameba 

Sameba church in Tbilisi, Georgia

The Holy Trinity Cathedral


Distance from previous stop: 1.3 km/0.8 mi, 20-minute walk or just use Bolt or a taxi
Time spent here: 1 hour

And finally, Tbilisi’s massive, golden-roofed main church, the Holy Trinity Cathedral of Tbilisi aka the Sameba. It’s off on the other side of the river than anything else; you’ll know, you can basically see it from anywhere in the city. Plus, if you’re staying at Hotel 21, Sameba’s right on your doorstep.

Sameba is one of the largest religious buildings in the world. It fits 10,000 people inside! Make time to also wander around the church grounds, they’re nice and well-maintained, and you get a different view from every corner. Plus, the views at sunset are incredible.

The complex has several entrance points, but the main entrance is where Erevan Street turns into Samreklo Street. I felt like a king walking towards the church on the fancy, tiled walkway leading up to the main door. Until, that is, I found out I’m more like the jester—you can’t enter through the main gate, us common folk need to use the door to the right.  



Day 2 of Georgia itinerary: Driving the Georgian Military Highway

Map showing route from Tbilisi to Stepantsminda, Georgia

From Tbilisi, it’s straight up north to Stepantsminda


Main sites visited on day 2: Chronicles of Georgia, Mtskheta, Georgian Military Highway, Zhinvali Reservoir, Ananuri Fortress, Russia-Georgia Friendship Monument, Jvari Pass, Stepantsminda
Restaurant tipsRestaurant Maisi | Kade - Café | My Object
Hotel recommendations: Hotel Memoir | Rooms Hotel Kazbegi
Further reading: Amazing places in Georgia | Best places in Tbilisi | Best day trips from Tbilisi


Today, you’ll be heading up to the incredible Caucasus Mountains, driving on the epic Georgian Military Highway. The total driving time for today is about 3.5 hours.

But before you reach your overnight destination of Stepantsminda (formerly known as Kazbegi), there are a few places you’ll want to see on the way.


Day 2, stop 1: Chronicles of Georgia

Chronicles of Georgia in Tbilisi

A gem of Georgian history—Chronicles of Georgia


Distance from central Tbilisi: 11 km/7 mi, 20-minute drive

Time spent here: 1–2 hours

You won’t get far on your drive today before you hit the first stop—it’s still technically in Tbilisi. I absolutely loved this place, so don’t even think about skipping it.

Introducing Chronicles of Georgia, a mind-blowing, almost arrogant monument that defies the norms of historical landmarks. The Chronicles of Georgia give Soviet vibes to the max, the utter hugeness, blackness and over-the-topness of it is incredible. It almost felt sacred! 

The top half of the 16 mammoth pillars show the kings, queens, and heroes of Georgia’s past, while the bottom half takes you through the adventures of Jesus Christ. There's a stairway that takes you up there, and you get amazing views of Tbilisi from there as well.  

The drive takes about 20 minutes from Tbilisi city center. You can park right underneath the Chronicles of Georgia for free.


Day 2, stop 2: Mtskheta

The city of Mtskheta and Svetitskhoveli Cathedral in Georgia

View of the rivers, mountains and the Svetitskhoveli Cathedral  in Mtskheta


Distance from previous stop: 20 km/12 mi, 20-minute drive
Time spent here: 1–2 hours

Just a short drive away is your second stop on today’s itinerary: Mtskheta. Yeah, that’s really how you spell it. Mtskheta is not only really easy to reach and impossible to pronounce and spell, but it has these claims to fame:  


  • It’s one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world: people have been living there since before the Bronze age. 
  • Mtskheta was the capital of the Kingdom of Iberia before it got moved to Tbilisi in the 6th century. 
  • The Georgian Orthodox Church declared Mtskheta the Holy City.  


Svetitskhoveli Cathedral is right in the middle of town and it’s the second-largest church in Georgia, right after Sameba in Tbilisi. But it’s not just it’s size that lures in the pilgrims, it’s the fact that a piece of Jesus’ robe is buried there. I’m very skeptical about any sort of relic, but hey, believe what you want to believe.

You can then just stroll through Mtskheta’s pleasant cobblestone streets, or, if you’re already craving some higher ground, head up to Jvari Monastery. It stands on a hilltop to the east of Mtskheta, and you get a fantastic view of the confluence of the Mtkvari and Aragvi rivers overlooking Mtskheta.



Day 2, stop 3: Zhinvali Reservoir and Ananuri Fortress + lunch

Ananuri Fortress in  Zhnivali Reservoir, Georgia

Views of the Zhinvali Reservoir and Ananuri Fortress


Distance from previous stop: 38 km/24 mi, 45-minute drive
Time spent here: 45 minutes

By the time you get to this Zhinvali Reservoir, the mountains around you will start to get higher and more dramatic. Doesn’t that sound like a great time for another stop? But let's not get carried away here, it’s just a little pit stop on our epic road trip.

Zhinvali Dam has managed to create a rather picturesque lake and there’s a halfway decent viewpoint there as well. And if you squint your eyes just right, you might catch a glimpse of some green hills reflecting off the water. It's not mind-blowing, but it’s nice.

If you want your reservoir views with a side of fortress, then look no further than Ananuri! Perched overlooking the Zhinvali Reservoir, this historical gem adds a touch of intrigue to your pit stop.

Ananuri Fortress, with its rugged walls and ancient towers, stands as a silent witness to the passage of time. It’s a small place, you really only need about 20 minutes to walk through it, but it’s nice.

Oh, and did I mention there's a chance to grab some lunch? Now, don't go raising your culinary expectations too high, it’s more like a quick bite to appease your growling stomach. Try Restaurant Ananuri if you want ok food, reservoir views, and wooden (not plastic) chairs on the terrace.



Day 2, stop 4: Russia-Georgia Friendship Monument

The Russia Georgia Friendship Momument in Gudauri

The Russia Georgia Friendship Momument: worth a stop for tiles and for the views


Distance from previous stop: 60 km/37 mi, 1 hour 20-minute drive
Time spent here: 10 minutes

If you're up for a dash of Soviet-era nostalgia mixed with panoramic mountain views, this stop along the Georgian Military Highway is a must-see. This monument is where politics and aesthetics collide in a bizarre but oddly intriguing fashion.

Tip: There’s a pretty epic viewpoint on the way to the monument, so take a minute and give it a stare.

Once you arrive at the Russia-Georgia Friendship Monument, prepare to be greeted by an imposing, circular structure covered by thousands of tiles. It proudly showcases the artistic prowess of the bygone era. It's a monument that screams "we used to be friends, but things got complicated”.

Half, if not more of the amazingness of this place lies in the vistas that surround it. With the majestic Caucasus Mountains as your backdrop, you'll understand why this spot is worth a pit stop. Luckily, the mountains don't care about borders or political squabbles—they're here to impress, regardless of human drama.

There’s a small parking lot right by the road, you’ll probably asked to pay a couple of GEL for it. The actual monument is down a short path. You can’t miss it.



Day 2, stop 5: Jvari Pass and Stepantsminda

Stepantsminda in Georgia

The incredible mountains in Stepantsminda


Distance from previous stop: 28 km/17 mi, 30-minute drive

The final stretch to the nice town of Stepantsminda (formerly Kazbegi) is only about 30 minutes away from the Russia-Georgia Friendship Monument, and it’s about to get epic to another level.

You’ll be driving through the fabulous Jvari Pass. If you’re jaw hasn’t hit the floor before this, it most certainly will now. I just hope you find joy in navigating twisting, winding mountain roads full of crazy Georgian drivers! The Georgian Military Highway that you’ll be driving on is on my list of the world’s best drives.  

And finally, Stepantsminda, the gateway to Kazbeg Mountain (you’ll see it up close tomorrow!). You’ll want to book yourself into either Hotel Memoir or Rooms Hotel Kazbegi for 3 nights. No matter where you stay, you’ll be standing open-mouthed at the window (or on the terrace), staring at the incredible mountains towering above you. For real, I’m not one to exaggerate.  

Stepantsminda is a Georgian gem when it comes to wining and dining, so make yourself at home and grab a good dinner. You’ll need the energy for tomorrow’s hike! Restaurant Maisi, Kade - Café, and My Object all made me happy during my stay.

Side note: If you’re not aware, the service and often even the food in restaurants in Georgia are, you guessed it, mediocre at best. Stepantsminda and Tbilisi are the only two exceptions that have great restaurants.


Day 3 of Georgia itinerary: Hiking Mt. Kazbeg (with Gergeti Trinity Church)

The views during the hike to the Kazbeg Mountain, Georgia

These views are the reward for the hardcore hike you’re about to attend


Main sites visited on day 3: Gergeti Trinity Church, Kazbeg Mountain
Restaurant tipsRestaurant Maisi | Kade - Café | My Object
Hotel recommendations: Hotel Memoir | Rooms Hotel Kazbegi
Further reading: Best day hikes in Georgia | Amazing places in Georgia | Boutique hotels in Georgia


Today’s hike is nothing short of epic. Epically beautiful, epically hard, epically crowded. The Kazbeg hike ranks as one of the most challenging hikes I've ever conquered. (Just in case you don’t feel up for it, I’ll tell you about an easier alternative below).

The Kazbeg hike is a grueling 21 kilometers, with an elevation gain of around 1,800 m (6,000 ft). My knees were begging for mercy by the end (and didn’t forget to remind me about this hike for months after I got home). 

You’ll be going up to Kazbeg glacier, or Gergeti glacier, whatever you want to call it. Kazbeg was the first mountain that ever made me feel small. Towering above at over 5,000 m (16,400 ft), it remains one of the most spectacular sights I've ever laid eyes on.

The highlights of this hike are the views and the scramble up the glacier, a white wonder that stretches from around 3,200 m (10,500 ft). Or, skip the glacier part if you want and turn back early. You still get amazing views.


Here are the full hike stats:


Hike length: 21 km (13 miles) there and back (you can loop parts of it) [can be shortened by 6 km/3.7 miles by starting at Gergeti Trinity Church] 
Elevation gain: 1,860 m (6,100 feet)
Difficulty level: Hard   
Hiking time: 9 hours    
Trailhead: Google Maps link (there are several ways up to the church, but this is the best one) 

The hike starts under the famous Gergeti Trinity Church, Georgia’s picture-perfect landmark. There are several routes up to the church, some stupidly steep, and one that is the obvious winner: take the trailhead behind Gergeti Cafe. Make sure to allow yourself time to take in the views of and from the church—it’s on all the postcards for a reason.  

Side note: You can easily drive to Gergeti Trinity Church and start your hike from there if you’re short on time or the desire to walk up to a place that has a road leading to it.  

Easier alternative: If all you can manage is the church hike, that’s fantastic too. I mean, you won’t be as cool as me, but then again, that’s an impossible standard to hold yourself to in the first place.


Hiking to the Gergeti Trinity Church in Kazbegi, Georgia

On your way to Mount Kazbegi you can stop at the Gergeti Trinity Church


The hike to Gergeti Trinity Church is more of a half-day (steep) walk. Gergeti Trinity Church’s location is as dramatically picturesque as it gets. The reason it steals the show is that the town of Kazbegi/Stepantsminda is far below and the mountain has at least 4,000 m (13,000 ft) prominence (elevation difference) from the town to the peak. So, even if you’re only hiking up to Gergeti Trinity where the „real“ hike up Mt. Kazbeg starts, you’ll feel like you’re on top of Mt. Everest.

The trick is to take the correct trail up to the church. Click on over to my article about the Best Day Hikes in Georgia for full details on both of these hikes, because I already put all the info in there and I’m not about to copy paste the whole thing onto this itinerary.


Day 4 of Georgia itinerary: Truso Gorge and drive to Borjomi

Map showing route from Stepantsminda to Borjomi, Georgia

You’ll need to backtrack back almost all the way to Tbilisi in order to get to Borjomi from Stepantsminda


Main sites visited on day 4: Truso Gorge, Borjomi
Restaurant tipsDimitri’s Wine Cellar and Restaurant | Cafe Iggy
Hotel recommendations: Borjomi UnderWood
Further reading: Best day hikes in Georgia | Amazing places in Georgia


After 3 days of non-stop action, it’s time to take it easy and rest, don’t you think? NOT! What did you expect, a pool day?! I mean, at the very least, you’ll be driving 4.5 hours to Borjomi. That could kind of be considered rest if this wasn’t Georgia. Those locals navigate the roads like drunken penguins on ice skates (that also happen to be really angry).


Day 4, stop 1: Truso Gorge

Truso Gorge in Georgia

Truso Gorge


Distance from Stepantsminda: 22 km/14 mi, 40-minute drive (to Kvemo Okrokana village)
Time spent here: 2–6 hours depending which variant you choose (or just a few minutes if you just walk up the nearest hill, get a pic, and head out again)

You can defy my travel wisdom and do your own thing in Stepantsminda for part of the day (Godspeed to you), or, stop at Truso Gorge on the way to Borjomi instead. The reason it’s perfect is that you can make it as long and challenging as you want it to be (or not). (You can also just drive part of the way, get your views in, and call it a day.)

There are a couple of starting points, a fully flat trail as well as one that takes you up to some finer viewpoints, and, finally, for all you lazy bums out there, you even don’t need to walk it at all. If you have a good enough car (high clearance, 4x4 ideally), you can drive the entire thing. I hope you’re good at offroading though!

There are 3 way to see Truso Gorge, all ending at Zakagori Fortress:


  1. Driving Truso Gorge. Note that the “road” is really nothing more than some dirt tracks, very bumpy, sometimes disappearing into the mud, so don’t expect the German Autobahn.
  2. The full Truso Gorge hike. Starting in Kvemo Okrokana village, there are two routes you can take that end up making the hike 20 km (12.2 mi) to 30 km (18.5 mi) long. 
  3. The part drive/part hike Truso Gorge hike. You can skip the first, and arguably most boring section of the full hike, and drive all the way to the first travertines. Hike to Zakagori Fortress from there. This way, it’s only a 10 km (6 mi) round trip.


Details about all of these options can be found in my Best Day Hikes in Georgia article.


Day 4, stop 2: Drive to Borjomi

The city of Borjomi in Georgia

Borjomi—the spa town


Distance from last stop: 258 km/160 mi, 4.5-hour drive

Buckle up, buttercup, you’ll be doing A LOT of driving to your next destination. You’re heading to the spa town of Borjomi, which is also the gateway to the Lesser Caucasus. You unfortunately don’t have time to do any hikes in the mountains here in this Georgia 1 week itinerary, but you would if you extended your itinerary for longer... think about it. You can check out the hikes you’re missing in the 10-day itinerary extension below—don’t look if you easily get FOMO.

Driving from Stepsaminda to Borjomi takes about 4.5 hours without stopping, so make sure you leave yourself enough daylight hours to get there.

The Borjomi UnderWood is the hotel I wholeheartedly recommend, and when you get this fine place nestled beside the pine tree-covered slopes, right next to the river, you’ll have a hard time prying yourself out to get some dinner. Luckily, the onsite Dimitri’s Wine Cellar and Restaurant is a stellar choice. Seriously, it’s one of the best restaurants in town.


Day 5 of Georgia itinerary: Rabati Fortress and Vardzia

Rabati Fortress and Vardzia cave city in Georgia

Rabati Fortress on the left and me, going down into one of the caves in Vardzia


Main sites visited on day 5: Rabati Fortress, Vardzia cave city
Restaurant tipsDimitri’s Wine Cellar and Restaurant | Cafe Iggy
Hotel recommendations: Borjomi UnderWood
Further reading: Amazing Places in Georgia | Day trips from Tbilisi | Georgia’s monasteries and churches


There’s not much to do in Borjomi except for chilling in Central Park, trying to see if that smelly water really has healing properties. So let’s go on a little day trip instead.


Day 5, stop 1: Rabati Fortress

Rabati Fortress in Georgia

Mixture of cultures—Rabati Fortress


Distance from Borjomi: 50 km/30 mi, 1-hour drive
Time spent here: 1–2 hours

First, drive about an hour from Borjomi to Rabati. Rabati Fortress’ location close to the near the Turkish borders has sure rubbed off on it. It's got a whole different vibe going on compared to the rest of Georgia, and I mean that in a good way. With its unmistakable Muslim and Ottoman feel, it's like a delightful fusion of cultures... or is it the lack of Georgia-ness that I actually liked?

Sure, the interior might not be worth writing home about, but who cares when you have the exterior and the stunning gardens to soak in? The view from the towers is worth every step. You'll stare over a sea of golden roofs and the charming walled city, painting a scene that will make you truly appreciate the beauty of this place. And maybe make you want to travel to Turkey asap.  

There’s even a restaurant right inside the fortress and it was good! How about that, a place I have nothing bad to say about. Not a common occurrence in Georgia.



Day 5, stop 2: Vardzia cave city

Vardzia cave city—day 5 of Georgia itinerary

Discovering this cave city was a great adventure you don’t want to skip


Distance from last stop: 62 km/39 mi, 1.5-hour drive
Time spent here: 3–4 hours (I spent half a day there!)

This next stop is a little different. The captivating Vardzia cave complex, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, will leave you in awe. We spent half a day wandering around the former city (that was formerly just a mountain), and I barely ever make that much time even for real cities!  

With origins dating back to the 12th century, Vardzia boasts over 700 rooms on several floors and, of course, the star attraction—the monastery. What is left has not been untouched by earthquakes, but just imagine it used to be able to house over 50,000 people!  

Get ready to climb the ladders and stairs through several floors of the Vardzia complex, and don't miss the pillars and frescoes in the monastery. To be quite honest, the monastery interior looks a lot like a regular Georgian Orthodox church, which might surprise you since, you know, you’re in a cave. But then you realize “I’m inside of a mountain!” and it’s just so cool.  

You can explore Vardzia on your own, or pay extra for an audio guide. There’s a free parking lot by the Vardzia Visitor Center.



Day 6 of Georgia itinerary: Kutaisi

Map showing route from Borjomi to Kutaisi, Georgia

Get ready for more time on the road!


Main sites visited on day 6: Gelati Monastery, Martvili or Okatse Canyon, Bagrati Cathedral and central Kutaisi
Restaurant tipsCafe Newport | Lilestan | Piatto Cafe
Hotel recommendations: Newport Hotel
Further reading: What to see in Kutaisi | Best day hikes in Georgia | Georgia's beautiful monasteries and churches


Kutaisi isn’t a place you need to spend tons of time in, at least not for the city itself. But Gelati Monastery, which is the single most incredible place to visit in Kutaisi, is just outside of town, and even just that makes Kutaisi worth a visit.

In fact, why don’t you drive straight there from Borjomi. It’ll take you a little under 3 hours.


Day 6, stop 1: Gelati Monastery

Gelati Monastery in Kutaisi, Georgia

Gelati Monastery complex


Distance from Borjomi: 140 km/86 mi, 3-hour drive
Time spent here: 1.5 hours

With epic views into the distance and similarly epic interiors, Gelati is one of the highlights of my visit to Georgia. It was one of Georgia’s first monasteries, founded in the beginning of the 12th century. You can see they really took their time to make this place worthwhile for us tourists 1000 years later. If you feel like you can see Gelati from miles away, you’ll make the founders very happy, because the goal was for the complex to be visible from the entire country.

The monastery grounds are comprised of several buildings, which you can wander in and around. Don’t forget to peel your eyes off the old structures to also take in the views of the surrounding hills.  One of the buildings serves as an exhibition hall, so make sure to peak in to see what’s going on there when you visit. You’ll also probably find scaffolding due to ongoing works.

Tip: If you can’t get enough of Gelati goodness, take a walk on the trail that leads from the monastery through the surrounding forest. It takes you past some more religious buildings that are scattered amongst the trees.

Parking is easy on-site near the entrance of the monastery. You’ll need at least 1.5 hours to enjoy all there is to see.



Day 6, stop 2: Grab lunch and settle into Newport Hotel

Newport Hotel in Kutaisi, Georgia

Have a rest in Newport Hotel in Kutaisi


Distance from last stop: 9 km/5.5 mi, 15-minute drive
Time spent here: 1.5 hours

Now would be a good time to grab some lunch and go check in. Unless your hotel has an annoying 4 pm check-in time, you may want to change out of your church clothes and put on your outdoor clothes for the next stop. Otherwise, just grab some food and keep going. Gelati Monastery complex is located 9 km (5.5 mi) northeast from Kutaisi’s city center, so you’ll be in town in about 15 minutes.

You obvisouly don’t have to choose Newport Hotel for your night in Kutaisi, but I recommend you do. It’s right in the city center, steps away from the Colchis Fountain, and in a baby blue Georgian heritage building. So, sleeping there counts as sightseeing!

Plus, the onsite restaurant is one of the best in town. They have speedy, professional servers and high quality European food—basically everything is way above the Georgian standard.


Day 6, stop 3: Martvili Canyon (or Okatse Canyon)

Martvili Canyon in Kutaisi, Georgia

Option 1: Martvili Canyon


Distance from last stop:  50 km/30 mi, 1-hour drive
Time spent here: 1–2 hours (less at Martvili, longer at Okatse)

Now you have two options. They are both canyons and they are close to each other, about a 1-hour drive from Kutaisi. One has barely any walking and you go on a little boat through the canyon, the other has annoying SUV drivers and you walk way up high on walkways attached to the canyon walls.

So, the question is: how afraid of heights are you?

If you want to stay low to the ground, Martvili Canyon is your best bet (and my personal favorite of the two). The Martvili trail is only 700 m (0.4 mi) long. The 20-minute boat ride might sound lame, but it’s actually a nice ride and it takes you to the opposite side of the canyon than the trail, and it’s the only way to see the canyon from the bottom up. Hey, the Dadiani family used to use these parts as their royal bathing spot, so it has to be nice enough for us regular folks, right? 



Okatse Canyon in Georgia

Option 2: Okatse Canyon


Okatse Canyon, on the other hand, can be considered a mild hike, at 6 km (3.7 mi) long (out-and-back). You can even just drive the first 1.5 km of the hike (though missing a nice trail), and just focus on the fun stuff at the end. By that I mean a long metal walkway, a bridge that doesn’t allow little kids, lots of stairs and viewpoints hanging from the canyon edges. Fun!

A word of warning: Don’t forget you’re in Georgia, where making money is more important than integrity. Your first encounter at Okatse Canyon will be with the “lovely” gentlemen on the parking lot of the visitor center, all trying to get you to pay them to take you to the bridge. They’ll tell you that if you try to walk the entire way, the hike will take you 4 hours. Or that you can’t drive your own car there. It’s all lies, obviously. The entire hike will take a maximum of 2 hours. And, if you want to and have a good car (higher clearance, 4x4), you can just drive to the bridge yourself.

You can read a little more about Okatse Canyon in my article about Day Hikes in Georgia.



Day 6, stop 4: Kutaisi’s few sights

Places to see in Kutaisi—day 6 of Georgia itinerary

Enjoy your last day in Kutaisi!


Distance from last stop:  50 km/30 mi, 1-hour drive

If you have any time and energy left and want to see a bit of Kutaisi, here are the few spots you could target:

  • Bagrati Cathedral. Once one of Georgia’s most important landmarks, now a renovated cathedral that was stripped of its World Heritage List status (because of said renovation). The views from there are cool though.
  • Colchis Fountain. It may look just cute, but there is actually a deeper significance behind the random-looking choice of fountain fauna. They aren’t just cute golden animals; they are enlarged models of archaeological artifacts. And while you’re there, take a look at the surrounding buildings as well—Meskhishvili Theatre and the TBC Bank building are some of the grandest structures in the city.
  • The French and Jewish Quarters. They are next to each other to the north of Newport hotel, and have some interesting old buildings to look at. The Holy Annunciation Temple in the French Quarter used to be a Catholic Church, giving it a unique exterior. And in the Jewish Quarter—surprise!—Kutaisi Synagogue. It’s pretty easy to spot as it’s the only building around that isn’t slowly but surely falling to pieces. Don’t be fooled by the monochrome exterior, the inside is all kinds of colorful.


Day 7 of Georgia itinerary: Back to Tbilisi (with stops)

Map showing route from Kutaisi to Tbilisi, Georgia

Time to head back to Tbilisi


Main sites visited on day 7: Katskhi Column, Chiatura, Mgvimevi Convent
Restaurant tips: Otuna Restaurant | Rendez-vous | Blue Fox Restaurant and Bar Tbilisi
Hotel recommendations: Hotel 21 | Blue Balcony Hotel
Further reading: What to see in Kutaisi | Georgia's beautiful monasteries and churches | Best things to do in Tbilisi


Your week in Georgia is coming to an end. You’ll take a detour on your way back to Tbilisi, checking out some of the strangest places on this itinerary. In total, the driving time for today is about 5 hours (260 km/160 mi).


Day 7, stop 1: Katskhi Column

Katskhi Column in Georgia

Katskhi Column. See the little church on top?


Distance from Kutaisi: 60 km/40 mi, 1.5-hour drive
Time spent here: 30 minutes

To get to Katskhi Column, you’ll be driving on pretty good, though sometimes narrow, roads. When you’re close, you’ll see signposts directing you to Katskhi Column parking. Park at the first parking area and walk the rest of the way unless you enjoy driving on bumpy dirt roads. 

What to expect once you get there? A small church on a 40 m (130 ft) limestone column. The monks from the monastery at the base sometimes climb the ladder up the column and pay God a visit. Us regular humans aren’t allowed up there, so just stare at it from the bottom for a bit and move on.



Day 7, stop 2: Chiatura

Chiatura in Georgia

Chiatura: The perfect spot to film The Walking Dead!


Distance from last stop: 10 km/6 mi, 20-minute drive
Time spent here: 1 hour

Have you ever wanted to visit a post-apocalyptic-looking town? No? Then please skip this next stop.

Chiatura is a former manganese mining town known for its network of Soviet-era cable cars (originally set up to help the miners commute) that crisscross the city, and it sure ain’t pretty. You will only enjoy Chiatura if you’re an urban explorer and can find allure in old, defunct buildings and cable cars.

Too bad all the old cable cars are now discontinued and will probably spend the rest of time rotting. They are supposed to be restored, since they are classified as a heritage site, but I’ll believe it when I see it. Too bad most of the rusty cars have been removed from the lines—they were pretty photogenic (in an eerie, industrial way).

The good news is that 4 new cable car lines were opened in 2021, allowing more than just those seeking photo ops of derelict buildings and sad-looking stations a chance to enjoy the place. To ride on one (or all) of the lines, head to the imaginatively named Central Cable Car Station.



Day 7, stop 3: Mgvimevi Convent

Mgvimevi Convent near Chiatura, Georgia

Mgvimevi Convent church


Distance from last stop: 2 km/1.2 mi, 5-minute drive
Time spent here: 45 minutes

Mgvimevi Convent is right outside of Chiatura, and it’ll fix that zombie apocalypse aftertaste right up! That is, unless you look down into the ugly industrial area that’s right below the convent.

Once you manage to locate the steep staircase up the mountainside, you’ll be treated to what’ll feel like a secret church. The main part of the church is in a natural cave, but it was built up in the 13th century into a simple place of worship that exudes a sense of serenity and humility.

This is a nice little stop and worth the bit of effort to climb up the “mountain”.



Day 7, stop 4: Lunch and drive to Tbilisi

A tourist in Tbilisi Old Town, Georgia

Welcome back to Tbilisi!


Distance from last stop: 180 km/115 mi, 3-hour drive

You’ll spend most of the afternoon driving the rest of the way to Tbilisi. After 15 minutes of driving from Mgvimevi Convent you’ll arrive at a town called Sachkhere where you can stop by Otuna Restaurant for lunch. It’s the only place far and wide that seemed decent for a food stop. If you’ll make do with some coffee and cake at this point, there’s a surprisingly nice cafe close by, as well. It’s called Rendez-vous.

If you arrive in Tbilisi and need a little extra inspiration for places to see, check out my 2-day Tbilisi Itinerary.


Have more time? Georgia itinerary for 10 days

Map showing the route of this Georgia itinerary for 10 days

If you have 10 days, you can extend your reach all the way to Svaneti NP in the northwest. Worth it! (see this on Google Maps)


Oh, so you do have more than 7 days in Georgia? Lucky you, because that means one thing: more epic hikes! Here, I’ll give you 3 more days that you can add to the 7-day itinerary above.

In order for the logistics to make sense, they should be added as days 6 – 8, like this:

Day 1: Tbilisi (sleep in Tbilisi)
Day 2: Drive Georgian Military Highway to Stepantsminda (sleep in Stepantsminda)
Day 3: Kazbeg hike (sleep in Stepantsminda)
Day 4: Truso Gorge, drive to Borjomi (sleep in Borjomi)
Day 5: Borjomi, Vardzia, Rabati (sleep in Borjomi)
Day 6: Hiking in Borjomi (sleep in Borjomi)
Day 7: Drive to Mestia, Chalaadi Glacier hike (sleep in Mestia)
Day 8: Koruldi Lakes (sleep in Mestia)
Day 9: Drive to Kutaisi, Martvili Canyon, Gelati Monastery (sleep in Kutaisi)
Day 10: Katskhi Pillar, Chiatura (sleep in Tbilisi)

Here’s what’s been added:


Day 6 of 10-day Georgia itinerary: Hiking in Borjomi

Hiking in Borjomi, Georgia

Get ready for some serious hiking and some marvelous views!


Main sites visited on day 6/10: Likani Valley Trail
Restaurant tipsDimitri’s Wine Cellar and Restaurant | Cafe Iggy
Hotel recommendations: Borjomi UnderWood
Further reading: Amazing Places in Georgia | Best day hikes in Georgia


Like I mentioned, Borjomi is the gateway to the Lesser Caucasus. It’s smaller than its big brother in the north of the country, but there’s still tons of hiking options.

Right outside of Borjomi you can venture out into Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park. There are 12 official hiking trails, but some are closed/damaged, and new ones are being marked, so it’s hard to tell the exact number. Many of them are overnight trips, too, which is a no-no for me.

My chosen trail, the Likani Valley Trail is supposed to be a loop, but the final section is an annoyingly steep descent that has zero views, so I decided that it’s not worth the knee pain. For this reason, I recommend making this hike an out-and-back variant.  Here are the hike stats:


Hike length: 10 km (6 mi) out-and-back
Elevation gain: 500 m (1,600 ft) 
Difficulty level: Easy unless you meet a bear or decide to do the full loop (steep descent)
Hiking time: 4 hours 
Trailhead: Google Maps link  


Expect a lot of trees that will obstruct your views, but you do get glimpses of snow-capped peaks and Borjomi Gorge.

Important: There are bears in the area, and you need to register to go on this hike at the Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park Administration office in Borjomi. It’s quick and free.  


Day 7 of 10-day Georgia itinerary: Drive to Mestia, Chalaadi Glacier hike

Mestia in Georgia

Around Mestia


Main sites visited on day 7/10: a very long road, the horrible town of Mestia, and Chalaadi Glacier
Restaurant tips: Diaroni Restaurant in Zugdidi |
Hotel recommendations: LileoInn Boutique Hotel:
Further reading: Amazing Places in Georgia | Best day hikes in Georgia

You’re overnight destination for the next 2 nights is Mestia, the place where I was frowned upon for demanding they change the sheets after the previous guests (I have a whole story about that), and that single-handedly became my least favorite city in the entire country.

But, it’s also the place where you have to stay if you want to go on some breathtaking hikes in Svaneti National Park, so you’ll have to manage.


Day 7/10, stop 1: Drive to Mestia

Map showing route from Borjomi to Mestia through Zugdidi, Georgia

If you want to go see incredible scenery in Svaneti NP, you’ll have to put the work in on the road first!


Distance from Borjomi: 360 km/225 mi, 7.5-hour drive

I don’t want to scare you, but today’s drive is incredibly long, and even though there are some spots you could stop on the way to break up the journey, you really shouldn’t. The thing is, you still want to have enough time to go on a short hike once you get up to Mestia—the Chalaadi Glacier is spectacular!

So, plan on starting early in the morning and head out the door with a large, caffeinated beverage in one hand and a playlist of energetic tunes in the other. Have I mentioned driving in Georgia is not for the faint of heart? Yeah, that too.

The only place I’ll allow you to stop is Zugdidi, a city about 4 hours into your drive. And the reason is... lunch! Not Dadiani Palace, which is what most people crave to do in Zugdidi. You’re short on time, so you’re looking for some place that’ll feed you. If you love spicy, aromatic food with tons of cheese, you’re in for a treat! Try Diaroni Restaurant.


Day 7/10, stop 2: Chalaadi Glacier hike

Chalaadi Glacier hike, Georgia

Time for a little hike—Chalaadi Glacier awaits!


Distance from Mestia: 360 km/225 mi, 7.5-hour drive

Time spent here: 2 hours

Once you finally make it to Mestia, don’t waste too much time checking into your hotel (I recommend LileoInn Boutique Hotel) and head out on a little hike to Chalaadi Glacier. I hope you like scrambling over huge rocks!


Hike stats:


Hike length: 5 km (3 mi) 
Elevation gain: 270 m (885 ft) 
Difficulty level: Easy 
Hiking time: 2 hours
Trailhead: Google Maps link to trailhead


This short hike is fun, very scenic, and a perfect way to spend a couple of hours to stretch those legs cramping from the car ride over here. To start, take a taxi to the trailhead at the little bridge across the river. It’s impossible to park there.

The bridge itself is a sight, since it allows you to cross the sometimes wild river and it’s just this dainty little wooden thing (it can get slippery!). You’ll be greeted by a small cafe and probably some soldiers from the nearby military checkpoint. Have your passport with you so they can wave you by and you can be on your way to the glacier.  

The trail to Chalaadi is straighforward (and straight), just keep the river on your left and you’re good. You’ll be going a little bit through the pine forest at first, but a lot of the trail follows the river. Once you’re out of the woods, the view to the glacier opens up. Watch your step and expect lots of big (big!) rocks and paths where you can easily lose your footing especially if it had rained recently.  

Just don’t go too close to the glacier—people have gotten killed by falling rocks, you’ll probably even see some while you’re there (the falling rocks, not dead people hopefully).  Also, I’ve heard about bears and wolves in these parts, so keep an eye out.  


Day 8 of 10-day Georgia itinerary: Koruldi Lakes hike (with easy alternatives)

Mestia Koruldi Lakes, Georgia

Koruldi Lakes in Mestia


Main sites visited on day 8/10: Koruldi Lakes hike
Restaurant tips: Diaroni Restaurant in Zugdidi | Darzabi Restaurant in Mestia |Twin Peaks in Mestia
Hotel recommendations: LileoInn Boutique Hotel
Further reading: Amazing places in Georgia | Best day hikes in Georgia


Today’s hike is one of my absolute favorite places in Georgia, because the scenery here is so stunning that you won’t even care if you can get that photo of the mountains reflecting in the lake. Spoiler: You won’t, and the “lakes” are basically puddles. And it’s still absolutely awesome!

This is another hike that you can customize to your level of fitness and laziness.

Here are the full Koruldi Lakes hike stats in case you are energized, strong, and have good legs:


Hike length: 16 km (10 mi) 
Elevation gain: 1,360 m (4,460 ft) 
Difficulty level: Hard 
Hiking time: 7.5 hours (plus extra time for a beer at the cafe and many photos at the top!) 
Trailhead and parking: Google Maps link to trailhead and Google Maps link to parking on Seti Square 

But, just in case you’re on the worse end of the hiker spectrum, a good 4x4 will get you all the way up to the lakes. Then you can just walk around some of the viewpoints there without much effort at all.

Another alternative is to get your semi-lazy ass driven part of the way up to the cross and nearby cafe (that’s what we did). That’ll shorten your total hike to about 8.5 km (5.2 mi) and you skip the hardest part, which is in the beginning of the full hike. I say work smarter, not harder applies here.


Day 9 of 10-day Georgia itinerary: Drive to Kutaisi, Martvili Canyon, Gelati Monastery

Map of route from Mestia to Kutaisi, Georgia

Time to head down from the mountains


The last 2 days of the 10-day itinerary are the same as the last 2 days of the 7-day Georgia itinerary, except that you’ll be driving to Kutaisi from Mestia, not Borjomi. That’s 220 km/137 mi (5 hours) of driving.

Since you’ll be coming from the north, you’ll want to stop at Martvili Canyon first, because it’s literally on your route. If you opt for Okatse Canyon instead, that’ll add about 30 minutes to your drive.

Then, continue on to Kutaisi and Gelati Monastery.


FAQ 1: When’s the best time to visit Georgia country? 

The ideal time to visit Georgia country depends on what activities float your boat (or hike your mountain in this case). For hiking and summer holidays, between May and October is best. But be aware that there might still be snow in the mountains in May/June and it could start getting a bit chilly in September and October.

Now, let's talk precipitation. Georgia knows a thing or two about rain. Whether you're on the coast or scaling those mountains, be prepared for a 50/50 split between rain and sunshine.  There isn't a specific "dry" month, so pack that waterproof gear!

But wait, there's more! If you're a secret skiing enthusiast, Georgia's got you covered too. Who knew, right? From December to February, the slopes come alive, and you can swoosh through the powdery goodness. Just a friendly reminder: Avoid going too high, as altitude sickness might try to crash your skiing party. We wouldn't want you to feel like a dizzy snowman, would we?


FAQ 2: Is Georgia (country) safe to visit? 

When it comes to health in Georgia, I'd give a hesitant nod of approval, even though I would really not want to visit their hospitals.

How about the world of scams and thieves? Yikes, Georgia can be a bit of a wild west in that regard—I absolutely despised the behavior towards tourists. Even little old grandmas will try to rip you off, and if you don’t get anything stolen in Georgia, you probably have a very street-smart guardian angel. Honestly, if you can’t or don’t want to deal with trying to constantly outsmart those annoying tricksters, you might want to consider Austria or Germany for a more worry-free experience instead. The mountains are equally stunning, and you'll be treated to superior service that's worth its weight in strudel and sausages.

Oh, and let's not forget the ongoing semi-conflict with its neighbor, Russia, along the borders. Things can quickly escalate into a dicey situation, so, if you prefer your adventures to be of the non-military kind, it's best to avoid those border areas.


FAQ 3: How do I plan a trip to Georgia? 

If you ask me (and you did), I think this itinerary is the best for 1 week in Georgia:


Day 1: Tbilisi (sleep in Tbilisi)
Day 2: Drive Georgian Military Highway to Stepantsminda (sleep in Stepantsminda)
Day 3: Kazbeg hike (sleep in Stepantsminda)
Day 4: Truso Gorge, drive to Borjomi (sleep in Borjomi)
Day 5: Borjomi, Vardzia, Rabati (sleep in Borjomi)
Day 6: Gelati Monastery, Martvili Canyon, Kutaisi (sleep in Kutaisi)
Day 7: Katskhi Pillar, Chiatura (sleep in Tbilisi)

If you have more time, it’s worth adding extra days and include more hikes in the Caucasus Mountains—they are the highlight of any Georgia trip. Here’s what a 10-day itinerary in Georgia could look like:


Day 1: Tbilisi (sleep in Tbilisi)
Day 2: Drive Georgian Military Highway to Stepantsminda (sleep in Stepantsminda)
Day 3: Kazbeg hike (sleep in Stepantsminda)
Day 4: Truso Gorge, drive to Borjomi (sleep in Borjomi)
Day 5: Borjomi, Vardzia, Rabati (sleep in Borjomi)
Day 6: Hiking in Borjomi (sleep in Borjomi)
Day 7: Drive to Mestia, Chalaadi Glacier hike (sleep in Mestia)
Day 8: Koruldi Lakes (sleep in Mestia)
Day 9: Drive to Kutaisi, Martvili Canyon, Gelati Monastery (sleep in Kutaisi)
Day 10: Katskhi Pillar, Chiatura (sleep in Tbilisi) 


This post contains affiliate links. I earn a small commission if you make bookings through my links, at no additional cost to you. This helps keep this blog free, thank you!  


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About me

About me

Hi! I’m Jan. I live in Prague, Czech Republic. I try to experience the best the world has to offer, and I don’t cease to be impressed. But if I’m not, I’m sure going to tell you! You can count on my full honesty and real opinions here. No bullcrap. I own and run several companies, which gives me great (but not unlimited) freedom to roam the world.  

I was first inspired to start this blog by my own experience of researching for upcoming trips—I often struggle with a lack of good information, accuracy, and authenticity of resources. You wouldn’t believe how many “travel bloggers” don’t even visit the destinations they write about! 

My goal with this blog is to provide you with complex and practical information so that you can plan your own vacation, complete with insights you’d only get if you visited the place. I also put together itineraries that are fully planned out trip guides.

Another aspect that drives this platform is my curiosity about the history, geography, politics, and economy of each country I visit, so I try to include this information in my articles, too. It’s always great to get the bigger picture, right? 

And just to be clear, I am not trying to compete with backpacking blogs or provide hacks for an economical and affordable experience. My vacations follow the standard pattern of traveling by plane, staying in good hotels, and renting a car on the spot to get around. I’m also always up for a fantastic meal, though I don’t shy away from local delicacies and street food, either.  

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