Best of Georgia Tour

Tbilisi, Mtskheta, Mukhrani, Telavi, Tsinandali, Sighnaghi

The Best of Georgia Tour winds through cobblestoned Old Tbilisi, saintly Mtskheta, wine-loving Mukhrani, charming Telavi, cultural Tsinandali, historic Sighnaghi and the whimsical, one-of-a-kind David Gareja Monastery as it acquaints you with the very best of eastern Georgia through private, guided tours.
Georgia is a land that simply excels at everything. Whether you’re seeking idyllic historic monuments, tantalizing cuisine, high quality wines, picturesque towns, city comforts, unbeatable scenery, mysterious ruins or cultural appreciation, Georgia stands ready to offer it all, and more, with impressive hospitality and a welcoming embrace.

Arrive in Tbilisi, Georgia’s capital. You will be met by our driver for drop-off at the hotel, where check-in begins at noon. Have a rest, followed by a private, guided walking tour of Old Tbilisi. Your tour begins at Metekhi Bridge and includes the following sites:

  • Metekhi Church (13th century), guarded by a statue of King Vakhtang Gorgasali.
  • Cable car ride from Rike Park up to Narikala Fortress (4th century). Nearby stands the 20-meter-high statue of Kartlis Deda, also known as the Mother of Georgia.
  • Old Tbilisi’s narrow winding streets, on which you’ll see the famous Jumah Mosque.
  • Bridge of Lovers, situated near the cooling waters of the 22-meter-high Legvtakhevi Waterfall.
  • Historic Abanotubani District, where you’ll pass by the famous Tbilisi Sulfur Baths.
  • Jan Shardeni Street (Jean Chardin), an area filled with cozy coffee shops, wine tasting bars and souvenir stores.
  • Sioni Cathedral (7th century), with a jaw-dropping interior of gold and turquoise frescoes.
  • Leaning Clock Tower of Tbilisi, a cartoonish landmark next to the city’s famous Reza Gabriadze Puppet Theater.
  • Anchiskhati Basilica Church (6th century), a Georgian Orthodox Cathedral and the oldest house of worship in Tbilisi.
  • Bridge of Peace, which spans the Kura River into Rike Park.
Overnight at the hotel in Tbilisi.
Tour duration: 3-4 hours
Meals provided: none

In the morning, meet your driver and guide at your Tbilisi hotel to continue your tour. Drive to Mtskheta (25km, 30min), ancient capital of Iberia and a holy pilgrimage site for most Georgians. Explore Mtskheta’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites:

  • Jvari Orthodox Monastery (6th century), a unique remnant of the early Georgian church built at the top of a hill. The church overlooks the confluence of the Mtkvari and Aragvi Rivers and amazes its visitors with simple yet beautiful facades.
  • Svetitskhoveli Cathedral (11th century), where one of the holiest items of the orthodox Christian world - the seamless robe, or chiton, worn by Jesus Christ at crucifixion - is believed to be buried. Admire the stunning architecture and moving frescoes as you learn the various legends connected with the church.
  • Samtavro Monastery (11th century), former center of the Georgian Orthodox Church and burial site of Queen Nana and King Mirian, who founded the monastery. The complex attracts many religious pilgrims and includes several churches, bell towers, frescoes and an active convent.
  • Take a walk on the lovely streets of Mtskheta to admire the homes and balconies, or shop for Georgia’s famous national sweet, churchkhela.
Continue driving west (13km, 20 min) to visit Shio Mgvime Monastery (6th century), an active monastery and unique, sacred site for many Georgians. Enjoy the magnificent view as you explore the cave church, bell tower and chapels.
Continue to Mukhrani Region (33km, 40min), stopping for wine tasting and exploration at Chateau Mukhrani Winery. The winery is a castle with wine cellars and gardens belonging to the royal family of 19th century statesman Ivane Mukhranbatoni.
After touring the winery, drive back to Tbilisi (5km, 10min). Overnight at the hotel in Tbilisi.
Meals provided: breakfast, lunch
In the morning, drive from Tbilisi to Georgia’s wine country, Kakheti Region, via the Gombori Pass (95km, 1hr 30min).
On the way, visit Akhali Shuamta Monastery Complex (5th and 16th centuries), site of two monasteries reflecting distinct architectural styles.
Continue driving to Telavi, capital of Kakheti Region, through picturesque rivers and valleys. Take a short walking tour through Telavi’s charming streets, stopping for photos with the 900-year-old Giant Plane Tree and a monument of Irakli II, king of Kakheti in the 18th century.
Drive to Tsinandali to tour the Tsinandali Estate, a historical complex which includes a lovely garden and the House Museum of Prince Alexander Chavchavadze, the 19th century poet and stateman who developed the manor.
Enjoy lunch and wine tasting at the adjacent Shumi Georgian Winery and Museum, an ancient winery that produces exclusive wines and boasts of a unique collection of Georgian and European varieties. All wines are made according to traditional qvevri winemaking methods in centuries-old qvevri vessels.
Continue to Sighnaghi, a small Silk Road town in east Kakheti surrounded by 23 towers and defensive walls. Walk the narrow cobblestone streets of this outpost known locally as The City of Love.
In Sighnaghi, explore the Bodbe Monastery Complex (9th century). Also known as St. George’s Monastery, it’s one of Georgia’s most significant religious sites, for St. Nino, credited with converting Georgia to Christianity in the 4th century, is believed to be buried here.
Return to Tbilisi (110km, 1hr 40min). Overnight in Tbilisi.
Meals provided: breakfast, lunch
Your guide and driver will meet you at your Tbilisi hotel. Drive to David Gareja Monastery Complex in Kakheti Region via the small town of Rustavi and the Argali River (75km, 2hrs).
Arrive to David Gareja Monastery (dates vary) for exploration of this fascinating religious center*. The first cave monastery was founded in the 6th century, and additions were made up until the 17th century. The expansive complex includes monasteries, churches, a chapel, living quarters and classrooms hewn into the rocky mountainside.
Of particular note at the complex is Lavra Cave Monastery, an active monastery with hundreds of cave cells and robed monks who still inhabit its quarters.
Enjoy some light hiking (45 minutes one way) to Udabno Monastery, a large cluster of cave cells famous for their 12th-century wall paintings. Enjoy the colorful, semi-desert landscape as you have a short rest and listen to your guide provide informative background information.
Hike back to the entrance and drive to Tbilisi (75km, 2hrs). Overnight at the hotel in Tbilisi.
Meals provided: breakfast, picnic lunch
*Note: We advise you to bring appropriate footwear, sunscreen, a raincoat and a hat for this day trip.
Free morning to pack or to continue exploring Old Tbilisi on your own. Check out of the hotel by noon and transfer to Tbilisi International Airport. End of Best of Georgia Tour.
Meals provided: breakfast
  • Private guide on days 1, 2,3 and 4;
  • Entrance fees to the sights and wineries as per itinerary, including cable car ride;
  • Transportation throughout the tour;
  • Accommodation based on double/twin room at hotel (4 nights, with breakfast);
  • Bottled mineral water (0.5 liter per person per day);
  • Meals – two lunches with wine tasting on days 2 and 3; boxed lunch on day 4.
  • International flight tickets before and after the tour;
  • Hotel charges for additional services;
  • Lunches and dinners not specified in the itinerary;
  • Personal travel insurance;
  • All other charges and services not mentioned under Inclusions;
  • Tips are not included but are appreciated.

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