- Mar 29, 2015
Tel: (+995) 599 778 734
(+995) 557 180 110
Capital and largest city - Tbilisi
Official languages - Georgian
Religion - Georgian Orthodox(Christian)
Area Total - 69,700 km2 (120th)26,911 sq mi
Population - 2013 estimate - 4,942,157
Time zone - GET (UTC+4)
Currency - Lari () (GEL)
This 1.75-million-year-old skull from the republic of Georgia might have belonged to one of the first humans to leave Africa. And it doesn’t look anything like what scientists thought it would.
This is the face that’s changing a thousand minds. It could be the face of the first human to leave Africa. And it’s not what anyone expected. This 1.75-million-year-old pioneer, found last year beneath the ruins of a medieval town called Dmanisi in the republic of Georgia, had a tiny brain—not nearly the size scientists thought our ancestors needed to migrate into a new land. And its huge canine teeth and thin brow look too apelike for an advanced hominid, the group that includes modern humans and their ancestors. Along with other fossils and tools found at the site, this skull reopens so many questions about our ancestry that one scientist muttered: “They ought to put it back in the ground.” - National Georgaphic Magazine
When it comes to wine-making, Georgia is blessed. Grapevine has been cultivated in the fertile valleys of Georgia for
about 8000 years. With over 500 varieties of endemic grapes and the world’s first cultivates grapevines, the traditions of viticulture are entwined with the country's national identity. It is also believed that the word “wine” is of Georgian origin (“gvino” in Georgian)
8,000-year-old wine unearthed in Georgia:
Scientists have discovered the world's oldest wine – a vintage produced 8,000 years ago. The find pushes back the history of wine by several hundred years. New discoveries show how Neolithic man was busy making red wine in Shulaveri (Georgia). Although no liquid wine from the period has survived, scientists have now found and tested wine residues discovered on the inner surfaces of 8,000-year-old ceramic storage jars. - The Independent, 2003
Unesco World Heritage Sites
Historical Monuments of Mtskheta
The historic churches of Mtskheta, former capital of Georgia, are outstanding examples of medieval religious architecture in the Caucasus. They show the high artistic and cultural level attained by this ancient kingdom.
Bagrati Cathedral and Gelati Monastery
The construction of Bagrati Cathedral, named after Bagrat III, the first king of united Georgia, started at the end of the 10th century and was completed in the early years of the 11th century. Although partly destroyed by the Turks in 1691, its ruins still lie in the centre of Kutaisi. The Gelati Monastery, whose main buildings were erected between the 12th and 17th centuries, is a well-preserved complex, with wonderful mosaics and wall paintings. The cathedral and monastery represent the flowering of medieval architecture in Georgia.
Preserved by its long isolation, the Upper Svaneti region of the Caucasus is an exceptional example of mountain scenery with medieval-type villages and tower-houses. The village of Chazhashi still has more than 200 of these very unusual houses, which were used both as dwellings and as defence posts against the invaders who plagued the region.
Alaverdi St. George Cathedral (first half of the 11th century) is located 18 km from the town of Telavi in the Alazani-River valley. Earliest structures of Alaverdi Monastery date back to 6th century. The present day Cathedral is part of an 11th century Georgian Orthodox monastery. The Monastery was founded by the monk Joseph [Abba] Alaverdeli, who came from Antioch and settled in Alaverdi, then a small village and the former pagan religious centre dedicated to Moon. At the beginning of 11th century, Kakhetian King Kvirike the Great built a cathedral in the place of a small church of St. George.
Alaverdi is the highest cathedral in Georgia (up to 50 meters). It dominates the surrounding landscape in a fertile river valley against the backdrop of the Caucasus Mountains. It is a cross with three apses inscribed in a rectangle. In the western part of the building, there are galleries on the second tier of the side naves. The interior of the cathedral is extremely imposing. Outside the Cathedral is devoid of embellishments, and the facades have monumental blind arcades and niches for decoration, which give the entire structure an air of monumentality and solemnity. The walls are of fieldstone faced with hewn slabs of shirimi water tuff, now badly weathered. An area enclosed by a fortified wall contains dwelling houses, the refectory of the monastery, wine cellars, baths, and other structures.
Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park – Supported by WWF
Located in the Lesser Caucasus
the Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park is one of the largest in Europe and the first national park in the Caucasus. It covers more than 76,000 hectares, which amounts nearly 1% of the territory of Georgia. Mountainous forests and sub-alpine and alpine meadows are home to rare species of flora and fauna. The park is supported by the World Wide Fund for Nature.
Ushguli – Europe’s Highest Village
At 2200m Ushguli is the highest settlement in Europe. The village of about 200 people is located in Upper Svaneti region, at the foot of Mt. Shkhara (5068m) – one of the highest summits of the Caucasus. Dotted with medieval Svanetian watchtowers Ushguli is also a UNESCO World Heritage site.
A 3000-Year-Old State
Georgia has one of the world’s richest and oldest histories. Archaeological excavations provide clear evidence that Georgian tribes formed their statehood as early as the second millennium BC. The remains of the flourishing Georgian states of Colchis and Iberia can be seen while travelling in the ancient cities of Vani, Ku
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