TbilisiCopyright: Boris Stroujko/Shutterstock.com
TbilisiThe vibrant capital of Georgia is as though taken straight from a fairy tale, a city with spectacular architecture, both old and new, cobbled streets, underground thermal baths and the wonderful natural surroundings of the majestic Caucasus. Tbilisi is a perfect example of a city where tradition and modernity coexist, giving life to an amazing travel experience.
The Country: GeorgiaNestled in the Caucasian Mountains between Europe and Asia, on the Black Sea shores, and often unjustly neglected by international tourists, Georgia is a country that conceals unbelievably beautiful treasures. It has a lot to offer to every kind of traveller and holds a rich and fascinating history for such a small territory. Tbilisi, the capital city, is the perfect destination as it combines the old and the modern and gives a glimpse into the country's culture. It doesn't have to be the only stop for you: to get a complete vision of the Georgian traditions and folklore, you must venture into rural Georgia and experience the gorgeous nature. Hike up some of the highest snow-topped peaks of Europe, explore old villages, and interact with the local people, famous for their warm hospitality. The country also lays claim to being the birthplace of wine and is an established gastronomic destination, so you should not miss a tasting with a lovely view of the vineyards, or eating at one of the hidden cellars where you can also try some delicious local food.
TbilisiTbilisi takes its name from the sulphuric hot springs found in the area along the Kura River, which, according to the legend, was the reason why the founder, King Vakhtang I Gorgasali, decided to build the city there. Since then Tbilisi has been the political and cultural centre of Georgia and is now a rapidly evolving city, spearheading the development of the whole country. The capital of Georgia is a multicultural city where different religions, cultures and architectural styles, ancient and modern, coexist and thrive. Orthodox and Catholic churches stand alongside synagogues and mosques, while old ruins like the Narikala fortress watch the modern, marvellous architecture of the Bridge of Peace. Old sites, like the sulphur baths, visited by the likes of Pushkin and Dumas, are paired with new landmarks, constantly evolving and changing Tbilisi's cityscape into an original and intriguing blend of fascinating history and modern architecture. Tbilisi is a city where you will always find something new to discover, be it an impressive monument, a little restaurant around the corner, a traditional bar with exquisite wine or simply the immensely rich, thousand-year old Georgian culture and tradition, coupled with the warmest hospitality you can find.
Do & See
Museums, churches, historical sites and buildings, green open spaces and much more await you in Tbilisi, the capital city of Georgia. Surrounded by mountains and crossed by the Kura River, the city combines the ancient and the modern with a good mix of old streets, dotted with decadent buildings, along with brand new sights and attractions, such as the 360-degree cable car, which takes you up to the Narikala Fortress and lets you enjoy a spectacular view, and the stunning Bridge of Peace, made of steel and glass and beautifully illuminated at night.
Georgia has a longstanding culinary tradition, almost as old as the country itself. It is no wonder then that social dining (and drinking) holds a special position in Georgian culture, with traditional feasts (supra) being very important and ritualised. Leading a supra is always a tamada, toastmaster, whose role is to speak and propose toasts, until the feast is ended. Tbilisi offers a lot of restaurants serving local cuisine in accordance with Georgian tradition and it is not uncommon to stumble upon a typical feast with people toasting, singing and dancing.
After a long day of sightseeing, nothing is better than a good cup of coffee or a flavoured tea, perhaps along with exquisite local pastries, and Tbilisi's cafes offer you all of that, plus some of the most charming views of the old city and the surrounding mountains. Otherwise, if you are up for a glass of wine, you must know that Georgia is considered to be the homeland of wine, so you would better discover the lovely hidden cellars and pop open some of the finest bottles in the region.
Bars & Nightlife
Whether you are a frequent or an occasional party-goer, there is a right place for you in Tbilisi: join a crazy pub crawl around the city and challenge new friends to beer pong games, sit back and enjoy good music and drinks in a cosy bar, dance all night long in a vibrant night club, or join a more elegant party on a terrace. Whatever it is you are looking for, fun is guaranteed.
Tbilisi has a comprehensive offer of malls and fashion boutiques, but for a unique shopping experience you should focus on the traditional handicraft stores, workshops and markets: there you will find the most original souvenirs and get an insight into the country's culture and folklore.