Tips for tourists visiting Georgia
Don’t hesitate to ask
Hospitality is an integral part of Georgian culture. With a smile on your face and the magic word “gamarjoba” (hello) you can get help anytime. Georgians love tourists, so don’t be afraid to ask if there is anything you need. Even if there is a language barrier, if you use gestures and body language people will try to help, or call someone who is fluent in your language to help you.
Engage in daily life
No matter how much money you have, if you want to immerse yourself in the culture you are visiting, it is better to leave your hotel and take a walk. Shardeni Street, Rustaveli Ave, and Freedom Square are recommended places to discover on foot. Sit down and relax in a park and observe daily life. Look at the colors, people, new and old buildings, take in the smells and just enjoy the surroundings. A new world will open up in front of your eyes.
Keep digital and physical copies of important documents
If something goes wrong, it is always a good idea to have copies of important documents, such as your passport, your birth certificate and a list of important phone numbers. Also, photos are a valuable part of our journey. With the help of backup systems such as “Idrive” or “Backblaze” you can ensure that you won’t lose your precious memories.
Create a “memory box”
Keep stamps, used tickets, magnets, and city maps and put all these things in a box. Open this box after a year and you will see how these small things will make a huge impact. You will remember the places where you went and the wonderful feelings of those times will come flooding back. If you decorate this box it can become a great part of your home décor. It will definitely catch the attention of your guests and you will have a chance to show off a little.
What to see
In Georgia you can enjoy almost any type of tourism: paragliding, camping, trekking, rafting, ziplining, diving etc. Here is a short list of places you should visit:
Batumi is the best place to go if you love the sea and want to escape for the summer. Colorful buildings, beautiful sculptures, a dolphinarium where you can swim with dolphins are some of the things you can do in Batumi.
If you love mountains, Svaneti is one of the best places to visit. Medieval stone towers, peaks and cliffs, museums filled with ancient treasures, world-class icons and jewelry stores are worth seeing.
The Svans (the people of the Svaneti region), with their own language and traditions, will leave you speechless.
And finally, there is Tbilisi, the capital city and heart of Georgia. The city will impress you with the Abanotubani district, the National Botanical Garden, Narikala Fortress, Holy Trinity Cathedral, the Peace Bridge and other famous sights. You can take a cable car tour in the Old Town (the historical part of Tbilisi) and afterwards you can try a sulfur bath. Also, 144 Stairs Café on Betlemi Street is highly recommended because you can enjoy picturesque views over Tbilisi from here. To discover lots of pubs and restaurants, visit Shardeni Street, which is a great area for nightlife. This is just a small sample of the things and places you should see in Tbilisi.
Taste local food and drinks
Georgian cuisine is unique. Each historical province of Georgia has its own culinary tradition. Some of the most famous dishes are Khachapuri (Georgian cheese bread), Khinkali (meat dumplings), lobiani (bean-filled bread) and Mtsvadi (BBQ meat). You can taste these dishes almost everywhere. Some of the most highly recommended places to eat are “Barbarestan” on D. Aghmashenebeli Ave. and“Funicular” on Mtatsminda plateau. Some less expensive restaurants that are still great quality are “Khinklissakhli”, “Shemoikhedegenatsvale” and “machakhela”.
Georgia has a long tradition of winemaking. Don’t miss the chance to taste local wine from a pitcher during your meal. If you’re lucky you might get the chance to drink from a “kantsi”, which is a traditional drinking horn. If you decide to go to Mtskheta, which is just 40 minutes from Tbilisi by car, you will have the chance to taste wine for free, near Svetitskhoveli Cathedral.