Hiker's Journey to the Caucasus

Lodge-Based Hiking in the Republic of Georgia

Overview

Our adventure with extraordinary Trip Leader Eka Tchvritidze brings us to a realm where, in Eka’s words, “the mountains meet heaven.” In wild Tusheti National Park, with its untamed alpine beauty and ancient stone towers, our lodge-to-lodge hikes bring us to slate-roofed villages guarded by 17th century watchtowers. Two of the villages have UNESCO “living museum” status for their cultural heritage, and at our guesthouses, feasting is a cherished tradition and way of life—we’ll be welcomed with songs, poems, and hearty toasts! Descending to the Kakheti region, we’ll discover Georgia’s age-old wine-making tradition and taste a delightful cuisine with influences from Eastern Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. Join us for an amazing experience of the thriving cultures and soaring landscapes of the Caucasus.

Itinerary at a Glance

Days 1-2
Tbilisi

In the ancient hillside city of Tbilisi, our walk includes the 4th century Narikala Fortress overlooking the Old Town and charming Rustaveli Avenue, the city’s popular strolling promenade.

Vinotel
Tbilisi, Georgia
Days 1 to 2 (2 nights), Day 11 (1 night)
Days 3-7
Hiking in Tusheti National Park

In Georgia’s green Tusheti Mountains, we are warmly greeted in mountaintop hamlets where medieval watchtowers stand tall. Our Trip Leader grew up here in the village of Shenako, which has UNESCO status, and her extended family still lives here—we’ll be welcomed! One of our hikes brings us across Sanare Pass (6,270'), visiting three remote villages en route. Our highest hike takes us over Nakaicho Pass (9,514'), which connects the wild terrain of the Tusheti, Pirikity, and Gometsari valleys. The Tusheti region, with its semi-nomadic herding heritage, is still largely untouched by the 21st century, and we’ll stay in simple, family-run guesthouses where we’ll enjoy supras—Georgian feasts around long communal tables (get ready to drink wine out of goat horns, toast to life, and dance!).

Guesthouses in the Caucasus
Tusheti, Georgia
Days 3 to 7 (5 nights)
Days 8-11
Wine Tasting in a Private Vineyard / Hikes in the Kazbegi Mountains

In Kakheti, we’ll taste the wines in Eka’s lovely vineyard, set in one of the world’s oldest wine-growing regions. In the Kazbegi Mountains, our final hike brings us up to the iconic 14th century Gergeti Trinity Church, perched on a ridge below snow-capped Mt. Kazbek (16,512'). Depart on Day 11 via Tbilisi.

Chateau Mere
Telavi, Georgia
Day 8 (1 night)
Rooms Hotel Kazbegi
Kazbegi, Georgia
Days 9 to 10 (2 nights)
Vinotel
Tbilisi, Georgia
Day 11 (1 night)

Highlights

Highlights

Hike in the alpine landscapes of the Tusheti and Kazbegi mountains
Be welcomed like long-lost friends in family-run guesthouses
Savor traditional Georgian feasts with the villagers, including lamb roasts and wild trout with local wines
Hikes by day, basic lodges at night, no camping!
Learn how European, Asian, and Middle Eastern influences melded together to shape the unique culture

Details

Length: 11 days
Cost From: $4495  
Arrive: Tbilisi, Georgia
Depart: Tbilisi, Georgia
Lodging: 5 nights hotels, 5 nights guesthouses with shared facilities
Meals: All meals included except 2 lunches as indicated in the Detailed Itinerary (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
Activity: Cultural Adventures, Hiking / Trekking
Trip Level:

5 hiking days on ungroomed mountain trails, 4-7 hours a day, 2 walking days,

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