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From Tbilisi: Small Group 1-Day Tour to Armenia with Lunch

1. From Tbilisi: Small Group 1-Day Tour to Armenia with Lunch

Visit two of Armenia’s ancient monasteries and the town of Alaverdi on this small group tour from Tbilisi. Cross over the border with your experienced guide who will take you through the highlights of Northern Armenia in just 1 day.   Depart at 9:00 AM sharp for a 1.5-hour trip across the Georgian-Armenian boarder. Almost immediately you’ll start to notice changes in the landscape—the fields will become rocky mountains and the scenery takes on a certain apocalyptic touch, due to the many abandoned Soviet mines and factories. Your first stop is the fortified monastery of Akhtala, where you can marvel at the beautifully preserved frescoes and learn about the thrilling history of this Georgian-Armenian creation.   Then, you’ll reach the UNESCO-listed monastery complex of Haghpat, where you’ll learn about the Armenian stone crosses and the mystical poet Sayat-Nova. The next stop is a small authentic restaurant by the river, where you can try authentic Armenian cuisine. Travel another 30 minutes to the center of the town of Alaverdi, famous for being the hometown of MIG fighter jet engineer Mikoyan, and the 10th century monastery of Sanahin. Arrive back in Tbilisi by around 6:00 PM after a full and fascinating day.

From Tbilisi: Day Trip to the UNESCO Sites of Armenia

2. From Tbilisi: Day Trip to the UNESCO Sites of Armenia

Armenia, with its distinctive culture, its beautiful rocky mountains and ancient history is a must-see when traveling in the Caucasus region. Discover the beauty of Northern Armenia on this day trip from Tbilisi, with your tour starting at 9:00AM, after which you will head for the border. From here the landscape will begin to change, as you drive through the narrow gorges of the Debed River in between the high rocky mountains. The time seems to stand still in this part of the country, with its typical Soviet cars and huge copper factories built in the middle of the mountains, the scenery is full of bizarre beauty. The tour includes several main sightseeing objects of Northern Armenia, such as the historic Lori region, the fortified monastery of Akhtala, a unique example of wonderfully preserved frescoes from the 11th century and the two UNESCO protected monasteries of Sanahin and Haghpat. The history of the two monasteries in Alaverdi is connected by a legend of father and son and you can see many similarities, but also differences in their architecture. Both places are known for their beautiful architecture and the unique hachkars, as well as the stone crosses, a signature of Armenian art. Before heading back to Tbilisi you can taste authentic Armenian food in a traditional restaurant by the river.

From Tbilisi: 2-Day Tour to East Georgia

3. From Tbilisi: 2-Day Tour to East Georgia

Day 1: Tbilisi - David Gareji - Village Badiauri - Bodbe - Signagi - Telavi (driving distance: 300 kilometers) Start with a pick-up at 09:30 from the hotel of your stay in Tbilisi. Departure from Tbilisi early in the morning, to the direction of David Gareji cave monastery (driving distance 100 kilometers). Davit-Gareji is a rock-hewn Georgian orthodox monastery complex, that was established in the 6th-century by holy father David, one of the thirteen Assyrian monks, who arrived to Georgia and preached the name of Christ. Next destination is village Badiauri where you can see how Georgian bread is baked with great aroma and crispy edges. From Badiauri, continue your way to Bodbe Monastery. Visit one of the most famous monasteries and holy places for Georgian people where St. Nino is buried, who brought Christianity to Georgia in the beginning of 4th-century.  Afterwards, guests will have an opportunity to visit Signagi. Buildings in the city built in the style of southern Italian Classicism with Georgian elements. The city is surrounded with high defending walls, 4 kilometers in length. A few years ago, Signagi was restored and constructed. Since then, many tourists have visited the city to enjoy the stunning panorama, which opens onto Alazani Valley. The town’s architecture is unique with old and the modern components. Today, Signagi has additional status as the 'City of Love.' The last destination of the day is Telavi, the main city of Georgia’s eastern part - Kakheti. Overnight in Telavi. Either in a family type GH or 3-star Hotel “Old Telavi.” Day 2: Alaverdi Cathedral - Napareuli wine cellar - Factory of Eniseli - Gremi Fortress - Kvareli Wine Tunnels - Tsinandali - Schuchman Wine  Cellar - through Gombori Pass to Tbilisi (Driving distance 250 kilometers) In the morning, you first destination will be Alaverdi Cathedral (11th-century) one of the most important orthodox monuments in Georgia. (In the tentative list of UNESCO from 2007). Next, drive to village Napareuli and visit Twins Wine Cellar and Wine Museum, where you can taste 3 different sort of wines. From Napareuli, tour continues to Gremi Fortress that was the main city of the Kakheti region till 16th-century. Nowadays, Gremi is impressive with its wonderful location and surrounding views. On the way to Kvareli, guests can visit the factory of Eniseli and taste local wine there. Afterwards, the trip goes to the small city of Kvareli to Wine Tunnels under the mountains of the Great Caucasus. Total length of the tunnels is 8 kilometers. On the way back to Tbilisi, the guests can choose between either visiting Prince Chavchavadze Palace (19th-century) with a wonderful French park or one more wine tasting with a stop in the beautiful Chateau of Schuchman in the village of Kisiskhevi. At the end of the tour through Gombori Pass, arrive back to Tbilisi and be dropped off at your accommodation in Tbilisi.

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What people are saying about Kakheti

Overall rating

4.9 / 5

based on 39 reviews

I didn't expect much, just wanted to get a snif of Armenia, but the tour was better than expected. You get to see the old christian churches, old, but operating copper mines and factory that looks like it has been bombed many times over (dismal state), there is a cable car that was operational until 2017, but still hangs in the air. And then you can see the birthplace town and memorial (also museum) to the probably the most well known armenians after Kardashians - the Mikoyan brothers, one of whom was the designer of the famous Soviet jets MIG and the other was a long standing Politburo (a small band of Soviet supreme leadership) member who even survived Stalin (which was a rarity by itself, but more so because one was georgian and the other armenian with little trust between the two nations). And then there is a great dinner at a open air restaurant located by the banks of a stormy river. You get to taste a lot of armenian dishes. The tour guide Iraklis is good, speaks good english.

Irakli is truly passionate and knowledgeable guide. I really recommend The Real Giorgia company (they know about real Armenia too ;))! We've seen not only monasteries, but also (post)Industrial areas and scenic mountains. Lunch was really tasty and I was full, though offer for vegetarians could be more varied. Thank you Irakli for showing me northern Armenia! I'll definitely join other activities next time I'm visiting Giorgia!

I went on this tour n May 2002 and I really enjoyed it. Irakli was an excellent guide, he was extremely well-informed and made everything very interesting with lots of amusing details. The minibus was comfortable and there were only five people on the tour - I think his was an ideal number. I would recommend this tour to anybody visiting Tblisi and with a time to do do it.

The tour organisation was very good, we had delicous lunch, and we enjoy our visited location. The group was very friendly. I would love to thank the most to our tour guide, he had a lot of patient with us, and we feel very good because of him. Because of him i would recomend to everyone this tour.

A great way to get a taste of Armenia. Very informative guide who looked after us very well and shared plenty of interesting info along the way. The lunch was a wonderful experience with lots of dishes to try.