8. Racha: 6-Day Trekking Tour
Day 1: Tbilisi - Shaori - Shovi
Start your 6-day journey by departing for the mountainous region of Racha, located 340 km from Tbilisi, and 140 km from Kutaisi in North-West of Georgia. Enjoy a stop at Nikortsminda Church which was built in the 11th century and repaired in the 17th century. The Cathedral is on the Tentative List of UNESCO World Heritage Sites and a true sight to behold. The total driving distance for the day is 340 km (7-hours).
Day 2: Glola - Shovi – Buba Glacier - Glola
After an evening of well earned rest, you will start your trekk to Buba glacier. The trail starts at the Shovi resort and goes along the gorge of the river Bubastskhali. After the slope, the route passes Shepherds’ Summer hut and ascends the ridge. From here you will enjoy an impressive panorama of the Buba Glacier and the surrounding vicinity. From the glacier, passing the same way, the trail returns back to Shovi. The walking distance during the day is 12 km (6-hours). The starting elevation is 1566-meters, maximum elevation 2505-meters, 1010-meters up and down.
Day 3: Glola - Shovi - Udziro Lake
Start your day with a hike through the forest before continuing into the alpine meadows of the picturesque Chkauri valley. Afterward, you will follow the upstream river and have lunch in the alpine meadows just below the massive mountain peaks. From here, enjoy the hike up the steepest section of this trek: to the Geske pass (3076-meters). At the top, you can see Udziro lake and the surrounding mountain of Katitsvera. Afterwards, you and your group will descend towards the lake and spend the overnight on the banks of the lake. The walking distance for the day is 11 km (9-hours). The starting elevation is 1346-meters, maximum 3077-meters.
Day 4: Udziro Lake – Glola
Day 4 will provide the group with a well needed rest, on a day that is relatively less active than the others. You will be treated to majestic views and witness the sunset into the Great Caucasus mountains. You'll also get to look at one of the highest peaks of the Caucasus from the lake. The trail is quite steep and requires several hours to reach Glola village. The walking distance of the day is 8 km (6-hours in duration). The starting elevation is 2800 and ends at 1330-meters.
Day 5: Glola - Ghebi - Gona - Lagura Huts - Oni
The last part of your Racha trekking adventure starts on Day 5. You will hike toward the Shoda-Kedela mountain range. The views for today are nothing short of breathtaking; the Greater Caucasus Mountains, small villages, glaciers, and snow-peaked mountains are amongst some of the highlights of the day. After you reach Lagura huts, the residence of local shepherds, you will hike back to Ghebi village, and drive to Oni. The walking distance for the day is 14 km. The starting elevation of the day is 1284-meters, maximum elevation 2000-meters.
Day 6: Oni - Ambrolauri - Tbilisi
In the morning, start your final steps of your Racha adventure. Travel to Khvanchkara village where you will taste the famous wine of Racha at the Khvanchkara wine factory. Khvanchkara is a single estate semi-sweet Georgian red wine made from unique aboriginal varietals “Aleksandrouli” and “Mujuretuli” produced at Khvanchkara Winery according to the ancient traditions. Afterward, travel back to Tbilisi or Kutaisi. The driving distance for the day is 310 km (duration 7-hours).