Georgia was one of the trading crossroads of the ancient world, but also had a turbulent history of wars and conquests; so many priceless ancient artefacts have been discovered around former citadels and places of habitation. Read More
Indeed, from Greek mythology, the story of the Golden Fleece is based in western Georgia (known as Colchis, from Roman times). Several
museums in Georgia have many artefacts of Greek origin, or influence, which date from the 800 BC period. Moreover, in the ancient world,
Georgia was not only a source of gold, but the likely origin of exquisite jewellery, with workmanship that rivalled that of the Greeks and
Thracians, of the same era.
The main Simon Janashia Museum of Georgia (Georgian National Museum), for example, has over 1.2 million stored artefacts, primarily dating from the third millennium BC. Of particular note are the 1.8 million year old human skulls, discovered in a cave near Dmanisi (90km south of Tbilisi) and the oldest known human remains outside of Africa. Also, of particular note are gold & silver jewellery, from various regions of Georgia, which date back as far as 800 BC, much of which are truly stunning.
Another museum of particular interest is the Shalva Amiranashvilki Museum of Fine Art. The building itself is also of historical importance because it was once an Orthodox Christian seminary, its most well-known student being Joseph Stalin himself (then known as Joseph Jughashvili). The museum has over 38,000 items in its collection, and includes Oriental , Russian, Western European & Persian art. Of particular note is a collection of jewellery from an ancient citadel in western Georgia, near to the town of Vani. The jewellery was found in burials at the site, which date to 800 BC. The jewellery is some of the most exquisite, from the ancient world, and may have belonged to Kings & Queens from the era of the Golden Fleece.
Of course, there are many regional museums with art and artefacts, as well, and most of them are included on the itinerary of our tours. Moreover, many of our tours will take you to the places in Georgia where much of the art and artefacts in the national museums originated, and of course there is so much more to see and appreciate, while you are there.