Cultural Tour photo of Rabati Castle, on a tour with Laerton Tours in the country of Georgia
Photo of the Cave Cathedral at Vardzia, a country of Georgia tour, with Laerton Tours
Photo of the gardens and tourists within Rabati Castle,  a country of Georgia tour, with Laerton Tours

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Cultural tour

Rabati Castle, Vardzia and Borjomi

This tour focuses on the historical treasures in the southwest of Georgia, on the slopes of the Lesser Caucasus mountains (close to the Turkish border). From the beautiful Rabati Castle which has changed hands several times in history, to the amazing Cave Catherdral at Vardzia, to the Green (Mtsvane) Monastery near to the famous city of Borjomi and National Park. Borjomi is a favourite mineral water, savoured for its taste & curative powers and a well-known name in much of Eastern Europe.

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Your Own Tour

If there are a specific set of places that you would like to visit, in Georgia, we can design a tour especially for you! For example, if you might wish to visit Dmanisi, or the archaeological museum near Vani. Whatever your ideas, we can quickly formulate a plan, and then take you there in the comfort of one of our people carrier vehicles, with an experienced tour guide, who has likely been there before. The cost will only be slightly more than for our standard tours. Contact Us

Overview

Destination: Akhaltsikhe and Borjomi
Duration: 1 Day
Type: Group or Individual tour
From: $250
Next date: Flexible

Itinerary

Day 1
  • 8:00am Departure from Tbilisi, towards the City of Akhaltsikhe, in the southwest.

  • Arrival at Rabati Castle, which is overlooks the City of Akhaltsikhe and occupies about 7 hectares of land. At the summit of the complex, there is a museum, which was the original castle. Lower down, there is the Mosque with the tomb of Haji Ahmed Pasha Jaqeli, a 9th century Orthodox Church and an amphitheatre. There are also some very nice gardens and lower down, tourist restaurants, cafe’s, bars and hotels. The unusual mix of architecture is to do with the history of the city. Originally known as Lomsia in Georgian, it later became part of the Ottoman Empire in 1578, and from 1628 was the centre of power for a larger Ottoman domain. An initial attempt to retake the city in the 1806-12 Russo-Turkish war failed, but in the 9th, 1828-29 Russo-Turkish war, the Russians and their allies succeeded in retaking the city in 1828. Since then, it has remained part of Georgia. In the recent past, the Georgian government has invested a considerable amount of funds into restoring the site, and it is now an increasingly popular tourist destination.
  • 1:00 - 2:00pm Lunch break.

  • Arrival at the Vardzia Cave Monastery. The site is known to have been inhabited since the Bronze Age. The caves cut into the slopes of the Erusheti Mountain extend for almost half a kilometre and are 19 stories high, in places. Building was most active in the 12th to 13th centuries, but the site was abandoned after the Ottoman takeover in the 16th century. Seven monks still reside in the Church of the Dormition area of the complex and still ring the bells daily.
  • Arrival at the Green (Mtsvane) Monastery in the Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park. The Monastery is so called because it is an a very green and picturesque valley near the City of Borjomi (famous for its mineral water, in most of Eastern Europe) and because the stones used to build the Monastery have a green hue. After falling into disuse, the Monastery has been renovated in the recent past.
  • 9:00 - 10:00pm Return to Tbilisi.

Included

Premium Package
  • All transportation costs
  • An English speaking Georgian Tour Guide
  • Lunch
  • Admission fees for all the tourist attractions (Museums etc.)
Basic Package
  • All transportation costs
  • An English speaking Georgian Tour Guide

Prices

Premium Package
  • $400
Basic Package
  • $250

Map