We paid a brief visit to The Fortress of Bebris Tsikhe ("The Elder's Fortress"; built in the 14th Century) during a day trip to Mtskheta in February 2013.This ruined castle is located a little way north of the city centre. It took us around 15 minutes to walk the 1.2km or so along Davit Aghmashenebelis qucha from Samtavro Church to reach the...more
The Samtavro cemetery excavations can be visited with the ticket you buy for the museum visit.These excavations look quite spectacular for those who are not used to see big necropolis from the antiquity. The cemetery dates back to the 3rd millennium BC and several periods of “activity” have been identified till the 10th century AD and various...more
That is the kind of museums which have lots and lots of interesting items and where there are almost no explanations; that leaves a lot of space for imagination and interpretation, but, seriously, if one of the guides from the museum had not guided me for free (I gave her a French course in return) and explained about the people who lived in the...more
Inside Svetistkhoveli Cathedral the visitors will discover exceptional chapels, frescoes and icons. As there are many pilgrims and worshippers, the religious atmosphere adds to the beauty of the cathedral.Some of the paints on the walls, ceilings are from the 13th century, but most are from the 19th century, as the “Russian Orthodox church did not...more
The pillar of life is what mean the name of the cathedral; Svetitskhoveli cathedral has long been the most important of the country, and lots of Georgian were angry when the Trinity church has been built in Tbilisi, at the turn of the 21st century.This big church, laid out like a cross is interesting to visit, outside and inside, and here are some...more
Mtskheta is a very old city which is best visited on feet; I walked along one of the rivers, looking at the houses and the hills in the far, enjoying the cool weather (it would rain soon), after having visited the cathedral. Nice in the city are the fortifications around the cathedral and the small renovated houses in small narrow streets near the...more
Jvari (or Djvari) monastery stands on a hill overhanging Mskheta in the South-east. It is close to the city and can easily be seen from Sveti Skhoveli but it rained hard and we felt that the rainy and foggy landscape was not worth the climb and we skipped it, as we had skipped Bebris Tsikhe.It is a cruciform church and the main historical landmark...more
Sveti Shkoveli is famous among Ufologists. On a 17th century fresco depicting the crucifixion of Jesus, they have spotted a pair of flying saucers painted on each side of the Christ. I have not been convinced and feel that the two “things” are more likely to be flying jelly fishes!more
Sveti Skhoveli is a highly venerated place of worship for Georgians. The cathedral that we see today was built in the Xith century at the place where stood a much older church, built in the Ivth century. Several legends are associated to this first church. To make short a long story, it would have been built with seven cedar column including one...more
In Sveti Skhoveli as in most churches in Georgia, the bell tower stands outside of the church itself. It sits on the inner side of the ramparts. There is a staircase that leads to the bells but there was a locked gate that did not allow to visit. Too bad, besides the bells, there should have been a nice look on the cathedral.more
The bell tower of Stamvro church stands apart from the church. It has three levels, all of them with arched apertures. The first and the second level were built on a square pattern while the third level is circular. The first level has four apertures (one on each side), the second level eight and the third level twelve. I suspect it has a religious...more
My girlfriend and I ate lunch at Old Taverna during our daytrip from Tbilisi to Mtskheta in February 2013.Old Taverna is located in a building that looks to have been renovated in recent years, just a short walk from Svetitskhoveli Cathedral. Indeed, the plastic tables outside the front of the restaurant look across towards the cathedral. On a...more
Armazis Tskaro is one of those really neat Georgian restaurants where you eat out in the fresh air at a picnic table, only this establishment is tucked into a small gorge hidden in the cool shade of tall trees and serenaded by a babbling brook. The main restaurant is built upon the bedrock along the brook, out from which spout several artesian...more
Old Mtskheta restaurant is located on the edge of the large parking lot established at the east end of town. It has indoor and outdoor seating, and specializes in grilled Georgian food, such as kebabi and shashlik. The kebabi, shashlik, khinkali, khachapuri and fries all were better than some places as they were not overcooked or oversalted. The...more
This restaurant featured South Pacific looking thatched cabin type rooms for private parties...which was well suited for our large group. Each cabin was situated with its own fireplace - a must for this time of year. There was outdoor seeing with a view of the river and Svetitskhoveli - but it was a bit cold for that...would be a great summer...more
A typical Georgian restaurant in Mst'khet'a. A good place to stop and take pictures of Jvari from accross the river. They have most of the national food there, we had Khinkali (A ball of dough filled with meat and boiled) and Mthvadi (Meat roasted over an open fire. Mtsvadi can be roasted flesh of lamb, Pig and young goat). Both were very good as...more
During our visit to Tbilisi in February 2013, we decided to undertake a day trip to the nearby town of Mtskheta, a former capital of Georgia.We ascertained that the cheapest way of getting to Mtskheta was by marshrutka (local minibus) and the following details were correct as at the time of our visit.Tbilisi – MtskhetaThe marshrutky (plural of...more
Getting to Mtsheta is easy. One just has to use subway or marshrutka (minibus – taxi with assigned route) to reach this sprawling market north of the center of Tbilisi. From there another marshrutka takes you for 30 minutes and less than a dollar to the old capital. Do not forget to tell the driver that you want to stop in the center of town - it...more
From the Didube bus station in T'bilisi there are frequent buses to Mts'ket'a.The busses in Mts'khet'a leave at the maine road opposite the small shop.Just shake your hand to stop the bus.The busses have the pictures of the monastary in front.You can by the tickets at the counter near the bus.Please take a look at the Georgia by bus transportation...more
Stalls outside of main church. Sheep "fur" Caucasus style hats. Black ones were not available at this location. Do not give in and buy white hats anyway because real men are supposed to wear black ones. Agressive in their pricing, the local saleswomen are not budging no matter how hard you try. Do not despare! The black hats are waiting for you in...more
A popular sweet snack in Georgia is Churchkhela.Nicknamed the "Georgian Snickers", Churchkhela is a string of nuts covered in a thickened sweet grape juice with a slightly rubbery texture.You will find them hanging outside many shops or being sold at markets, from stalls in the streets or by elderly ladies in underpasses. When they are hanging...more
Jvari church is a cross-domed church dating back to the 6th-7th century; jvari, by the way. means "cross".
This little church on top of a hill, overlooking the town of Mtskheta (from where you can see the confluence of the rivers) is where St. Nino erected the first wooden cross - the pedestal can be seen in the middle of the church.
There is no public transportation to the church so you need a car or taxi to get there. It's probably possible to walk, but the walk is long and it is not signposted. The road and path are really not evident.
Mtskheta is Georgia's ancient capital city and, as you can see from the picture, is located at the confluence of the Aragvi and Mtkvari rivers. It is about 30 minutes away from Tbilisi.
Mtskheta is named after Mtskhetos, son of Kartlos - the legendary progenitor of the Georgian people. It is also the place of the first Christian church in Georgia and it is still regarded as the spiritual capital.
Fondest memory: My fondest memory has to be that of the monasteries visited. We had great expectations about the museum but, it turned out, had been closed for renovations for many year, and it is not thought to e opening its doors again for many years.
Thank you LP for yer another misleading tip.