Sighnaghi Things to Do

  • Wall crossing the road to Sighnaghi from Tsnori
    Wall crossing the road to Sighnaghi from...
    by Hanka
  • Detail on a door of the Church of St. George.
    Detail on a door of the Church of St....
    by Hanka
  • The cows seemed to belong to the Bodbe Convent.
    The cows seemed to belong to the Bodbe...
    by Hanka

Most Recent Things to Do in Sighnaghi

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    Check out Sighnaghi's ancient defensive walls

    by Hanka Written Oct 14, 2013
    Someone's front door is part of the city wall.
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    I've been wanting to walk along Sighnaghi's ancient city walls since the first time I laid eyes on them. Today, I finally had the chance to go exploring, only to find that the scrub brush and trees grow so thickly along the walls that it is impossible to actually do so. But I did have a lovely walk anyway. I walked out of Hotel Kabadoni and walked up the hill on the left side of Hotel Sighnaghi. At the top of the hill, I passed the small church and tower at 9 I. Chavchavadze St. Even at 9:55 AM the old men that hang out here asking for money to enter the tower were ready and waiting. I waved them off and continued along the city wall down to Galavnis Kari Hotel to the right through the wall and into the Ethnographic Park. I continued to the left, past a three or four-story building being renovated, and deeper into the woods where a man was clearing the brush with nothing more than a hatchet or scythe. The road was now nothing more than two lightly travelled tire tracks going up a hill and I could see ahead of me an opening in the trees that promised to give a good view of a valley. When I got to the opening the "road" turned to the left, went back out through the wall and ended immediately leaving standing suddenly in a neglected and almost forgotten cemetery. After reading a few gravestones, I climbed up on the wall and took in the beauty of the hills, the valley, the wall, and just everything. I long to fast-forward ten years, in the hopes that Georgia will create hiking paths along Sighnaghi's city walls, discretely hidden in the shade of the trees and providing scenic overlooks when possible. This town of Sighnaghi could be a much larger destination than it is today. It could have miles and miles of hiking trails along the city walls and city streets, biking trails through the woods, horseback riding, scenic marathons or bike races up and down the winding roads leading to the city.

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    • Hiking and Walking
    • Road Trip

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    Stroll Through the Bodbe Convent Grounds and Relax

    by Hanka Written Apr 12, 2013
    Detail on a door of the Church of St. George.
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    I loved visiting this monastery-turned-convent. Once I walked inside the slightly falling apart outer walls, I found peace and tranquility in the smooth stone walkways, the manicured lawn, and the tall cypress trees. Away from road traffic, I could hear the birds sing and smell the scent of beeswax candles lit for prayer. There is tranquility here. What a wonderful place to study religion. What a view the nuns have, and the bountiful garden... I'm sure they have great food here too. There is the "Pilgrim" cafe right outside the convent, but I didn't get to eat there. I'll have to make a point of eating there the next time I visit Sighnaghi. Bodbe Convent is just 2 km away from Sighnaghi.

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    • Women's Travel
    • Religious Travel
    • Historical Travel

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  • JLBG's Profile Photo

    Sunny landscape on Sighnaghi

    by JLBG Written Nov 15, 2011

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    Sunny landscape on Sighnaghi
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    When we left, the sun finally came out and we had a glimpse of what the city wall would have looked like in a sunny weather! It was too late to go back in town, unfortunately as we had to drive back to Tbilisi and given the road conditions, it is better not to drive too much at night!

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    Villages in the Alazani valley

    by JLBG Written Nov 15, 2011

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    Villages in the Alazani valley
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    Sighnaghi stands on a shelf and is surrounded by its city wall. Underneath, in the plain of the Alazani river, villages have grown almost uninterruptedly. The valley is very fertile and there is a lot of agriculture. Though, space used to build houses is not used anymore to grow crops!

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  • JLBG's Profile Photo

    Sighnaghi, celebration of Georgian workers

    by JLBG Written Nov 15, 2011

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    Sighnaghi, celebration of Georgian workers
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    Outside the city wall stands a monument that celebrate Georgian workers. It obviously dates back from the Communist period but the style is not unpleasant.
    There are four stone panels, carved on each side, which altogether makes 8 scenes of workers performing their job.

    Photos 1 and 2 are general view of the monument
    Photo 3 is a close-up on a scene that shows a handsome peasant harvesting corn with a scythe, framed by two young maids.
    Photo 4 is a scene with another handsome peasant, leaning against an amphora of wine and harvesting grapes, again framed by two handsome maids. It seems that the carvings had once been painted but the paint has weathered and almost faded away. Though, some parts have faded away in a way that does not seem to be only weather related. I bet that it must be a local play to climb on top and to rub the breast of the girl on the left! That would explain why she is so worn out!
    Photo 5 shows a couple holding grapes with a little girl standing on the right. That might be a family scene.

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  • JLBG's Profile Photo

    Sighnaghi, a tower of the city wall

    by JLBG Written Nov 15, 2011

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    Sighnaghi, a tower of the city wall
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    photo 1 : part of the city wall and on a tower. They are in very good condition.
    Photo 2 : close-up on a tower
    Photo 3: One of the entrances into the city has been put down to let pass the road. It has replaced by an archway.
    Photo 4 shows why it is not easy to see the city wall: shrubs grow so well that in many places, they almost hide the wall.

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    • Historical Travel
    • Architecture

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  • JLBG's Profile Photo

    Sighnaghi, the city wall

    by JLBG Written Nov 15, 2011

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    Sighnaghi, the city wall
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    Irakli II, king Kakheti and Kartli began to build the fortress in 1772. It was designed not only for the inhabitants of Sighnaghi but in case of invasion, which occurred often, to offer shelter to the inhabitants of neighboring villages. Therefore, each village contributed to its building and each of the 23 towers got the name of the village that built it. It has 6 entrances: Magharo (the main entrance), Bodbe, Mashnari, Vakiri, Zairb Khovelini, Shilda. The wall and the towers were built with pebbles and bricks

    Though the city wall of Sighnaghi is 4500 meters and has 23 towers it is not easy to have a general view on it. There is a viewpoint overhanging Sighnaghi that offers this landscape but as the weather was misty and rainy (and it was late), we did not search for it. The photos give a few aspects of the city wall running from the valley to the top of the hills.

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  • JLBG's Profile Photo

    Sighnaghi, various buildings

    by JLBG Written Nov 15, 2011

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    Sighnaghi, the theater
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    Though Sighnaghi is a “preserved” town, all buildings are not traditional houses.
    Photo 1 shows a public building in a neo-classical style. I have found later that this was the theater.
    Photo 2 is a modern clock tower built in bricks and which belongs to a rather modern looking building.
    Photo 3 shows a square with the statue of a priest
    Photo 4 shows that pebble stones are used together with bricks for building,

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  • JLBG's Profile Photo

    Sighnaghi, traditional houses

    by JLBG Written Nov 15, 2011

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    Sighnaghi, traditional houses
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    There was no time to wander in the streets but we were happy to have a look at the beautiful architecture of traditional houses in Sighnaghi. They have usually two or three levels and wide covered balconies made of chiseled wood, often painted in pale blue or grey blue.

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  • JLBG's Profile Photo

    Sighnaghi from the N5 road near Anaga

    by JLBG Written Nov 15, 2011

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    Sighnaghi from the N5 road near Anaga

    We had left Tbilisi in the morning and had already visited Alaverdi, Ikalto, Shuamta, Telavi and Gremi. Therefore, it was late but we wanted to have a fast look at Sighnaghi, before going back to Tbilisi.
    We arrived in Sighnaghi by the S5 road, as we came from Gremi. The photo shows the first sight we got from the N5 road, near Anaga

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    • Historical Travel

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  • Ninuca's Profile Photo

    Bodbe Monastery

    by Ninuca Written Sep 26, 2007

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    When you go to visit Sighnaghi, don't forget to visit Bodbe Monastery, It's located very near to Sighnaghi, you can see a sign on the way to Sighnaghi.
    It's a very old Monastery, on the territory of the monastery its located Saint Nino's (Enlightener of Georgia) church, her tomb is buried in church. And there also you will find steps, which take you to the saint water, which is believed that has great power for people’s health and mentality.

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    Old Town Studios

    by jankenpon Updated Mar 22, 2007

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    250 year old wine cellar
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    See paintings in progress by an American living in Georgia and his apprentices. Also on their premises is a 250 year old wine cellar. They also have a rug making thing on site and can tell you all about them and sell you rugs if you like. Make sure you call ahead of time and they will schedule a proper viewing and wine tasting for you. Call John Wurdeman (899 53 44 84) or Shergil Pirtskhelani (899 79 53 60). English, Georgian, and Russian spoken.
    See this website for more info: http://karemizu.com/2007/02/old-town-studios.html

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    • Wine Tasting
    • Arts and Culture
    • Architecture

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  • josephescu's Profile Photo

    surroundings: Niakhuras Tsikhe

    by josephescu Updated Oct 29, 2006
    Niakhuras Tsikhe, Georgia
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    Niakhuras Tsikhe is a fortress on the way from Sighnaghi to T’bilisi, so if you’re travelling on a private car, it’s worth stopping by for a half an hour or so.

    The medieval fortress walls are completely restored and offer a good perspective on the size and architecture of the defensive complexes of that time. However, all you can find behind the walls are weeds and some leftovers from the restoration works.

    On the other hand, the area near the Niakhuras fortress is surrounded by vineyards, and strolling around a little can be rewarded by some bunch of grapes or even delicious freshly squeezed grape juice.

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    • Castles and Palaces
    • Architecture
    • Wine Tasting

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  • josephescu's Profile Photo

    Church & bell tower

    by josephescu Updated Sep 17, 2006
    church & bell tower - Sighnaghi, Georgia
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    Located half way downhill from the main square in the old town, this bricked church together with its bell tower is a fine example of medieval religious complexes in old Georgia. Small and picturesque, absence of restoration works and the ivy and weeds climbing around the roofs enhance its romantic charm.

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    • Arts and Culture
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    Church within the walls

    by josephescu Updated Sep 17, 2006
    church hidden within the Sighnaghi walls - Georgia
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    Walking uphill alongside the walls, you’ll reach a late medieval church with a small bell tower hidden within the walls. Take the stairs near the church entrance on the right and you’ll get on the top of the walls, with panoramic views over the area. The door leading inside the church was not shut, and so I was the only one to witness the interior of the church being illuminated for 3-4 minutes by a sun beam entering through a tiny window in the western wall.

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    • Historical Travel
    • Museum Visits
    • Architecture

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Sighnaghi Things to Do

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