Sighnaghi Travel Guide

  • First View of Sighnaghi
    First View of Sighnaghi
    by Hanka
  • Wall crossing the road to Sighnaghi from Tsnori
    Wall crossing the road to Sighnaghi from...
    by Hanka
  • The cows seemed to belong to the Bodbe Convent.
    The cows seemed to belong to the Bodbe...
    by Hanka

Sighnaghi Highlights

  • Pro
    jankenpon profile photo

    jankenpon says…

     Beautiful Small Town Atmosphere 

  • Con
    rjaparidze profile photo

    rjaparidze says…

     Service needs to be improved 

  • In a nutshell
    josephescu profile photo

    josephescu says…

     a few days exploring the surroundings worth it! 

Sighnaghi Things to Do

  • Check out Sighnaghi's ancient defensive...

    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...

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  • Stroll Through the Bodbe Convent Grounds...

    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....

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  • Sunny landscape on Sighnaghi

    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

    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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  • Sighnaghi, celebration of Georgian...

    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 monumentPhoto 3 is a close-up on a scene...

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  • Sighnaghi, a tower of the city wall

    photo 1 : part of the city wall and on a tower. They are in very good condition.Photo 2 : close-up on a towerPhoto 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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  • Sighnaghi, the city wall

    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...

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  • Sighnaghi, various buildings

    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 priestPhoto 4 shows...

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  • Sighnaghi, traditional houses

    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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  • 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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  • Bodbe Monastery

    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...

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  • Old Town Studios

    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...

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  • surroundings: Niakhuras Tsikhe

    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...

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  • Church & bell tower

    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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  • Church within the walls

    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...

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Sighnaghi Restaurants

  • Delicious European and Georgian dishes

    We had dinner and breakfast in this restaurant. Before our dinner was served, they brought us a small plate of nadughi (cheese with fresh mint) and crustini bread. Then we ate the most delicious chicken Caesar salad. My husband had veal medalions in wine sauce with mushrooms -- so tasty! I had a chicken roll stuffed with sweet peppers on a pillow...

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  • More Than a Restaurant and Winery

    I visited Pheasant's Tears with friends for a wine tasting, and upon seeing their menu, I know I will be back some day for dinner. We sampled about five wines, all dry, but ranging from white to black, and finished the course with a shot of chacha. I'm not much of a wine drinker so I can't say much on that topic, but I loved sitting outside on...

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  • Don't miss traditional, delicious and...

    This restaurant is located in the historical part of Signagi. The atmosphere is very pleasant and relaxing. You can listen to the traditional Georgian folk music or the world's best hits. The name of this restaurant is related to the Signagi's barrow where was found the golden lion 42 centuries ago. ''Golden lion'' is family restaurant and you...

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  • One of the best

    One of our best finds for freshly cooked ingredients -not just defrosted as is often the case elsewhere, is tucked away in a cul-de-sac parallel to the Pirosmani Museum. It's to the left of the museum as you are walking up from the town centre.Owned by a local young couple who are very kind. They have a few outdoors tables at the back of the...

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  • Restaurant near the Wall

    The service is really awfull.. .But this is the best in terms of price and the view is truly spectacular. Do not order Shashlik - I waited for ab out 45 minutes and there were not really good parts of meat. But at least this restaurant is the only available option as said...

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  • Georgian restaurant

    Unfortunately I don't exactly know the name of the restaurant, but it's very famous and if you ask anybody where Georgian restaurant with the view of the Alaznis veli is located they will show you the way definitely.It's served really delicious food there, and the most important thing is the view which you see while sitting there, I think it's one...

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  • Georgian Mex

    This restaurant served mexican food in a relatively mexican atmosphere - to include the complimentary chips and salsa (both were unique from any I've had before, but very good), as well as sombrero decor and mexican music. Though already full of chips and salsa, I ate chicken in green salsa and the local white wine - 25 tetri a glass, can't beat...

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  • Believe it or not - Mexican Restaurant

    It’s a warm and intimate hole-in-the-wall eatery with a wide-ranging menu for very decent prices. Except for dishes and drinks containing avocados, tequila and Kahlua, all food is made fresh using local produce. Do not leave Pancho Villa without trying a hot chocolate. It comes in espresso-sized portions, and is terribly decadent—less a liquid and...

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  • healthy food from own backyard

    Nana will offer to cook for you, and it’s a mistake if you refuse. For 15 LARI (7 dollars), you get 3 excellent meals, healthy traditional food from her own backyard. No grease, many vegetable based dishes and loads of the best yoghurt I had in years, all accompanied by a tasteful wine. Not to forget - hot khachapuri and strong coffee in the...

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Sighnaghi Transportation

  • josephescu's Profile Photo

    by josephescu Written Sep 17, 2006

    From Sheki in Azerbaijan, it was time for me to go back to Georgia. So after looking on the map and reading the LP, I jumped in a marshrutka heading to the last Azeri town before the border – Balakan, with no idea what will I do from there. Luckily the driver imagined I would head to Georgia, and at the end of the line in Balakan, he pointed me to some taxis waiting in the market square. 20 minutes later and 3 new manats less, I was crossing the border on foot. Other taxis were waiting on the Georgian side, ready to go as far as Tbilisi or Telavi. From a 10 lari trip to Lagodekhi in a vintage Mercedes, I bargained to 30 lari for Sighnaghi.

    Alternatively, as I was to realise on the road, I could have taken marshrutkas from Qax to Telavi.

    Related to:
    • Backpacking
    • Road Trip
    • Budget Travel

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Sighnaghi Local Customs

  • Villages along the road

    I have tried to shoot a few views of the villages that we drove through. Most houses were built on a square pattern, on two levels. Most of them had on one or on two sides a wide covered balcony. Most of them were not very old and were not of the wooden traditional type displayed at the museum in Tbilisi

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  • Warning school !

    I have found not far from Sighnaghi this School warning road sign. That will be one more for my collection that has now almost 140 photos. I have not put them on line as a whole yet but should do it soon elsewhere than on Vt as it does not fit with the structure of VT.

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  • Horse drawn cart

    In the villages, horse drawn carts are still widely used. April is not the best time for field works and I did not see any. However, I have noticed that the fields that had been ploughed had no straight lines like when a tractor has been used; I feel that horse drawn plough must be still used in some parts of the country.

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Sighnaghi Off The Beaten Path

  • Restored monastery

    Along the road from Gremi to Sighnaghi, almost halfway, I noticed this monastery that was undergoing a heavy restoration. It looked like an ancient monastery and worth a mention but I have been unable to identify it though I have extensively searched. Anybody has a clue ?

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  • Dzveli and Akhali Shuamta

    In the neighborhood of Telavi, the monasteries of Dzveli Shuamta and Akhali Shuamta are a must see. Shuamta (or Shuamt’a, or Chuamta) means “between mountains”.The monastery of Dzveli Shuamta (old Shuamta) is actually a set of three churches built one after the other between the Vth and the VIIIth century. There does not remain anything from the...

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  • Telavi with Irakli II palace

    Telavi is especially famous for Irakli II palace, standing in the middle of a strong fortified enclosure, Batonis Tsikhé. The palace was built in 1672 and is in very good condition.More on my Telavi page.

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Sighnaghi Favorites

  • charming old quarters

    Charming wooden houses in the historic centre around the main square, narrow streets, small local shops, old trees in shaded squares – ingredients which make Sighnaghi irresistible from the first sight. The peaceful lazy atmosphere during hot summer afternoons is followed by a Mediterranean like evening, when people get out chatting in doorsteps...

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  • View over Alazani Valley

    The town is located up the hills south of Alazani Valley, a major wine producing area in western Georgia. The afternoon views over the valley are wonderful.

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Explore Deeper into Sighnaghi
Gremi, a strong fortified complex
Off The Beaten Path
Ikalto, famous for its academy.
Off The Beaten Path
Alaverdi cathedral
Off The Beaten Path
Local shops
Local Customs
Medieval city walls
Things to Do
Map of Sighnaghi

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