Svanetia - Georgia
|Ushguli - Svanetia|
At 2200m this is sometimes referred to as the highest village in Europe. It is located at the feet of Shkhara one of the higher Caucasian summits. Unlike many other villages high in the mountains it is still inhabited and thriving. About 70 families (about 200 people) live in the area and there is a small school. For 6 months of the year snow covers the whole are and often the road to Mestia is closed. The school however is open and life goes on.
Typical Svanetian protective towers are found throughout the village with goats, pigs and cows happily mingling with the local population on the narrow cobbled lanes. A short walk above the village leads to a small hilltop where the Ushguli Chapel is located. This dates back to the 12th century and contains some very old frescoes. From here a magnificent, broad valley leads to the foot of Shkhara in 3 hours walking through flower strewn alpine meadows.
The superb location of Ushguli and the unique lifestyle of the people in the village make this a popular destination to visit. The road from Mestia to Ushguli is rough and requires a 4WD vehicle with a journey time of about 2 to 3 hours. It is often blocked in the winter months.Return to top of this page