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Georgia - Caucasus

Tusheti Khevsureti


Sample Trips: Svanetia  Mount Kazbek Ascent Cultural Tours

General Information: Borjomi Climate Flora and Fauna Food History Mestia Mtskheta Security Tbilisi Ushguli Visas

This area lies north of Tbilisi and is only accessible by vehicle for a few months of the year when the high mountain passes are free of snow. Few people live here permanently and those that do are cut off from the outside world for several months a year. The Valley's in Tusheti are quite open and several villages contain the old protective towers where families and cattle used to stay at night or when being raided. In Tusheti all the locals from young children to the old travel by horse.

Crossing the Asunta Pass Khevsureti region is reached, here the valleys are steep-sided with narrow trails zig-zagging between villages. Our trek from Tusheti to Khevsureti passes through the most interesting valleys and villages of the two regions. Because of the altitude (from 1400m to 3430m) the temperature changes from +25°C (afternoon) to below 0°C (night). The climate is much drier than the western Caucasus so although the vegetation is not as luxuriant as in Svanetia the walking as a result is easier and on good paths.

Georgia - Caucasus Grade B Fully horse supported.
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Sample Itinerary
Day 1: Arrival in Tbilisi
Arrival in Tbilisi. Meet at the airport. Transfer to the hotel. Night in Tbilisi.

Day 2: Tbilisi
Full-day city tour of Tbilisi with visits to the Old Town, Narikala citadel, Georgian State Museum and a walk along Rustaveli Avenue. Return to our hotel. Lunch and dinner at own expense.

Day 3. Tbilisi to David Gareji Monastery and Telavi
We travel to Kakheti province and visit David Gareji Monastery and walk up to Udabno Monastery. These contain ancient frescos and fine cave architecture. Overnight in Telavi at a beautifully designed private house.

Day 4. Telavi to Shenako
After breakfast we depart in a 4WD for Tusheti Province (100km, 4 5 hours). The mountain road is steep and rough passing wonderful forest then open mountain scenery. We cross the the Abano Pass (2930m) then descend to the mountainous Tusheti province. We reach Shenako (2000m) where we stay at a village house.

Day 5: Shenako to Dartlo
We start our trek in the early morning and pass Diklo village then trek along the Pirikita-Alazani gorge to the village of Dartlo, 1850m, 6-7 hours walking. The walk is partly through pine forests and partly along open hillsides overlooking the gorge. We set up camp by a stream on a meadow near the village Dartlo. The ancient towers create a wonderful atmosphere. After a rest we visit the village the more energetic can walk up a hill to where another village, Kvavlo (2100m), is located. Night in tents.

Day 6: Dartlo to Parsma
Trek to village Parsma, 1960m, 4 hours walk. This is a fascinating and remote mountainous Georgian village. The houses and towers in this village were built with local stones and have survived many centuries. Camp near the village.

Day 7: Parsma to Camp at the foot of Atsunta Pass
We continue our trek along Pirikita-Alazani Gorge passing some abandoned villages and continue up the valley to our campsite, 2500m, 6-7 hours walking.

Day 8: Cross the Atsunta Pass
Start the trek in the early morning up a wide path through alpine meadows along the river, then up grassy slopes with some scree sections to the Atsunta Pass, 3430m, where from we have spectacular views of the surrounding summits including the deep canyons of Khevsureti province where we will be trekking in the next few days. Descent to our campsite, 2800m, 7-8 hours walking.

Day 9: Camp to Ardoti
We descend on a good path to Khevsureti province and the Andaki river gorge where we camp near the village Ardoti, 1850m. The village, almost uninhabited now, dates back to the 10th. Along the way we have excellent views of Mt. Tebulo, 4500m. 5 hours.

Day 10: Ardoti to Shatili
On the way to beautifully located Shatili we pass some villages and monuments, the most famous and impressive is the partly destroyed medieval fortress of Mutso located on a steep hill where we have lunch. The narrow gorge of Andaki Valley leads to Shatili, 1400m, and the end of our trek. Shatili village-citadel is one of the highlights of Georgia, with its mighty towers standing proudly in Arguni river valley for 1200 years. We camp near the village and then visit the fortress. Shatili is inhabited year round and ancient cultures and traditions are still preserved by the locals. 6 hours walking.

Day 11: Shatili to Tbilisi
Drive to Tbilisi first crossing Datvis Jvari Pass (2676m) then following the deep Aragvi gorge to join the Georgian Military Highway. We follow this to Mtskheta, the ancient capital of Georgia, where we visit 6th century Jvari Monastery and Svetitskhoveli Cathedral (11th century). Return to our hotel in Tbilisi. Dinner not included.

Day 12: Tbilisi. Free day
Today you have free day in Tbilisi. For extra we are ready to arrange a half day excursion outside Tbilisi. Hotel. (B).

Day 13: Departure
Transfer to the airport. End of the tour.

Accommodation: 4 nights in Tbilisi at a 3 star Hotel Varazi, Hotel Vere Palace, Hotel Tori or similar. 1 night in Telavi at a private house (bathroom is shared). 1 night in Tusheti at a simple village house (bathroom is shared). Tents for camping.
All meals, guides, cook assistants and city guides, all transport (4WD for mountains, comfortable car or minibus for other areas).
Horses to carry all group and personal equipment.
Entrance fees to the sites and museums.

Other services, alcoholic drinks, meals specified in the itinerary. Tips and extras in the hotels. Personal clothing and equipment (sleeping bag and mat, boots, etc.). Insurance. Visas.

Important Notes:
Single room accommodation in the village houses is possible but limited according to the availability.
A single tent can be provided upon request subject to Extra an charge of $40.
Please limit your personal luggage to be carried by horses on trek to a maximum of 25 kilograms


Making Beer
Making Beer
heading to Asunta
Heading to Asunta
Telavi guesthouse

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