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Georgia 7-day Wine Tour
Georgia is one of the oldest wine regions in the world. On the fertile valleys of the south Caucasus, according to historians, the culture of the wine was originated in the Neolithic period - more than 7000 years BC. With such a long history, traditions of viticulture and wine-making are closely intertwined with the national identity of Georgians.
The territory of modern-day Georgia was inhabited by Homo erectus since the Paleolithic Era. The proto-Georgian tribes first appear in written history in the 12th century BC. The earliest evidence of wine to date has been found in Georgia, where 8000-year old wine jars were uncovered.
Archaeological finds and references in ancient sources also reveal elements of early political and state formations characterized by advanced metallurgy and goldsmith techniques that date back to the 7th century BC and beyond. In fact, early metallurgy started in Georgia during the 6th millennium BC,
The capital, Tbilisi, is known for its diverse architecture and the maze-like, cobblestone streets of its old town. Also famous for Vardzia, a sprawling cave monastery dating to the 12th century, and the ancient wine-growing region Kakheti.
This wine and food tour will take you through some of the most interesting and beautiful places in this country, where you will be amazed at the quality of the wine and traditional food served to you.
Transport as per program
English speaking professional tour guide
Hotel accommodation 4 nights in 4* in Tbilisi / 2 nights in 4* in Kutaisi
5 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 5 dinners
Wine tasting as per program
Presentation of Kvevri making
Entrance fees to: national museum in Tbilisi, Uplistikhe cave town
Complimentary water (1 bottle per day)
Flights to Georgia
Gratuities for tour guides
Entrance fees not mentioned in the program
Ladies will require a head scarf when entering the Georgian Orthodox churches, and n some, a skirt is required (no short trousers allowed)
Sun and rain protection may be useful
Slow Tours offer a number of other Wine Tours in Europe
Arrival in Tbilisi. Pick up from Tbilisi international airport. Hotel accommodation and overnight in Tbilisi
Tbilisi / Vardisubani / Kindzmarauli / Khareba / Velistsikhe / Tbilisi (350 km)
Breakfast at the hotel. Depart from Tbilisi to Kakheti – the main wine-growing region of Georgia where you can learn about viticulture and wine-making. Our first stop will be at kvevri shop located in Vardisubani village, Kakheti. Its owner Remi is a fourth generation qvevri maker and his son continues the tradition. Guests may observe the whole process of making a traditional qvevri. After a stop at kvevri shop in Vardisubani you will have the pleasure of experiencing an itinerary through taste and tasting some of the best wine of kakheti in Winery Kindzmarauli. Explore wine production facilities and have a degustation of different types of wine produced with native species of Kakheti region.
After visiting the Kindzmarauli we drive to Gvirabi (which means tunnel in English) carved in the rock of the Caucasus Mountain Range. It is the “Winery Khareba” cellar, used to age wine. Wine tasting of best wines produced with local grape species of Imereti region (western part of Georgia). It is lunchtime and we invite you to the restaurant of Khareba located at the top of the hill above the tunnel. The restaurant is a perfect combination of high dining and nature. Guests enjoy splendid views of the Alazani Valley and Kvareli vineyards.
After lunch, we continue to Velistsikhe, where we will visit a local family winery that dates about 300 yrs. Taste wine directly from "Kvevri". Making of wine in Kvevri is the oldest known method of wine production and it represents UNESCO Intangible cultural heritage. In the evening, we return to Tbilisi for dinner in a restaurant. Hotel accommodation and overnight in Tbilisi. (B/L/D).
Tbilisi -- city tour / brandy Factory
Breakfast at the hotel. Today we have city tour in Tbilisi. It will be day of familiarization with the capital. A charming town built in the 5th century along the twisting valley of the Mtkvari River. All the places of interest are very close to each other, within a few minutes’ walk. Start the excursion from Metekhi church (13th century). Visit the old part of the city - cafe street Shardeni, Synagogue, Sioni Cathedral, the Anchiskhati Basilica of St Mary (6th century). After that visit Narikala Fortress (4th century), which dominates the skyline of the Old Town.
Continue to explore the brick-domed underground sulfur baths (17th cent.) – the district of naturally hot mineral waters. Lunch in the traditional restaurant.
Afterwards, visit the National museum. You can admire the great variety of antique pottery and earthenware figures that were used in wine-making in ancient times. One of those artifacts is the clay vessel dated 6000 A.C. In the evening visit the brandy factory. During the visit you can explore, feel and understand the real soul that stands behind of every brandy bottle produced in the factory. Experienced local guide will lead you through the company’s history and tell you about the most significant events in David Sarajishvili’s life. Afterwards, you taste 3 different kinds of brandy. Dinner in a traditional restaurant. Overnight at a hotel in Tbilisi. (B/L/D)
Tbilisi / Mtskheta / Chateau -Mukhrani / Gelati / Kutaisi (270 km)
Breakfast at the hotel. Drive to the ancient capital and religious centre of Georgia – Mtskheta (3000 years old) and see its historical monuments: 6th century Jvari church and 11th century Svetitskhoveli Cathedral where the Robe of Christ is buried. Both Jvari and Svetitskhoveli are UNESCO World Heritage sites. After the visit of Mtskheta proceed to “Chateau Mukhrani” winery. An excursion in Prince Bagrationi’s castle with its gardens, stable, antique cellars, amphitheater and vineyards.
Enjoy a tasting of the best wine produced with local grape species of the region Kartli. Lunch in the restaurant of the Chateau.
After lunch we drive to Kutaisi- one of the ancient cities in the world (3500 years), the town of Golden Fleece. We visit 12th century Gelati Complex – three churches, the academy which was the centre of cultural and spiritual life and the grave of David the Builder, founder of the complex and the most eminent king in Georgian history. Gelati is UNESCO World Heritage sites. Dinner in a restaurant. Overnigt at a hotel in Kutaisi. (B/L/D)
Kutaisi / Racha / Kutaisi (180 km)
After breakfast at the hotel, early in the morning we start a very scenic drive up towards the region of Racha- one of the most beautiful highland regions of Georgia. This region is famous for Khvanchkara semi-sweet red wine. Take a walk through the vineyards of micro-zone and visit the winery where you will be offered a tasting of the famous wine Khvanchkara. Lunch with the family, delicious local foods and tasting of traditional Qvevri wines.
After lunch we visit the Xth century church Nikortsminda. Nikortsminda has one of the most beautiful decorations of all Georgian churches and cathedrals because several different styles can be seen, showing the richness of the selection of motifs and the manner of execution. In the evening we drive back to Kutaisi for dinner in a restaurant. Overnight at a hotel in Kutaisi. (B/L/D)
Kutaisi / Uplistsikhe / Gori / Chardakhi / Tbilisi (270 km)
Enjoy a tasty breakfast at the hotel and proceed along the Silk Road to arrive in Gori - the birthplace of the Soviet leader Stalin. The first stop during our trip is in the cave town Uplistsikhe (1st millennium BC) - one of the first cities in Georgia carved into the rock. The caves were the site of pagan rituals, before Georgia became a Christian country and still, it is impressive to see wine presses and wine cellars in the rocks. After visiting Uplistsikhe we drive to Chardakhi, the village of the region Kartli. Visit a boutique winery and taste the organic wine made traditionally in kvevri. Meet the owner of the winery, Iago Bitarishvili. In the evening, we are back to Tbilisi. Dinner in a traditional restaurant. Overnight at a hotel in Tbilisi. (B/L/D)
Transfer to Tbilisi International Airport for your departure.
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