Perhaps the stamp that we take from the church of Gergeti, in front of Mount Kazbegi, be it the most or the most seen in Georgia. A church, which seems tiny, and in the background a mountain more than five thousand meters high, exactly five thousand forty-seven. And if you look at the back of the church with the mountain in front of it, the photograph is almost perfect.
Well, yes, we arrived at a really spectacular place, and to get there, we also went through other places that also left us surprised and speechless, Jvari, Mtskheta Y Ananuri, and do not miss the Georgian Military Highway, which deserves a separate chapter.
The mountains are one of the landscapes that are repeated the most throughout the country, but in this area, or rather from Ananuri until Stepantsminda, town where it is located Gergeti, is spectacular, or trip to another world, seriously. I do not know what is more worth it, if you enjoy the way to Kazbegi, or of the Gergeti church surrounded and facing the highest mountain in Caucasus.
Gergeti watches over Kazbegi
It is quite likely that you are wondering why the town is called Stepantsminda, name of Assyrian origin, if everyone calls it Kazbegi. Well, the answer is simple, during the Soviet era, 1925, the name of the town was changed. Do not forget that that mountain, Kazbegi is a physical and political border with Russia.
The original and current name is Stepantsminda, which comes from Saint Estefan, since an orthodox monk named Stephan built a small hermitage. However, in the 18th century the Russian empire, reaching this place.
There was a family who were in charge of the town and the area, since they charged toll to those who wanted to go through Stepantsminda in the direction of Russia or in the opposite direction. With the expansion of the Russians to this area, its inhabitants rebel against them, but this family does the Russians a favor by extinguishing any revolt. The family name was Kazbegi.
You will see in this small town a sculpture of a famous writer, where they park their cars and take the 4 × 4 towards Gergeti. He is Alexander Kazbegi, the grandson of the local oligarch. But nevertheless, this grandson came out rebellious, since his works were very focused on the most disadvantaged, in addition to being a declared Georgian nationalist.
And Kazbegi also, is a place where Greek mythology passed through there. It is supposed that it was on this mountain that Zeus took Prometheus to torture him. An eagle went every day to devour his liver, since being Prometheus immortal, his liver regenerated every night.
How to get to the Church of the Holy Trinity of Gergeti
Well yes, once you have reached Stepantsminda, you have to go to Gergeti. They are basically two ways to get there, in 4 × 4, it costs about 40 laris, and it takes about 30 minutes. They are around six kilometers.
The other option is to walk, but you have to take into account that there is a lot of unevenness and it is not an easy path, since in winter it is full of mud and in spring and summer it is full of dust, in addition to that raised by the 4 × 4 . These almost six kilometers, can suppose more than two hours walking, and if it is sunny, it is not recommended.
We thought about doing it on foot, but we decided to go in a 4 × 4. On the way we stopped some Russians who were half drowned by the heat and dust.
Gergeti Holy Trinity Church
Once we got within a hundred meters of this little gem, we saw the flood of Russians visiting the place. It turned out that we coincide with the national holiday week in Russia, on May 1, and considering that Russia is just behind Kazbegi Mountain, the influx of these was massive.
So looking for the perfect photo without people was mission impossible… And to take the best photo, I had to get away and climb a small hill.
We also agreed that part of the church was under construction, so the visit was not as great as we would have liked, but we still enjoyed the place very much. Spectacular views. Kazbegi, the mountain, was what surprised us the most, we did not expect to find such a spectacular landscape.
It was quite difficult to stop looking around, the views towards such an impressive mountain, ex-volcano, the views down seeing the town of Stepantsminda, and of course the view of the Gergeti church watching over Kazbegi. For that alone, it is worth getting there.
We made the trip in one day from Tblisi, but it is true, that there are activities to stay in the town and do some trekking in Kazbegi.
On that journey back and forth to TbilisiHe took us past the Jvari church, the ancient capital of Georgia, Mtskheta, the Ananuri fortress, and the impressive Georgian Military Highway.
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Accommodation in Tbilisi
The truth is that Tblisi is a city with a lot of tourism, especially Russians and other nationalities from former Soviet republics, so if there is something that is not lacking, it is accommodation of all types, categories and prices.
We went during the week of May 1, which is the Russian national holiday, so the city, well the whole country, was full of Russians. It took us a little while to find an accommodation that was centrally located and its price was also quite good, for some reason everything was very expensive.
We finally decided on him Red Fox Guest House. The truth is that it is very good, it is a fairly new accommodation, the rooms are normal and the bathrooms are shared. It also has breakfast included.
The location of Red Fox Guest House It is very good, as it is located about three or four minutes walk from Meidan Square.
Tamara is the person who owns the accommodation and is responsible, really a very nice person who helped us a lot and gave us a lot of information about the city.
In fact, on our way back to Tbilisi, to catch the plane back, we stayed there again.
In the following link, Red Fox Guest House, you can see the availability of dates, prices and more photos about this accommodation.
You can also see more options in the following link, Accommodation in Tbilisi.
Georgia Travel Insurance
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