Tbilisi at night seems so romantic and attractive

Posted By : Georgian Tour/ 6

Every city changes its appearance at night. One may not even recognize the same city at night. Light, torches, flashing buildings and cars with their lights on – all these give special beauty to the city at night. Tbilisi is a perfect destination for those who are interested in night life.

Tbilisi is among the most beautiful and oldest capitals in the world. At night it becomes even more attractive and romantic. Here we explore several photos and video recorded by the Georgian photographer Shermazana, Giorgi Shermazanashvili.

Photos are taken in different time of the year and reflect all the beauty of night Tbilisi.

Story behind Tbilisi

The capital of Georgia was founded in the 5th century. It has been conquered by Roman, Arab, Turkish, Persian, Mongolian and other conquerors. Russia invaded Georgia in 1799 and remained there until the end of the Soviet era. All the different cultures have left their tinges on the development of the city. Now Tbilisi boasts about its old, traditional and modern, newly developed architectural centres. Old Tbilisi is replete with historical, cultural and religious centres with the typical balconies and carvings on the house. While modern Tbilisi has a variety of extraordinary buildings.

What to see in Tbilisi

The fortress Narikala is a must-see place in old Tbilisi. It was built in the third century. Due to invasions, the castle was destroyed and rebuilt several times. The fortress is located on an uphill and looks over the city. Before going up Narikala, visitors should observe the Metekhi Virgin Mary Church and the monument of the king Vakhtang Gorgasali, the founder of Tbilisi, on the steep bank of the Mtkvari River (Kura). Georgians have a 7000-year history of bathing culture. Bathhouses of thermal springs located in the old district of Tbilisi are still in use.

Annual festival Tbilisoba

Tbilisoba is an annual festival held on the last weekend of October but this year it takes place on the first weekend of October. The reason for that is presidential election that is due on the 28th of October.
It was first held on October 28, 1979, and has since become an established tradition. The festival features open-air concerts of traditional music and dancing and various cultural events, centered on Old Tbilisi, the historical part of the city. Beyond celebrating the city’s past and present, people from all over Georgia represent their region at the fair of the harvest and Rtveli. Awarding honorary citizenship of Tbilisi by the city government also occurs in the framework of Tbilisoba.
See photos on this link: https://we.tl/t-ADTBVYj4DS
Source: www. Georgianjournal.ge, photos by Giorgi Shermazanashvili

Jessie J Takes Over Black Sea Arena

Posted By : Georgian Tour/ 12

From Elton John to Christina Aguillera, Check in Georgia has brought a lot of stars to the stage of the Black Sea Arena in the past three years since it opened. The venue opened the 2019 season with a successful Black Eyed Peas’ concert on June 16 this year, meaning on August 6, Jessie J had a lot of pressure to keep up the audience’s expectations. However, with her astounding voice, fantastic band, and high level of organizational management from the staff of the Black Sea Arena, Jessie J’s show gave a new meaning to the combination of words ‘tremendous success’.

The gates opened at around 18:00, but devoted fans of the British Pop star had been gathering around the Black Sea Arena hours prior, some had even spent the night there to grab the chance to see their favorite performer up close from the Golden Ring. When the doors opened, they poured into the Ring, many of them humming Jessie J’s hits, from ‘Queen’ to ‘Domino.’

Jessie J appeared on the main stage a little later than scheduled, opening the show with a 2015 single ‘Masterpiece’, meriting endless rounds of applause from the cheering audience. After a couple of songs, the performer saluted the audience and explained her choice of outfit and hairstyle – so different to her look at her Amsterdam show just a few days before the one in Shekvetili.

“I decided to dress up as myself from 2010, because that’s where it all started, and I’ve never been to Georgia. So to make up for it, I decided to take you all nine years back and sing the songs that I think you might want to hear,” said the British singer-songwriter over loud screams from the audience.

Jessie J did not forget to mention her gratitude for the sold-out show, admitting that the love she gets from people never ceases to amaze her and that fame has never becomes normal for her. The pop star united the audience, engaging them all with her hilarious self-depreciating humor. The latter combined with her own words: “You came to see me, I came to see you.” She asked the audience not to record her performance of ‘Domino,’ just so she could see everyone’s faces and the blissful moment could be caught and enjoyed by all – making the public feel that Jessie J, the incredibly talented famous pop star, was just a regular person, equal to them. This integrity shone from the star’s personality throughout the two-hour show in many ways – adding a song to her playlist at the fans’ request, conversing with the audience and taking videos with their phones, reading a fan’s letter on stage, warming up the listeners by having them sing along to an improvised ‘Jessie J and Georgia’ bit – all these and much more made the Shekvetili show unique for Georgian and foreign music lovers.

The winner of the 2011 BRIT Awards expressed her desire to come back to Georgia and as her Instagram post post-concert reads: “…THE ENERGY WAS MAD!!! My 1st show in Georgia and it was SOLD OUT! YOU WERE SO LOUD AND FULL OF LOVE. Thank you, thank you…”. The singer also posted a photo on her page that shows her having a blast on Shekvetili beach.

When asked about Jessie J’s thoughts and satisfaction with the concert, Executive Director of Black Sea Arena, Tato Kharchilava, told the press: “I haven’t talked to her yet, but I don’t think we need any further confirmation – seeing her face and emotions on the stage spoke well of her satisfaction and happiness about today’s show.”

An excited fan, 20-year-old Katerina, shared her impressions with GEORGIA TODAY: “I’ve been to quite a few shows, but this one is particularly memorable for me. Because I’m such a huge fan. She’s such a modest person and an amazing performer – delivering 100% in every show. I can’t describe the feeling with words: it was a once-in-a-lifetime experience.”

While the Black Sea Arena cleaned up after the show and started preparation for Thirty Seconds to Mars’ arrival on August 13, the music lovers left slowly, some of them admitting that they hadn’t known much about Jessie J before this concert but were completely in love with her from there on in.

 

 

Source: www.georgiatoday.ge; By Nini Dakhundaridze

Photo source: https://sputnik-georgia.com/culture/20190507/245151330/Jessie-J-saqartveloshi-koncerts-gamartavs.html

The International Folk Festival

Posted By : Georgian Tour/ 27

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The International Folk Festival is set to kick off for the third time in Georgia. Under the scope of the government’s Check in Georgia program, the Black Sea Arena is to host the annual cultural event on September 7-9. The music celebration will be opened on the 7th with united concerts of Georgian and European ensembles.

Folk singers and dance ensembles from Georgia and abroad will be presented to listeners in Shekvetili. The festival follows perfectly Georgia’s reputation for preserving cultural heritage. This time round, the International Folk Festival features representatives of even more countries: France (Corsica) will be presented by Spartimu and Italy (Sardinia) by the Castelsardo ensemble.

Georgia will be introduced to the Black Sea audience by the following performers: Bermukha (Ajara); Shilda (Kakheti); Trio ‘Shalva Chemo’ (Guria); Riho (Svaneti); Basiani and Kartuli Khmebi (Tbilisi); The State Song and Dance Ensemble of Kutaisi; Enver Khabadze State Choreographic Ensemble ‘Batumi.’

On July 30, a press conference was held in the garden of the Folklore Center, attended by the Executive Director of the Folklore Center, Giorgi Donadze, Head of Black Sea Arena, Tato Kharchilava and Director Nikoloz Heine-Shvelidze.

The festival aims to support the popularization and preservation of Georgian folklore. Georgia, the homeland of polyphony and ever better-known for its extraordinary traditions and its people’s outstanding ability to sing and dance, in September is grabbing the opportunity to host other nations with equally important traditions of different styles of folk music. With numerous emerging musical genres, it is important to remember where it all started. That is why Georgia is ambitious to make its own land the location of an annual meet up for Georgian and worldwide folk music.

When done at the Black Sea Arena, the festival will carry on, traveling to the mountainous region of Racha, where united concerts of Georgian and European ensembles will be performed in Oni and Ambrolauri. This time, Georgia will be presented by ensembles Pesvebi from Adjara, Shilda from Kakheti, Shalva Chemo from Guria, Iavnana, Sagalobeli, Racha, Salaghobo from Lechkhumi, Lile, Lagusheda from Kvemo Svaneti, Dziriani, and Basiani from Tbilisi. The closing performance of the festival will be given by Georgian Ethno Jazz group ‘Egari’.

The continuation of the International Folk Festival scheduled in Racha will also feature four foreign ensembles. “Spartimu” from France, “Castelsardo” from Italy, “Koniakow” from Poland, and “Ackups” from Latvia. Seminars will be led by famous ethnomusicologists Polo Vallejo and Renato Morelli. For foreign and local guests, masterclasses will be given by Giorgi Donadze, Levan Berelidze and Professor Natalia Zumbadze.

Tickets will be available on tkt.ge.

Source: www.georgiatoday.ge; By Nini Dakhundaridze

Photo source: www.Georgiatoday.ge

Easy summer destinations for Tbilisi travellers

Posted By : Georgian Tour/ 27

Summer is the busiest period in terms of tourism. Here are 4 places a foreign visitor should see in Georgia, Tbilisi to experience city’s modern and traditional mix.

Narikala Fortress

Narikala Fortress dates back to the fourth century and oversees Tbilisi and river Mtkvari. It is a good start to explore Tbilisi. When visiting the fortress, one should not miss Statue of Qartlis Deda, impressive monument seen from almost every part of the old city. View is great from the place, so it gives perfect opportunity to take impressive pictures.

Sameba or Holy Trinity Cathedral

It is impossible to visit every part of the city in a day, but one should not miss Sameba Cathedral, impressive sample of the Georgian architecture and culture. This is the highest Orthodox church in the East. The Cathedral is being painted and is a mix of traditional and modern style and is surrounded with beautiful garden.

Dry Bridge

So called Dry Bridge and everyday exhibition there reflects Georgia’s past and present. There one can see antique items dating back to centuries that will definitely attract attention. One can find there old items like a copper vase or an old dagger, or paintings reflecting contemporary Tbilisi views. If one is interested in collecting antique items, Dry Bridge is a great destination.

MoMA or Museum of Modern Art

Zurab Tsereteli Museum of Modern Art in Tbilisi connects past, present and future. It connects Georgia and the world, where there is exhibited more than 300 masterpieces of different genres and around 250 photos. If one is interested in exploring modern Georgian or foreign art, MoMA is a great destination.
Source: www.Georgianjournal.ge

Great News! Tbilisi is among 20 beautiful European cities with hardly any tourists

Posted By : Georgian Tour/ 43
(CNN) — With overtourism showing no signs of abating in Europe’s most famous destinations, there’s never been a better time to seek out wonderful options that attract fewer visitors.
Keen to travel somewhere new without having to battle through huge crowds of selfie stick-wielding tourists in the likes of Venice, Paris and Amsterdam?
Here’s our pick of the most beautiful European cities with hardly any tourists:

Tbilisi, Georgia

The capital city of Georgia, which is actually positioned between Asia and Europe, derives its name from the hot springs that bubble beneath its surface.
Its sulfur baths are a magnet for visitors, albeit far fewer than those that head to the famous spas.
Tbilisi wears its multi-ethnic history with pride — the famous Metekhi Church, which dates back to the 13th century, sits close to the Narikala Fortress, built by the occupying Persians in the fourth century.
Meanwhile, the rambling alleyways and small shops of the Old Town are perfect for whiling away the hours.
In the list there are following cities:

Orange, France

Norwich, England

Aarhus, Denmark

Antwerp, Belgium

The Hague, Netherlands

Sarajevo, Bosnia

Pristina, Kosovo

Malmo, Sweden

Aberdeen, Scotland

Bern, Switzerland

Wroclaw, Poland

Minsk, Belarus

Yerevan, Armenia

Cluj-Napoca, Romania

Debrecen, Hungary

Ankara, Turkey

Plovdiv, Bulgaria

Trondheim, Norway

Turin, Italy

 

Source: www.edition.cnn.com

Georgia plans to increase wine exports to Japan

Posted By : Georgian Tour/ 45

Georgian Agriculture Minister Levan Davitashvili and President of Japanese alcoholic drinks consultation company ASIA AC Wataru Iwamoto met yesterday to discuss the prospect of exporting more Georgian wine to the Japanese market.

Wataru Iwamoto stated that Georgian wine is in high demand on the Japanese market after the ‘Georgia – Homeland of Wine’ exhibition was held.

Minister Levan Davitashvili said he hopes the partnership with the Japanese market will be fruitful.

The employees of the Asia AC company will have a two-day tour in Tbilisi and Kakheti region to taste different varieties of Georgian wine.

 

Source: www.agenda.ge, photo source: www.agenda.ge

Batumi Boulevard Development Plan

Posted By : Georgian Tour/ 45

This week, Batumi Boulevard announced plans to open a tender for a company to provide functional zoning and landscaping on and around the boulevard. The boulevard is being updated in accordance with city development plans, which include preserving the historic parts of the boulevard and expanding its footprint, with particular emphasis on preserving its character and nearby historic buildings.

The Batumi Boulevard was born in 1881 as a seaside park built by a German landscape artist, commissioned by the governor of Batumi. Today’s boulevard, divided into old and new parts, is approximately 7 kilometers long.

The company selected by the Batumi Boulevard will have one year to complete the work, at a cost of 435,000 GEL ($151,300). The three-part project will include research, the creation of a development plan, and the production of guidelines for the administrators of the Batumi Boulevard to follow. The project aims to produce a development plan that will preserve the landscape and architectural beauty of the old Boulevard, while establishing new recreation areas that can be enjoyed by both locals and tourists, and people of all ages and abilities. The deadline to submit a bid is August 19.

The announcement is part of a series of efforts over the past few years to update and improve the tourist infrastructure of Batumi.

In June 2016, then-Chairman of the Government of the Autonomous Republic of Adjara, Archil Khabadze, announced plans to invest $40 million in the development and reconstruction of the New Boulevard of Batumi. The original plan allocated 50% of the territory to tourist-recreation zones, and included the construction of hotels and other tourist-focused facilities.

32,000 square meters of the New Boulevard of Batumi was previously been put up for auction with a starting price of $2.3 million. Orbi Group Millennium Construction Company bought it for $4.3 million. More than $520 million was invested in the New Boulevard’s reconstruction in 2016.

In August 2018, the Municipal Development Fund of the Ministry of Regional Development and Infrastructure, supported by the Asian Development Bank (ADB), announced plans to commit $21 million to protect beaches and refurbish pedestrian bridges in the city. 12 pedestrian bridges will be constructed, and the damaged sections of the boulevard will be refurbished. The works are scheduled to be completed this year. In 2015, a similar project amounting to $20 million was also supported by the ADB.

Among all the investment and ad-hoc projects, this week’s announcement marks the beginning of a new phase of development for the Batumi Boulevard, which will be led and framed in by a development plan. The most recent Batumi Development Strategy, 2018-2021 was approved by the Batumi City Assembly in April of last year. “For the first time in the history of the municipality, we managed to develop a full 2018-2021 strategy for Batumi Municipality. This is a 240-page document, a very detailed book, for each service, in which all the measures necessary to achieve the goals set for the next four years, all the methods, timelines, budget, etc. are broken down into detail,” said Batumi Mayor Lasha Komakhidze.

In the nearby town of Kobuleti, earlier this month renovations were completed on a two-kilometer stretch of coastline. The Municipal Development Fund of Georgia headed the renovation works, which cost GEL 9 million ($3.13 mln). The World Bank funded GEL 2 million ($70,000) of the total cost, with the state budget covering the rest. The rehabilitation works in Kobuleti began in 2017, but were delayed. The contract with the original construction company was cancelled after public outrage at the delays, and, ultimately, the State Construction Company completed the project.

 

Source: www.georgiatoday.ge, By Samantha Guthrie

Image source: In Your Pocket

Koruldi Lakes in Svaneti – Heaven On Earth

Posted By : Georgian Tour/ 28

Koruldi Lakes is one of the most magical places in Georgia. The lakes are situated in Upper Svaneti at an altitude of 2850 meters above sea level , 10km away from Mestia, the main regional center of Zemo (Upper) Svaneti.

Koruldi Lakes are surrounded by glaciers and peaks of the Caucasus. Visitors will spot Shkhara, Tetnuldi, Ushba and other peaks of the Caucasus Mountains. The lakes can be reached via a car, horses or hiking. The best view at the place is the Mountain peaks mirroring in the lake.

Svaneti is a historic province in the northwestern part of Georgia. It is surrounded by the Caucasus Mountains. The highest mountain in Georgia, Mount Shkhara (5,201 meters) is located in the province. Svaneti has a unique nature and architectural monuments.

 

Source: www.georgianjournal.ge, Photo courtesy: Shermazana

18th century iconic Tbilisi palace undergoing restoration

Posted By : Georgian Tour/ 30
A historic palace located at the foot of Metekhi rock overlooking the Georgian capital of Tbilisi is undergoing major renovation, announces the Tbilisi City Hall.
Built in the 18th century palace Sachino, a summer residence of Queen Darejan, the wife of King Erekle the Second, is one of two palaces in Tbilisi that remains to this day.
About 2 million GEL ($710,480/€629,474) will be spent on the renovation of the Sachino palace (which is also called Queen Darejan Palace) and the work is due to be completed in 16 months.

We will do our best to make this area one of the best [in Tbilisi]. It is a very attractive place for tourists, many people visit the palace… This project is of utmost significance as the palace is a cultural monument,” Tbilisi Mayor Kakha Kaladze said when visiting the renovation site today.

In 16 months the palace complex, which includes the King Erekle’s bath, a church and a fence of the palace, will be completely restored.
Besides, conservation work of the wall painting of the Peristsvaleba [Transfiguration of Jesus] Church will be carried out which will cost 52,000 GEL”, said Kaladze.
The Queen Darejan Palace was built in the form of a castle to protect its inhabitants from continual invasions of foreign occupiers. However, neither the location on the top of the rock, nor the high defensive walls could protect the palace from the Iranian invasion of Agha Mohammad Khan at the end of the 18th century. As a result, the palace was destroyed and ravaged.
After this invasion the King Erekle moved to Telavi, Kakheti where he died in 1798. Having lived for some more time in her palace the queen Darejan was deported to Russia on a charge of a plot against the future head of state appointed by the Russian Emperor.

 

Source: www.agenda.ge, Photo source: www.agenda.ge

Ajarian Khachapuri at Argentinian Restaurant

Posted By : Georgian Tour/ 30

Ajarian khachapuri, one of the most outstanding dishes of the traditional Georgian cuisine, has moved beyond the borders of Georgia and is quite successfully establishing itself on the foreign gastronomic markets. It first became popular in the USA, and has just recently appeared on the menu of a prestigious Argentinian restaurant chain, Almacén de Pizzas.

Visitors to the restaurant will have a chance to taste three varieties of Ajarian khachapuri, prepared with four different types of cheese. The options are to include bacon and cheddar, as well as spinach and blue cheese.

The price for discovering the taste of the Georgian gourmet pleasure amounts to 499 pesos, which is about $12.

Khachapuri is Georgian bread stuffed with melted cheese and represents an inseparable part of the Georgian festive table. The Ajarian khachapuri is a boat-shaped khachapuri topped with the raw egg and butter before serving.

 

source: www.georgiatoday.ge, By Ketevan Kvaratskheliya