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Off-road Tour to David Gareja Monastery and Rainbow Mountain

1. Off-road Tour to David Gareja Monastery and Rainbow Mountain

Go on a one-day tour to the David Gareja Monastery complex. This short but eventful journey will allow you to explore one of the most ancient and important religious sites in Georgia. Davit-Gareja cave city, an extraordinary site with fantastic semi-desert landscapes, is located 100km south-east from Tbilisi, and it was founded in the 6th Century by David (St. David Garejeli). The complex of temples stretches for several kilometers in the south-east of the country and along the border with Azerbaijan. The David Gareja Monastery is unique due to the fact that many of its buildings are cut into a huge tilted rock and some of its temples still preserve millenary frescos. Be ready to walk and climb on uneven ground. The walking route last approximately 8 km (5 miles). On the way back, you will stop at a nice cozy house for lunch (not included) and for a wine tasting.

From Tbilisi: David Gareja Monastery and Sighnaghi Tour

2. From Tbilisi: David Gareja Monastery and Sighnaghi Tour

In the morning, the guide and driver will pick you up from your accommodation in Tbilisi (if you choose the private option), or alternatively meet the tour group at Europe Square. Then, head to the David Gareja complex via Sagarejo village. Turning from the Eastern main road, drive on a dirt road to the semi-desert. The complex was established in the 6th century AD by one of the 13 Assyrian monks and expanded through the centuries. Here, have a tour of the caves and monasteries. On your way to Signagi, you’ll visit the Bodbe monastery. The monastery is one of the major pilgrimage sites in Georgia, due to its association with St. Nino, the 4th-century female evangelist in Georgia. In Sighnaghi, a small town surrounded by 18th-century defensive walls and remnants of fortifications, take a relaxing walk in the town, explore the defensive wall and fortifications, and enjoy the views of Alazani Valley. In the evening, drive back to your place of stay or Europe Square in Tbilisi.

From Tbilisi: David Gareji Monastery Where Time Stands Still

3. From Tbilisi: David Gareji Monastery Where Time Stands Still

The Davit Gareji Monastery complex was founded in the first half of the 6th century by one of the holy Assyrian fathers - David. The settlement of David in one of the caves was the beginning of the foundation of that religious and cultural center, which numbered 12 monasteries once. The complex of Davit Gareji carved into the rock is one of the largest among such carved complexes. The monastery of Bertubani is one of the cave monasteries in the Davit Gareji complex, the painting of which arouses the interest among visitors. The monastery of St. John the Baptist is also located in the Davit Gareji complex, 12 kilometers west from the lavra of David, is a single complex carved into the rock. It was founded in the 6th and 7th centuries by a disciple of David Garedjeli, Lucian. Then, visit the medieval Udabno (desert) Monastery in the Davit Gareji complex. The cave monastery encompasses many cell churches. The main structure of the ensemble is the Church of the Virgin Mary. In the monastery, there is a painting preserved in which the life cycle of David Garedjeli was recorded for the first time. The oldest layer of the main temple painting dates from the second half of the 10th century.    

From Tbilisi: 2-Day Tour to East Georgia

4. From Tbilisi: 2-Day Tour to East Georgia

Day 1: Tbilisi - David Gareji - Village Badiauri - Bodbe - Signagi - Telavi (driving distance: 300 kilometers) Start with a pick-up at 09:30 from the hotel of your stay in Tbilisi. Departure from Tbilisi early in the morning, to the direction of David Gareji cave monastery (driving distance 100 kilometers). Davit-Gareji is a rock-hewn Georgian orthodox monastery complex, that was established in the 6th-century by holy father David, one of the thirteen Assyrian monks, who arrived to Georgia and preached the name of Christ. Next destination is village Badiauri where you can see how Georgian bread is baked with great aroma and crispy edges. From Badiauri, continue your way to Bodbe Monastery. Visit one of the most famous monasteries and holy places for Georgian people where St. Nino is buried, who brought Christianity to Georgia in the beginning of 4th-century.  Afterwards, guests will have an opportunity to visit Signagi. Buildings in the city built in the style of southern Italian Classicism with Georgian elements. The city is surrounded with high defending walls, 4 kilometers in length. A few years ago, Signagi was restored and constructed. Since then, many tourists have visited the city to enjoy the stunning panorama, which opens onto Alazani Valley. The town’s architecture is unique with old and the modern components. Today, Signagi has additional status as the 'City of Love.' The last destination of the day is Telavi, the main city of Georgia’s eastern part - Kakheti. Overnight in Telavi. Either in a family type GH or 3-star Hotel “Old Telavi.” Day 2: Alaverdi Cathedral - Napareuli wine cellar - Factory of Eniseli - Gremi Fortress - Kvareli Wine Tunnels - Tsinandali - Schuchman Wine  Cellar - through Gombori Pass to Tbilisi (Driving distance 250 kilometers) In the morning, you first destination will be Alaverdi Cathedral (11th-century) one of the most important orthodox monuments in Georgia. (In the tentative list of UNESCO from 2007). Next, drive to village Napareuli and visit Twins Wine Cellar and Wine Museum, where you can taste 3 different sort of wines. From Napareuli, tour continues to Gremi Fortress that was the main city of the Kakheti region till 16th-century. Nowadays, Gremi is impressive with its wonderful location and surrounding views. On the way to Kvareli, guests can visit the factory of Eniseli and taste local wine there. Afterwards, the trip goes to the small city of Kvareli to Wine Tunnels under the mountains of the Great Caucasus. Total length of the tunnels is 8 kilometers. On the way back to Tbilisi, the guests can choose between either visiting Prince Chavchavadze Palace (19th-century) with a wonderful French park or one more wine tasting with a stop in the beautiful Chateau of Schuchman in the village of Kisiskhevi. At the end of the tour through Gombori Pass, arrive back to Tbilisi and be dropped off at your accommodation in Tbilisi.

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What people are saying about Kakheti

Great experience. Alex, the tour guide, has an amazing knowledge about the history and Georgian culture and you can tell he is passionate about organizing those trips. The trip was very relaxing, Alex gave us a lot of space to make decisions about where we want to go and what we want to see. The David Gareja destination is one of the kind, off-the beat. If you're looking for a hidden gem in Georgia, this is it! Nobody knows about this place, but locals. Enormous landscape with colorful mountains, you take a hike there away from any civilization and you feel like on another planet. On our way back we stopped by an amazing winery with delicious food.

10/10 Amazing experience! Very different from the other tours from Tbilisi. Very unique and very recommended. Aleksi was very nice and very passionate about the tour. The view of the mountains and the whole area was so breathtaking and so worth it. i would definitely try it again if i come back to Georgia. Recommending good shoes as there is a little bit of hiking. Thank you very much Aleksi for an amazing tour!

Beautiful tour... Full of adventure.. Aleksi was a spectacular guide. Full of information. He was extremely attentive to our needs....allowed us to enjoy the tour at our pace. I highly recommend this tour and more importantly Aleksi as a guide.

Awesome tour! We spent an amazing day wandering around truly remarkable places with an extremely knowledgeable and passionate guide. The tour is definitely a must-do from Tbilisi if you want to safely explore less touristy areas of Georgia.

Everything was awesome and we understood everything our guide had to say, we experienced more than we expexted, the driver was skilled and very good too