Tourists come to this small city to see historical sights, amazing monuments of architecture and cultural values. A calm atmosphere reigns here, there is an opportunity to stroll through the narrow streets in silence, to visit fascinating excursions. The reconstruction was carried out in 2012, so now it is a pleasure to come here.
The city began its history in 900. Its founders, the Jakeli family, belonged to a number of rebels, waged wars with the authorities for a long time, which is why defensive fortresses were built at the residence to protect against attacks. Akhaltsikhe was the central place of all the surrounding cities, merchants, artisans and pilgrims flowed here.
In 1578 these lands were captured by the Turks, under their rule the fortress flourished, being the pride of the Ottoman Empire. But the golden age ended in the 19th century, immediately after the construction of the legendary mosque, the area was besieged and captured by the Russian army. Once a brilliant city turned into a province of the Caucasus.
• Rabat Fortress - medieval buildings, ruins of a church, a citadel, a tomb are preserved on a huge area. Here you can see the museum of Samtskhe-Javakheti district, Ahmediye Mosque. The majestic walls amaze the imagination, each tourist notes the incredible atmosphere, as well as the amazing beauty of the landscapes opening from the wall: the town is in the palm of your hand, as are the high mountains.
• Safara Monastery - 10 kilometers from the center of Akhaltsikhe, here preserved the spirit of the past, which is so lacking in many objects that have undergone restoration. About 20 monks live here, you can see unique frescoes dating back a millennium ago. The building itself is located on a rock, giving the gaze an incredible sight. The only drawback is that minibuses do not go here, you will have to hire a taxi, but the trip is worth it.
• Green Monastery - the oldest place of worship in Georgia, preserved from the 10th century. The complex is dedicated to St. George, the interiors surprise with their unusual style, next is a river with a rocky bottom painted in red - according to legend, this is the blood of monks killed by the Turks.
• The Church of the Epiphany of the Holy Cross - a structure in the Armenian style, is in a dilapidated state, but retains an unusual entourage of the medieval era. The disputes about the restoration are between the Georgian and Armenian sides, since not one of them is willing to concede historical value.
• Lake Khozapini - the local landscape is devoid of bright colors, but the reservoir itself is located in an unusual place: on one side it is surrounded by a steep mountain slope with sheer cliffs, on the other you can see meadows of meadow flowers. Located on the border with Turkey, it will be interesting to lovers of rare birds: curly and pink pelicans, Armenian gull and owl. In total, there are 59 species, 20 of them are waterfowl.
Despite the small size of the town, today recreational infrastructure is developed here. The number of hotels is small, but there are enough apartments and private apartments for tourists. And the cost of living is very low.
Restaurants and cafes with national and European cuisine work here. One of the most favorite places is “At Sergo”, here they serve incredibly tasty khinkali. And Rabat is especially popular, with a Georgian and Meskhetian menu.
How to get there?
Two federal highways pass right through the city: in the direction of Turkey and Tbilisi. On the main town square there is a railway and bus station. You can take a minibus from Tbilisi, Kutaisi, Rustavi, Gori, Borjomi.
Akhaltsikhe is a unique historical city in Georgia, where you can see fortresses, old houses, magnificent buildings and incredibly beautiful parks with strange birds and plants. It is worth coming here to inquisitive travelers, people for whom religion means a lot, admirers of the beauty of nature, everyone who wants to improve their health, using mineral water.