The famous resort of Georgia, with sources of miraculous mineral water and a unique microclimate of the Borzhomi gorge. The second largest city of the region is Samtskhe-Javakheti, the center of the municipality.
In the narrow valley of the Kura and its tributaries, the Borzhomuly and Gujaretistskali (Black River), between the Trialetsky and Meskheti ridges of the Caucasus Mountains, a small Georgian city stretching for five kilometers, surrounded by the Borjomi Gorge. He gained fame thanks to the local water, which occupies the third position in the list of the most famous mineral waters.
The hen is not wide here, just a few meters. It divides Borjomi into left- and right-bank, but the presence of several suspension bridges does not create difficulties in movement. The route runs along the left bank.
Climate and nature in Borjomi
Borjomi gorge creates unique weather conditions, protects from strong winds and temperature fluctuations. Although sometimes the difference between day and night temperatures can be 10-15 °. The mountain slopes rise from 2-2.5 kilometers on each side. There are 200 sunny days a year. Summer is warm, the average temperature is + 19 °; winters are mild, with an average January temperature of –3 °. An amazing place, rare in Georgia, where you can relax all year round. This is a relatively dry region, but moist air masses, penetrating from the west, feed the picturesque slopes covered with forests. And each season is good in its own way: in spring - the variety of wonderful aromas of flowering plants (especially rhododendrons); in the summer - many shades of green; then deciduous forests are painted with bright and rich autumn colors, and conifers continue to turn green; in winter - you can see fantastic snow landscapes (when there are no snowflakes in other parts yet).
How to get there?
From Tbilisi from the metro Didube from 7.00 to 18.00 every hour minibuses depart (a distance of 160 km, about 2-3 hours).
From Tbilisi Airport, you need to get to the city, then by bus or train (sent twice a day: 7.00 and 16.40, travel time is about 4 hours).
From Kutaisi, you can take the passing bus in the direction of Akhaltsikhe.
From Batumi at 9.00 there is a minibus to Borjomi.
Two railways pass through Borjomi: regular and narrow gauge.
Improvement in Borjomi
Of course, the main "doctor" of the most famous spa resort is considered to be mineral water, recognized as the most unique in the world in taste and effects on the body. But the combination of miraculous water and the natural phenomenon of the Borjomi gorge with a useful microclimate - allows you to talk about the unsurpassed effect of the local treatment.
In modern terms, Borjomi is a well-known brand and business card of Georgia. The useful properties of local mineral springs have been established since ancient times - stone baths were found during archeological excavations. But if previously only bathing was used, now different methods are used: drinking, inhalation with steam and an atomizer, inhalation, siphon irrigation and washing (colonotherapy), underwater hydro-massage and other procedures.
10 wells "produce" from 700 thousand to a million liters of healing mineral water per day. The famous carbon dioxide fluid contains many trace elements that are beneficial for different systems of the human body:
• respiratory (treatment of bronchitis, pleurisy, prolonged pneumonia);
• urinary (with cystitis, urethritis, parametritis, metritis, etc.);
• digestive (with gastric ulcer, pancreatitis, intestinal dysfunction; promotes the excretion of salts and stones from the biliary tract; with liver diseases, the initial stage of cirrhosis);
• nervous (with neurosis, neurasthenia, neuralgia);
• cardiovascular (the presence of a significant amount of potassium improves blood circulation);
• has a positive effect in metabolic disorders (treatment of obesity, anorexia, arthritis, diabetes, gout).
"Borjomi" effectively cleanses the body, improves immunity, normalizes the water-salt balance and acid-base metabolism, improves digestion, promotes the synthesis of insulin, improves the function of the pancreas.
The recommended recovery period is from 12 days. Sanatorium card issued on the spot.
Accommodation in Borjomi
On the basis of hotels operates a significant number of resorts. Medical centers offer diagnostic and therapeutic procedures.
There are two five-star hotels of the capital level: “Rixos Borjomi” and “Crowne Plaza Borjomi” with luxurious restaurants, spa centers and indoor pools, four-star “Borjomi Palace”, several three-star ones, among them the most famous “Borjomi gorge” (“Borjomis Kheoba” ) with its own source. The hotel infrastructure continues to evolve: in the fall of 2016, the international company Golden Tulip restored the famous house Firuza (turquoise), an architectural monument of the 19th century, and opened a 4 * hotel with a restaurant, a fitness room, a pool, a sauna, a room for medical procedures.
In addition to luxury hotels, there are many mini-hotels, guesthouses, cottages, individual holiday homes.
The cost of a hotel room is from $ 60-150 per day (depending on the “star”), in mini-hotels - $ 30-40 per day, accommodation in guest houses - from $ 10-15 per person per day.
In order for the rest and rehabilitation to be perfect, it is recommended to book a suitable accommodation on the site.
Sights of Borjomi
• For almost half a century, before the revolution of 1917, Borzhom district was in the land of the royal family in the land of the city. In the village of Likani (western outskirts), the Romanov Palace, the summer royal residence, is fanned with a romantic aura. For the electrification of the palace, a hydroelectric power station was built, the first in the Russian Empire. In 2016, the proposal to transfer the palace to private ownership was rejected. During the three restoration will be carried out, the museum will open.
• Two fortresses that once belonged to the princes of Avalishvili remained. Opposite the Palace of the Romanovs, on a small mountain beyond the river stands the fortress Petre (Petres-tsikhe). To the top you can climb the serpentine trail. Once a large castle blocked the passage through the gorge. In the XVI century. The Turks conquered the fortress and kept a large garrison here.
• The fortress of Gogia (Gogia-tsikhe) is located closer to the center of the city, between Pirosmani and Georgi Saakadze streets. The quadrangular shape of the towers indicates that it was built in the X-XIV centuries, because such towers were no longer built.
• At the beginning of Tabidze Street there is a monument to the composer Tchaikovsky, who was very fond of Borjomi. On the same street in an interesting three-story building is a local history museum.
• A bright landmark and a kind of attraction - the narrow gauge railway to the ski resort Bakuriani. 38 km of railway tracks pass through the mountainous terrain with steep descents and ascents, the journey will take 2-2.5 hours. And although motor transport can be reached in two ways, in 40-50 minutes, we advise you to take the Kukushka (this is what people call the famous train). It will raise you to a height of 1,700 meters above sea level, and the contemplation of the picturesque landscapes of the surroundings will leave an unforgettable impression. The old narrow-gauge railway has been 115 years old (the constant movement along it began in January 1902). Part of the way, the electric train will pass over the bridge erected by the project of the outstanding French architect Gustave Eiffel.
• City Park - a great place for rest and treatment. Here is the main mineral spring, above it is a beautiful "crystal" dome. In the old days, mineral water was an expensive product, packed in crystal bottles and was available only to the rich. Now anyone can dial it from a natural source absolutely free. The park stretches for almost a kilometer, very well maintained, with benches, rides, playgrounds. “Colored” paths for walking were laid (yellow, for example, “horse” - you can take 30 minutes to ride along the Borzhomuly river). You can also see the real waterfall: small but beautiful. In winter, when it partially freezes, it looks even more enchanting. Near the waterfall stands the statue of Prometheus.
• If you walk to the end of the park, and then another couple of kilometers along the river through a beautiful forest, the path will lead to a glade with sulfuric pools under the open sky. Everything around is lined with stone and landscaped (benches, tables under a canopy). Three pools: one for children, the second - for swimming, in the third (with the hottest water) you can sit on the "underwater" bench. Imagine how exotic it is in winter: you are in a hot bath under snow-covered trees!
• Ropeway. It is already of “retirement age”, but it is completely reliable: it was recently restored. The lower station is located near the entrance to the city park. The funicular will take you to the upper station "Plateau" (1000 meters above sea level), there is a ferris wheel. You will be breathtaking from the most beautiful panorama of the surroundings from the height of bird flight. Nearby is a small temple of St. Seraphim of Sarov. You will be able to walk through the Sadgersky forest park.
• Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park - among the largest in Europe. The area of 85 thousand hectares. A dozen routes were laid: from the shortest (3 km) to four days (54 km, called the “Andrey Pervozvanniy Path”), there were campgrounds, picnics, bonfires, there are houses for overnight. There are several entrances to the park, the main one is in the Likani district, near the administration building. The visit is free, but it is necessary to register, you will be given a special document that can be checked by the Rangers. You can pre-book horses, accommodation for the night.
Excursions and travels in Borjomi
The convenient location provides an opportunity to get acquainted with the sights of Samtskhe-Javakheti. This region played an important role in the socio-economic life of Georgia, important trade routes passed through it. He was the closest to the territory of the warlike Ottoman Empire, so it is not surprising that here you can see a lot of defenses, large and small.
In the vicinity you can get acquainted with several interesting monuments of Georgian church architecture. You can at least every day (without discontinuing treatment) to carry out cognitive short "attacks".
• 5-6 km (10 minutes drive) - the village of Sadgeri, in which the residence of the princes Avalishvili was located. High above the Borjomula River in the VII. The temple of St. George was erected, destroyed in the XV century, then restored in the XIX. Sadgersky gold cross from this church is now stored in the Golden Fund in Tbilisi.
• 10-12 km (20 minutes), in the Gujaretistskali gorge, - Dabsky Monastery. The Church of St. George the Victorious in Daba is one of the oldest in Georgia. It is located in the forest and is not visible from the road, half of it is covered by a cave. An inscription is inscribed on the western gate saying: built in 1333.
• Tsagveri - a large settlement along the Borjomi-Bakuriani road (about 14 km, 25 minutes). There are sources of healing mineral waters. In Sadgeri, Dabu and Tsagveri can also be reached by narrow-gauge railway.
• Timotesubansky monastery, currently operating (17 km, 30 minutes from Borjomi, or 4 km from Tsagveri) with the Church of the Assumption of the Virgin built at the turn of the XII-XIII centuries. In good condition, frescoes of the early 13th century have reached our days. with the image of Queen Tamar. Traces of ancient cave dwellings can be seen on the sheer cliffs, but it is impossible to reach them without equipment.
• Green Monastery, the official name is St. George, currently operating (10 km, 15-20 minutes, one kilometer from the road). Appeared at the turn of the IX-X century. After the cruel raids of the Persians and Turks died out for five hundred years.
• Next - Atskurskaya fortress, on a cliff above the Kura. Archaeologists believe that the settlement of Atskuri originated around 1700 BC. The fortress buildings of the XIV-XVIII centuries have survived. This outpost defended the southern entrance to the Borzhomi gorge. In the XV century. the Persians laid siege to him, but they could not take it and offered the inhabitants to surrender, promising to save life, but perfidiously broke the promise, and tried to burn the relic, the icon of the Atskur Mother of God. The shrine miraculously survived and is now stored in the Tbilisi Museum of Art. It can also be reached by rail (Tkemlana station, 23 km from Borjomi). Atskuri is also located one of the entrances to the Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park.
You can make longer trips. And the advantage is that if the excursions from Tbilisi due to lack of time cover only the main attractions of this region (Rabat and Vardzia), then the Borzhomites can view other equally interesting objects in one day.
• The monastic complex Zarzma (84 km, 1.5 hours) is supposedly built in the 9th century. On several stone slabs there is an inscription about the battle of David III with the Byzantines, dating from the second half of the 10th century. A large temple was built at the turn of the XIII-XIV centuries. Frescoes are among the most significant monuments of Georgian art.
• The Golden Fortress (from Zarzm 8-10 km, about 12 minutes) at the turn of the XIII-XIV centuries. was a powerful stronghold. Located on a high massive rock, it is difficult to access even today: you can get up on an SUV. The ruins are very picturesque.
• Akhaltsikhe (48 km, 50 minutes). From every point you can see the majestic "Rabat". Date of occurrence of the first fortification is not known. But when the rulers of this region princes Dzhakeli in the XII century. built a fortress, called it Akhaltsikhe ("new"). The conquerors besieged and destroyed it many times: the army of Tamerlane in the XIV century, the troops of the Ottoman Empire in the XVI century. Since then, the current name is known. After the completion of reconstruction in 2012, Rabat became a real cultural center on an area of seven hectares. The towers have observation platforms, which offer fascinating landscapes. In the central city square there is a monument to Queen Tamara.
• Sapar Monastery (10 km from Akhaltsikhe): preserved buildings of the 10th-16th centuries. The murals (XIV century) are very colorful and not damaged by the Turks, who usually rubbed the faces of the saints.
• Fortress Khertvisi (from Akhaltsikhe 45 km, 45 minutes): the buildings date back to the X-XIV centuries. It was ruled by a princely family of Jakeli. In the thirteenth century lost power, fell before the Mongols. In the XVI century. Turks seize it for almost three centuries. During this time, the Georgians thrice captured her, but due to various circumstances were forced to leave.
• Tmogvi Fortress (9.5 km from Khertvisi, 10 minutes) - at an altitude of about two thousand meters above sea level, first mentioned at the beginning of the 10th century. The huge stronghold reached us in a severely damaged form due to the storms of the enemy and the strong earthquake of 1283. Since the XVI century. 250 years was in the possession of Turkey. The last dozen kilometers to the town of Tmogvi is on a steep serpentine with spoiled soil, you can only drive an SUV.
• In the high cliff above Kura, like the windows of a multi-storey building, looks like the “cave city” Vardzia, a unique architectural monument, one of the main attractions of Georgia (16 km from Khertvisi, 20 minutes; 61 km from Akhaltsikhe, about an hour; 108 km from Borjomi about 2 hours). In its heyday, Vardzia was completely hidden in the rock and inaccessible, and during the earthquake of 1283 a wall collapsed. A small part of the huge unique city, which suffered many times from earthquakes and invaders, has remained to this day. During the reign of Queen Tamara built the Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Next to the existing monastery.
• If there is time and opportunity, take a look at Vanis Kvabebi (Van caves) a kilometer from Vardzia (there is a sign on the road), they are 500 years older! Monks live in left-wing caves today. If in Vardzia there are only rocks, then trees and bushes grow in these caves. Very beautiful here in the fall. Jeep can drive up to the gates of the complex.
Not all the places that can be visited in this fertile land are listed.
Borjomi gorge is also suitable for extreme types of recreation: rafting, diving, hang-gliding, hunting and fishing.
In general, it is difficult to find a place where you can relax and diversify so diversely as in Borjomi!