12 Days Wine Tour Georgia - The Best Eastern Georgia Wine Tour - Welcome to Caucasus
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Welcome to Caucasus / 12 Days Wine Tour Georgia – The Best Eastern Georgia Wine Tour

12 Days Wine Tour Georgia – The Best Eastern Georgia Wine Tour

per person
12 Days
Moderate

Discover wine regions: Kakheti, Kartli region Gori, Mukhrani Chardakhi, Meskheti – the areas of the oldest winemaking traditions. Experience food and wine tour in Eastern Georgia, meeting with locals, enjoying time in some of the best guesthouses or hotels in the area. Visit some of the famous and exotic cultural tour destinations during the Wine tour Georgia.

  Taste and experience Georgia in unique way, dine with local families across country
  Visit small authentic wineries and some of the best guesthouses
  Get to know Georgia as an ancient wine-producing country. Visit local wineries, take a walk in the revived historical vineyards, meet Georgian winemakers and feel the ancient spirit that is in each grape.
 Taste delicious traditional dishes in traditional cellars, listen to folk music and get acquainted with Georgian drinking culture and toasting tradition.
  Learn more about Georgian traditions in interesting museums and monuments. See with your own eyes where the wine is stored and how Georgian winemakers produce it.
  Visit the factories that produce many varieties of delicious wines with both traditional and modern technologies and export them to different parts of the world.
  Make Georgian churchkhela and other traditional food by yourself
  Enjoy the views towards Caucasus summits from the great walls of Sighnaghi and visit some other historical sights during wine tour in Kakheti
  Travel to the ancient Georgia in Vardzia, Uplistsikhe, Saro village and Dmanisi
  Try horse riding in the beautiful Lagodekhi national park.
  Visit the old narrow streets of the capital Tbilisi and Mtskheta
  Visit the lakes area of Georgia and meet Armenian hosts

Wineries mentioned in the plan may be replaced by equivalent wineries in the same area depending on the availability of the hosts

Wine tour Georgia outline:

Day 1: Telavi – Tsinandali palace – Shumi winery – Shuchman winery – Zegaani Monastery – Dinner at Chacha Maker’s place – Tsinandali

Day 2: Winery in Kisiskhevi – Togonidze wine cellar – Marleta cheese farm or Mosmieri restaurant – Ruispiri Biodynamic vineyard – Chateau mere or Milorava guesthouse and wine cellar

Day 3: Qvevri maker – Alaverdi Monastery – Matsoni house – Artana wines(optional) – Lazagi wine cellars – Twins Wine Cellar – Kvevri Wine Museum

Day 4: Shilda village wine tasting – Gremi Castle – Kvareli Tunnel – Javakhishvili Wine Cellar – Kvareli Eden

Day 5: Numisi Cellar Museum – Okros wine – Sighnaghi

Day 6: Lagodekhi horse riding – Brewery in Apeni or Badiauri family – Guyaani winery – Vellino winery – Tbilisi

Day 7: Tbilisi wine tour

Day 8: Jvari monastery – Svetitskhoveli – Bagineti pagan temple – Iago winery – Kolkhis Ezo or Nebi Winery – Guramishvili Cellar – Tbilisi/Mtskheta

Day 9: Dzalisi – Chateau Mukhrani – Merebashvili wine cellar – Kaspi tombs – Uplistsikhe cave town – Nika Vacheishvili cellar/Gori

Day 10: Borjomi park sulfur bath pools – Rabati castle – Vardzia terraces winery – Vardzia cave town – Valodia cottages or Vardzia resort

Day 11: Saro village – Lunch at local family in Khizabavra or Chobareti cheese farm for workshops – Drink kvevri beer in Aspindza – Paravani lake – Poka Monastery and Family corner restaurant – Bolnisi

Day 12: Whiskey Distillery- Dmanisi Museum and Castle – (St Peter and Paul’s Monastery – Winery – Bolnisi Sioni) – Berdiki fortress – Tbilisi

This tour is subject to customization and amendments based on demands of clients.
More wine tours in Georgia:

1

Telavi - Tsinandali palace - Shumi winery - Shuchman winery - Zegaani Monastery - Dinner at Chacha Maker’s place - Night at Tsinandali

We will start the day on the way to Telavi through the Gombori pass enjoying the views of the Caucasus mountain range. Telavi is the historic center of the Kakheti region famous for its ancient wine-making culture. We will have a walk through the old streets of Telavi, feel its atmosphere and take pictures of the town’s unique architecture.

We will visit the Telavi food market, where you can buy Georgian fruits and vegetables, fresh cheese and Georgian bread, also famous Georgian sweets called Churchkhela made of walnuts and grape juice. Our next destination is Tsinandali Palace that surprises all guests with its beauty with its beautiful garden and a historic winery .

Then we will visit Shumi winery for wine tour in Kakheti. There we will taste high quality wine while exploring a museum of ancient wine artifacts. After that we will drive to Schuchmann Winery - located in Kisiskhevi. This premium winery combines German discipline with well-known indigenous Georgian vine varieties. Wines are lighter than usual but leave a pleasant taste.

Our next destination will be Zegaani monastery - surrounded with dense forest, built in the 6th century. There we will see the basilica, a small chapel and ruins of an ancient winery. It is one of the most authentic quiet places to recharge your energies.

Later, you will be able to experience the Georgian traditional supra (meal with toast making) – at a local chacha (vodka) maker. With toasts, dishes, barbeque and songs you will create unforgettable memories.

Overnight in Tsinandali (Park Hotel and Radisson is recommended)

2

Winery in Kisiskhevi - Togonidze wine cellar - Marleta cheese farm or Mosmieri restaurant - Ruispiri Biodynamic vineyard - Night at Chateau mere or Milorava guesthouse and wine cellar

In the morning we will visit a winery in Kisiskhevi where you will taste Georgian wine and explore traditional wine-making culture. Then we will drive to Togonidze wine cellar where wine is produced in the traditional qvevri (Georgian traditional clay wine storage) vessels.

Then we have two alternatives. One is to visit the Marleta cheese farm. Here you will find a goat farm, an open cafe, a library and a tasting area. You will taste types of cheese which are made on the farm by non-traditional technology. Second and less luxurious alternative is to visit Mosmieri restaurant and taste their delicious dishes.

Our next destination will be The Ruispiri Biodynamic Vineyard which is a great place where you will taste locally produced wine, enjoy beautiful landscapes and try local bioproducts: vegetables and goat cheese.

Overnight in Chateau Mere (high quality hotel with good European and Georgian food and wine production) or Milorava guesthouse and wine cellar (this one is located in Telavi and they make wine from Georgian and European grape varieties).

3

Qvevri maker - Alaverdi Monastery - Matsoni house - Artana wines(optional) - Lazagi wine cellars - Night at Twins Wine Cellar - Kvevri Wine Museum and hotel or night at Lopota Lake Resort

In the morning we will visit one of the few people who still make qvevri - Georgian traditional clay wine storage vessels. We will find out the history and art of qvevri making and taste delicious qvevri wine made by traditional methods.

The next destination of the visit is Alaverdi Monastery - one of the largest church buildings in Georgia. You will visit Matsoni house next to the monastery where you can taste delicious yogurts made according to Georgian traditions.

After that we can visit Artana wines where you will taste classical amber-colored Kakhetian wine - Rkatsiteli. Then we will visit Lazagi wine cellars where wine is made by Tushetian owners. They have vineyards of Rkatsiteli and Mtsvane grape varieties. In the cellar you can taste unique Khikhvi wine.

Our next destination will be village Napareuli where we will visit Twins Wine Cellar which was rebuilt on an ancient wine cellar. There we will taste delicious wine and visit Kvevri Wine Museum where you will see all steps of making Kvevri vessels.

We can stay there overnight or if the budget allows, visit Lopota lake, a luxury resort with Chateau Buera inside where you can taste high quality wine. Lopota lake resort can be one of the best places to stay in Georgia.

4

Shilda winery wine tasting - Gremi Castle - Kvareli Tunnel - Javakhishvili Wine Cellar - Night at Kvareli Eden

After breakfast we will drive to Shilda village where we will visit a local winery. There you will taste delicious wine and we will head to Gremi Castle which was built in the 16th century. One of the unique features of Georgian churches is that they blend into them. Gremi is one of the great examples of that.

Our next destination will be Kvareli Tunnel - soviet time longest wine storage and restaurant where you will have a guided tour and wine tasting. Adventure continues to the Javakhishvili wine cellar - ancient architecture style winery where you will taste 10 varieties of Georgian wine, brandy and chacha(vodka). In the complex there is a shop where you can buy locally produced drinks.

Overnight in Kvareli Eden where you can try wine therapy in spa center or local guesthouse in Kvareli area

5

Numisi Cellar Museum - Okros wine - Sighnaghi

Our day will start with a visit to Numisi Cellar Museum where we will hear even more about Georgian food and wine and you will be able to prepare Georgian meals yourself and taste them.

Our next destination will be Sighnaghi where we will visit Okros wine - a winery which produces wine with traditional Georgian techniques.Their amber kvevri wines including Rkatsiteli and Kisi can be really amazing.

The day will finish in Sighnaghi town - the city of love, which is full of beautiful streets, old-style architecture and interesting sightseeings. We will move to the Sighnaghi walls - historical walls that surround the whole city. We will look down to the huge Alazani Valley and enjoy the beauty of Kakheti.

Overnight in Sighnaghi.

6

Lagodekhi horse riding - Brewery in Apeni or Badiauri family - Guyaani winery - Vellino Winery - Night in Tbilisi

After breakfast we will visit Lagodekhi where you can try Horse riding in the beautiful green forests of Lagodekhi National Park and drink local beer in a local brewery in Apeni. On the road we will have a stop in Badiauri, to taste local bread and cheese with the local family.

Alternatively we can visit Guyaani winery where we will taste delicious Mtsvane wine. Winery mixes traditional methods and modern technologies to produce alcohol drinks. Manavi is the area for Mtsvane wine and it usually fits European taste. Our next destination will be Beka Jimsheladze’s vellino where we will taste multiple kinds of wine. Family exports wine to the USA, England and Austria. Beka is a young and enthusiastic winemaker who explains his methods and work very well.

In the evening we will return to the capital of Georgia - Tbilisi.

Alternatively we can stay in Mtevino winery which is located in Khashmi village not far from Tbilisi. The hotel is inside the vineyard and their Saperavi (red dry wine) can be interesting.

Overnight in Tbilisi

7

Tbilisi wine tour

Our first destination of Tbilisi wine tour will be a newly built pedestrian glass and steel bridge with bow design - Peace Bridge Then we will visit the Mother of Georgia’s monument via cable car. The monument is located on a hill overlooking the entire city. After enjoying the view we will visit Narikala Fortress - the main defensive structure of the city.

The main symbol of Tbilisi is the sulfur baths so this will be our next destination. Ottoman’s period bathhouses and sulfur smell around will immediately make you feel the vibe of old Tbilisi. Through this amazing atmosphere, we will reach Leghvtakhevi - a 14 m high waterfall in the heart of Tbilisi and enjoy the views of old Tbilisi balconies in the shade and fury of the waterfall.

Our next destination will be an open air museum of ethnography where you will explore centuries old items from different regions of Georgia.

The day will end with Georgian gastronomy and art. You will taste delicious dishes and drink Georgian wine (or take a break from wine) accompanied by Georgian music and traditional dances.

Overnight in Tbilisi

8

Jvari monastery - Svetitskhoveli - Bagineti - Iago winery - Kolkhis Ezo or Nebi Winery - Guramishvili Cellar - Tbilisi/Mtskheta

We will start the day by visiting Mtskheta - the old capital of Georgia. Our first destination will be Jvari Monastery (6th cent.). From here you will see the beautiful landmark of the confluence of two rivers. Then we will walk the narrow, old architectural style streets of the town and browse handmade products displayed on small counters. Then we will visit Svetitskhoveli Cathedral - UNESCO World Heritage Site, known as the place of Tomb of Christ Robe.

After that we will visit the mystical Bagineti, pagan temple of ancient Georgia. Here you will step into the different culture from where we will see an amazing view of the old town Mtskheta and Jvari monastery.

Our next destination will be Iago winery on ancestors’ vineyard. There we will have a tour of organic viticulture and taste white and red wine varieties.

Then we have an option to visit Kolkhis Ezo which was founded by a family that merges traditions of east and west wine-making. Or we can drive to Nebi winery at Chardakhi, where you will taste white dry wine - "Chinuri“ and taste delicious Georgian dishes.

In the evening we will visit the Guramishvili Cellar in Saguramo for dinner.

Preferred hotels are Savsamora and Chateau Villa Mosavali because of high quality service and wineries in the area. However, night stay can be in the same hotel in Tbilisi

9

Dzalisi (optional) - Chateau Mukhrani - Merebashvili wine cellar - Kaspi tombs - Uplistsikhe cave town - Night at Nika Vacheishvili cellar or Gori

After breakfast we can visit Dzalisi - an ancient city in eastern Georgia. An ancient hill settlement found in the city dates back to the 2nd century AD. There you will find ruins of baths, pools, barracks and water systems. Dzalisi is a distinguished monument for its unique Roman mosaics which are the oldest ones in the Caucasus.

Then we will drive to the Chateau Mukhrani which combines a castle, forest and winery. We will learn more about Chateau’s history, explore the vineyard and taste locally produced wine in case of interest.

Then we will drive to a small town called Kaspi for wine tour in Kartli. Here we will visit Merebashvili's winery. Wine is stored in qvevri (Georgian traditional clay wine storage vessels). Host will show us their vineyards and you will have a chance to taste Georgian qvevri wine.

Then we will drive to Kaspi Tombs - A group of caves carved into the rock which are unique ancient monuments of Georgia because similar tombs have not been found in the country yet.

Our next destination will be Uplistsikhe - an ancient rock-hewn town, which contains structures dating from the Early Iron Age to the Late Middle Ages.

For overnight we can visit Nika Vacheishvili cellar or Nitsa Guesthouse in Gori.

Nika Vacheishvili’s cellar is located next to Ateni’s Sioni Cathedral which was built in the 7th century. Church is located in the middle of beautiful nature next to the Tana river. Winemaker is a specialist in architecture and will tell you many interesting stories. You can taste there wines which are unique for the area including Goruli mtsvane wine (white dry wine).

Nitsa guesthouse is a very unique accommodation in Gori. Though it can be basic, the host is very welcoming and warm, plays piano well and cooks homemade meals.

10

Borjomi park sulfur bath pools - Rabati castle- Vardzia terraces winery - Vardzia cave town - Valodia cottages or Vardzia resort

In the morning our first destination will be Borjomi resort where we will visit Borjomi park. There you can taste mineral water and walk in the beautiful nature. There we can walk to the sulfur pools which have many health benefits.

Then we will visit Rabati Castle - a castle complex of Asian style in Akhaltsikhe. Recently renovated Castle is the perfect place to take stunning photos in the background of its stunning eastern-styled towers, shining mosque, charming palaces and fountains.

Our wine tour in Vardzia will continue in Vardzia terraces winery where we will have a tour of restored rarest historical varieties of the grapes. You will taste delicious wine and learn more about Georgian wine making culture. We can eat Apokhti’s Khinkali today which is a local variety for this region.

Our next destination will be the most important monument of Georgian history - Vardzia Cave town. In the Cave town you can find the main church, bell tower, cave dwellings, chapels, pharmacy, and wine cellars - dated to the Bronze Age.

Overnight in Valodia cottages or Vardzia resort.

Valodia cottages are very unique accommodations at Kur river. They have tasty organic wine, their own farm and vegetables. The warm and welcoming family will serve you tasty dinner with local vegetables which grow in the garden, honey from flowers of the same garden, fish caught in the fish farm. Location i very unique and memorable, surrounded by the rocks of the Vardzia area.

Alternative night stay is Vardzia resort. While the price is higher, space for rest and relaxation is also great. The pool overlooks the Vardzia cave town so you can fully enjoy the views to it and take a walk to Vanis Kvabebi caves. Here in the restaurant you can taste local dishes including tatarberaki, tutmaji, layered Khachapuri in Meskhetian style and other dishes. Here you can drink Meskhetian speciality - the juice of Sea-buckthorn - the taste you will remember.

11

Saro village - Lunch at local family in Khizabavra or Chobareti cheese farm for workshops - Drink qvevri beer in Aspindza - Paravani lake - Poka Monastery and Family corner restaurant - Bolnisi

After breakfast we will visit Saro village with its megaliths, small church and breathtaking yellow panoramas. Here you can see Meskhetian traditional house with a roof pointing to the sky. There You can taste vodka from honey or plums which is a speciality of the area and see a real Georgian small village lifestyle. This village is orthodox while the other village in 2km is Catholic Christian (where there is production of Mozzarella cheese). This is where we will head next.

We will have a delicious lunch at a local family in Khizabavra or Meskhetian cheese workshop in Chobareti where we can participate in workshops of Meskhetian Khachapuri and bread and have an excursion in the old Meskhetian Oda-house. After that we will taste delicious local qvevri (traditional clay pots used to store wine) beer - Amphora in Aspindza - no wine drinking this day. Then we will drive to Paravani lake. Next to the lake Foka Monastery is located. The founding of the church is connected with the name of St. Nino - a woman who brought Christianity to Georgia. There is a shop in the monastery where you can taste special kinds of Georgian cheese: white and red Abuli, Javakhetian blue and others prepared by old traditions and other locally produced products, such as jams and honey. For a meal/coffee we can stop at a family corner in Gandzani village with a local Armenian family. Their warmth and hospitality is amazing. It will make us feel in the heart of Caucasus.

Overnight in Tetritskaro Guesthouse (Artist’s house) or Deutsche Mulle Hotel in Bolnisi. Deutsche Mulle - German mill is located next to German built part of Bolnisi. Germans lived here in the 19th-20th century and followed winemaking. The hotel was used as a mill that time. It has thick walls and a warm interior. Their wine is produced in the Kakheti region.

Artist’s House - guesthouse full of amazing original artwork. The rooms are decorated with beautiful art. Owner is a Georgian artist whose work can be seen at the Georgian Museum of Fine Arts. Cozy Family atmosphere and homemade food will be memorable.

12

Whiskey Distillery - Dmanisi Museum and Castle - (St Peter and Paul’s Monastery - Winery - Bolnisi Sioni) - Berdiki fortress - Tbilisi

If we have stayed in Tetritskaro, we can drive to the village and visit Alexander’s distillery. We will try Georgian whisky there. Also we can try their chacha and cider. Their garden and village atmosphere is beautiful.

Then we will drive to Dmanisi. There we can visit the Dmanisi museum where the oldest human’s skull in Europe was discovered. The museum stands in the territory of an old castle which stands above a beautiful canyon, so even if we don't visit the museum the historical site and its panoramas are a must visit.

Then we will visit the medieval fortress of Berdiki (poladauri fortress). This is one of the best fortresses of Georgia, non-touristic, with perfect views and thrilling uphill walk. The castle was controlling road in Poladauri gorge. The ruins of the castle are still preserved today. Below the fortress we can make Georgian shashlik (barbeque).

If we have stayed in Bolnisi, we can visit more sights of the Bolnisi area before the Berdiki fortress. One of these can be St Peter and Paul’s monastery where we can enjoy a 360 degrees panorama of valleys and mountains of the region. Also brothers’ winery in Bolnisi and Bolnisi sioni - Basilica which stores the oldest Georgian inscription. There we will see unique cross shapes which are called “Bolonian Cross”.

Finally we will arrive in Tbilisi.

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