Svaneti is probably the most beautiful region of Georgia. Surrounded by highest Caucasus Mountains, it is a popular tourist destination. For thousands of years this land has been a homeland of Svans, a very distinctive ethnic group related to Georgians. Svaneti is a landscape of high snow-capped peaks, forested hills, spectacular valleys and breath-taking views. During our 12-days trip, we will hike in the heart of Svaneti region and visit the most popular tourist destinations of Georgia.
Today you will meet your guide and the rest of the group in Kutaisi (meeting point - an international airport). Kutaisi is the second most popular city in Georgia. Historically one of the major cities of Georgia, it served as the capital of the Kingdom of Georgia in the Middle Ages.
Today we have a transfer to city of Mestia, where we’ll start our hike up to the Svanety Mountains. On the way, we'll have time to visit The Enguri Dam, which is located on the Enguri River. Currently it is the world's second highest concrete arch dam with a height of 271 meters. Finally, we have got to Mestia. It is the regional capital of Svaneti and the main center of tourism for the region. After short and not difficult hike, we'll head to our campsite.
After breakfast, we start ascending on the mountain ridge. On the way, tourists will see picturesque ranges, alpine valleys and the most interesting Svanety Mountains scenery. After descending from the mountain crossing, we’ll come to Leli, a village where the group stops for the night.
From Leli camp, we hike to our next destination – Adishi village. Short brake and we are ready to see the amazing natural wonder of Caucasus Mountains. A spectacular walk will bring us to the place where we can enjoy the view of spectacular glacier. Walking distance about 10 km.
Today will be not easy hike. We walk to Iprali – another remote village of Upper Svaneti. Our path leads along incomparably beautiful mountains. Distance 13 km. We walk on Chkhutnieri Pass (2700m) and have to cross a river. First we hike along the river and after the path rises heavily for a couple of kilometers up to the highest point. From the pass we go down to Iprali village – the place where we will stop for the night.
This will be relatively lighter day. From our campsite, we’ll go to the famous village of Ushguli at 2300 meters, which is the highest-altitude village of Upper Svaneti. One of the village’s four districts, Chazhashi, is a unique monument, recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Overnight stay in the campsite next to Ushguli.
Today we’ll be a spectacular day, as we hike from Ushguli in a beautiful wide valley at the foot of Mt. Shkhara, the highest mountain of Georgia (5068m). It is also the third highest peak in the Caucasus.Total walking distance is about 15 km. We walk alongside the wonderful Enguri River, which will lead us to its origin – the beautiful Shkhara Glacier. Another wonderful night in Ushguli.
This morning we’re descending to Mestia. One more interesting day in the heart of Svanety. Apart from breathtaking landscapes and high mountains, the city of Mestia is notable for number of medieval monuments, such as churches and towers that are included in a list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. This day we spend visiting unique and historical places of Mestia.
We will spend this day getting rest in Kobuleti – one of the best Caucasian resorts famous for curative mineral waters. It is located along the Black Sea coast on the wide strip of sandy and amazing beach. That's exactly what you will need after active trip in Svanety region.
Today we’re going to visit Batumi – the second-largest city of Georgia. Batumi is located in a convenient natural Black Sea bay and is not only an important seaport, but also a tourism capital of Georgia. It has everything you need for leisure: beautiful beaches, interesting architecture, delicious traditional meals and wines, hospitable locals and unique souvenirs.
Another great city of Georgia. Kutaisi a very beautiful place to walk around and take in the many sights. It is one of the world’s oldest continuously inhabited cities. Nowadays it is the third largest city and one of the most popular tourist destinations in Georgia. Here we’ll visit Gelati monastic complex, consisting of three churches. The monastery was founded in 1106 and is recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Also we are going to visit another monastery – Motsameta. This small monastery is situated on a spectacular cliff top.
Our trip comes to the end today. It is the last day of our adventure to Georgia. We say bye to this fantastic Caucasian land. At the airport, we’ll have a flight back home.
To take part in the tour you’ll need to have valid foreign passport with you. Also, find out if you need a visa to enter the country you plan to visit. Get ready physically and mentally for your trip. Check your equipment and clothes before you go. Look up the region you plan to visit and its climate conditions. Book your flights ahead of time. You can always contact us and we will be more than happy to help you with any questions you may have (airline tickets booking, tourist gear choosing, etc.). Before the trip, we'll give you all detailed information about when and where exactly you will meet your guide and his contacts.
The tour price includes:
The tour price does not include:
The estimated amount of additional expenses during the trip is about 150-200$ (transfers, entrance fees, camping/hostels, souvenirs, etc.).
To guarantee your booking, we kindly ask to send us prepayment by bank transfer or Western Union service. It’s required to leave a deposit (30% from the tour price). The rest of the amount you will pay in cash at the meeting point before we start our trip. We accept Ukrainian currency (hryvnia), US dollars and euro currency. Before our trip starts, we will send you all payment details. After making a prepayment, do not forget to send us a scan/photo copy of the deposit slip.
Your prepayment is non-refundable. If you cancel your reservation no later than 10 days before the tour starts, you can switch it for another tour or date.
If a prepaid reservation is cancelled by us (due to the small number of tourists or bad weather conditions), the deposit will be refunded.
In case of any kind of emergency (bad weather, serious health problems etc.) for group safety our guide has a right to slightly change the itinerary or decide to stay in a campsite for the day.
Minimum age for tourist is 18 years. People under 18 can also go hiking but they must be accompanied and supervised by a legal guardian.
Deciding what type of outdoor gear you need can be a hard task to take up. The most important rule is to take on your trip only essential items, which are truly necessary. You can travel more quickly and cover greater distances with a lightweight backpack. Of course, the equipment you need to carry will vary according to the type of outdoor trip, you planned (hiking, rafting, combitour). Here is a sample-packing list to help you remember what things you might bring with you on your 1-day adventure.
The backpack is the most important item of equipment. For long hiking trips there are two main designs: internal frame backpack, which depends on support from metal or plastic stays incorporated into the pack and the external frame backpack, which consists of metal bars to which the bag attaches. The recommended size of your backpack for 3-7 days hiking trip is: for men – min. 75 liters (4600 cubic inches); for women – min. 50 liters (3100 cubic inches).
The best option will be three-season tent. What to look for in a tent: quality: good waterproof flysheet coverage and tent floor, two or more poles for stability in wind; size and weight: look for the lightest tent available, that meets your size requirements such as number of people and equipment. It’s a plus, when the tent has vestibule areas for gear storage. Winter camping tents have thicker walls, they are more durable and designed to shed snow and to protect hikers from the strong wind.
Sleeping bag essential
The proper sleeping bag can help you to sleep comfortable. The best option is three-season sleeping bag with the temperature of comfort +5 – -5°C (45 – 22°F). It will keep you warm in different weather conditions. For winter hiking you will need warmer sleeping bag with down or feather filling. Temperature rating must be -10 to -20*C.
Sleeping mat essential
An air or foam mat will not only help you to sleep more comfortable on hard or uneven ground, but will also provide insulation, preventing body heat from being lost through contact with the ground. It also acts as a barrier between your body and moisture that may have seeped inside your tent.
Will help to keep you warm, dry and comfortable when sitting out during your hiking trip. You can use either air or foam sitting mat.
Kitchen set essential
Your kitchen set should contain: a spoon, a bowl and a cup, preferably heatproof, lightweight and robust. Choose heatproof plastic or metal. More expensive, but extremely durable and light is titanium material. Insulated cup will keep your drink hot in cold weather.
Water bottle essential
Carrying water during hiking trip is usually not a problem – you need only a lightweight water bottle (1-2L or 30-50oz will be enough). You can use plastic or aluminum bottles. More expensive but comfortable is hydration pack, that has a tube, which allows you to take a sip of water while the move. For cold weather travelling, it’s good to take thermos.
A good knife is only useful if it is sharp. Which one is better, normal (hunting or army) knife or multifunction tool? Many hikers prefer the second one. Usually, multipurpose pocket knife includes: blade, can opener, corkscrew, scissors etc. Around camp your knife handles many chores, from slicing cheese to cutting small pieces of wood for fire.
Flashlight is helpful on a hike and at a campsite when it’s dark. The best design for hiker is a headlamp that frees up your hands and allows you to direct your light where you need it. Always remember to take spare batteries for your flashlight.
Personal gear essential
Personal kit contents will vary and depend on your personal needs, the basic are: toothpaste and toothbrush, toilet paper, soap, small comb, face/hand cream, hygienic wipes, sunscreen, lip balm, insect repellent, contacts/glasses, women: feminine hygienic products.
First aid kit essential
During hiking trip your safety is number one, that’s why proper completed First aid kit is essential to have with. Kit contents:
Matches or lighter essential
Spending time outdoor you will need a fire to cook, to warm up in cold weather or just to sit around, relaxing and talking with your friends. Take with you small pack of matches or lighter. Do not forget to put them in a waterproof bag (ziplock). More expensive, but very helpful is special fire starter that can help you to make fire without any problems.
Dry sacks essential
To keep your extra clothes dry or to protect your electronic equipment, money, documents and food from moisture, you will need a waterproof sack. The best option – nylon dry sack with buckle. If you do not have one, you can use ziplock bags or just ordinary trash bags.
Being out of home it is very important to keep in touch with your family and friends. So take your mobile phone with you. As addition you will get clock, alarm clock, music, camera, some phones have GPS. Before you leave home, make sure your phone battery is full charged, always keep your mobile phone in dry place. And do not forget Powerbank charger.
Always be in time! A watch will help you to organize your time during travelling. Better if it is waterproof. Some watches have timer, alarm clock, compass, time zones, which is very useful when you are travelling.
Taking photos is an excellent way to record the places you have visited during your hiking trip. To protect your camera you should carry it in a waterproof and durable camera bag. Always have spare batteries for your camera and extra film (for film cameras).
Passport (personal documents) essential
Travelling outside your country, you must have an ID (passport). You will need to present your photo ID at the airport, railway/bus stations, crossing national parks etc. Check with your embassy if you need a visa or special permission to visit Ukraine.
You should have enough money for your travelling needs. Calculate all expenses that you might have during your trip: transportation, extra food, hiking tour, souvenirs etc.
Notepad and pen
Very useful to have a small notepad in your trip just in case you’ll have to note some information or even to write down phone numbers and addresses of your new friends.
Hiking poles reduce the pressure on the back, legs and especially knees by transferring weight onto the arms, help to keep a balance when crossing the river or descending steep slopes. For winter hiking this is essential item.
Sunglasses will protect your eyes from the bright sun. Make sure to have your glasses with you not only in summer, but in winter as well.
A baseball hat is great for keeping the sun off. Better if it’s synthetic than cotton. Get with you wool or fleece hat also to wear at cold night by the campsite. For winter hiking you’ll need warmer hats or balaclava, which protect your head and face from cold weather.
More hikers prefer lightweight waterproof and wind resistance jacket. Very good if it has adjustable hood. Breathable fabric like Gore-Tex will be the best choice for hiker. This fabric keeps rain out and allows water to vapor from sweat to escape. For winter travelling take with you additional warm jacket that will keep you warm during the cold evening.
Rain cover (poncho) essential
For extremely wet weather you’ll need a rain cover with a hood. The best option is poncho that covers both hiker and his backpack.
You will need pullover for cold weather or when resting in a camp. Choose insulating fabrics such as fleece or wool. Always make sure to have one, as even in summer it might be chilly at night. It’s a plus to have spare light pullover too to hike in during cold weather. For winter hiking you must have couple of pullovers.
For your hiking trip you’ll need at least 2 T-shirts. Better synthetic, that wick away moisture and dry more quickly than cotton.
The best for hiking are lightweight nylon or polypropylene pants. They are comfortable and dry faster. Very useful are convertible pants with legs that zip off and convert into shorts, saves you from carrying a pair of both. Avoid jeans or any cotton pants – they dry longer and are very heavy and uncomfortable when get wet. You can take also an additional pair of fleece pants for camp site or to sleep in. In winter you’ll need warmer pants (something like pants for snowboarding) or just use two layers: polypropylene long underwear and nylon hiking pants on top.
For extra protection gaiters cover your boots and keep moisture and snow away from your feet. Better when they are made of waterproof and breathable material. A bag zip makes gaiters easy to get on and off. In winter this is essential item.
When travelling in summer season make sure to have your shorts with you.
If you have an option between synthetic and cotton fabric of your underwear, chose first one – it dries faster and keeps you warmer.
Hiking footwear ranges from lightweight trekking sandals to fully fledged mountaineering boots. The best option for Carpathians are lightweight or middleweight boots. Choose waterproof leather or Gore-Tex. Hiking boots will support your ankles; they are very flexible and comfortable. Some people prefer to hike light, choosing lightweight trekking shoes or sneakers. It always good to take with you additional pair of sandals or sneakers for use on the camp site. Be sure that your boots are well broken in before your hiking trip will start.
Socks are an important part of your footwear system. Socks made from wool and polypropylene are smooth against the skin and are comfortable to wear if you have blisters. Thick wool socks will keep you warm in cold weather. Take with you at least 2 pairs of lightweight synthetic socks and 2 pairs of wool socks.
For hiking you usually don’t need gloves but in a camp during cold and windy weather it’s good to have a pair of fleece or wool gloves. In winter it’s good to use two layers: fleece gloves and waterproof gloves on the top. And do not forget extra pair for camping.
The group equipment below is provided:
If you do not have some of those items, there is no reason to cancel your trip! Please contact us if you have any questions about items on this list or you need to rent some equipment. We are always ready to help you with that and make your trip comfortable and safe!