Georgia Road Trip – Day 6: The charm of old Tbilisi

Today you will wander through the ancient streets of Tbilisi, walk along the Dry Bridge, climb the funicular, explore the ancient fortress of Narikala, walk along the beautiful Tbilisi Botanical Garden, visit the Freedom, Europe and Gorgasali squares, walk along the old Metekhi bridge and the new Peace Bridge.
Georgia Road Trip
Visiting:

Trip duration: 8 days

Svetlana Lisitskaya

Dry Bridge | მშრალი ხიდი

Bridges


The dry bridge rises above Kura's former sleeve, which was then drained. Hence the name. It was built a century and a half ago by an Italian architect. At that time the bridge transported the inhabitants to Madatov island, and it in turn belonged to the Princes of Orbeliani. That's why they built the bridge over Kura in this place. And then, when in the 30s of XX century the river was drained, the bridge acquired its present name.

Flea Market | ძველმანების ბაზრობა

Flea Markets


Right behind the dry bridge begins the famous flea market. This market is for amateurs, but it is included in the list of Tbilisi sights. Of course, once in a while you do not have to and sometimes tourists can absolutely accidentally buy something they liked from the past. We are not a fan of antiques, but we are interested in two things.

Zakhar Zakharich | ზახარ ზახარიჩი

Caucasian Restaurants


And let's go to lunch at Zakhar Zaharych! The khinkali is so delicious here! And the salads are delicious not only from fresh vegetables, but also from pickled vegetables... Each restaurant has its own zest, but everywhere is delicious and hospitable!

Liberty Square (თავისუფლების მოედანი)

Plazas


Which street in Tbilisi will lead to Freedom Square? Of course, Rustaveli Avenue! As well as many other streets that run in this old town from the main square with such a loud name. In the old days there was a market and a headquarters on the square - well, a classic example of a medieval European city. Both the first caravanserai and the first theater appeared on this ancient square, and Pushkin A.S. lived nearby (Pushkin Street, also originating from this square, does not let forget about it), and the famous robbery of the State Bank in 1907 happened here, in a word, a continuous history. Now there is a beautiful pillar in the middle of the square with George the Victorious - the patron saint of Georgia, and quietly and quietly on the square. Go for a walk, study, and near Pushkin Square.

Narikala Fortress (ნარიყალა)

Historic Sites


In the heart of old Tbilisi is the fortress of Narikala. It was the most impregnable structure on the trade route. The fortress is very ancient, in the IV century it is already mentioned in the sources. Then it expanded and completed. Heavily affected by an earthquake in the early 19th century. You can get there by cable car. The views from the fortress open up just delightful!

Church Of St Nicholas, Narikala (ნარიყალას წმ. ნიკოლოზის ეკლესია)

Churches


St. Nicholas Church was built on the site where the Church of St. George of the XII century, ruined by the Persians in the late XVIII century, stood. Then, in an earthquake in 1827, it was severely destroyed and only in 1996 was the temple rebuilt.

Botanical Garden (Botanical Garden | ბოტანიკური ბაღი)

Botanical Gardens


Tbilisi Botanical Garden is located not far from Narikala Fortress. Unique in its composition - there grow and exotic, and coniferous and deciduous trees, the garden is located in the valley of the river Legvta Hevy. It used to be called the King's Garden. Now the park has many paths for walks, with bridges over the river, a waterfall and an abundance of flowers. Park Openwork Bridge is one of the oldest buildings in Tbilisi. This bridge was part of the road from Iran to Mtskheta when Queen Tamara lived there. Slim cypresses border the walking alleys. In the heat it is very pleasant to plunge into the coolness of the garden, and in spring the garden is fragrant with flowering plants.

Gorgasali (Meidan) Square (გორგასლის მოედანი (მეიდანი))

Plazas


Just 10 minutes walk from the botanical garden is Gorgasali square, which locals call Maidan in the old days. It's the heart of the old town. It used to be a trading area with its own traditions: from morning till lunchtime, the citizens bought goods from the peasants and only in the afternoon they had the right to buy wholesalers. Now the square is surrounded by restored old houses and cozy cafes.

Old Town (ძველი თბილისი)

Neighborhoods, Historic Sites


Old Tbilisi is a historical part of the city, there are so many monuments of architecture! Crooked narrow streets, old houses with carved balconies, a fortress, baths - just plunge into the depths of centuries and immerse yourself in the atmosphere and spirit of the old city.

Metekhi Bridge (მეტეხის ხიდი)

Bridges


Metekhi Bridge connects the Old Town and Metekhi. Bridge over Kura, in the historic part of town. King Vakhtang Gorgasali, who founded Tbilisi, stands on a monument above Kura and blesses the city and his people.

Europe Square (ევროპის მოედანი)

Plazas


After passing the Metech bridge, we find ourselves on the Europe Square. It's relatively new, with a large flower bed in the center. The square is adjoined by Rike Park. From Europe Square you can enjoy a beautiful view of the Old Town.

The Peace Bridge (მშვიდობის ხიდი)

Bridges


And here is the most modern bridge in Tbilisi - the Bridge of Peace. It connects the past with the present, Irakli II Street with Rike Park. Very beautiful, openwork bridge blends in organically with the look of the city. The bridge is pedestrian, covered with a glass dome. It looks beautiful both at dawn and daytime, and in the evening - with backlighting. The author is Italian Michele de Lucchi.

Azarphesha | აზარფეშა

Wine Bars, Eastern European Restaurants


After admiring the views from the bridge and the bridge itself, we leave for dinner. Very atmospheric restaurant with good cuisine. We continue to study Georgian cuisine. I liked the wines, the vats of their veal and the whole arsenal of related dishes. Restaurant for big companies and couples in love.