Since Wizz Air has direct flights to Kutaisi from major cities of Europe, Kutaisi has become a popular destination for many tourists. This former capital and the second largest city of Georgia has a great location to see some of the main cities, town, and natural landmarks. Thus, we compiled the 9 best day-trips you can do from Kutaisi. 

Tskaltubo

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Photo Source: blonde-gipsy.com

This small spa resort town located very close to Kutaisi has lost its glory, however, it still is an important place to explore. Boasting with radon-carbonate mineral water springs, the main focus of the resort is balneotherapy. During the Soviet rule, Tskaltubo was a popular destination for many locals and foreigners attracting about 125,000 tourists per year. Even Stalin used to come here and had his own private room, which is open for the public to see. 

Tchiatura and Katskhi Pillar

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Katskhi Pillar
Photo Source: thisisinsider.com

Chiatura is a manganese producing town which similar to Tskaltubo lost its glory after the collapse of the Soviet Union and the Civil War of Georgia in the 90s. However, it still produces the minerals, but not with the same capacity as in the past. In terms of the attractions, Chiatura has nothing to offer except an adrenaline-boosting cable car that hasn’t been changed for more than 50 years and is surprisingly working perfectly.

From here, you can also drive to one of the natural wonders of Georgia – Katskhi Pillar, a natural limestone monolith with the height of about 40 meters (131 ft). Until 1944, the pillar was not surveyed by researchers or claimed. The more regular expeditions happened from 1999 till 2009 and discovered that a monastery of the medieval times used to be on top of the pillar. The church that you’ll see today was built in 2009. Unfortunately, no one is allowed up there, but the site is still magnificent even from the below.

Shaori Lake

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Shaori Lake
Photo Credit: Tai Dondua

Serving as both lake and the reservoir, Shaori is considered as one of the most important water sources of the country. Located about an hour drive from Kutaisi, the lake offers beautiful views of the surrounding nature. And if you happen to travel to Georgia in autumn, make sure to add Shaori Lake to your itinerary. It’s even beautiful at this time of the year.

Okatse Canyon

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Photo Source: blonde-gipsy.com

Nature lovers will enjoy a trip to Okatse Canyon, another natural wonder of Georgia. The path is well marked and takes around two to three hours to walk through the gorgeous forest towards the Kinchkha waterfall. It’s one of the tallest waterfalls in the country. The side is even beautiful during the spring as water levels are high and nature is in bloom.

Martvili Canyon

Martvili Canyon samegrelo


Photo Source: blonde-gipsy.com

This is another great escape to a natural sight. The emerald green color lake of the canyon does attract many visitors. The trail is not long and is moderately easy, therefore you won’t need any special hiking shoes here. And to add a bit more excitement to your trip, you can take a boat ride along the lake.

Borjomi

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Photo Source: Flickr.com

Borjomi is another resort town famous for its mineral waters of the same name, Romanov summer house located in a small village called Likani, and breathtaking trails of Borjom-Kharagauli National Park. Hiking lovers should spend a couple of days here, but if you are short on time, Borjomi will suit you just fine. Come here to drink the mineral water at its original form, walk along the beautiful park, and ride up a cable car for picturesque views of the town.

Akhaltsikhe and Vardzia

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Photo Credit: Øystein Hagerup

Even though Akhaltsikhe and Vardzia are a bit far to include in a day-trip, but those of you who are determined enough to see as much as possible during your vacation here, we decided to include them in the itinerary.

The main sight of Akhaltsikhe is the Rabati Fortress, a newly renovated complex boasting with a mixture of different religions and cultures. It’s one of those rare spots where several religious worship landmarks co-exist next to each other. Due to the fact that Georgia was constantly invaded by Mongols, Russians, and Ottomans, the Fortress altered its purpose and exterior each time, resulting in a blended complex of different cultures.

Not far from Akhaltsikhe is the 13th-century cave town Vardzia. Constructed by Queen Tamar, the town managed to survive different invasions from the enemies. There are 13 floors that house more than 600 rooms, a bell tower, a church, throne room, and wine cellars.

Kolkheti National Park

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Photo Source: wikiwand.com

The coastal town and port of Poti is home to another beautiful national park of Georgia. Kolkheti National Park is rich in flora and fauna, however, Paliastomi Lake is its main attraction. In order to see the park and have a full-scale experience, take a boat tour on the river, lake, and Pichori Gorge. It’s worth noting that an archaeological team found remnants of the Colchis Kingdom here.

Zugdidi

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Photo Source: wikiwand.com

The central city of Samegrelo region is another great day-trip option from Kutaisi. Come here to learn more about the Dadiani Family, the ruling dynasty of the Samegrelo Kingdom, wander through their palace and admire unique antique memorabilia including the death mask of Napoleon, relax at the botanical garden, stroll down the boulevard, and visit the Queen’s Palace. 

Where to stay in Kutaisi

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Black Tomato Kitchen
Photo Source: Black Tomato Hostel Fb page

Black tomato hostel was opened recently by two Georgian best friends, who managed to transform an ordinary house into a very cosy and modern hostel with vintage soul. The place is in an old part of Kutaisi and the neighborhood is also typical Georgian. The staff is very friendly and always ready to help. Remember you are in Imereti region, in the homeland of Khachapuri, so don’t forget to have a delicious breakfast in the morning and to try baked khachapuri made by the local lady, if you are lucky, you will have a chance to meet her and talk.
Our favourite spot in the hostel was the balcony, where the evening is really calm and breezy, have a glass of wine there and enjoy summer in Georgia 2019, besides you will explore Black Tomato Wine Bar in the yard of the hostel, which offers traditional Georgian wines as well as sparkling wine and wine cocktails. The cozy and friendly atmosphere at the bar is perfect for making friends with other travelers. Good background music and a glass of wonderful Georgian wine is the best idea after a long adventurous day. The wine bar is not only for Hostel guests, it is available for everyone. From time to time, the bar hosts some events, workshops, public speeches, etc. Working hours: 6:00 -1:00 am