Welcome to Adjara
Adjara is a fascinating and unique area, where the sea collides with mountain range. One of the must-see regions in Georgia, Adjara has fairly built up a superb reputation as one of the best resort areas, with its warm sub-tropical climate, its heady mix of sea and mountain air, its revitalizing and healthy sea and spa-waters, and some of the best and brightest nightlife on the Black-Sea.
You want to ski and surf on the same day? You can do it in Adjara. There’s nowhere in the world quite like it. Whether you sky-dive, scuba-dive, water-ski or jet-ski, Adjara has everything you need above and beneath the sea. And in the evening, enjoy your favorite style of music in various bars and clubs. But, if music or water isn’t your thing, simply walk through the peaceful mountains or stay with a local family to experience true hospitality and tranquility. Orange, tangerine and lemon groves, beautiful orchards, forests, mountain streams, and waterfalls make the entire region truly breathtaking. The mountains, which reach over 3,000 metres, are home to dozens of mineral water springs, charming wooden villages and medieval bridges. The historic town of Batumi is the main tourist destination. Tracing its history back thousands of years, it was once the main port on the ancient Silk Road. Today it is a buzzing resort where the world comes to relax and play. Recent investment, modern infrastructure and deluxe five star hotels create an amazing atmosphere for the best holiday you can imagine. Adjara really does have it all.
History and Culture
The region of Adjara has a great history and a unique cultural identity. Part of the Colchis and Caucasian Iberia since ancient times, it was colonized by Greeks in the 5th century BC, and fell under the control of the Roman Empire in the 2nd century BC. It was incorporated into the unified Georgian Kingdom in the 9th century AD but was later conquered by the Ottomans. The presence of such diverse civilizations has truly left its mark on Adjara, and you can see many remnants and artifacts in the museums and monuments spread throughout the region.
In Adjara, powerful, mountain-fed rivers roar to the sea, forming beautiful, pure and clean waterfalls. Through such stunning scenery, adventurers can enjoy horse-riding, mountain biking, hiking, four wheel drive tours, rafting, and paragliding. And in winter, don’t forget to ski or snowboard in the snow-sure ski resorts.
Batumi is a city which visitors find easy to fall in love with, thanks to its unique blend of subtropical coastline and beaches, framed by spectacular snow-capped mountains and boasting legendary nightlife. The health restoring qualities of this combination of sea and mountain air is renowned and perhaps one reason why Georgia boasts an unusually high number of centenarians. The fields around the city are mostly tea and citrus plantations, sweet fragrance of which diffuses throughout the area.
Established in 1881, the Seaside Park is one of the charms of the city. Locals call it simply the “Boulevard”. It stretches 7km from the centre of Batumi, along the seashore to the north-west as a long, vibrant and green line. As soon as you approach the Boulevard you start to feel the salty sea air, mixed with the aroma from the hundreds of hundred year old pine and palm trees which line the route.
Garden Just 9km north of Batumi at Mtsvane Kontskhi (Green Cape), the Batumi Botanical Garden grows thousands of beautiful species of plants – there are over 5,000 species of plants. Thanks to Adjara’s unique micro-climate, gardens can grow an astonishing variety of plants from different regions and climates, all side by side. Marvel at the full impact of so many species together in one place, or simply breathe in the scent from these spectacular plants.
Four protected areas cover up to 20% of the territory in Adjara
Mtirala National Park is a rich and diverse park, with an abundance of flora and fauna. The villages surrounding the Park have many examples of traditional, ancient wooden houses while the park itself offers world-famous bird-watching and ecotourism activities. The first walking trail starts at the Visitor Centre and stretches along the left bank of the Chakvistavi-River. On the way you will see many varied representatives of the local flora and fauna, such as the Georgia’s Red List species. These include Georgian walnut, Colchic hazelnut, Ungerni’s and Pontic rhododendrons. Other rarer, but still sighted examples of fauna include brown bear, marten, the red fox and golden eagles.
Kobuleti is well known for its many species of migrating waterfowl and its rich abundance of plant species. The region has a very interesting culture and history as one of the ancient trading routes passed right through Kobuleti, which in turn became a cultural and trading centre for the area. The surrounding mountain settlements create a perfect environment for amazing bird-watching.
The Kintrishi Protected Areas incorporate the Kintrishi Nature Reserve, established in 1959 and Kintrishi Protected Landscape, established in 2007. Located between the Black Sea and the mountains of Adjara-Imereti, it has a unique micro-climate as the mountains hold up the warm, humid sea air to create a very high humidity climate, with a relatively warm and narrow temperature range throughout the year. The spectacular Kintrishi Nature Reserve contains many deep gorges, formed by the Kintrishi River – the main water artery of the reserve – which starts at the top of Mount Khino and flows into the Black Sea near the resort of Kobuleti.
Tours in georgia
Kobuleti stands out as one of the very best areas for its micro climate. Famous for its warm, humid sea air, Kobuleti has become an important tourist centre and health resort on the Georgian Black Sea region, attracting many tourists thanks to its glorious long and well equipped beach.
Tsikhisdziri is also well known for its heady mix of warm humid air from the sea and cooler, sweeter air from the surrounding high mountains. There are many guest-houses, restaurants, café-bars, and villas in beautiful gardens and parks on the green slopes of Tsikhisdziri. The beaches are extremely comfortable and allow you to enjoy the many excellent water facilities.
The resort of Chakvi is the homeland of Georgian tea. It was here that Chinese scientist Lao Jiao first grew and cultivated tea in Georgia. Why not sample some of the sweet tasting tea for yourself while staying at hotels, summer cottages, and guest-houses situated all along the seaside.
Mtsvane Kontskhi (Green Cape) is one of the most beautiful seaside resorts in Georgia. In 1903, the Doctors Society opened a railway station here in order to access the world-famous Batumi Botanical Gardens. The area is also well known for its attractions under the sea as it is a popular dive spot with many visitors who stay and enjoy the area’s health-restoring sanatoriums, hotels, restaurants, and café-bars.
Makhinjauri has been a true spa resort since 1904 and it’s easy to see why so many people visit this place. Just 5km north of Batumi it is situated right on the edge of the mountains and it quickly grows from sea level to over 1,300m and creates a distinct, humid, subtropical environment. Powerful natural hot springs provide deep cleansing and relaxing sulphur baths, useful for easing your joints, soothing the entire nervous system, and aiding many, many other ailments of modern day life.
Gonio, Kvariati, Sarpi
The resort of Gonio, Kvariati and Sarpi are situated 13-18km south of Batumi and Sarpi is actually situated on the Georgia-Turkey border. The warm sea temperature (over 25 degrees C in July) combines beautifully with the humid sea and mountain air. Sarpi, Gonio and Kvariati are favourites for youngsters from all over Georgia and other countries. It’s a real play-time atmosphere. Play on the beach all day then party in the bars and clubs till morning. If you can keep up with the pace, there’s no better place to spend the summer.
One of the many prominent resorts in the Adjara Mountains is Beshumi, 1900m above sea level. While traveling towards Beshumi visitors are amazed at the incredible scenery as they pass through Acharistskali Valley where clean and pure mountain rivers create incredible waterfalls and unforgettable landscapes. Arriving at the height of Beshumi one of the first things you notice is its clean, fresh air, laced with the scent of thousands of coniferous trees from the surrounding forests. This truly is a magical place.
The Gonio-Apsaros fortress is located 12km to the south of Batumi, on the left bank of the River Chorokhi. It is a real paradise for lovers of historical and cultural antiquities as this was one of the most important citadels for the Roman and Byzantine Empires. The Gonio-Apsaros fortress was vital to protect the entrance of the Black Sea, having a strategically important role.
The highlands of Adjara are rich in fascinating and beautiful sights and the churches and fortresses of Skhalta, Khikhani, and Khino are of particular interest. Skhalta Church is a XIII century monument to Georgian architecture in Khulo. The interior of this remarkable church retains some of its original XIII century paintings and during liturgy, prayers are accompanied by the sound of the river Skhalta.
The ruins of ancient historical city-fortress Petra are located in the village of Tsikhisdziri and dates back to VI Century A.D. The Byzantine Emperor Justinian built a city here because of its strategic location which enabled it to become a strong military base and powerful trading centre with Europe and the Byzantine provinces–Armenia and Persia.
Arched Stone Bridges in Adjara
There are quite a few ancient arched stone bridges in Adjara, and each and every one is an important part of the history of the region. Their beauty and fragility makes them as significant as the mighty fortifications, monuments, and castles that are also spread around this historical area and are a must-see of any visit.
©Georgian National Tourism Administration