The origins of Christian asceticism in Georgia and the "Martian" landscapes of the Gareji desert.
The birth of Christianity on georgian soil, the history and legends of the religious complex and unusual natural landscapes will be the main objects of your attention on this excursion.
The Way to the Ancient Monastery
We will meet in Tbilisi and go in a south-easterly direction, to the Georgian-Azerbaijani border. The only village that you will meet on the way to the monastery, as if making excuses because of its location in an arid area, is called Udabno (desert — in Georgian). Along the way, you will consider the natural landscape of the surrounding area — a waterless steppe that changes color depending on the season, ridges of hills of bizarre "design" and the outlines of the Caucasus Mountains viewed in the distance. After short stops for photography at the salt lake and / or other places we like, we will arrive at the main destination — the monastery operating to this day.
St. David's Lavra
Among the many historically significant architectural and picturesque natural monuments of the country, the David-Gareji monastery complex rightfully occupies a special place. In the Middle Ages, it covered a vast territory. Its branches — temples carved into the rocks, monks' cellars and utility rooms — were sometimes at a considerable distance from each other and were scattered over several tens of square kilometers. On the tour I will tell you about the origins of Christian asceticism in Georgia, about the birth of the monastery and the legends associated with the construction of the monastery.
Trekking and scenic views of the surroundings
Then you will find about a two-hour hike to the ridge, formally being the border of the two countries, a walk along the opposite slope and a descent along the trail from the other side. During the hike, you will see the rooms of the ancient monastery of Tetri Udabno carved into the rock with fragmentary preserved wall paintings — interesting examples of Georgian medieval monumental painting. And also look at the views of the plains of neighboring Azerbaijan from above.
Natlismtsemeli Cave Monastery
You can complete the tour by visiting another cave monastery, named after John the Baptist. The monastery is part of the Davido-Gareji complex and is located in an equally picturesque place. However, travelers and pilgrims rarely get here because of some distance from the beaten paths.
• We will pick you up in Tbilisi and bring you back.
• Transportation costs are included in the price.
• A guide from our professional team will guide you through the tour.
• Payment on the spot is possible in GEL, dollar, euro, rubles (at the exchange rate).