There are so many incredible cities, towns, and places to visit in Georgia (Europe) that it’s hard to just pick a few of the best places to visit in Georgia.
In fact, there is so much to see and do in Georgia that one can easily find yourself lost in this stunning Caucasian country for weeks or longer. It’s no wonder that the country of Georgia has exploded onto the tourist scene over the past few years.
With over 65 countries across the world under my belt, Georgia remains at the top of my list. The country of Georgia offers everything a traveler could want: affordable prices, a welcoming culture, excellent and cheap transportation options, incredible mountains, seaside resorts, vibrant city life, and delicious food and drink.
There is a lot to choose from in this incredible country, but you won’t want to miss these 9 best places to visit in Georgia Europe.
And if you are headed to the country of Georgia, be sure to check out my Georgia Travel Guide for more details on the best places to visit in Georgia, things to do do in the country, sample Georgia itineraries, and more! You also might like this list of 10 Amazing Things to do in Georgia Europe.
[disclosure: This list of the best cities in Georgia (country) was updated in November, 2018. Links on this page may provide a small commission to support this site at no cost to you]
Batumi reminds me of what would happen if you mixed Singapore with Atlantic City, shrunk it down ten sizes and plopped in onto the Black Sea’s pebble beaches. Batumi, Georgia offers modern architecture (Donald Trump once had plans to build a skyscraper here), an enormous and gorgeous botanical garden, and access to the pebble beaches of the Black Sea.
In summer, Russian, Georgian, and international visitors descend on the city, with its beaches crowded by day and its nightclubs throbbing through the night. Batumi is definitely one of the best cities to visit in Georgia.
Mestia is the main town in the mountainous region of Svaneti. Svaneti isn’t easy to get to (unless you can snag one of the few flights from Tbilisi to Mestia), but it’s well worth a visit to this stunning but isolated mountain region. There you’ll find a unique but fierce culture that has managed to ward off invaders ranging from the Mongols to the Persians to the Ottomans.
With the government of Georgia heavily promoting tourism to Svaneti, Mestia is quickly taking off as a tourist destination. But, while the town now offers higher-end hotels and a airport terminal that looks like it’s from the future, it still retains its centuries-old charm.
While I always encourage people to make their own travel path, and don’t believe in such things as “must see” places,” the Svaneti region of Georgia is as close as it comes to a must see in Georgia.
Svaneti is so incredible – it’s my favorite place in my favorite country in the world – that it warrants two entries on this list.
Ushguli is a tiny collection of villages high in the Caucasian mountains. You can only access it via a single dirt road from Mestia, or via a four day trek on foot, but it’s well worth the journey. Dozens of ancient watchtowers guard the entrance to this surreal area, which is hemmed in by jagged and imposing mountains.
It’s still possible to spend a night staying with a Svan family here for a small fee, where you’ll likely be treated to a delicious dinner and copious wine while a fire crackles in the background. I generally shy away from calling anything a “Must See,” but I’ll make an exception here: if you’re going all the way to Georgia, you should make the trip to Ushguli.
Tbilisi is definitely the top city to visit in Georgia.
Almost every tourist traveling to Georgia will make a visit to Tbilisi at some point, and the city, despite being so popular with the traveler crowd, won’t disappoint. Tblisi contains a charming old town situated on a dramatic cliff-side, which mamkes for some awesome views.
It offers first-class dining options at cut-rate prices (at least by European standards), vibrant nightlife, affordable accommodation, and easy access to day trips through large parts of the country. No wonder Tbilisi remains the most popular and best city to visit in Georgia for most travelers.
Perhaps the most recognizable icon of Georgia, the Gergeti Trinity Church stands guard over the Kazbegi region from its perch on a hillside just under Mount Kazbegi.
You can access Kazbegi as part of a day trip from Tbilisi, or you can opt to stay overnight in Stepantsminda town, allowing you get up early to beat the crowds and catch the morning sun glistening off Trinity Church. You’re sure to work up a hunger during the climb, so be sure to stop over in Stepantsmida on your way back for some delicious Georgian khachapuri to fill you up.
Georgians love their wine. Just about every family you’ll meet has some fermenting in their basement. But Georgia also has you covered with high-end vino. In fact, Georgia’s Kakheti region is quickly becoming famous for serving up some of best — and most affordable — wine in the world.
You can tour Kakheti’s many wineries as part of one of the many day trips on offer in Tbilisi’s Old Town, or you can opt to soak in the region’s gorgeous landscapes by spending a few nights exploring the many villages and towns in this large region. If you have time, a trip to the David Gareja monastery complex in the south is also one of the more popular places to visit in Georgia Europe.
Georgia is unusual in that it technically has two capital cities, with its legislature sitting the central city of Kutaisi. The town of Kutaisi is much smaller than Tbilisi, but is still charming and offers enough to do – monasteries, churches, and restaurants – to warrant a night or two. Kutaisi also may fit into your itinerary if you arrive or depart on one of the increasing number of budget airlines that flies here from mainland Europe.
This one is going to be a bit controversial as an inclusion on a list of places to visit in Georgia Europe. That’s because Lake Ritsa is located in Abkhazia – an area that is is a self-proclaimed independent nation whose borders are largely controlled by Russia. But Abkhazia is widely considered by the international community to be a part of Georgia.
A visit to Abkhazia isn’t for everyone and is potentially even dangerous. But, politics aside, intrepid travelers to the former Soviet retreat at Lake Ritsa (Stalin himself used to have a home here) will be rewarded with access to incredible nature juxtaposed against hauntingly abandoned buildings. Before going, check out my full guide to what to do in Abkhazia.
About 70 kilometers north of Tbilisi lies the unbelievable Ananuri castle complex – a can’t miss destination in Georgia for many tourists. The 17th-century structure has survived numerous attacks over the centuries, and stands in stunning contrast to the Aragvi River, which it overlooks.
You can visit several different churches within the small complex, or climb one of the watchtowers for a unique view of the surroundings. Ananuri can easily be explored as a day trip from Tbilisi, and is often combined with visits to Kazbegi, allowing you to check off several of the best places to visit in Georgia in a single day.
Then check out my Georgia Travel Itinerary and Country Guide for detailed information on when to visit Georgia, where to go, and possible itineraries for the amazing country of Georgia.
You also definitely don’t want to miss my list of 10 Things to do in Georgia Europe!
And if you are a frequent traveler, be sure to check out my list of 20+ AWESOME Resources for Every Traveler. It’s one page with all the travel sites I use to book my own travel!
And, as always, feel free to ask questions – or let me know your thoughts – in the comments! What do you think are the best places to visit in Georgia?
Oh, and if you are on Pinterest, be sure to pin these 9 Awesome Places to Visit in Georgia (Europe) for later:
Nate Hake has traveled to 65+ countries across six continents around the world and blogs about his travels at TravelLemming.com. He is from Denver, Colorado, recently concluded a six month stint living in Mexico, and is now currently traveling in Thailand.