I’m so happy to hear you are looking for the best places to visit in Georgia (the country in Europe).
With over 65 countries across the world under my belt, Georgia remains at the top of my list as my absolute favorite country in the world. I’ve traveled extensively in Georgia, even living there in 2019.
You’ll find so many awesome things to do in Georgia. 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 are so many destinations in Georgia choose from, so this list will help you narrow it down to the 11 top places to visit in Georgia Europe:
11 Best Places to See in Georgia (Europe)
Before you dive into the list of places to visit, be sure to watch this video to see my 10 favorite things to do in Georgia:
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Ushguli is a tiny collection of villages high in the Caucasian mountain region of Svaneti. After nearly five years of non-stop world travel, I feel confident in saying that Ushguli is one of the most incredible places to visit not just in Georgia but in all of Europe.
Dozens of ancient watchtowers guard the entrance to this surreal UNESCO World Heritage Site, 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 can, Ushguli is a must see in Georgia 🙂
Note you can only access Ushguli via 4×4 on a single dirt road from Mestia, or via a four day trek on foot, but I promise it’s well worth the journey.
*Pro Tip* Be sure to bookmark my mega travel guide to Svaneti Georgia to plan your trip – it covers everything you need to know to make the challenging journey to Svaneti.
🛏️ Where To Stay in Ushguli
Tbilisi is definitely the top city to visit in Georgia, and probably the first stop on your Georgia itinerary.
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 makes for some awesome views.
Tbilisi offers first-class dining options at affordable price, vibrant nightlife, abundant quality accommodation, and tons of great historical sites. There is even a cable car that will whisk you over the Kura River for stunning views of Old Tbilisi on your way to the medieval Narikala Fortress.
Tbilisi’s strategic location also makes it the perfect base for taking day trips to explore the nearby mountain, desert, and wine regions of Georgia. In fact, many tourists to Georgia opt to book a hotel in Tbilisi for their whole stay and take a different day trip or tour each day.
Pro Tip: Here is a good site to compare day trips and tours from Tbilisi.
🛏️ Where To Stay in Tbilisi
- Top Choice: Grand Hotel Mimino
- Best Mid-range Hotel: Metekhi’s Galavani Hotel
- Best BudgetOption: Fabrika Tbilisi
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 offers incredible modern architecture – Donald Trump once even had plans to build a skyscraper here before he was elected President. It also has an enormous and gorgeous botanical garden, and a bunch of black pebble beaches (note for Western travelers: you can’t really compare these to sand beaches).
In summer, Russian, Georgian, and international visitors descend on the city, with its beaches crowded by day and its nightclubs throbbing through the night.
🛏️ Where To Stay in Batumi
- Top Choice: Wyndham Batumi
- Best Mid-range Hotel: Daisi Sunset Hotel
- Best Budget Option: Eleganti Hotel
Mestia is the main town in the region of Svaneti of the Caucasus mountains. Though not as hard as going all the way to Ushguli, it still isn’t easy to get to (unless you can snag one of the few flights from Tbilisi to Mestia).
That said, it’s well worth a visit to this stunning but isolated mountain region – especially if you’re a hiker or trekker (just make sure you have Georgia travel insurance cover if you’re going up in the mountains though!).
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, the small town of Mestia is quickly taking off as one of the top tourist destinations in the country of Georgia – and especially is popular as a base for trekkers seeking to explore the stunning natural beauty of the Caucasus mountains.
🛏️ Where To Stay in Mestia
- Top Choice: Hotel Posta
- Best Mid-range Hotel: Guesthouse Mountain View
- Best BudgetOption: Manoni’s Guesthouse
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.
READ NEXT: Georgia to Armenia (3 Day Itinerary)
You can access Kazbegi as part of a day trip from Tbilisi (here is the best tour to book if doing that). Alternatively, you can opt to drive the route from Tbilisi along the Military Highway yourself and 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.
🛏️ Where To Stay in Kazbegi
- Top Choice: Hotel Sno Kazbegi
- Best Mid-range Hotel: Rooms Hotel Kazbegi
- Best BudgetOption: Hotel Elegant
Did you know that wine was invented in Georgia?
And even today Georgians really love their wine. Just about every family you’ll meet has some fermenting in their basement. No wonder that Georgia’s Kakheti region is quickly becoming famous for serving up some of best — and most affordable — wine in the world. Not to mention, it’s one of the most beautiful places to visit in Georgia in its own right.
The most popular way to tour Kakheti’s many wineries is as part of an organized day trip from Tbilisi. I suggest this full-day group wine tour, which has over 100 great reviews and is super affordable to boot.
If you have more time, you can 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’re not a wine lover, you can still visit the 6th century David Gareja monastery complex, one of the more popular places to visit in Georgia Europe.
🛏️ Where To Stay in Kakheti
- Top Choice: Lopota Lake Resort & Spa
- Best Mid-range Hotel: Hotel Hapo
- Best BudgetOption: Guest House Kavkasioni 33
Even though it is technically one of the largest cities in Georgia, Kutaisi feels incredibly small compared to Tbilisi. Still, Kutaisi is charming and offers enough to do – monasteries, churches, and restaurants – to warrant a visit for a night or two. Plus, Kutaisi is a great base for day trips to nearby wonders like Martvili Canyon.
Kutaisi also may fit into your Georgia itinerary if you arrive or depart on one of the increasing number of flights available from mainland Europe.
🛏️ Where To Stay in Kutaisi
8. Lake Ritsa
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.
🛏️ Where To Stay in Lake Ritsa
- Top Choice: Travel Hotel
- Best Mid-range Hotel: Botique Hotel Amra
- Best Budget Option: Kaffa Guesthouse
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 in Georgia in a single day.
🛏️ Where To Stay in Ananuri
- Top Choice: Marine’s Guest House
- Best Mid-range Hotel: Guest House Dusheti
- Best Budget Option: Garden Hotel Pasanauri
10. Uplistsikhe Ancient Cave City
Just an hour away from Tbilisi, and a few kilometers outside of Gori, you’ll find another important Georgia point of interest: the incredible cave dwellings of Uplistisikhe (sometimes spelled “Uflistsikhe”).
One of the oldest settlements in Georgia, the “cave city” of Uplistiskhe was the capital of the ancient kingdom of Kartli, and fascinating for the fact that it was later a place where Christians and pagans co-lived together.
If you’re traveling to the western part of Georgia, Uplistiskhe makes a great attraction to break up the drive. Or make a Georgia history day trip from Tbilisi by combining Uplistisikhe with a stop in Gori to visit the fortress and the birthplace of Joseph Stalin.
This highly-rated tour is a great option if you want to knock out Uplistsikhe plus a lot of other important historical sites in one day. The tour also stops in Gori, the Stalin Museum, the old town in Mtskheta, and the Jvari monastery. Whew, that’s an action-packed day!
🛏️ Where To Stay Near Uplistsikhe
If you thought Ushguli was hard to get to, just wait until you hear about Tusheti National Park.
This super remote mountainous region is actually closed off for most of the year, impassable by snow and occupied by only a handful of border guards. But in the summer, Georgian herders bring their sheep in and inhabit Tusheti for the summer.
It’s quickly becoming one of the most talked-about destinations in Georgia and is high on my own travel list as one of the few Georgian tourist destinations I’ve yet to visit.
🛏️ Where To Stay in Tusheti
- Top Choice: Guesthouse Lasharai
- Best Mid-range Hotel: Guest House Shina
- Best Budget Option: Hotel Tsasne
That’s it for this list of where to go in Georgia. With so many points of interest, destinations, and unique places to visit, you’ve got some big decisions ahead.
Want some help planning your trip to Georgia? Check out all our Georgia travel guides:
Lastly, if you’re the budget travel type be sure to check out our mega-guide to Backpacking Europe.
And, as always, feel free to ask questions – or let me know your thoughts – in the comments!
Oh, and if you are on Pinterest, be sure to pin this for later.