Looking for the best places to visit in Georgia (the country in Europe)?
Well, you’ve come to the right place to find out what to see in Georgia, so get your bucket-list ready!
There are so many awesome things to 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 as my absolute favorite country in the world.
I’ve traveled Georgia extensively and I love Georgia so much that I’m currently basing myself in Tbilisi for the summer of 2019 while I work online as a digital nomad.
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 11 unique places to visit in Georgia Europe.
Oh, and if you are headed to the country of Georgia, be sure to check out my Georgia Itinerary and Travel Guide for more details on what to do in Georgia and sample itineraries for your trip.
Ok, let’s dive into the best places to see in Georgia:
11 Best Places to Visit in Georgia (Europe)
Last Update: August, 2019
1. Ushguli (Overall Top Place to Visit in Georgia)
Ushguli is a tiny collection of villages high in the Caucasian mountain region of Svaneti. I really think Svaneti, and especially 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 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 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 Ultimate Travel Guide to Svaneti Georgia to plan your trip – it covers everything you need to know to make the challenging journey to Svaneti.
2. Tbilisi (Best City to Visit in Georgia)
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.
[disclosure: using tour links on this page may provide a small commission to support my travels at no cost to you]
3. Batumi (Best “Beach” Destination in Georgia)
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 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.
4. Mestia (Best Base for Hiking in Georgia)
Mestia is the main town in the mountainous region of Svaneti. 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, 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.
5. Kazbegi (Most Beautiful Place to Visit in Georgia)
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.
6. Kakheti (Best Destination for Wine Lovers)
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.
Now 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.
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.
7. Kutaisi (Popular Transit Hub for Visiting Georgia)
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 Georgia itinerary if you arrive or depart on one of the increasing number of cheap international flights available from mainland Europe.
8. Lake Ritsa (Most Controversial Place to Travel)
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.
9. Ananuri (Most Instagrammable Place in Georgia)
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.
10. Uplistsikhe (Top Historical Place of Interest in Georgia)
Just an hour away from Tbilisi, and a few kilometers outside of Gori, you’ll find the incredible cave dwellings of Uplistisikhe.
One of the oldest settlements in Georgia, 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 you can visit as part of a day trip from Tbilisi, combining it with a stop in Gori to visit the fortress and the birthplace of Stalin.
11. Tusheti (Top Off-the-Beaten Path Attraction in Georgia)
If you thought Ushguli was hard to get to, just wait until you hear about Tusheti.
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.
Eager to Explore The Best Places to Visit in Georgia Europe?
Then check out my Georgia Travel Itinerary and 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 The Best Things to do in Georgia Europe!
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?
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