Rating: 7,5/10 (311 votes)
Almost all excursions in Kutaisi begin on the right bank of the Rioni, namely – in the oldest quarters of the city. Ukemerion Hill is considered one of such places, the place from where the history of Kutaisi begins.
The central attraction of the hill is the Bagrat Temple, built back in 1003- m year. A unique monument of medieval Georgian architecture is a large-scale structure in the best traditions of the architecture of the Caucasus. The shrine had a difficult fate, several times it was destroyed almost to the ground, but in 2011 the temple was completely restored. It is now under the protection of UNESCO.
To the southwest of the hill there is a local Recreation Park with attractions and a cable car. In addition to entertainment areas and restaurants, the park has several viewing platforms from which a picturesque view of the city opens.
On the right bank of Kutaisi, excursions should start from David the Builder Square. In Soviet times, it was decorated with statues of Lenin and Stalin, but now you can see here a bronze monument to King David sitting on a horse.
The central streets of the city run from the square, including Tsereteli street. It houses one of the largest Georgian museums – Kutaisi Historical Museum. In its collection there are more than 200 thousand exhibits, covering almost 2 thousand years of history of the land on which the city of Kutaisi once arose.
On Rustaveli Avenue there is a seemingly small but extremely important building for Kutaisi – Okros Chardakhi, or the royal house. Once there was a residence of Georgian rulers, and now – one of the city's museums.
On the way to the central streets of the Right Bank, you can go to the Jewish quarter Kutaisi. For Georgian cities now such places are – rarity, but for the sake of atmospheric walks, it's still worth a look. Of interest is the fact that most of the local buildings were built no later than the 19th century.
The majestic building of the Annunciation Cathedral in Kutaisi has changed its purpose several times over the years. The first building of the 15th century was demolished in 1823 for the construction of a Catholic church, in the Soviet years the temple was closed, and only in 1989 it was returned to the Orthodox Church again. At the same time, the interior partially retained the Vatican style, as well as the decoration of the cathedral.
The Church of St. George has a similar fate, which is called the Lower Temple here. It was built by the Armenians in the 18th century, but later, for unknown reasons, the shrine was transferred to the Georgian church. Now it is one of the most interesting temples in Kutaisi, with a rich interior and exterior decoration.
Of the modern structures within the city, it is worth mentioning the Kutaisi dam. Many people mistakenly consider it a part of the hydroelectric power station, but this is not the case - it was built to protect the city from spring and autumn floods. Access to the dam is open to everyone, but you should not forget about the basic safety rules – it is very easy to get injured at such facilities.
In the vicinity of Kutaisi, in the Tkibuli municipality, there is an ancient Gelati monastery located in the village of the same name. According to the chronicles, it was founded in the 12th century by David the Builder himself. A reconstructed version of the shrine has survived to this day, which was literally rebuilt from ruins in the 15th century. remaining after the invasion of the Tatar-Mongols. The monastery is now included in the UNESCO list.
Another interesting village in the region is Motsameta. The monastery of the same name located here dates back to the VIII century, but the first buildings of the shrine were destroyed by the Arabs. What can be seen now – this is a 15th century version of a monastery, restored in 2010.
Chitauri Municipality is known for its manganese mines become objects so-called industrial tourism. In some mines, tourists are allowed to go down directly in trolleys. Another object of the area, which is consistently of interest to guests – this is Katskhi Cathedral – a temple built in the 11th century and retaining its unique facade carvings and stucco moldings.
If you want to drive a little further from Kutaisi, then you can go to the area Kharagauli, where within a radius of 10 kilometers you can find several hundred monuments of architecture from different eras. There is very little information on some, the most famous being the Chkheri Fortress.
Of the natural parks on the outskirts of Kutaisi, it is worth appreciating the Sataplia Reserve. This is a unique relic area that has preserved samples of flora from prehistoric times.
We also recommend reading Geography and climate in Kutaisi
Topic: Attractions of Kutaisi.