6-day Tour of Abkhazia from Georgia
Group: 2–10 persons
From seaside resorts and subtropical gardens, to mountain lakes and ancient forests, on this trip you will see all of Abkhazia’s most striking locales. In a short period of time, we’ll manage to visit the temples and fortresses of the Abkhaz kingdom, explore the palaces and parks of the aristocratic Russian Riviera, and see the monumental resorts of the Soviet period. We’ll also hike through many beautiful forests and alpine meadows.
As we move through our route, we’ll be traveling in a comfortable minibus, and at times via SUV and even by boat. Despite the busy program, we’ll have enough time to spend a few relaxing hours on the beach, and be able to enjoy several opportunities to go swimming in the sea and some thermal springs. Along the way, expect many delicious village feasts, as well as leisurely walks through seaside towns.
This trip will take 6 days, and your guide will meet you at the Georgia-Abkhazia border. We’ll spend two nights in the capital city of Sukhumi, two nights in the historic resort town of Gagra, and one night at a camping site in the mountains.
If you plan to travel back to Tbilisi after the tour, the best option is to take the night train which departs from Zugdidi at 12:30.
Day 1. Eastern Abkhazia (L)
In the morning, we’ll cross the border between Georgia and Abkhazia. Once we enter the region, we’ll enjoy a welcoming mug of cold beer or glass of wine at a border cafe—then we’ll be off on an amazing adventure!
We’ll spend this first day travelling across the eastern part of Abkhazia. A spacious lowland surrounded by mountains, its low hills are dotted with village houses, citrus tree gardens and hazelnut groves. We’ll visit the Assumption Cathedral in the village of Mokva, which is Abkhazia’s largest medieval temple, as well as the ghost town of Tkuarchal, and some thermal springs near the village of Kyndyg. We’ll stop for lunch at a traditional cafe with a courtyard kitchen that serves Abkhazian cuisine. By evening, we’ll get to the capital, Sukhumi, where we’ll enjoy a stroll on the embankment and have dinner at one of the restaurants on the pier. Overnight at Leon Hotel.
Day 2. Day at the Russian Riviera (B/L)
We’ll spend almost the entire day accompanied by a guide in New Athos, strolling around its streets and parks. We’ll climb up the hill to the fortress walls of Anakopia, the first capital of the Abkhaz kingdom, then visit the New Athos Cave to see its giant halls, dripstones, cave lakes and an underground waterfall. Afterwards we will go to the New Athos Monastery, the spiritual center of Orthodox Christian Abkhazia. The night will be spent in Hotel Abaata in Old Gagra, the first hotel of the first Black Sea resort which was established in the early 20th century.
Day 3. Exploring the Bzyb Region of Abkhazia (L/D)
The day will begin with a walk around Old Gagra, where we can explore the old resort mansions. Next we’ll follow the River Bzyb upstream, driving off-road vehicles through a picturesque canyon that will take us to the legendary Ritsa Lake. From here we’ll go by foot, climbing up to another amazingly beautiful place, the Smaller Ritsa Lake. There we’ll have an outdoor lunch with wine and cheese, then visit Stalin’s dacha (summer home) and sail across the lake in a vintage boat. By nightfall we’ll be even higher up, in the Auadkhara alpine shelter, where we’ll spend the night.
Day 4. Trip to Lake Mzi (B/L/D)
On this day we’ll take a long walk across alpine meadows to visit Mzi Lake, located next to the Russian border. The picturesque walk will take half a day, but we’ll be back in Auadkhara for lunch. By evening, we’ll descend from the mountains, back to Gagra. Overnight at Hotel Abaata in Old Gagra.
Day 5. Pitsunda and Lykhny (L)
In the morning we’ll visit Pitsunda, formerly known as the finest resort of the Soviet Union, where we’ll enjoy some fresh air in a relict pine grove and drink a cup of coffee with ice cream on the rooftop of the Soviet sanatorium. In Pitsunda we will also visit a 10th century church which houses a giant pipe organ. Afterwards we’ll keep going east. We’ll stop for lunch at the village of Lykhny, and visit a few of our friends who live there. In Lykhny we’ll see Lykhnashta, a large square with a 13th century church, one of the seven shrines of the Abkhaz people. By sundown we’ll be back in Sukhumi, where we’ll spend the last night. Overnight at Leon Hotel.
Day 6. Jeep Safari to Tsebelda Valley (B/L)
On this day, we’ll take the SUVs to visit the least populated part of Abkhazia, Tsebelda (or Tsabal) Valley. This is an excellent location for short and easy hikes: to the Shakuran waterfall, through a grove of relict boxwood trees in the valley of the Kholodnaya River, or towards Amtkyal Lake and the mysterious Azant’a dolmen. After a day spent in the mountains, we’ll drive back to the border by 6 PM, leaving just enough time for crossing back to Georgia. Afterwards, you’ll have enough time to rest and dine in Mingrelia, before taking the night train to Tbilisi.
Map of the Tour
Price for the Tour (per person):
- with a group of 2 participants – $1950
- with a group of 3 participants – $1500
- with a group of 4 participants – $1250
- with a group of 5 participants – $1150
- with a group of 6 participants – $1050
- with a group of 7 participants – $1000
- Full services of a Caucasus Explorer Tour Leader with local guides and drivers
- All transportation (minivan, SUV)
- Meals and tastings as specified (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
- Accommodation throughout (Twin)
- All entrance fees, sightseeing, excursions and activities as per the itinerary
- Abkhazian Visa(s)
- Meals / services other than specified
- Medical insurance
Booking and Payment
- Single person supplement – $150
- For booking or any questions please contact us[email protected]
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