Tbilisi has a long and complicated history. So far it has been destroyed and rebuilt 29 times – making it an obvious destination for history and architecture enthusiasts. However there is so much more to this increasingly popular city and we asked international travellers why they love the Georgian capital. *
Old Town and History
A view of the River Kura and Tbilisi Old Town
Tbilisi is based on the banks of the River Kura and situated at the crossroads between Europe and Asia. Which has made the city a popular destination among Euroasian travellers ever since its founding. In parts of the Old Town it’s still possible to see traces of the Roman soldiers and Ottoman merchants who once walked the streets.
Not only has the Tbilisi Old Town survived centuries of destruction and reconstruction with most of its history intact. Walking the narrow cobbled streets crowded with traditional brick buildings and overlooked by wooden balconies is like stepping back in time. Soak up the atmosphere by staying in the centre of the Old Town at Guest House Lusi.
Wine connoisseurs flock to Tbilisi
The Georgian winemaking method was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2013 and as Tbilisi is well worth a visit for wine connoisseurs. Can’t survive on grapes alone? The city’s varied history has led to a heady mixture of cuisines and restaurants.
Georgian cuisine is well-represented, try the Khinkhali, piping-hot gravy filled dumplings to start. Then taste the city’s Asian and European connections including Uzbek, Thai, French, Greek and Spanish menus. Stay a short walk from some of the city’s best coffee cafes at the MGK Hotel.
Kartlis Deda, known as 'The Mother of Georgia'
Tbilisi’s Old Town is not the only area to see the city’s history. Throughout Tbilisi a mix of Neoclassical, Soviet, Art Nouveau and Minimalist architectural styles jostle for room.
Perhaps most striking is the 20-metre tall aluminum Kartlis Deda monument. It depicts a woman dressed in traditional Georgian clothing, clutching a sword overlooking the city centre. Stay at the Atsehgah Residence for a room with a view of this dramatic sculpture.
Wander through the National Botanical Garden of Georgia
Tbilisi sits deep in a valley next to the fast-flowing Kura River and, naturally, there are lots of vantage points to take in the views. Yet one incredible green space is impossible to see from any of these spots.
The National Botanical Garden of Georgia is concealed by the Sololaki Range. Those persistent enough to seek the garden entrance will find cascading waterfalls, brilliant flora, and curving tree-lined walkways. Stay nearby at the Old Tbilisi Narikala Apartment.
** The data scientists at Booking.com looked at the activities most endorsed in Tbilisi by international travellers. This is part of a series looking at The top 10 trending destinations for 2018.