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New qvevri school to open in Georgia

Posted on November 16, 2016. Filed under: News, Wine Tourism | Tags: , , , |

A school and cultural center dedicated to preserving the ancient craft of producing qvevri has been built in Georgia’s main wine region, Kakheti.

New qvevri school to open in Georgia

The Qvevri School and Academy, located in the town of Ikalto, 110 km east of the Georgian capital, Tbilisi, is set to open in mid-2017.

Qvevri are the clay, amphora-like vessels used for the fermentation and ageing of Georgian wine.

In addition to classes and workshops by local artisans, the school and academy will comprise of departments for research and tourism for Georgian wine regions.

‘The school will have a scientific research centre for studying how clay from different periods [of history] were used in making different kinds of vessels,’ says Bishop Davit Makharadze of the wine-producing Alaverdi Monastery in Kakheti, and who helped develop the concept for the school.

‘Also, we are also considering to conduct classes in foreign languages as there is a growing interest from foreigners in our heritage.’

The project has been financed by the World Bank Group, costing over $1 million, and is being implemented by the Municipal Development Fund of Georgia under the country’s Ministry of Regional Development and Infrastructure.

Qvevri winemaking

Georgia’s traditional qvevri winemaking method involves pouring crushed grapes with their juice, stalks and pips into the hand-made clay vessels, which are then sealed and buried in the earth for fermentation and ageing to take place.

qvevri school

It dates back several thousands of years in Georgia, which is often called the ‘cradle of wine’ because of its 8000-year wine history.

As there is little, if any, chemical or technological intervention, this method has gained a strong following by natural wine producers throughout the world, including the United States, France, Italy, Croatia and Austria.

‘I like the style of wine from a qvevri, because it is so ‘close to the earth’,’ says Manuel Ploder of Weingut Ploder-Rosenberg in Steiermark, Austria.

‘Everything takes its time. There is such a nice expression of the phenols. The flow of energy is so good. In fact, I am looking to buy more Georgian qvevri.’

Only a handful of qvevri artisans still practice the craft in Georgia, mainly the Kakheti and Imereti regions. Production of Georgian qvevri has been listed by UNESCO as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

Read more at http://www.decanter.com/wine-news/new-qvevri-school-open-georgia-344486/#9W9TedZvv0OP9l2p.99

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Cheese Fest 2016 Tbilisi, Georgia

Posted on November 8, 2016. Filed under: Georgian Cousine, News |

By Tika Bujiashvili

On November 6 Tbilisi hosted annual Georgian Cheese Festival at Rose Square. More than 45 companies introduced locally produced different kinds of cheese, accompanied with Georgian wine and honey. As Ana Mikadze, a Head of Cheese Producer’s Association of Georgia, said Cheese House had introduced 101 kinds of cheese.  Cheese Cake was cut by The Minister of Agriculture of Georgia. The first piece of the cheese cake was given to a man, who had eight children.

The main goal of the Festival was to focus on showcasing products from young farmers who are motivated and seek to reproduce Georgian cheese recipes that were either long forgotten or lost. Participants of the Festival were from all parts of Georgia.

The Ansamble Balada helped the fest to be more entertaining by singing Georgian songs. The festival was well organized and it really became as a public fest. In the end of the Fest, the members of Balada sang some Georgian songs with people.

The cheese festival was organized by the Ministry of Agriculture of Georgia.

This video is not good quality, but it’s worth watching as it shows emotions of the Fest-really Tbilisian emotions.

See photos here:

 https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/0B9nSbTt5bVNRV3FjOThRX19MOUE?usp=sharing

.

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Once there was a female farmer who made cheese in Georgia…

Posted on October 21, 2016. Filed under: News |

During the 43rd Committee on World Food Security (CFS43), participants discussed farmers, ago-entrepreneurs, and family businesses. There was much talk about women farmers and their importance in rural development. But the question is: where arethe women farmers? During the sessions, I was looking forward to finding the young people and women farmers. And I then I found her.

Ana Mikadze-Chikvaidze is a chairwoman of the Georgian Cheese Makers’ Association. She is here at CFS43 to gather experience from other people and take it back to Georgia. She is looking for organizations which are working to discover traditional, unique sorts of products and promote them.  For these reasons she was attending the Side Event about “Improving agribusiness and access to markets of small scale farmers”. But she discovered that every case is different, and what works in Western Cape will not work in Georgia.

Mrs. Mikadze-Chikvaidze is a woman farmer from Georgia and well-known among cheese lovers. She travels from village to village to discover and promote unique types of cheese and collect information from cheese masters.

Her creation – the Cheese Fest – serves the same purpose, which is to promote and introduce cheese to people. Three years ago, she opened a Cheese House in Tbilisi, where customers are offered about 53 types of products. This was the place where you could try and buy your favorite cheese.

Several months ago she closed it. She tells me that she wants to take time out for a year to get involved fully in farming and agriculture.

“Cheese is a very sensitive, delicate product. Hands, eyes, heart and soul – they all are the creators of cheese. A person of bad energy cannot make a good cheese. Cheese is a living creature, like a child: it is born, growing and developing.”

Fortunately, traditions are still maintained, even though there has been a period of stagnation, when the diversity of the Georgian cheese vanished from the sight of the Georgian customers. “This was in the era of the Soviet Union, during which time there was a war on individualism and that included food products as well,” Ms. Mikadze-Chikvaidze explained.

Cheese Fest

The idea of creating the Cheese Fest came later. Some people thought she was crazy; some joked about it and others were skeptical. But she remained determined, and traveled around the regions in search of the cheese makers.

When she realized that the “materials” she collected were sufficient for the Cheese Fest. she began to prepare for the first fest by visiting several regions and meeting the cheese producers.

However, on the day of the fest, not a single person showed up in “Bebris Bagi”. She found herself distressed, sitting in a garden. All of a sudden, several buses started to gather at the entrance to the garden. It appeared that a lot of people had brought a wide range of interesting samples.

It was magical to see such a variety of cheese spread around the garden. There was a cheese aged in wine, Meskhetian Tenili; cheese threads in a clay pot; goat cheese stuffed in vine leaves, Megrelian Guda; Crusted cheese of Tsalka Chogi, Kalti both, raw and dry. In sum, the festival was a success and she realized it wouldn’t be right to stop there.

She has suppliers who have their own farms. She knows all their details, starting from the names of the cows to their nutrition and health condition.

Teletian Stories

Recently, she began looking for investors for another interesting initiative:  a cheese factory-museum in Teleti. This will showcase both European and Georgian production. She will make cheese following old traditions.

“I plan to bring back all the forgotten cheese varieties. And I need to buy milk in the corresponding regions. I’m building a large cellar, where I will age cheeses as described in historical sources and observe the development of each type in certain conditions.” This will be a small enterprise by European standards with only 100 cows in total.

So, here she was, a female farmer and agro-entrepreneurs, from my own country, at CFS!

Blogpost by Melano Dadalauri, Nana Kobaidze, #CFS43 Social Reporters – melano.dadalauri@yahoo.com

Photo: Georgian cheese, courtesy Lana Iantberidze

This post is part of the live coverage during the 43rd Session of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS). This post is written by one of our social reporters, and represents the author’s views only.

20/10/2016 20:45
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Georgia – The Most Beautiful Country In The World

Posted on October 1, 2016. Filed under: News |

The other day I was reading an article in which the head of the World Tourism Organization Claimed – Georgia is the most beautiful country in the world.

Well, I can ONLY agree with the words from the head of WTO, Mr. Taleb Rifai, and to ad my 50 cents  I have listed 32 places you should visit to make the most from your trip to Georgia. For more cool tourism sights, restaurants or travel options in Georgia – check out  All about Georgia travel app based on my personal experience as an expatriate in Georgia.

Georgian nature, culture and people make this country the most beautiful in the world,

said UN Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai, the World Tourism Organization. Source: Глава Всемирной туристской организации: Грузия – самая красивая страна в мире

Don’t miss out following cool tourism objects in Georgia

Click on markers to see more info

Ask anybody in Georgia – what are the must have tourist sites to visit while in Tbilisi. Narikala fortress will be a top of the list….

Svetitskhoveli Cathedral is an another must have tourist attraction site not to miss when traveling to Georgia. Located in historical a…

Vardzia cave town is definitely a must have tourist attraction when traveling to Republic of Georgia, located in region of Samtkshe – Javakh…

David Gareja Monastery complex probably is among top tourist attractions in Republic of Georgia you should visit. Located in the desert, bor…

Udabno is a small village located in distance some 50 km from Tbilisi. The chances you will visit this place is huge if you are visiting one…

Wine Tunnel owned by a winery Khareba is located close to the town of Kvareli, in region of Kakheti, republic of Georgia. It features not on…

One of my first memories from Georgia are very related with Expo Georgia Exhibition center, back in April 2011 when I first arrived to Georg…

I don’t call myself an art or museum person, thus time by time I visit some exhibition, and that’s exactly happened again at start of Decemb…

Motsameta monastery is one of the most spectacular sites I have visited while being living in Georgia. To get here yo will need either to ow…

Gelati monastery together with Bagrati Cathderal are one of the main sights in this region (Imereti) in Georgia. Although I have been living…

Prometheus cave is one of the interesting places I have visited lately in Georgia. In fact that’s the second cave I have visited here. The f…

That day finally come and I have finally photographed the legendary Georgian Parliament building in Kutaisi. After picking up my mom at…

Borjomi mineral park which is located in town on Borjomi, some 120 km from nations capital Tbilisi, is a lovely place to enjoy a lazy d…

Georgia will never end surprise you (at least me), so did happened during our recent hiking/trekking tour in lovely parts of Borjo…

Rike park is just recently opened for public a landscaped territory close to Tbilisi Old Town. I first visited this park at the end of Septe…

Château Mukhrani is a winery located in Mukhrani village, Mtskheta-Mtianeti region (somewhere between Mtskheta town and Natakhtari vill…

Anchiskhati Basilica is one of the oldest (if not the eldest) Georgian Orthodox church’s located in Old Town of Tbilisi. The history of this…

The Bridge of Peace in Tbilisi is a pedestrian bridge and one of the most famous tourist spots in the city. It connects district of Tbilisi…

Jvari monastery is a popular tourist destination in Georgia, and I believe there are two reasons of that – first it’s located close to the n…

The other day during a hiking tour at Birtvisi Canyon we discovered anther interesting object – Algeti reservoir. I couldn’t resist to make…

The other day in company of three we headed to Birtvisi Canyon for some hiking experience. It all started reading some info of a non-standa…

Holy Trinity Cathedral of Tbilisi, commonly known as Sameba (Trinity in Georgian) probably is among the most known Tbilisi to…

Gudauri is a popular winter resort located in Republic of Georgia, Caucasus some 120 km from Tbilisi. Though I first visited Gudauri back in…

Abanotubani is one of the most attractive neighborhoods in Tbilisi. It’s famous of its public sulfur baths, and very spectacular views. I b…

Georgia will never end to surprise you (at least – me). Few years ago a major tourist attraction were renovated and opened to public, some…

This was a great Saturday – our friend took us on a Kakheti drive  – we went to Telavi (they have a great market there), Tsinandali (he…

Some time ago we find some offer on Facebook offering rafting tour in Georgia for 2 days – on Mtkvari river. Tour included raft, safety west…

Sataplia cave together with Prometheus cave are one of the main tourist sights around Kutaisi town, in Republic of Georgia. I first visited…

Bagrati Cathedral probably is among the most iconic site to visit in Georgia, and it should be a must have on your travel list if…

I first met Giorgi from Georgian fishing tours back at the end of 2013, when we did a fishing tour at Jandari lake organized by his company….

Am I missing some place? Share in comments. 
– Read more:https://www.reinisfischer.com/georgia-most-beautiful-country-world

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Georgian Wine Week 2016

Posted on September 22, 2016. Filed under: News, Wine Tourism |

By Tika Bujiashvili

Georgian Wine Week 2016 was launched on September 22. At 12.00 Qvevri School-Academy was opened in Ikhalto, Akhmeta. A photo exhibition and award ceremony for the monastery wine took place here too. Simultaneously, in Telavi at king Erekle square public festival was held where Georgian Wines and different agricultural companies were presented. Visitors could taste wine, cheese, dried fruit and churchkhela.

Autumn decorations were done by Gardenia Shevardnadze.

The festival was supported by Georgia’s Ministry of Agriculture and National Wine Agency.

The organizer of the opening events was Georgian Wine Association.

 

Dear reader. Because of photo uploading limit on WordPress, you can see more photos here:

https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/0B9nSbTt5bVNRaEx4dklLVnRHdU0

 

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7 great treks in Georgia for every type of hiker

Posted on August 31, 2016. Filed under: News |

The Country of Georgia lies between the Black and Caspian sea, at the border between Europe and Asia. Known also as “Gem of the Caucasus”, it occupies the southern reaches of this 1100 km long mountains range. Even though the country is quite small, it is a trekkers paradise – and it doesn’t matter whether you prefer to explore its remote, medieval villages or undertake long treks in the wilderness.
Development of tourism in Georgia was for a long time hampered by wars and a lot of instability overall, but thankfully those times are finally over and the country is quickly opening up to the world.
Yet, there is still very little information about its treks and walks online. And even more surprisingly, nobody has put them on the list as of yet. So let me grab this opportunity and introduce to you 7 multi-day hikes which, in my humble opinion, are amongst the best ones this country has to offer.

1. From Mestia to Ushguli

Trek connects Mestia, center of Svaneti region with the remote mountain village of Ushguli. This is the most popular trek in Georgia and for a very good reason – it offers great natural and historical sights, is accessible and not that long. Another advantage is the possibility to sleep every night in old, rustic villages, so unlike other multi-day hikes, for this one, you don´t need a tent.
If 4 days is not enough for you, you can easily extend this hike into an adventure almost 2 weeks long and explore less touristy parts of Svaneti.

Recommended for: Hikers who are looking for best possible scenery, contact with locals, comfort and don’t mind meeting other tourists.
Distance: 58 km
Duration: 4 days
Tip: For even better views, on the first day take an alternative higher route crossing Zuruldi massif with the sleepover in Tsvirmi (instead of sleeping in Zhabeshi village).

Trail above Mestia

Trail above Mestia

By Pablo Naumkin (for more photos, click on any image)

 

2. From Shatili to Omalo

This trek connects villages of Omalo and Shatili, historical centers of mountain regions Tusheti and Khevsureti. It’s intriguing not only by natural sights but also by several middle age villages, dominated by stone towers such as Omalo, Shatili, Dartlo and others.
First two days are spent in inhabited valley, then comes the section in the wilderness where you will meet only occasional shepherds, trekkers or border guards. The highlight of the trek is a crossing of the 3413m high Atsunta pass.

Recommended for: Those who want to experience the culture of mountain people, as well as camping in the wilds.
Distance: 70km
Duration: 5 days
Tip: You may be tempted to break camp on the ridge behind Atsunta pass as the views are incredible, but rather find some lower, better-protected place. Storms in Caucasus can be severe.

Omalo

Upper Omalo

By Nela Wurmová

 

3. Hike through Chaukhi pass

The popular trail connecting Juta village in Kazbegi region with the Khevsureti region . Very interesting due to a proximity of the imposing Chaukhi massif with its seven sharp peaks and a necessity to scale 3338 meters high Chaukhi pass. At the other side of the pass, you will find Abudelauri lakes – three beautiful alpine lakes with different colors (green, blue and white).
If you have more time, you can turn north and visit communities of Arkhoti. Especially upper part of this remote valley is worth a visit – you can expect to find there nice gorges, waterfalls, and complete solitude. The next day you can cross Arkhoti pass and return back to Juta.

Recommended for: People who visited Kazbegi, saw the most iconic sight of Georgia and are looking for another great sceneries in its proximity.
Distance: 21 km (one-way) or 52 km (with return through Arkhoti)
Duration: 2 days (one-way) or 4 days (with return through Arkhoti)

Chaukhi massif

Chaukhi massif

By Jesper Ansbaek

 

4. Trek from Svaneti to Racha

This beautiful, but very demanding trek takes you to some of the most remote parts of Caucasus. It follows the old road, which once connected Zeskho village in Svaneti with Ghebi in Racha, but fell into disrepair a long time ago. Nowadays almost nothing remains of it, as it has been destroyed by landslides and is now almost totally overgrown.
The route is very difficult, it crosses two steep mountain passes and a completely overgrown valley of Tskhenistskali river. Not for everybody!

Recommended for: Adventurers who primarily don’t seek cultural or natural sights, but go after a sense of achievement, want to overcome obstacles and don’t mind wading through fields of 2-meter tall stinging nettles.
Distance: 39 km
Duration: 3 or 4 days

From Svaneti to Racha

View from Rioni valley in Racha

By Michal Sochor

 

5. Trekking in Lagodekhi park

Caucasus is a home to numerous animal species, yes sometimes its valleys feel a bit empty, devoid of life. It is caused by an age-old hunting instinct of local people (or, to put it more bluntly, poaching).
If the wildlife is what you are looking for, you should head for Lagodekhi park, the oldest natural reserve in Georgia. This Park offers several hiking trails, the most interesting of which being the trek to Black Rock lake. You will cross ancient, preserved forest and be able to observe local fauna such as chamois, deer and mountain goats. When you climb above the treeline, some beautiful views of the mountains will open up. Trek ends near Black rocks lake, lying at the elevation of 2800 meters.

Recommended for: Hikers looking not only for natural sights but also for wildlife.
Distance: 40 km (there and back)
Duration: 3 days

Black Rock lake, Lagodekhi

Black Rock lake in Lagodekhi NP

By I. Kurtauli

 

6. Trekking on Keli plateau

This trek, starting in picturesque Truso valley, explores the Keli volcanic plateau which is a barren, rocky piece of land lying west of Georgian Military Highway. Only very few people ever come hiking here as this area is in the close proximity of the territory of South Ossetia and a permit from Georgian Ministry of Internal Affairs is needed. The highlight of the trip is a visit to the glacial Kelitsadi lake.
If you want to spend more time in the area, you can explore also the Suatisi and Mna gorges north of Truso valley – they offer interesting rock formations, waterfalls and new unusual views of the Kazbegi massif.

Recommended for: Trekkers familiar with more touristy areas of Georgia, looking for something new and impressive.
Distance: 37 km
Duration: 3 days

Kelitsadi lake on Keli volcanic plateau

Kelitsadi lake

By Green Zebra hiking club

 

7. Trek to Tobavarchkhili lake

Tobavarchkhili (Silver) lake lies at the heart of Egrisi mountains, which separates the Svaneti region from lowlands. To reach it, you have to walk for 3 days, then you can continue north to Svaneti.
There are no cultural sights such as villages or towers on the way, but it’s more than compensated by a very diverse environment – glacial lakes, rocky gorges, waterfalls, shepherds huts and much more.
What’s even better, you will meet only a few hikers, mostly Georgians. Foreign tourists with limited time and even more limited ability to remember crazy Georgian words such as “Tobavarchkhili” usually focus on better-known areas and keep this gem of Caucasus mostly unspoiled.

Recommended for: Nature lovers, who want to avoid crowds.
Distance: 70km
Duration: 5 days
Tip: Have 1 or 2 days in reserve as the area is quite rainy. If all goes well, you can spend them camping by the lake and doing day trips – good idea is to visit shepherds in Magana gorge and taste their traditional elarji meal. Or you can always try to climb various mountains surrounding the lake for even better views.

Mountains above Tobavarchkhili lake

Mountains above Tobavarchkhili lake

By Max Richter
Thank you for reading all the way down here. If you think I overlooked some trek which deserves to be in the list or made some other mistake, pls write me via contact button below my photo. (I know, I know, soon I will add an option to comment articles directly). And if you enjoyed this list and are into trekking, you can name your firstborn share it or like my Fb page. Thanks again! Jozef. 🙂

Source: http://www.caucasus-trekking.com/best-7-treks

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Georgia To Become The World’s Premier Tourist Destination By 2025

Posted on August 23, 2016. Filed under: News |

Two weeks ago the Prime Minister of Georgia, Giorgi Kvirikashvili, mentioned with pride the growing number of tourists (3 400 000 people) in the country throughout the last 7 months, which is 11% higher than last year’s index.

“It is a welcoming fact that the number of tourists from neighboring countries as well as the EU member states is increasing,” said Kvirikashvili hoping that this trend will continue. The PM also noted that the country should work hard to prepare local infrastructure for the inflow next year.

The Georgian National Tourism Administration (GNTA) claimed in an interview with the OBSERVER that Georgia will become a premier, year-round, high quality tourist destination by 2025.

“Our main target markets are neighboring countries: Azerbaijan, Turkey, Russia and Armenia and other countries in which administration promotes Georgia as a tourist destination,” said Eka Soselia, the Media Manager at the GNTA.

According to her, Marketing campaigns include outdoor, TV, digital and print media in 14 countries. 

Georgia is a year round destination offering a variety of tourism possibilities such as:  Culture, Food and Drink and many activities and adventure in both winter and summer.

“We are trying to convert cultural products into tourism products. Since the best we could offer is our authentic and extraordinary culture,” said Soselia.

Culture

You are about to discover a country rich in history, tradition, pride, and friendship. A land so pleasant, rich and fertile that it is home to the earliest remains of modern man found outside of Africa, dated to be nearly 2 million years old. From these early Georgians, living in the shadows of the mighty Caucasus Mountains, to the Ancient Greek myth of Jason and the Argonauts’ search for the Golden Fleece, the Kings and Queen that converted Georgia to Christianity in the 4th century AD and the events of the 20th and 21st centuries, Georgia has an amazing story to tell. Whether you visit our ancient cave cities, marvel at the highest settlements in Europe or experience the sights and sounds of our brilliant theatre, food, arts, wine and music, Georgia will capture a place in your heart forever.

Food and Drink

Nothing tells you more about the spirit and culture of a country than its native food and wine. And Georgia’s food and wine is amongst the best in the world. It may surprise you to know that Georgia has the oldest continuous unbroken tradition of wine making in the world, stretching back over 8,000 years and today, there are more than 500 indigenous grape varieties still cultivated here. A quick look at its geographical position and its landscape shows you why it is the perfect place for growing grapes.

Georgian cuisine offers a variety of dishes, with liberal use of various traditional herbs and spices. Each historical province of Georgia has its own distinct culinary tradition, such as Megrelian, Kakhetian, and Imeretian cuisines. And while meat plays an important part in Georgian food, very close attention is also paid to the locally produced salads, vegetables, fruit and greens. Many people come to Georgia and marvel at the sweet tasting produce and wonder how such flavour can be grown here. Again, the secret is in our history, location and soil type. A visit to Georgia is a true feast – let us show you how to eat and drink your way around Georgia.

Winter in Georgia

Ski in Georgia

There’s nothing better than getting to the top of a ski lift, breathing in the cold, pure air and gazing across the snowy peaks, realising that you are about to ski down the side of a mighty mountain. Here in Georgia we are lucky enough to have some of the most impressive and highest mountains in Europe, with the highest peak, Shkhara in the Svaneti region, reaching 5,193 metres. The skiing is equally impressive  and continuing upgrades and investments mean that our traditional resorts of Gudauri and Bakuriani are equal to international standards while our brand new resort of Mestia will be one of the most advanced resorts in the world. New runs are being opened every year, but if on-piste isn’t enough for you we are one of the few countries in the world that allows heli-skiing. The opportunities to heli-ski in Georgia are virtually limitless and it is probably the most exhilarating activity an advanced skier can do, anywhere in the world. For the best moments of your skiing life, come to Georgia.

Summer in Georgia

The Black Sea Coast

When your summer break is nearing, it’s time to think of the Black Sea coast of Georgia; sunshine, sea, snow-capped peaks, fabulous friends, food and wine. Whatever your perfect summer holiday, Georgia has it all.

Adventure

Georgia is perfectly designed for the ultimate adventure holiday.

Stride through some of the highest, most dramatic mountain scenery in Europe; hang glide off high cliffs; white-water raft down glacier-fed wild rivers; bike along barely used tracks and ride horses across plains untouched since the early days of the Silk Road.

Walking and Trekking; Paragliding; Horse Riding; 4×4 Adventure; Mountaineering; Mountain Biking; Rafting;  Caving; Bird Watching; Ballooning.

Future of Georgian Tourism

Georgia Tourism Strategy 2025, outlines the vision for the development of the country’s tourism sector for the next 10 years:

By 2025, Georgia will be well known as a premier, year-round, high quality tourism destination, centred on its unique cultural and natural heritage, world-class customer service, and timeless tradition of hospitality. Georgia will be at the forefront of tourism competitiveness, through strategic investments in infrastructure, education, marketing, and the development of unique Georgian visitor experiences that appeal to high-value markets around the globe. Tourism will significantly increase its contribution to Georgian economic growth and development, through increases in visitor spending. The focus will be on the quality and diversity of visitor arrivals, not the total number of visitors.

With this, the GNTA has selected 8 strategic objectives, 50 priority actions and over 100 activities, which will be oriented on development of the country’s tourism potential.  Overall, within the next few years, Georgia will progressively focus its efforts to diversify markets, raise awareness about the country throughout the world, assist the private sector in creating higher quality and niche tourist products, further stimulate the domestic tourism market, conduct training and capacity building exercises to improve the service quality in the country; and with this, place higher emphasis  on increasing the contribution of tourism to the country’s economy.

By Viktorya Muradyan

Source: http://www.observer.com

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Top Ten Military Generals Of All Time

Posted on February 10, 2016. Filed under: News |

David IV of Georgia was the first in top ten military generals of all time.

David IV of Georgia

In 1121 he, with his army of 55.000 men won against seljuks. Their army composed of 600.000 soldiers. The battle of Didgori is often regarded as battle of “miraculous victory”. Before the battle David ordered his troops to block their way back addressing soldiers that they would either win or die there. Over 70 percent of seljuks were killed and rest were taken in prisoners.M+1280

He was very young when was crowned. He inherited not only political and economical problems, but disastrous results from earthquakes of previous years. But in several years he managed to gain victory on Seljuks, who were hazardous for Europe and thus he saved not only his own country, but Europe too.
His name was widely spread in contemporary world and in Europe he was compared to St. Peter. He was savior also of Armenia and Shirvan (territory of modern Azrebaijan). These countries were quite week by that time, they asked the king David the Builder, to take them under his protection. By the way, the king was the only, who managed to free Ani, former capital of Armenia, and give it back to Armenians. So, his strategic point of view was covering quite a wide territories and what’s main – he was not an Emperor, but maintained national state structure in each country, who went under his protection.

He managed to begin the Golden Age of Georgia, which lasted almost 2 centuries. That’s why he is called Saint King David the Builder!
He was the greatest!

Source: http://www.thetoptens.com/top-military-generals/

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World Bank: By 2025 Georgia To Be Premier Tourism Destination

Posted on January 11, 2016. Filed under: News |

8c358d28d4f46d78068cee62157dc92bPresident of the World Bank has named Georgia among the most successful countries regarding its tourism and infrastructure development.

Georgia’s achievements in a tourism development were applauded at the World Bank Group Tourism Forum 2015, held on December 8-9 in Washington DC.

The website of the World Bank announced that it may be somewhat surprising, that Georgia has only recently developed a long-term strategy for its tourism industry.

“For many years the country had a vision, certainly, but no clear and well-designed strategy that it could implement and monitor,” the World Bank noted.

According to the website, the tourism development strategy was established by the Government of Georgia with the support of the World Bank Group.

Georgia Tourism Strategy 2015-2025 is a 10-year vision and strategic plan for increasing the value and importance of tourism for the benefit of the country’s economy and ultimately its citizens.

“It contributes to the achievement of the World Bank Group’s twin goals in Georgia. The plan was formulated through a partnership between the government and the private sector with a view to maximizing tourist satisfaction, diversifying market and products, increasing the size and profitability of the industry in a sustainable way, and maximizing opportunities for job creation,” the World Bank website reads.

According to the World Bank between 2009 and 2013, Georgia achieved one of the fastest growth rates of tourism globally: total visits to the country increased by more than 300 percent, from 1.5 million to 5.4 million. Total tourism revenues increased from approximately $475 million to $1.8 billion, or more than 20 times the global average during the same period.

Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia Dimitri Kumsishvili emphasized that Georgia’s National Tourism Strategy outlines the vision for the development of the industry until 2025.

“The Government of Georgia will progressively focus its efforts on diversifying tourism markets, raising awareness about the country, assisting the private sector in creation of higher quality and niche tourism product, improving service quality and further stimulating the domestic tourism market. With this, development of infrastructure and attraction of new investments will be the driving force of advancement and progress within the industry,” he said.

Georgia’s National Tourism Strategy for ten years was presented jointly by the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia and GNTA on December 4, 2015 to representatives of the country’s tourism and travel industry, government, donors, and civil society organizations.

“The purpose of the Strategy is to create a road map increasing the value, profitability, and sustainability of Georgia’s tourism industry. It also aims to define and implement a plan for converting Georgia’s tourism assets into world-class tourism products and visitor experiences that will attract tourist from some of the world’s highest spending travel markets, including the European Union, North America, and East Asia,” Mercy Tembon, World Bank Regional Director for the South Caucasus said.

According to the forecast of the World Bank, by the 2025 Georgia will become well-known as a premier, year-round, high-quality tourism destination, centered on its unique cultural and natural heritage, world-class customer service, and timeless tradition of hospitality.

Photo: World Bank Website

source:http://georgiatoday.ge

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