Explore Georgia



Tbilisi (Georgian: თბილისი [ˌtbiˈliːsi] "Warm Spring") is the capital and the largest city of Georgia, lying on the banks of the Mtkvari (Kura) River. The earliest written records of Tbilisi date from the 4th century AD. It became the capital of the East Georgian kingdom in the sixth century when the decision was made to move from the ancient capital of Mtskheta, some 10 miles north of Tbilisi. There are many legends associated with the birth of Tbilisi. According to one legend, King Vakhtang Gorgasali, some 1,500 years ago, shot a beautiful deer with an arrow while hunting in a mountain valley. The wounded animal fell into a spring. Suddenly it leaped out of the water and to the king’s astonishment, bounded away as swift as an arrow. The water in the spring was warm and seemed to possess a mysterious healing power. King Vakhtang ordered a town to be built around the spring and it was named Tbilisi, from the word “tbili”, meaning warm.The climate of Tbilisi is moderately humid subtropical; it experiences relatively cold winters and hot summers. Snow falls on average 15–25 days per year. Because the city is bounded on most sides by mountain ranges, the close proximity to large bodies of water (Black and Caspian Seas) and the fact that the Greater Caucasus Mountain Range (further to the north) blocks the intrusion of cold air masses from Russia, Tbilisi has a relatively mild micro-climate compared to other cities that possess a similar continental climate along the same latitudes. The average annual temperature in Tbilisi is 12.7 °C (54.9 °F), with January being the coldest month with an average temperature of 0.9 °C (33.6 °F). From the end of April through the beginning of July, the average temperature is 18.0°C (64.4°F). July is the hottest month with an average temperature of 24.4 °C (75.9 °F).
The city is emerging as an important transit route for global energy and trade projects. Located strategically at the crossroads between Europe and Asia and lying along the historic Silk Road routes, Tbilisi has often been a point of contention between various rival powers and empires. Forty times in recorded history, the city was overrun by foreign armies, plundered, and left in ruins. Each time it would emerge from the ashes and become vibrant. Tbilisi history can be seen by its architecture, where the “Haussmannized” Rustaveli Avenue and downtown are blended with the narrower streets of the medieval Narikala district. The demographics of the city are diverse - historically it has been home to peoples of many cultures, religions and ethnicities. Despite being overwhelmingly Orthodox Christian, Tbilisi is one of the few places in the world where a synagogue and a mosque are located next to each other, in the ancient Bath district several hundred meters from the Orthodox Christian Metekhi Church.With a population 1.15 million people, Tbilisi stretches for more than 35 km (22 miles) along the banks of the River Mtkvari.The main street of Tbilisi is Rustaveli Avenue. Tbilisi has a METRO (underground transportation system), higher educational establishments, an opera, ballet theatre, many film studios, stadiums (the largest has a capacity for 80,000 people), theatres and museums. On the steep, craggy ledges of the right bank of River Mtkvari is the towering ancient citadel of Narikala, which according to early chronicles was build in 4th century AD. Among the oldest architectural monuments at the citadel are the Church of Anchiskhati (6th century) and the Cathedral of Sioni (6th-7th century).Tbilisi is divided in to the 10 regions: Chugureti, Didube, Gldani, Isani, Krtsanisi, Mtatsminda, Nadzaladevi, Saburtalo, Samgori, Vake.

AGTG © 2015