South Caucasus & Turkey

Essential Georgia

Photo credit: Ann Schneider

8 Days
From $4,795
Trip Type
Group Size
Your choice
Activity Level
Flexible Private Trip — Book Your Dates for You & Yours

From Wine Country to High Country


Georgia, rising from the shores of the Black Sea to encompass the peaks of the Caucasus Mountains, is a small wonder. Though not well known to North Americans, it’s a world-class travel destination with fascinating historic sights, spectacular natural beauty, legendary hospitality, sophisticated culture, and food and wine that are becoming international stars. Sitting at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, Georgia melds the best of both worlds. Now is the time to discover it.

Travels to: Georgia



  • Days 1-2: Tbilisi (Georgia)

    Start your Georgian experience with a tour of hip, picturesque Tbilisi, the country’s capital and by far its largest city. Follow the winding streets of the red-roofed Old Town; stroll down broad Rustaveli Avenue, the Tbilisi’s main thoroughfare; and stop at three historic churches: Anchiskhati Basilica, Metekhi Church of the Virgin, and Sioni Cathedral. In the surrounding hills, the 4th century Narikala Fortress and the Mother Georgia monument are inescapable presences towering over the city. In the afternoon, pay a visit to the Simon Janashia Museum of Georgia, a component of Georgia’s National Museum, for a look at some of the country’s most significant archaeological finds.


    • The elaborately carved balconies of Tbilisi’s Old Town
    • Narikala Fortress, the 4th century citadel
    • The frescoes of 6th century Anchiskhati Basilica, Tbilisi’s oldest church
    • People-watching and window-shopping on Rustaveli Avenue
  • Days 3-4: Signagi

    Head into Georgia’s most esteemed wine region, Kakheti, and visit the estate of Alexander Chavchavadze, a 19th century aristocrat and poet who was also groundbreaking winemaker. Tour and taste at two leading wineries, Zhuka-Sanos and Pheasant’s Tears, both of which use traditional methods and local varietals to create exceptional, distinctly Georgian wines. Overnight in the hill town of Signagi and visit the 9th century Bodbe Monastery.


    • The beautifully restored mansion of Alexander Chavchavadze
    • Experiencing Georgian wine at its best
    • A picnic lunch at Zhuka-Sanos Winery
    • The basilica and gardens of Bodbe Monastery
  • Days 5-6: Ananuri, Gudauri, Kazbegi

    Ascend into the heart of the Caucasus Mountains along the scenic Georgian Military Highway, built in the early 19th century and still the main road through the region. Along the way, stop at 17th century Ananuri Fortress Complex and at Gudauri, the highest village on the highway. Visit the village of Kazbegi, situated at the foot of one of the Caucasus’s highest peaks, Mt. Kazbek, and hike or drive to the Church of Tsminda Sameba (the Holy Trinity).


    • Ananuri Fortress and neighboring Zhinvali Reservoir, which together make one of Georgia’s prettiest settings
    • Gorgeous mountain drives on the Georgian Military Highway
    • Fresh mountain air and exceptional views at the alpine village of Gudauri
    • The remote 14th century Church of Tsminda Sameba silhouetted against towering mountain peaks
  • Days 7-8: Gori, Mtskheta, Tbilisi

    Visit Gori, best known as the birthplace of Georgia’s most infamous native son, Joseph Stalin. Next, explore UNESCO-listed Mtskheta, capital of the eastern Georgian kingdom of Iberia from the 3rd century BC through the 5th century AD. Return to Tbilisi and toast the pleasures of Georgia at a sumptuous farewell dinner.


    • The Stalin House Museum, located in the wooden hut where the Soviet ruler spent his first years
    • Mtskheta’s two exceptional early Orthodox churches
    • A supra – an indulgent traditional Georgian feast

Dates & Prices

Please note:

  • Private trip prices vary by season and are subject to hotel availability for your travel dates.
  • Listed prices below are based on double occupancy and a 2 traveler minimum.
  • Hotel upgrades, additional nights, and solo traveler prices are available on request.

Land tour price, per person, starting from:

  • 2024 Dates
    Available: April - October
    Tour, double occupancy
    Single supplement

What's Included

  • Tour Includes
    • Accommodations per the itinerary. All room types, even in upgraded properties, are standard entry-level doubles or twins; please call for room category upgrade pricing and information.
    • Meals, as noted in the itinerary: 7 breakfasts, 4 lunches (1 picnic-style) and 3 dinners.
    • Restaurant tips for included meals.
    • One arrival and one departure airport transfer. (Additional arrival and departure transfers available at additional cost.) MIR will arrange for travelers to be met upon arrival and seen off on departure, whether we make your air arrangements or not.
    • Ground transportation throughout itinerary by private vehicle (size of vehicle depends on number of travelers in your group).
    • Evening cultural performances per the itinerary.
    • Guided sightseeing tours and entrance fees as outlined in itinerary.
    • Services of experienced, English-speaking local guides, drivers and other staff.
    • Complete pre-departure electronic document that includes detailed packing suggestions, reading list links, country-specific information, maps, travel tips and more.
    • Assistance booking your custom flight arrangements (on request; please note that international airfare is not included in the land tour cost).
    • Electronic final update bulletin, with any late news, updates and important information.
  • Not Included
    • International airfare or taxes/fuel surcharges.
    • Meals not specified as included in the itinerary.
    • Single supplement charge, if requested or required.
    • Items of a personal nature (phone calls, email, laundry, alcohol, excess baggage, etc).
    • Baggage handling.
    • Gratuities to local guides and drivers.
    • Visa/passport fees, airport departure fees.
    • Expenses incurred as a result of delay, modification or extension of a tour due to causes beyond MIR’s control.
    • Travel and trip cancellation insurance.

Activity Level

Level 3: Medium, but Customizable

This ‘Essential’ itinerary designed for private travel features long days walking and standing, some long days of overland travel, some stair climbing, cobblestones or unpaved sidewalks and streets, uneven surfaces and steps, absent handrails, and lack of elevators. While some of these challenges are inherent in the destinations and sites, as one of our Essential Series programs this trip can be modified as needed for those travelers who are looking for a less challenging (or more challenging) program.

There is a significant amount of touring on foot, and those travelers planning to take the program as written should be able to walk at least a mile a day comfortably. Some long drives are an inevitable element of the routing this tour uses, and road conditions in the region can be bumpy and rough. Some attractions are only accessible via steep staircases with tall, uneven steps, and handrails are not always in place. Interior staircases may involve steep steps inside narrow passageways with limited light. Touring will be over a variety of surfaces, such as cobblestones, bricks, packed or loose dirt, or gravel, including uphill or downhill sections.

Past travelers have also encountered challenges with bureaucratic service, plumbing in and out of hotels, and availability and quality of public restrooms.

Accommodations in the basic program are generally small, moderate, three-star to four-star hotels, some quite small with basic amenities and services. Upgrades may be available in some cities, please call for details.


Traveler Reviews

  • "With regards to the Georgian people, I’ve never been more welcomed anywhere I’ve traveled. People went out of their way to meet me, and thank me for coming. The food in Georgia was fantastic. Meals were freshly prepared and portions were generous. "Guest" best describes the way I felt in Georgia, I was more a guest to their country than a tourist."

    Author C. Fisher

    Youngstown, OH

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