Upper Svaneti Fundraising Trek

Overview

5 – 14 September 2017

Day 1: Transfer Tbilisi /Kutaisi to Chuberi, welcome meal, overnight with family

Day 2: Hike over Utviri Pass to Nakra valley, overnight with family

Day 3: Hike Bak pass to Mazeri, overnight in guesthouse

Day 4: Hike Guli pass to Mestia, overnight at TCT house

Day 5: Rest day in Mestia, visit Svaneti museums, eventing hike to Lakhiri, overnight with family

Day 6: Hike to Adishi, overnight with family

Day 7: Hike to Ushguli, overnight with family

Day 8: Mountain bike to Zeskho, overnight in cabins

Day 9: Visit the Soviet-era resort of Tskaltubo

Day 10: Transfer to Kutaisi / Tbilisi

Svaneti

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1 / 5 Sep: Transfer to from Tblisi or Kutaisi to Chuberi (7 or 4 hrs), overnight in guesthouse with family (shared room). We will meet in the morning in Tbilisi and make our way through west Georgia to Svaneti, stopping on the way for a meal and sightseeing in Samegrelo. We will make our way up the Enguri valley to the Neskra river, the first valley in Svaneti, where we will stay with a family in Chuberi. Optional pick up in Kutaisi city centre possible at noon

Day 2 / 6 Sep: Hike over Utviri Pass to Nakra valley, overnight with family (shared room). From the Nenskra valley, we will climb Utviri pass, with views west into Abkhazia and east across  the Enguri valley and Svaneti with views of the 4,000m peaks of Ushba and Laila. We descend to Nakra, a charming logging village set in the forest, where will stay with a local family.

Day 3 / 7 Sep: Hike Bak pass to Mazeri, overnight in family guesthouse (shared room). From Nakra we continue to follow the Enguri valley through the villages of Tsaleri, Kichkhuldashi, Gheshderi, Pari, and Etseri. We will stop to talk to locals and have them show us the  ancient churches they have protected for generations, including a spectacular fresco above the village of Pari. We climb over Bak pass, with more dramatic views of Ushba and Laila, before descending to Mazeri, where we will stay in a guesthouse.

Day 4 / 8 Sep: Hike Guli pass to Mestia, overnight at TCT house (shared room). For our final day of hiking, we make one last climb over Guli pass. Now we are directly below the twin peaks of Ushba, and Tetnuldi (4,858m) comes into view. We descend to Mestia, famous for it’s dense collection of medieval towers.

Day 5 / 9 Sep: Rest day in Mestia, evening hike or bike to Lakhiri, overnight in family guesthouse (shared room). We visit the Svaneti museum in the morning to see the treasures of Svanetian culture, from prehistoric metalworking to fascinating medieval Christian art. In the evening we will make the easy hike or bike to Lakhiri in the next valley over from Svaneti and stay with a family.

Day 6 / 10 Sep: Lakhiri to Adishi, overnight in family guesthouse (shared room). We make our way toward Tetnuldi, the mountain known as the “bride of Svaneti” and through the new ski area of the same name, to the village of Adishi, a beautiful example of a traditional Svan village.

Day 7 / 11 Sep: Adishi to Ushguli, overnight in family guesthouse (shared room). From Adishi we make our way across below Skhara (5,200 m), the highest mountain in Georgia, to the UNESCO World Heritage site of Ushguli.

Day 8 / 12 Sep: Bike from Ushguli to Zeskho, overnight in mountaineering camp (shared room). On day eight we will have the option of biking or driving 27 km on the rugged mountain road to Zeskho, the last village in eastern Svaneti, where we will stay at the mostly abandoned Soviet-era mountaineering camp.

Day 9 / 13 Sep: Transfer (3 hrs) to Soviet era resort of Tskaltubo. We will take the rarely-used road from upper Svaneti to Lower Svaneti, stopping in small villages that see few visitors, before making our way to Tskaltubo, home to the former sanatorium of the Soviet ministry of defense, one of Stalin’s preferred retreats, which was recently renovated, where we can have take in the waters, rest, and recover.

Day 10 / 14 Sep: Transfer to Tbilisi (4 hours) or Kutaisi (1 hour). We leave at noon to drive back to Tbilisi. Those flying from Kutaisi can be dropped at the city centre or airport as preferred (estimated time midday).

Price:

US $2000 per person

Includes:

  • Overnight in family guesthouse with beds (shared rooms)
  • All meals – breakfast, lunch and dinner
  • All transfers and services as detailed
  • TCT team member guide & support driver / guide

Excludes:

  • Items of personal nature e.g. phone calls
  • Any visas
  • International flights
  • Tips to guesthouses and any other service
  • Personal travel insurance

Notes:

  • Guesthouses of simple and basic nature with shared bathroom facilities. Shared rooms are with more than two persons, with single beds.
  • Meal requirements can be provided for, within reason considering the rural location
  • Maximum group size 10
  • Fitness – Inexperienced trekkers welcome if fit and accustomed to hill walking.
  • Elevation: minimum 1204m, maximum 2976m (average 1960m). Elevation gain / loss: 7926m / – 7042m. Max slope 37.6%, – 49.5% (average 11.1%, – 12.4%). Distance 122km

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