Bakuriani – balneotherapeutic and ski mountain resort of Georgia
Bakuriani is a small urban-type community with population about 2,400 people, located at the crossing of the Lesser Caucasus Mountains ranges on the northern slope of the Trialet range not far from the Borjomi gorge. This small alpine village is situated at the altitude of 1,700m and surrounded with mountains, green meadows and thick pinewoods. These local mountains originate the Borjomi mineral springs famous in the post-Soviet territory.
The Bakuriani region is a touristic place of interest in Georgia and one of the most famous ski mountain resorts of the country. Its location at the crossing of geographic zones, diverse flora and fauna and conformation make Bakuriani an attractive place for active rest and ecological tourism.
Bakuriani is a well-known climatic and balneotherapeutic resort of Georgia. There are healing mineral sources and botanic garden of the Georgian Academy of Sciences.
The summer is rather cool (air temperature does not exceed 15°С in July-August) there, but winter is mild, snowy and sunny (up to – 7°С in January).
Beginning from the XIX century, Bakuriani became a place of rest for the Russian tsar’s family, which fact is confirmed by an imperial palace in its surrounding countryside. In 70-80-s of the XX century Bakuriani was one of the bases for training of ski mountaineering Olympic national team of the Soviet Union, where many famous Soviet skiers were training, it also various slalom, bobsleigh, biathlon and skiflying sporting events were held.
Today Bakuriani is a comfortable alpine resort with a developed touristic infrastructure, where amateurs of ski mountaineering and snowboarding are gathering from November till March.
Presently several routes both for skillful skiers and beginners are functioning there. Two-step routes – “Kokhta-1” (a chair lift) with the total length of 1,500m and “Kokhta-2“(tatrapoma, tugboat) with steeps alternating with smooth slopes, as well as a “Plato” route for beginners with bar lifts are at skiers’ disposal.
A modern route of the Didveli complex with a gondola lift has been recently opened; the construction and equipping of the additional routes are underway. Lifting by ski at the Tskhratskaro pass (13km from Bakuriani) at height of 2454 m is very popular among the lovers of ski racing.
Late in autumn and summer Bakuriani attracts lovers of hiking, tracking and climbing. From the nearest one-day routes you can choose climbing to Kokhta (2,155 m), climbing to Sekvelomta, visiting the Tabatskuri Lake, hiking to the Timotesubani monastic complex (XI century), to the mineral springs in Mitabari, to hot sources of Tsihisdzhvari.
If to choose from longer routes, then moving down along the Borjomi Gorge, you can visit village Daba with a chapel hidden in a big cave and ancient yew (2000 years old). The springs with mineral water challenging the Borjomi in its healing properties are found in Tsagveri.
Extreme alpinists can visit the Bakurianistskali Gorge with rises of connate crystalline rocks. The 300m -deep gorge bottom is blocked with giant 20-30m hexahedral crystals and its steep slopes are germinated with brushwood of wild blackberry. The locality of Bakuriani and Borjomi Gorge is also suitable for flying by paraglider, rafting, jeeping and also for hunting and trout fishing.