Of Georgias regions Guria has the smallest territory. Its area is 2036,1 sq. km. it is situated in South-Western part of Georgia. From east it is bordered by Imereti, from the east – by the Black Sea 22-km seaside strip, from the south – by Guria-Ajara range, and from the north – by the lowland of river Rioni. The region includes municipalities of Ozurgeti, Lanchkuti and Chokhatauri. The nature of the region and its climate is distinct thanks to the proximity of mountains and sea.
There are plenty of citrus plantations and groves in Guria as well as wide spectrum of locally produced tea and nuts. From old times this region was famous for its diverse and unique grapes varieties.
The region is rich with historical part, polyphonic singing and traditions: in Guria, other than traditional Georgian polyphonic three-voice singing they sing in four voices where one of the voices is krimanchuli. In villages six-lute spiritual instrument – soinari survives; while during Kalandoba (Khristmas) the Gurians according to old tradition make chichilaki and bake Christmas kverebi (Gurian variant of traditional Georgian cheese-pies-khachapuri)…
The biggest wealth of Guria is water. Almost everywhere one can come across full-flowing Gurian rivers, crystal-clear springs, murmuring brooks, mineral healing waters…making holiday and getting treatment in the region is possible on the seaside, on the highest spot in the mountains, in SPA Resorts rich with mineral waters. Lowers of active vacations have opportunity to enjoy kayaking or engage in fishing, hunting or rafting.
Resort of Askana
Location: Northern slope of Meskheti range, gorge of river Bakhvistskali
Distance: 17 km away from Ozurgeti, 333 km away from Tbilisi
Sea level: 173m
Climate: subtropical, winter mild, without snow, mean temperature in January – 4,3 degrees centigrade, summer warm and humid, mean temperature in August 21,8 degrees centigrade
Average annual precipitation: 1880 mm
Average comparative annual humidity: 75%
Duration of annual sunny light: 1800-1900 h
Askana has been developed on the right slope of the narrow gorge of river Bakhvistskali. The name of the village according to one version is linked with the descendant of god of wine.it was also said that during epidemic in Guria only residents of this village survived and after that were named `askanianebi` (in Georgian `having hundred skins).
In Paleogenic age, as a result of sedimentation of underwater volcano ashine sea water, clay was created which turned out on the territory of the village of Mtispiri in the community of Askana, local population used this clay for washing heads and sold it in the open market. In 1916 geologist saw clay on sale and was struck with the idea that it was precious fossil. Clay was called `Askante`.
In 1952-59 clay mining and clay processing factory was built manufacturing two kind of products: bentonite for wineries and molding clay. Today bentonites are used to prepare clay solutions during operation of reconnaissance and employment of drilling appliances, in paper production, in textile and food industries as well as in many spheres of agricultural production. Bentobol production in the form of tablets made of clay from bentonite clay quarries is well-known in medicine. It is administered for curing irritation of mucous membrane of a stomach. Stocks of Askanite clay where is the amount of 10 million tons. Today only its half has remained. To the South-Eastern part of clay quarry there is unique mud and sulfuric water discovered in 1945 which became famous with its unique therapeutic properties.
Resort of Baxmaro
Location: slopes of Meskheti (Ajara-Imereti) range, gorge of river Bakhvistskali
Distance: 130 km away from Rustavi, 120 km away from Tbilisi
Sea level: 1926-2050 m
Climate: middle mountain and sea climate, winter cold, mean temperature in January – -5,5 degrees centigrade, snow cover remains during 6 months, summer moderately cool and dry, mean temperature in August 13,4 degrees centigrade
Average annual precipitation: 1500-1600 mm
Average comparative annual humidity: 73%
Duration of annual sunny light: 2050-2200 h
Natural treatment factors: sea climate mixed with middle mountain upper belt climate
Types of therapy: passive and active climate therapy
Diseases for treatment: chronic diseases of respiratory system, various types (musculoskeletal, glands, pleura), secondary anemia, neurasthenia
A high-mountain health resort of Bakhmaro is located in the hollow of Guria mountains covered by pine and fir trees. Mount Gardekili, or Lechkis Seri (2520 m) overlooks it from the East. This peak is called by vacationers `Mount of the Rising Sun`. During the rising sun wonderful scenery opens up from the peak.
Until the end of XIX century Bakhmaro was visited only shepherds. shepherds were people who spread the resorts unique therapeutic features.
The unique character of Bakhmaro climate is caused first and foremost by its location. Resort is open to the west and thanks to that, the gorge is invaded by warm sea winds that ensure formation of soft middle mountain upper belt climate. That is why air here is always clean and transparent.
The holiday season in Bakhmaro is short: from the beginning of July until the end of August. Due to tough climate conditions the mountains of Guria by the beginning of September are covered with snow which in wintertime has the height of up to 4-6 meters. Bakhmaro’s natural conditions satisfy all demands of winter resort and there was an opportunity of constructing 8-10 ski trails of different purpose that could operate during 4-5 months in full swing.
Resort of Grigoleti
Location: Western part of Kolkheti lowland
Distance: 315 km away from Tbilisi
Sea level: 4m
Climate: maritime, humid, subtropical climate, winter mild without snow, mean temperature in January – 5,2 degrees centigrade, summer very warm, mean temperature in August 23.2 degrees centigrade
Average annual precipitation: 1700-1800 mm
Average comparative annual humidity: 79%
Duration of annual sunny light: 1980-2100 h
Natural treatment factors: maritime, humid, subtropical climate and sea water, beach sand, containing big amount of magnetic iron particles
Types of therapy: climate, thalasso and spa therapy, magnetic sand baths
Diseases for treatment: respiratory tracts, TB, nervous and musculoskeletal system (rheumatic and joints) diseases, sand baths activate immune process in the human body and improve metabolism.
Like Black sea resorts of Guria – Ureki and Shekvetili. Health seaside resort of Grigoleti in Lanchkhuti municipality also enjoys magnetic sand beach containing magnetite, titan-magnetite or ilmenite small particles and other rock splinters. Baths of hot sand provide thermal and mechanic influence to the human body activating immune process and improving metabolism, soothe nervous system, are useful for rheumatic and joint diseases. Hot sand bath cure – spa therapy – is very popular in the whole world today as well as proved by plenty of visitors from various countries to seaside resorts of Guria.
the biggest part of the sand beach seaside is accompanied by multi-year pine-tree grove creating a special microclimate and multiplying importance of Grigoleti as a resort area.
As in other seaside regions, recently construction of health resort infrastructure here is under way. In rest-houses and family hotels of Grigoleti there are full-scale conditions for spending comfortable holidays.
Resort of Nabeghlavi
Location: foot-hills of Meskheti range (lesser Kavkasioni mountain system), gorge of river Gubazeuli (tributary of river Supsa)
Distance: 25 km from Chokhatauri, 335 km from Tbilisi
Sea level: 470-490 m
Climate: subtropical, moderately humid climate, winter mild, nearly without snow, mean temperature in January – 3,6 degrees, summer warm, mean temperature in August 20,2 degrees centigrade
Average annual precipitation: 1438 mm
Average comparative annual humidity: 74%
Duration of annual sunny light: 1800-1900 h
Natural treatment factors: low mountain climate and carbonic acid, hydro-carbonate, sodium mineral waters with general mineralization of 7,5-8,0 g/dm3, contain silicon acid, bromine and other biologically active elements
Types of therapy: mineral water baths and application (drinking) passive climate therapy
Diseases for treatment: stomach and duodenum ulcers, chronic colitis and enter colitis, chronic gastritis, disease caused by metabolism disorders.
Village of Nabeghlavi famous with mineral springs is located on route from Chokhatauri to Bakhmaro. Spa and health resort springs are characterized by unique therapeutic and preventive properties, and their systematic application facilitates cleansing of the body from harmful substances and enrichment with needed minerals. Mineral water is recommended for individuals of any age, without any restrictions.
The spring of Nabeghlavi was discovered in 1905. Researchers studied curing effect of waters and officially assigned Nabeghlavi the status of a resort. In 1958 started factory bottling of the water. Today Georgian table mineral water Nabeghlavi was given ISO 9000:2000 as well as certificate of compliance with the standards of the European Union and it is sold in the markets of more than 20 countries.
Resort of Ureki
Location: South-Western part of Kolkheti lowland
Distance: 320 km away from Tbilisi
Sea level: 2-10 m
Climate: subtropical humid climate, winter mild without snow, mean temperature in January – 5,8 degrees centigrade, summer very warm, mean temperature in August 23 degrees centigrade
Average annual precipitation: 2000-2100 mm
Average comparative annual humidity: 78%
Duration of annual sunny light: 2000 h
Natural treatment factors: maritime climate and sea water, beach sand containing big amount of magnetite iron particles
Types of therapy: thalassotherapy, magnetite sand baths
Diseases for treatment: cardiovascular and central nervous system functional disorders, pulmonary and musculoskeletal and endocrine system diseases
The most famous Gurian seaside resort of Ureki is 20 km away from harbor of Poti. From the north and the south rivers Sepa and Supsa flow, and from the east it is surrounded by Tsvermagara mountain. On the site of today’s settlement was forest so dense and impassable that it was even difficult to herd predators out of the forest. That is why this place was called Ureki (no herding out in Georgian).
Development of forest-dimmed territory has started since 1928. Cultivation of citrus trees and hauling of magnetite sand from the beach aiming at its use in metallurgical production and oil drilling were business developed in the settlement. As a result, of 4-5 m high magnetic sand dunes totally disappeared in 15 years. This process had also positive outcome, as the benefits of Ureki magnetite sand were noticed exactly by the quarry workers. Soon therapeutic properties of sand drew attention of the community, medical professionals and research centers.
Artificially created magnetic field as physiotherapy means is widely used in today’s medicine. .pact of magnetic field improves the quality of biological processes under way in the human body; it has anti-inflammatory, analgesic and tissue-regeneration effect; it strengthens immunity of the body and facilitates longevity of life. Advantage of Ureki as a resort is the point that here we have naturally created low intensity magnetic field. Above that, we have here subtropical climate, sea, sun and unique sand having no clone in the world setting the best conditions for therapy and health improvement. Natural curing factors of Ureki are especially wholesome to deal with children’s ailments and rehabilitation of sportsmen.
Resort of Shekvetili
Location: black sea coast, confluence of river Natanebi
Distance: 325km away from Tbilisi
Sea level: 2-6 m
Climate: subtropical climate, winter mild without snow, mean temperature in January – 4,8 degrees centigrade, summer very warm, mean temperature in August 26.6 degrees centigrade
Average annual precipitation: 2096 mm
Average comparative annual humidity: 78%
Duration of annual sunny light: 2000 h
Natural treatment factors: maritime, humid, subtropical climate and sea water, beach sand
Types of therapy: thalassotherapy, beach sand
Diseases for treatment: cardiovascular, pulmonary, nervous and endocrine system diseases.
Village of Shekvetili is situated in the Ozurgeti district, near the confluence of river Natanebi, between Kobuleti and Ureki. In medieval ages here was a maritime harbor where garrison of the Ottoman empire had its station.
Nowadays Shekvetili, like Grigoleti, is a health seaside resort with magnetic sand beach and pine-tree grove. Depth of the sea here as low (from the beach within 30 meters’ depth does not exceed 1,5 m) that is especially comfortable for children. Swimming season stars in May when water temperature is 17 degrees, and lasts until mid-October. During this period water temperature swings from 21 to 27 degrees. Velvet magnetic sand of Shekvetili, crystal clear sea water, beaming sun and light breeze from the sea enriched with aroma of coniferous trees create excellent conditions for quiet holidays and revival of health.