Samtskhe-Javakheti

Goderdzi fossil forest

Location: Adigeni municipality, river Dzindze gorge, village of Utkisubani, 1480 m above sea level

Access road: located near motor way Akhaltsikhe-Khulo-Batumi, in 10 km from the village of Zarzmi of A digeni municipality, distance from Tbilisi 250 km; from Akhaltsikhe 50 km, from Batumi – 110 km.

Goderdzi fossil forest starts from Adigeni district, village Utkino Ubani, and covers also upper Adjara, up to village Riketi. Total area runs up to 365 ha.

Fossil forest of Goderdzi within the frames of the Caucasus and, wider in the region, is the only and unique one. Formerly, it was entered into the Red book, while today, as a natural monument, it is protected by the laws, since fossil forest was given the status of a natural monument in 2013.

 

Waterfall of Chule

Location: Adigeni municipality, surrounding territory of Patara Zanavi; at the foot of Persati mountains, left bank of river Kvabliani; 1480 m above sea level.

Access road: from the territory of Adigeni municipality leads a motor road to waterfall; from the motor way Akhaltsikhe-Khulo-Batumi a rocky road turns towards village Zanavi and leads to Chule, distance from the fork is 7 km, distance from Tbilisi 237 km, from Akhaltsikhe – 35 km.

From the territory of Persati Plateau starts river Chulestskali which creates approximately 30-m high waterfall near the Chule monastery to the north-east.

Name Chule in Georgian meant sagging, covered place. This name fully reflects Chulevi whereabouts.

 

Kanyon of Tmogvi

Location: Aspindza municipality, community of Nakalakevi, gorge of river Mtkvari; 1260 m above sea level

Access road: distance from Tbilisi 250 km. from Aspindza 23 km, from Akhaltsikhe 55 km, from Akhalkalaki 40 km.

On one of the highest volcanic remnant mounts stands a fortress-citadel of Tmogvi dating back to X century. there are remnants of old bridge on the river. One bridge connected both palaces of the river while the other was used for transit. In the south-east the wall touches border of a cave which ties up with the citadel and river Mtkvari through secret passage constructed in the rock.

 

Lake Tabatskuri

Location: border of Borjomi and Akhalkalaki municipalities; 1991 m above sea level

Access road: from the settlement of Bakuriani to the village of Tabatskuri leads a motor way where from May to November transit is possible on four wheelers. Distance from Tbilisi 210 km, from Borjomi 60 km, from Tsalka 45 km.

Tabatskuri in the province of Samtskhe-Javakheti, on the border of Borjomi and Akhalkalaki municipalities, is a village developed on the peninsula and its name means a bay of lake (Tabi).

The lake created as a a result of outburst of volcano is also called Tabatskuri. The deepest point of the lake is 40.2 m. Tabatskuri was regarded as a lake rich with fish. It had plenty of trout.

The lake surrounded with Ktis-Tabatskuri Preserved Territory which was founded in 1995 aiming at protection of birds distributed on this territory. International association for protection of birds – Bird Life International has awarded Tabatskuri lake international status of important place for birds (IBA). The later was entered into the Red Book of Georgia.

 

Lava torrent of Abuli

Location: Akhalkalaki municipality, basin of river Paravnistskali

Access road: ground road for four-wheeler cars leads to the Abuli fortress via Abuli village of Akhalkalaki municipality. Distance from the village of Abuli to Didi Abuli fortess is 17 km; the shortest way to Abuli Fortress lies via the village of Gandzani in Ninotsminda municipality; walking route is 10 km long; distance from Tbilisi 150 km, from Akhalkalaki 28 km, from Akhaltsikhe 100 km.

There are two mounts known in Samtskhe-Javakheti as `Abuli` – Didi (big) and Patara (little) A buli, as wel as lake, a village, a river and Cyclopean fortress on Patara Abuli. As to lava torrent of Abuli, it is one of the miracles of the nature of Georgia.

Lava torrent starts from mount Didi Abuli situated on the Abuli-Samsari ridge. The height of Didi Abuli is 3303 m. to the south of Didi Abuli, slopes of Patara Abuli (2800 m) and its foot are covered by so called `stone seas`. In the central part of lava torrent there are several lakes.

 

Swamp of Sulda

Location: Akhalkalaki municipality, plateau of Javakheti, 1860 m above sea level

Access road: distance from Tbilisi 180 km, from Akhalkalaki 20 km, from Akhaltsikhe 90 km.

Two important swamps on the plateau of Javakheti – Sulda and Kartsakh – were given the status of preserved territory. Both swamps were created as a result of lake turning into wetlands.

Preserved area of Sulda wetland is located in 2,5 km from the village of Sulda.in wetlands of Sulda 15 species of fowls are registered, among them 8 are waterfowl species. In spring and in fall it is possible to engage in bird watching here.

The preserve of Sulda marshlands engulfs territory of Javakheti National Park. Its general space area is 320 ha. This preserve was founded on March 22,2011.

In 5 km from Sulda to the south-west is situated preserved territory of Kartsakhi. Its area is 158 ha. In 2004 around lake Kartsakhi and its surrounding area, in mountain steppes and steppe-like meadows, were discovered representatives of rose family described in the Georgian flora which are not distributed anywhere else in Georgia.

 

Lake Khanchali

Location: Ninotsminda municipality, environs of the villages Didi and Patara Khanchali, 1928 m anove sea level

Access road: distance from Tbilisi 165 km, from Akhalkalaki 18 km, from Ninotsminda 25 km, from Akhaltikhe 95 km.

Lake Khanchali is located in Ninotsminda municipality, near the villages of Didi and Patara Khanchali. Mirror area of the lake runs to 13,3 sq. m, maximal width 2500 m. water is fresh and brownish. Surface is covered with water plants, from the end of November until the end of April it is covered with ice. Compared with other lakes in Javakheti, due to low level of water, Khanchali is the warmest lake and the best possible venue for waterfowls to pick habitat and resting place.

Lake Khanchali and Javakheti plateau are one of the main migration routes for birds. Depending on season, especially in the fall, there are numerous and diverse birds of prey, waterfowls and marshland dwellers here.

 

Mount Chikiani

Location: volcanic plateau of southern Georgia, northern part of Javakheti range, 2415 m above sea level

Access road: from the Tsalka-Ninotsminda motor road, to the north-east from the village of Paravani starts a pathway in the direction of mount Chikiani; distance from Tbilisi 165 km, from Akhalkalaki 18 km, from Ninotsminda 25 km, from Tsalka 25 km, from Akhaltsikhe 95 km.

The mount was structured from the sediments of volcanic origins having glass in the consistence. The world `chika` in old Georgian meant `glass`. Chikiani is structured almost totally from obsidian. In the sunny day this summit reflects sun beams and is shining. To the south-west of the mount, in the structural basin between Abul-Samsri and Javakheti range, is located the biggest lake in Georgia, Paravani (surface area 37,5 sq. km, basin area 234  sq. km).