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5.0
| 24 reviews

Trek the Caucasus Mountains in Georgia

Hike among the craggy snow-capped peaks and deep gorges of the Greater Caucasus, through ancient hamlets to dazzling glaciers

Duration

7 nights

Annual Leave

5 days off work

Group Size

Up to 12 people

Season

Jun-Sep

Location

Georgia

Meeting Point

Kutaisi Airport, Georgia

Classic Accommodation

Hotel · Guesthouse

Customer Reviews

(24)

5.0

Difficulty

Moderate

From

From

Take on sections of the pioneering Transcaucasian Trail, all the way to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Ushguli

Explore the majestic alpine scenery of ancient Upper Svaneti, one of the wildest and most remote regions of Georgia

Tuck into hearty mountain food to fuel your hikes through the Caucasus and sample natural wines, Georgian-style

Day 1

Kutaisi

Cityscape Of Kutaisi From Gelati Monastery

Touch down at Kutaisi International Airport where your host will be waiting to take you straight to a nearby hotel. Get settled and then rest up in preparation for the challenge ahead.

Day 2

Into the mountains

Driving

6hrs

Time for a road trip through this little-visited land, stopping for a traditional lunch of khachapuri (delicious cheese bread) in a local market. The winding mountain road will pass by the second-highest arch dam in the world, the Enguri Dam, where you can pause for a leg stretch. Continue on to the small town of Mestia where you’ll have time to explore, be sure to grab a drink in the old town square.

Day 3

Hit the trail to Adishi

Hiking

6-7hrs · 11km · 850m up · 350m down

After a short drive to Jabeshi, trek through the meadows and forests beneath beautiful Mount Tetnuldi (4858m). Make the most of the picturesque backdrop by stopping for a picnic lunch and then continue on to the ancient village of Adishi. You’ll know you’ve arrived when the trail descends offering magnificent views over its medieval monuments and iconic Svan towers.

Day 4

Crossing the Chkhutnieri Pass (2722m)

Hiking

6-7hrs · 18km · 650m up · 800m down

Fuel up on a giant homemade breakfast ready for another magnificent day of trekking. Following the trail towards the Adishi Glacier, you'll cross the Adishichala River with horses and then begin the uphill journey to the Chkhutnieri Pass (2722m). From the top of the pass you can enjoy stunning views of the Caucasus mountains and glaciers. Descend down to the historical village of Khalde, arriving at your guesthouse mid to late afternoon for some downtime before dinner.

Day 5

Ushguli

Hiking

5hrs · 12km · 300m up · 300m down

Sit back and relax for a while as you take a scenic drive to the historic UNESCO-listed settlement of Ushguli (2000m). Explore the ancient sites of this once clan-led land and after lunch hike through the valley to the Shkhara Glacier and look down on the green slopes climbing up to a snow-covered peak. Head back to Ushguli and spend another night in a local guesthouse.

Day 6

Ushba Waterfalls

Hiking

6hrs · 14km · 600m up · 600m down

Start the day with another traditional, homemade breakfast (khachapuri, anyone?) and then drive to the little village of Becho and the start of today’s trek. Take a tranquil stroll through the woodland, then, when the trees break open at the foot of Mount Ushba (4700m), you'll clamber up to the dramatic Ushba waterfalls. From here you can also enjoy stunning views of the Laila mountain range and Dolra Valley, before heading back to your guesthouse in Becho for the night.

Day 7

Kutaisi return

Enjoy a more relaxed start to the day before driving back to Kutaisi, arriving at around 15:00. Explore the city at leisure – walk the cobbled streets to the Bagrati Cathedral, get lost in the largest, liveliest and most colourful indoor produce market in Georgia, or just stroll around the city, taking in the culture and architecture. When you're ready, return to your hotel and indulge in a last Georgian meal of dumplings and natural wines to bring your trip to a suitable end.

Day 8

All good things must come to an end

Time to say your goodbyes! Head back to Kutaisi Airport in time for your journey home.

Included

Guides

Local, professional, English-speaking guides

Accommodation

2 nights in a hotel and 5 nights in local guesthouses

Meals

All breakfasts, 6 lunches and 6 dinners

Transfers

Both airport transfers and travel between locations

Luggage transfer

4x4 vehicle support throughout

Not Included

Flights to and from the meeting point

Personal expenses

Travel insurance

Visas where required

Day 1

Hotel · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 2 – Day 5

Guesthouse · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 6 – Day 7

Hotel · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 8

Departure day

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

What is the food like?

Cooking in Georgia. Photo: GettyImages-1134321106

Food will be a delicious mix of local Svan and Georgian national cuisine, cooked using produce grown or reared by the guesthouse owners themselves. Georgian cuisine is world-renowned for its mix of eastern and Western flavours, aromas and colours and is slightly spicy and usually based on meat, vegetables, cheese and fruit. There are also plenty of traditional dishes without meat, so vegetarians and vegans will be well catered for. Lunches will be picnic-style, out in the wilderness.

What is the accommodation like?

Kutaisi City

You'll stay in a 3-star hotel in the centre of Kutaisi located in the best part of the city, with the Colchis Fountain, Bagrati Cathedral and Kutaisi State Historical Museum all within walking distance. There is free WiFi and continental and buffet breakfast options are available each morning.

Upgrades

If you are arriving in Kutaisi in the early hours of the morning on Day 1, there is an "Early Check-In" option for the hotel which you can request (subject to availability) via your booking.

In the mountains

You'll stay in well-regarded guesthouses in Mestia, Adishi, Ushguli and the small village of Becho. Accommodation will be in clean and comfortable twin-share rooms, with friendly and welcoming hosts and usually a magnificent breakfast in the morning that you'll want to write home about.

Upgrades

For solo travellers looking for their own space, an optional private room can be booked on request for an extra charge, see Optional Extras for the price. Please include this request at the time of booking. Private room upgrades are subject to availability, and although typically not an issue at the hotel in Kutaisi at the beginning and end of the trip, private rooms are more limited in the guesthouses. Your host will confirm the private room availability with you in your booking.

The Area

map

Logistics

Starts

Kutaisi International Airport

Arrive any time on Day 1

Ends

Kutaisi International Airport

Depart any time on Day 8

Transfers

You can arrive into Kutaisi any time you like on Day 1 and depart at any time on Day 8.

Provided you have supplied your arrival and departure details in advance, your host will provide arrival and departure transfers to coincide with your flights. However, it is also very easy to get a taxi from the airport to your hotel. It costs around £5/$8USD and it takes 25 minutes. If you are arriving in Kutaisi in the early hours of the morning on Day 1, there is an "Early Check-In" option for the hotel which you can request (subject to availability) via your booking.

Travel options

There are flights to Kutaisi International Airport (KUT) from all over Europe. Alternatively, you can fly to Tbilisi International Airport instead and your host can arrange a transfer to Kutaisi which takes around 4 hours. Please ask your host for prices.

Enjoy 12.5% Off Outdoor Gear

In need of a few more items? All bookings receive a 12.5% discount to use at Cotswold Outdoor, Snow + Rock and Runner's Need.

What do I need to bring?

BAGS

  • Soft overnight duffel bag or rucksack (for your main luggage)
  • Daypack (20-30 litres)
  • Waterproof liner for kitbag or rucksack / drybags

CLOTHES

  • Lightweight down jacket
  • Waterproof jacket
  • Waterproof trousers
  • Breathable wicking layers
  • Fleece jacket or similar
  • Thermals (merino best) (for Sept trips only)
  • Warm hat
  • Gloves
  • Buff or neckscarf
  • Lightweight trousers/shorts/skirts
  • T-shirts
  • Underwear and socks
  • Swimwear
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunhat
  • Sleepwear
  • Hiking boots (worn-in)
  • Sandals for evenings

OTHER

  • Universal travel plug adapter
  • Power bank or solar charger
  • Passports (and visas)
  • Travel insurance documents
  • Ear plugs
  • Insect repellent
  • Suncream
  • Personal first-aid kit (inc. blister treatment)
  • Personal items (biodegradable toiletries, sanitary wear etc)
  • Toilet kit (toilet paper, biodegradable bags to carry paper out to dispose of)
  • Quick-dry towel
  • Alcohol hand-gel
  • Headtorch or torch
  • Reusable water bottle x1 litre (or x2)
  • Hiking poles (optional but highly recommended)
*Requests for optional extras can be made after booking on your “My Bookings” page

Optional Private Room Upgrade

Payable Before Departure

Optional Private Room Upgrade

Per Person

Pre/post trip accommodation - single room

Payable Before Departure

Pre/post trip accommodation - single room

Per Night

Pre/post trip accommodation - twin/double room

Payable Before Departure

Pre/post trip accommodation - twin/double room

Per Night

Kutaisi Hotel Early Check-In (Single Room)

Payable Before Departure

Kutaisi Hotel Early Check-In (Single Room)

Kutaisi Hotel Early Check-In (Twin/Double Room)

Payable Before Departure

Kutaisi Hotel Early Check-In (Twin/Double Room)

Private Transfer Tbilisi Airport to Kutaisi

Payable Before Departure

Private Transfer Tbilisi Airport to Kutaisi

Per Person

Evan(October 2023)

Amazing trip!! Local guides were very knowledgable, funny, and made sure all of our requests were taken seriously. They made the experience great. Would HIGHLY recommend to anyone wanting to explore the mountainous regions of Georgia or just want some adventure.

Charles(October 2023)

Without question, one of the most spectacular hiking destinations imaginable. You will explore some impossibly dramatic scenery, and discover a culturally unique corner of the world. Georgia was everything I hoped for.

The difficulty rating of moderate is, obviously, subjective, but probably about right for the average hiker. Terrain varied between grassy slopes, forest, and rocky ascents, with opportunities to stop and bathe in refreshing waterfalls and pools (very welcome in hot August sun).

The guides Levan and Nugo were a fantastic double act, professional, hardworking, and entertaining. Be warned, the local hospitality will press so much food on you, that if you're ever able to clear more than a third of the table you will be doing better than we did!

Stan(August 2023)

Fantastic trip around beautiful Georgia. The scenery, trekking were beautiful and the people were really welcoming. Very helpful guides where nothing was too much for them to do for us as a group. I would highly recommend this trip

Neil(August 2023)

Great, dynamic trip, with sites that never would have been seen if pursued independently. The guides were very knowledgeable and the scenery/itinerary was perfect. Even when not focused on hiking, there was encouragement and education about the local culture, food, people, and travel in and around the country. Highly recommend it to anyone considering - an incredibly unique part of the world!

Constantin(August 2023)

Great Trip

Aurelian(August 2023)

Beautiful country, very good local guides, well organized, perfect trip.

Henry(May 2023)

Fantastic trip! Great to explore somewhere a bit different and see some amazing sights. All went very smoothly and Sandro our local host was superb.

Grace(September 2022)

Highly recommend this trip - Georgia is absolutely stunning, the pictures on the itinerary don’t do it justice! The guide was fantastic and the food is delicious!

Laura(September 2022)

Really great trip! Excellent local guide… just a beautiful country!

Vicki(September 2022)

An amazing trip with beautiful scenery, great food and friendly people! Completely surpassed my expectations. Our guide was incredible and did everything to make sure we fully enjoyed our trip

Caroline(October 2019)

Nugo and Andro were fantastic guides. They were kind, caring and considerate, and brilliant fun. The scenery was spectacular. It was fascinating learning about the culture of Georgia, and staying in the different guesthouses along the hike. The trip was a lot of fun, we all got on really well as a group and were like-minded. This was a really special trip, for special people who are willing to embrace a different culture and leave the modern clutter of the Western world being, and instead enjoy having no connectivity or WiFI, and instead, appreciate the beautiful world that we share and appreciate the simple things in life.

Judy(October 2019)

What a trip, amazing scenery, particularly with the autumn colours, the hikes took us to remote villages and our guides, Nugzar and Andro, who were exceptional, immersed us in the history, culture and traditions of this friendly country.

Vivienne(October 2019)

The scenery was mind-blowing, and it was great to be in the remote villages. Nugo and Andro the guides were so friendly and took the time to share the Georgian culture with us. It really felt like we were with friends!

Yvonne(August 2019)

The country, the food ( even for a vegetarian - unusual) was great. The hotel in Kusaisi seemed luxury after some guest houses. The organisation by our guide once we were there was excellent.

Kylie(August 2019)

This was the best tour I've ever been on. Our guide, Sandro, was super knowledgeable, friendly and helpful. The hikes were great fun and the views were just rewards... Can't recommend highly enough!

John(July 2019)

Beautiful scenery, friendly and welcoming guides, tasty local food.

Charles(July 2019)

An amazing trip! Georgia is such a beautiful country, both in the incredible landscapes and the people and culture! Plus the two guides Nata and Natia were so friendly and welcoming, they made me feel like family!

Kirsty(June 2019)

Everything was great! The trip exceeded my expectations in every way. I thought perhaps it wasn’t going to be quite as beautiful as in the pictures but it was even better in real life. I was looking round in disbelief the whole time. The hiking was the perfect level for me and our guides were really fun and they added so much value to the trip. Georgia is a jaw droppingly beautiful country and I feel so lucky to have experienced it. I have said, numerous times, since I’ve been back that it was one of the best trips I’ve ever been on.

Jennifer(June 2019)

The hiking, the food, the people, the landscape and the guides were. There is nothing I can fault from this incredible trip.

Kathryn(June 2019)

The whole experience was amazing - the walking, the scenery, the food, the hosts Levani and Sandro and their stories of Georgia and the Svaneti region.

Maria(June 2019)

Friendly, organised and knowledgeable guides. Great scenery and food.

Jessica(June 2019)

The whole trip was fantastic, the scenery was stunning and there was a nice range a variety of hikes in different terrain, interesting villages and wonderful food. Our guides Levani and Sandro were exceptional - friendly, helpful, entertaining and passionate about sharing their culture and history with us, and great fun! They worked tirelessly to make the trip go smoothly and I can’t recommend them or this trip highly enough. Thank you! 😍

Jessica(June 2019)

Everything was great! A well thought out itinerary full of varied and scenic hikes, our guides were brilliant, the food was incredible :)

Kelly(September 2018)

Amazing week in the mountains, great views, fab group, we were looked after well.

We partner with the World Land Trust to ensure this trip achieves Net-Zero emissions. We also support their Buy an Acre programme, helping local communities to buy and protect natural habitats in perpetuity.

What's the number?
It works out on average at 389kg of CO2 emissions per person, including all local transport, accommodation, food, activities, guides, staff and office operations.

The only thing it doesn’t include right now is flights and travel to the destination. We do make an overall estimate across all our customers separately, but as we don’t book flights, have customers from all corners of the world, and no way of reliably knowing their travel plans, we simply can’t include an individual number in the figure on display here. We’ve got a goal to fix that, so that when you book, there is a way to measure and mitigate the carbon emitted by your flight too.

But what does the number mean?
Yep, hard to picture eh? To give you an idea:

  • Driving 1000miles/1609km would be approx. 281kg of CO2 in an average car (or 140.5kg per person if there was 2 of you in it).
  • A return economy class flight London - New York would be approx. 1,619kg (1.66 tonnes) per person.
  • 10 trees in a temperate forest are estimated to remove approx. 250kg of CO2 from the air in a period of 5-10 years.

What are we doing about it?
Our trips are relatively low-carbon by design, and we're working with all our hosts to develop long term carbon reduction plans. We partner with the World Land Trust to ensure this trip achieves Net-Zero emissions. We also support their Buy an Acre programme, helping local communities to buy and protect natural habitats in perpetuity, ensuring the protection of the reserve and its wildlife.

Want to know more?
Amazingly, no international travel company has ever publicly published their carbon measurements before, as far as we know. We believe that must change, quickly. So we’re openly sharing the method we used in the hope that other companies will be able to more easily follow suit and build on what we've done so far. You'll find it all here.

This trek is great for beginners and experienced trekkers alike. It’s classed as moderate, so we'd recommend a good fitness level to make the most of it. Some days are long with steep sections so being used to walking back-to-back days is essential. You only need to carry a daypack each day, as the rest of your luggage will be transferred by vehicle.

The terrain on the trail is mixed and ranges from easy paths to rough, rock-strewn climbs as you get closer to the glaciers. Good trekking boots are recommended.

The average temperature during summer in Georgia typically ranges from 25-35°C in the lower valleys. However, up on the plateaus and high in the mountains it will be colder, especially when exposed to the wind. For every 1000m of ascent, the temperature can be expected to drop by approximately 6.5°C. Mountain climates are notoriously unpredictable so it is essential to bring wet weather gear and layers to adjust your temperature as required. At night temperatures can drop down to 5°C. Dry sunny days are common (sunscreen/sun-protection is important) and rain at this time of year is rare but can happen.

There will be a short transfer to the start of the hike almost every day to ensure stunning new scenery.

Brief overview of transfers

Day 1: Transfer from the airport to your accommodation in Kutaisi.

Day 2: Your longest transfer day (Kutaisi to Mestia); however, it will be broken down into smaller sections with several interesting stops in between.

Day 3: A short transfer before hiking to the next guesthouse.

Day 4: You'll trek straight from guesthouse to guesthouse.

Day 5: You'll transfer to Ushguli in the morning as the road in between is fairly long and not hugely interesting. In the afternoon, the trek is out and back from the guesthouse.

Day 6: You'll transfer from Ushguli to Becho where the day's trek will begin. The return trek also has a short transfer at the end.

Sure can! Over 70% of our travellers travel solo, it’s a great way to meet like-minded people.

There will be 4x4 vehicle support throughout, so you can leave your main luggage/rucksack in the vehicle and just carry a daypack while trekking.

We recommend checking out the country specific information and also talking to a travel nurse.

For current advice about travelling in Georgia, have a read of the UK Foreign Office pages.

Our recommended travel insurance provider is Campbell Irvine.

Travel insurance is compulsory for all of our adventures and you are required to provide your policy information before departing.

Your insurance should include adequate protection for overseas medical treatment, evacuation/repatriation, your baggage and equipment and the specific activities involved on your adventure. We also strongly recommend it includes cancellation and curtailment insurance, should you be unable to join your trip for specific reasons such as illness.

We fully endorse Campbell Irvine as their insurance offers all of the above, so get in touch with them or call on 020 7938 1734 to get your insurance sorted. We suggest that you book travel insurance as soon as you book your adventure, just to cover you for any last-minute life changes. We know you’re an active lot and injuries do happen!

We automatically convert prices from the local currency that a host receives to your chosen currency. We update our exchange rates on a daily basis so this does mean that prices displayed on the site are subject to currency fluctuations, which is why you may see them change over time.

If you wish to change the currency you pay in, head to the bottom of the page.

All of our group adventures are specially designed for adults to enjoy (18+) as we want these adventures to bring together outdoorsy people who are truly like-minded. Children can be accommodated on some private departures.

You're always in good company on one of our adventures.

Our trips are typically made up of a mixture of solo travellers and small groups of 2 or 3 friends, with most in their 30s-50s.

Our sociable adventures are solo-friendly by design and naturally attract outdoorsy people with a shared mindset; a love for adventure, a desire to push themselves and meet awesome, like-minded people along the way.

It’s this camaraderie that has so often turned a great adventure into a life-changing one.

Don't just take our word for it:

  • 95% of people rate the group dynamics on our trips 5/5
  • 90% of people recommend joining a trip to make new friends
  • 75% of people have met people on our trips that they would now consider friends

See here for more info about the Much Better Adventures tribe.

Interested in a more exclusive experience? Opt for a 'Private Group' through the dates and prices tab to book this adventure for just you and your chosen companions.

Our team of Adventure Hunters create exclusive adventures with highly vetted, specialist hosts. We only work with independent, local in-destination experts who know the very best places to explore and how to stay safe. See here for more info about the local teams we partner with.

TRIP DEPARTURE DATES

June 2024

Sunday • 2nd June 2024

to Sunday • 9th June 2024
Guaranteed to run
Fully Booked

Sunday • 7th July 2024

to Sunday • 14th July 2024
Guaranteed to run
Hurry, only 1 space left

Sunday • 21st July 2024

to Sunday • 28th July 2024
Guaranteed to run
Fully Booked

Sunday • 11th August 2024

to Sunday • 18th August 2024
Guaranteed to run
Fully Booked

Sunday • 25th August 2024

to Sunday • 1st September 2024
Guaranteed to run
Fully Booked

Sunday • 15th September 2024

to Sunday • 22nd September 2024
Guaranteed to run
Hurry, only 1 space left

Sunday • 22nd September 2024

to Sunday • 29th September 2024
Guaranteed to run
Only 3 spots left at 5% off
Private trip

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