Mountains & Villages of Svaneti

Georgia Georgia: (IT-GECA05)
URL: https://www.hiddentrails.com/tour/Asia_Georgia_svaneti_ride.aspx

Introduction
Georgia Georgia
In the beautiful highland region of Svaneti, in Georgia, you can explore awe-inspiring mountain landscapes and alpine meadows from the back of a horse!

Svaneti is located in northwestern Georgia, along the southern slopes of Greater Caucasus mountains. For thousands of years these lands have been the home of Svans – one of the ancient Kartvelian tribes. The region is characterized by glaciers, mountain ranges and plateaus, covered by lush vegetation.

Nowadays, Svaneti is divided in two parts - Upper (Zemo) Svaneti and Lower (Kvemo) Svaneti. Upper Svaneti lies in the watershed of Enguri river. Lower Svaneti lies in the watershed of Tskhenistskali river. During the ride we’ll explore the both parts of Svaneti.

Our ride starts in Becho (Upper Svaneti) and follows a beautiful mountain trail via Guli pass, Mestia, Mulakhi valley, Adishi valley, Chkhutnieri pass, until Ushguli. Afer visiting Shkara glacier we’ll continue towards Latpari pass that divides upper and lower Svaneti and we will descend to the village of Chvelphi (Lower Svaneti).

Accomodation


Accommodations
This is a progressive ride, so you will be staying in different accommodations along the way.
During the tour, all luggage will be loaded in one of the 4x4 cars and transferred to the overnight accommodation.

Description
You will spend 7 nights in guesthouses. Most of the guesthouses have Wi-Fi access and facilities are often shared.

Accommodation Itinerary - subject to changes based on availability
Night 1 & 2: Guesthouse in Becho 
Night 3: Guesthouse in Mestia
Night 4: Guesthouse in Adishi
Night 5 & 6: Guesthouse in Ushguli
Night 7: Guesthouse in Lentekhi


Room Occupancy
In case solo riders are willing to share a room the single supplement can be waived. However, if nobody is able to room with you, the single supplement fee applies.


Meals
All meals are included from lunch on Day 1 to lunch on your last day.

Alcoholic drinks are not included but you are welcome to bring your own.

Dietary Restrictions
We can cater to most dietary restrictions with prior notice.

This trip includes and can accommodate special dietary requests.

Riding

Riding Pace & Terrain
During the ride, we will go mostly at a walk. However, we will also have some opportunities to trot and canter from time to time, when the terrain allows. Because this ride takes place at a slower pace, people with very little riding experience can participate as long as they feel comfortable staying in the saddle for long hours.

Horses
We use Tushetian Horses – a relatively small breed measuring between 140-150 cm. They are friendly, easy-going, surefooted, trustworthy, tamed and used to walk long distances and well adapted to the riding environment.

Itinerary


Sample Itinerary- subject to changes

Note: This itinerary is an example of the itinerary planned but it is only an example and may be changed at your guides discretion if they consider changes necessary due to weather or other local conditions. 
In case you want to add some riding days, we might be able to arrange something for you - please inquire.



Day 1: Arrival
We pick you up from Kutaisi and head towards Martvili Canyons, named after the nearby town of Martvili, to enjoy the scenery, the waterfalls and take a boat trip. The river canyon was formed over time by the Abasha River and displays a beautiful green-blue color.
After exploring Martvili Canyons, we’ll head to the village of Becho, right at the foot of mount Ushba.
Meals included: Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Guesthouse in Becho

Day 2: Ushba Waterfalls Ride
After a nourishing breakfast we get introduced to the horses and start riding to Sdugra waterfalls. The trail passes by mineral water springs, beautiful meadows, and slowly ascends through beautiful pine forests. The first few kilometers are on a bumpy road. After crossing the river, we’ll continue riding until we reach Sdugra waterfalls, where we stop for lunch. After our break, we saddle up again and head back to the village.
We take the same route back to Becho.
Riding approx. 28 km
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Guesthouse in Becho

Day 3: Becho to Mestia
Today, we ride from Becho to Mestia via Guli pass. From the pass, you’ll have magnificent views over Becho, the double peaked Mount Ushbam Mulakhi community, the snowy Tetnuldy massif, and the Egrisi ridge.
The Guli pass (2980m), at the foot of Mount Ushba (4700m) is considered to be one of the most impressive passes of the Greater Caucasus Ridge. 
During our descent, we’ll head towards Koruldi Lakes to stop for lunch. After lunch we descend to Mestia, where we overnight. Overnight in Mestia at the guesthouse.
Riding approx. 30 km
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at Guesthouse in Mestia

Day 4: Mestia to Adishi
We start our ride early, heading towards the Mulakhi valley. During the day we’ll be passing via the Svanetian villages, outstanding for their impressive defensive towers. After lunch in Jabeshi, we’ll ascend to the ski resort of Tetnuldi and descend to the village of Adishi.
Riding approx. 30 km
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at xxx in Adishi

Day 5: Adishi to Ushguli
From Adishi, we ride towards the majestic Chkhutnieri pass (2,720 m) withthe stunning views over the Ladraadi glacier which locals also refer to as the Adishi glacier (2,390 m). Near the glacier, we cross a river and follow our trail. The slopes around us are covered with evergreen rhododendron shrubs. This descent from the pass is steep, so we will need to dismount from our horses lead them down.
From the Chkhutnieri pass, we will get a good view of the Adishis Tchala river valley as well as the Khaldes Tchala river valley. We stop for lunch in Khalde at a local restaurant. After lunch, we’ll continue towards Iprali and Ushguli. Ushguli is one of the most beautiful places in Svaneti and has been included in the UNESCO World Heritage list. These villages are located at around 2200 metres above sea level at the foot of Shkhara peak which is the highest point in Georgia (5200m).
Riding approx. 31 km
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at xxx in Ushguli

Day 6: Shkhara Glacier Ride
Today's route leads us to the foot of Mt Shkhara, where we have a nice view over the Shkhara Glacier, the source of the Enguri river.
Mount Shkhara is located in the central section of the 12 km length rock massif, called the Bezengi wall. The height of the highest peak reaches 5201 meter. It is the second highest peak in the whole Caucasus Range after Mount Elbrus.
After we reach the foot of the glacier, we leave our horses and continue on foot to the glacier (total walking distance 4km).
After lunch at a local café, we’ll have some time to explore Ushguli village.
Riding approx. 19 km
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at xxx in Ushguli

Day 7: Ushguli to Lentekhi
From Ushguli we’ll ride to Gorvahsi Pass. After the Gorvahsi pass, we continue riding on the ridge, bypassing small alpine lakes until we reach Latphari pass (28075m). From there, almost all the peaks of the Main Caucasus are visible to the North, and the smooth schist rocks of the Svaneti Ridge can be seen to the West. 
We then continue our ride, heading down the valley until we reach Chvelphi. There, we say goodbye to our horses and continue by car towards Lentekhi.
Riding approx. 24 km
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Overnight at a Guesthouse in Lentekhi

Day 8: Prometheus cave & Departure
After breakfast, we head to Prometheus Cave - one of Georgia’s natural wonders providing visitors with breathtaking examples of stalactites, stalagmites, curtains, petrified waterfalls, cave pearls and underground rivers. 
After our cave excursion we transfer you to Kutaisi.
Meals included: Breakfast & Lunch

Note that it is sometimes possible to customize the program upon special request (price will be calculated accordingly).


Rates and Dates for Mountains & Villages of Svaneti

Rates include:

Accommodations, All meals, Local transfers, 6 riding days with English speaking guide & Sightseeing tickets

Packages and Options



  • SeasonYearDescription US$
    A
    20218-day trip, AP$1955
    • Group discount, pp (4-6 pax)($275)
      Group discount, pp (7-8 pax)($760)
      Small group supplement, pp (2 pax only)$580
      Solo rider supplement, pp (1 pax only)$2105
      Single supplement (if required)$240
Gratuity:
A 10% gratuity is added on your invoice.
%

* prices are per person based on double/twin occupancy
Gratuity: 10 %

Transfer and Other Charges:



 Description
2021 Group transfer from/to Kutaisi International Airport available - inquire for rates available - inquire for rates
- to be paid locally
2021 Non-rider discount - please inquire

Season Seasons  Min / MaxReserve
A 2021 05/01 - 10/31 8d / 7n 8-day trip, AP 3 /8 Reserve

Dates Note:

Rates do not include:

Airport transfers, Alcoholic drinks & Gratuities

Other Info
Meeting: Becho
Airport: Kutaisi International Airport (KUT)
Transfer: Kutaisi city center

Climate:
                                                    Tsageri area

Month

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

Jun

Jul

Aug

Sep

Oct

Nov

Dec

Average High Temperature (°F)

42

49

56

66

73

81

84

86

79

67

56

44

Average Low Temperature (°F)

26

29

35

43

49

57

62

61

54

44

35

28

Average High Temperature (°C)

6

9

13

19

23

27

29

30

26

19

13

7

Average Low Temperature (°C)

-4

-2

1

6

10

14

17

16

12

8

2

-2

Average Precipitation (days of rain)

10

8

8

11

12

10

7

7

7

9

10

11

Source: NOAA


Seasons

Georgia can be divided into 2 distinct climate zones. The west of the country, along the coast features a humid Mediterranean climate, while the rest of the country, in the interior benefits from a dryer continental climate. The Caucasus Mountains allow to moderate the climate in the plains.
The mean annual precipitation varies from 300 to 600 mm in eastern Georgia.

Spring (April to May) is one of the best times to visit because it is usually dry and temperatures start warming up. However, you should keep in mind that nights can still be cold in the mountains.

Summer (June to August) in Georgia can be hot but there is generally a pleasant breeze in the mountains, preventing it from being unbearable. You should be aware that there are some risk of rain at the beginning of the season.

Autumn (September & October) is an amazing time to visit as you can still benefit from mild weather a few precipitations. Moreover, the fall colors are splendid in the mountains.

What To Bring:
During the trek your main luggage will be transported by car. Please use bags or suitcases that are easy to handle. The horses are equipped with small saddle bags.

What to Bring
• Personal medication: ointment, blister plaster, anti-allergy, diarrhea, pain killer
• Flashlight / headlamp
• Water bottle
• Good Raingear
• Comfortable riding clothes for hot and cold weather.
• Trekking or hiking boots/shoes
• Sports shoes / flip-flops
• Sun hat, sunglasses, sun protection
• Mosquito repellent
• Sleeping bag/inflatable sleeping mat (we can give you foldable non-inflatable mat)
• Cushions for sitting outdoors

We also accept any kinds of horse riding and horse care equipment (used or new) that you do not wish to use anymore.