Why You Need to Visit Sakartvelo
Sakartvelo is how native speakers refer to the country we know as Georgia. If you break down the name into Sak-a-rtvelo, you’ll find that “rtvelo” means “wine harvesting” in Georgian – an appropriate name given that this country is the birthplace of wine. More on that below!
So why should you visit Sakartvelo? Well, Georgia is quickly becoming an emerging location for global tourism. Sitting at the crossroads of Eastern Europe, Central Asia, and the Middle East, it’s an ancient country full of diverse history, delicious cuisines, and gorgeous scenery. Here’s just a taste of what it has to offer:
Population: 3.7 million (2018)
Surrounded By: Russia to the north, Turkey, Armenia, and Azerbaijan to the south, Black Sea to the west
Primary Religion: Eastern Orthodox Christianity
Official Languages: Georgian, Abkhazian; some Russian spoken
Currency: Georgian lari (GEL)
Belly-Busting Food Scene
Food is an important part of Georgian culture and you will see a diverse range of influences from Russian, to Turkish, to Persian. The cuisine is generally very hearty and homey. There is an emphasis on fresh herbs, in-season fruits & vegetables, and locally available animal products.
Ancient Wine culture
For Georgians, wine is not just a drink, but a deep cultural tradition that reinforces a common national spirit.
Georgia is considered by archaeologists to be the birthplace of wine. And not only is the Georgian wine culture prominent but it’s also highly unique! Around 500 of the world’s 4000 grape varieties grow in Georgia’s mild climate. This leads to an expansive collection of wine offerings.
Although Georgia is a small country, it contains an array of awe-inspiring landscapes. There are the beaches of the Black Sea to the west and the rugged hills of the Caucasus Mountains to the north. As well, you will find gorges, hot springs, glaciers, lakes, and forests.
The land today known as Georgia has been inhabited since the 4th century BC when it was known as the Kingdom of Iberia. In the time since, it has experienced a tumultuous history, pulled between the powerful empires that surrounded it.
cheap, safe & friendly
Given that Georgia still flies under the radar in terms of travel destinations, you’ll find that trips can be done for pretty cheap by western standards. This is why backpackers love to visit Georgia!