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Telavi is the administrative and economic center of Kakheti, located in Eastern Georgia, 160 km away from Tbilisi and the city is a medium size. There was a time when Telavi had the most important caravan road between Europe and Asia. People call Telavi the lungs of Kakheti as there are significantly a large number of trees. In Telavi you can see the "Batonis Tsikhe" - a distinctive beauty building where lived the Kakhetian noblemen. This complex consists of two churches, a royal palace, a bath, a secret tunnel, a fortress and a 5 meter defensive wall, where locals were hiding during enemy invasions. Fortress wall occupies up to three hectares. In the palace, which is also named by the King of Erekle, I will select Art Gallery where you can view paintings of well-known Georgian, Dutch, Italian or Russian painters.
The economy of the city depends on agriculture, as the surrounding areas are agriculturally beneficial and it creates a good condition for its development. It should be noted that there is "Telavi State University" in the city, which has two dormitory for students. (Initially named Iakob Gogebashvili). Telavi is well known for its ancient history of wine production. There are 4 factories of wine that are producing world famous Kakheti wine. The most popular among them is Kindzmarauli, Tsinandali, Saperavi. Here you can get acquainted with the ancient wine traditions or visit many family cellars.
There are many sights and cultural infrastructures developed in Telavi. The person who is here does not really feel like cutting off from Tbilisi, because in Telavi you can enjoy a number of dramatic theater performances. (This theater has grown quite a large number of well-known Georgian TV actors today), also here you can visit historical and ethnographic museums, arts and music schools, libraries, and of course sports stadiums. Its geographical location is also interesting. It is located in the river Alazani basin, on the north-east slope of the Tsiv-Gombori Ridge, while its various areas are located at 500-800 meters above sea level. In general, Kakheti is distinguished from the other parts of Georgia. In Kakheti you will find one of the lowest points on the sea level as well as the highest point. From Telavi dwelling areas you can see amazing views of the Caucasus and Alazani valley.
Telavi is also distinguished by historic districts, among them are: Zuzumbo hill, Dzveli Galavani (Old Walls), Gvtaeba Deity etc. They are separated by small ravines, from the area of Nadikvari Park. Telavi serves several lines of the municipal (free) bus, which is convenient for tourists. The city has an airport and railway as well. Telavi is also comfortable in terms of tourist destination as you can visit many high rated hotels here, where you can enjoy a pleasant evening with full of emotions. The most interesting is that a great part of hotels are built in the old style, like the tower or the fortress, which makes the environment more attractive.
Not far from Telavi is located a house-museum of Tsinandali. This amazing house belonged to Georgian great poet and public figure Alexander Chavchavadze. In the first half of the XIX century, this garden was visited various times by: Alexander Dumas,who called Tsinandali park “The Garden Of Eden”. At different times in this garden was also the French orientalist and Kartvelolog Mari-Felicite Brosse, (who was always in an awkward situation due to her name), Russian great poets: Alexander Pushkin, Mikheil Lermontov and Alexander Griboedov. Chavchavadze also constructed here a magnificent wine cellar with a huge wine factory. He was also the pioneer who introduced carriage and grand piano to Georgians. He was the first who founded a collection of wines, which hosted 16,500 bottles of wine made with both Georgian and European methods. In international exhibitions held at different times this collection was awarded with 11 Gold Medals. Nowadays, Tsinandali is a house- museum, which consists of 4 parts: museum, park, hotel, accommodation and wine repository (winery and wine cellar). From 2019, the International Festival of Classical Music will be held in Tsinandali Museum in August-September annually. So this is an additional reason why you should visit Kakheti. 20 kilometers from Telavi, on the mountain covered with deciduous trees, the Lopota river creates an artificial lake. In 2008, recreational zone was built in the surrounding area. Since then, many hotels have been opened, which is accompanied by popularity. In this lake there is fish too, so if you wish you can even fishing here.
Overall, Telavi belongs to the cities which is must visiting. You will definitely not forget the hospitality of this city, delicious dishes and beautiful architectural structures.
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