After a long drive through Turkey along the Black Sea coast. Border crossing was easy with the help of very friendly personnel. To cross the border with a car, you need to arrange beforehand:
Some observations regarding traffic:
- Traffic is quite challenging.
- traffic lights are obeyed. That’s all, the rest is ignored. In case of eminent trouble: use the car horn.
- right hand drive is quite common and more cars than usual are missing bumpers and grilles…hmm.
- There are a lot of Toyota Prius cars – first generation – and some of these, similar to the other “normal” cars, produce blue smoke… But hey, It’s hybrid!
- There are a lot of Delica space wagons (L400) here.
- The L300 is quite exotic: it proves to be a head turner in this country.
For landscape, Georgia is diverse: the lowlands (still hilly) are almost tropical in this time of year (July) while in the mountains it can be compared to the Alps. Although peaks are higher.
Outside the cities where there is farm-able land, the private properties are forming a closed barrier along the roads, Making it a bit harder to find a camp spot. But still we found nice places despite this fact.
We already visited upper and lower Svaneti, Borjomi and Tblisi. We are continuing clockwise to see the most of Georgia.
Tblisi is a very nice city, at least the old city center. for the rest some really crowded roads run through it, because Tblisi is situated between the mountains.
We followed the militairy highway until we could see the border station with Russia. Stepantsminda is the main town in this area. we explored the Truso valley as far as was possible before reaching a military post. This valley was really nice. We visited the Trinity church and tried to explore two more valleys to the east, but we encountered military posts in each attempt. To enter you need 5 weeks to obtain a permit. You need to apply in Russian…
Sadly this makes the area to explore much smaller (see hatched areas on the map) so we left this area and went back south to explore another region.
Things to know
- Entering the country was easy, even in times of Covid
- Most (road) signs are, besides in the Georgian characters, also in Latin characters
- Mobile internet via magticom was very good and easy to top up: all over the country there are machines that look like a smaller version of an ATM. Here you can fill in your Georgian mobile number, insert banknotes in the and the value is added to your mobile account. with an app you can then choose what you want. (internet, sms, etc.)
- Most fuel stations accept a credit card. There a choice between euro diesel, normal diesel and gasoline. LPG is available too, dish connector is needed.
- It was not easy to find a good paper (road) map map in Georgia.