Top 8 Kazbegi attractions – descriptions and photos

Kazbegi, Georgia – What sights to see

Going on a trip but don’t know which attractions in Kazbegi, Georgia are worth seeing first? Looking for inexpensive and varied entertainment for the whole family? We have selected the most interesting and popular places in Stepantsminda (modern name Kazbegi) to make your trip memorable for years to come. You will love this town, located at the foot of Mount Kazbek, for its landscapes, architecture and ancient buildings. So, here are 6 of the most beautiful sights of Kazbegi.

Kazbegi, Georgia

Gergeti Church

Built in the 14th century, the Trinity Church in Gergeti is one of the most visited attractions in Georgia. If you come to Kazbegi it is a must-see. The church is located at an altitude of over 2000 meters, right above the village of Stepantsminda. From there you can get excellent views of the mountains and villages of Georgia, so be sure to bring a good camera.

Gergeti Church of the Holy Trinity

There are two ways to get to the temple: on foot and by car. The ascent by yourself takes from 1.5 to 3 hours, depending on your physical condition. The road is quite steep and constantly goes uphill, in addition, on the way there are no facilities, so do not go to the church with children. It is better to hike early in the morning to avoid getting burned and sunstroke.

Cab drivers and cars of Kazbegi residents stand at the foot of the mountain

The ascent by car takes only 30-40 minutes. At the foot of the mountain are always cab drivers and cars of the inhabitants of Kazbegi, who are happy to take you to the most beautiful places and even arrange a small excursion (for a fee). Do not go to Trinity Church on your own car. First, only very powerful off-road vehicles are able to make this trip, and secondly the road is steep and quite dangerous, an untrained driver may experience difficulties.

  1. Choose the right clothes and shoes. Optimal for a trip to the kazbegi in the spring, summer and fall is a sweatshirt over a T-shirt, long pants and closed, comfortable shoes. Bring a backpack with food, water and a windbreaker (the weather changes frequently in this area). In the winter, be sure to wear a hat and scarf and a warm jacket, but not a coat, as it will not be comfortable to move around in.
  2. Do not go to the church in the fog or rain. The most beautiful view that opens from this landmark is the clouds that “lie” on the mountains. Here you can take stunning photos of Kazbegi, but only in clear weather.
  3. It is not necessary to walk along the road designed for cars. Although cars pass through here infrequently, it is quite dangerous, because it is strewn with stones. In addition, it is almost one and a half times longer than the one hikers usually walk on.

Made of stone, it has been perfectly preserved to this day. Women in pants and with uncovered head are not allowed to enter here, so you can take a free scarf and skirt at the entrance. Gergeti church is lit only by candles of the people who come. In it you can buy icons and crosses. They say that any wish made here is sure to come true. You should definitely visit this sacred place.

Mount Kazbek

Many writers, including Lermontov and Pushkin, have written about this mountain. I must say, not in vain. The scenery, which can be seen only here, is breathtaking, and from the top of the mountain, where the height reaches 5000 meters, the most stunning views in Georgia are opened.

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Mount Kazbek, Kazbegi Ascent to Kazbek

Only trained climbers can overcome this climb, but Kazbek is also worth a visit for ordinary travelers (for example, you can get to the Trinity Church, which we wrote about above). Also at an altitude of just over 400 meters there is a plateau, from which there is a unique view of the temple and Kazbegi. You can get to the plateau on foot by buying a map in the town or browsing the route on the Internet. The easiest way to get there is by cab (cost about 50 GEL).

On a side note! To visit this attraction in Kazbegi and spend a minimum of effort on the ascent, find experienced fellow travelers or go on a bus tour. Use the recommendations above to choose the right clothes and time for your trip.

Gwelet Falls.

It is located in a small mountain gorge, not far from the central Kazbegi highway. You can get there on foot or by car. Fascinating hike takes about an hour, but is not suitable for the elderly and people with poor physical fitness. Also be careful when hiking with small children – at times the path is very narrow and rocky. To get to the waterfall itself you need to walk across the mountain stream (a popular place for photos in Kazbegi and Georgia in general) on a wooden bridge and go upstream.

Gvelet waterfall

The way by car from the foot of the mountain to the equipped parking lot takes only 15 minutes, but to get to the waterfall, you must overcome 700 meters on foot. It is possible to bathe in it, but there is a strong current and there are always many tourists.

  1. To visit Gveleta Falls is better to be on a sunny day to get the best impressions and great pictures.
  2. The waterfall belongs to those sights that can be seen in Kazbegi both in winter and summer, because the surrounding areas are picturesque both under a blanket of snow and in a green outfit.
  3. There is still snow in early spring, so if you like to travel in warm weather, it is better to wait until late April. The best time to visit the falls is May-June, when it is at its fullest.
  4. Wear comfortable sports clothes and shoes, and bring food and water, as there are no stores in the area at all.

Truso Valley.

Truso valley

This wonderful place is not so popular with tourists, it is perfect for those who like a quiet and relaxing holiday. To fully enjoy the local scenery, you can go for a hike with tents, as there is usually no strong winds and it is quite warm in the spring and summer. The path through the valley ends with the border control, so make a route beforehand and don’t forget to take a map.

You can drive through the valley in an off-road vehicle if you book it in town. The trip takes 1-2 hours each way, not counting the stops. On the way you can look at the mountain river, a lake with mineral “boiling” water, a natural gorge, and abandoned fire towers. Right in the valley there is a cafe where you can relax and gain strength, and a small village, whose residents sell delicious cheese and other homemade products.

Jeep tour to Truso valley

  1. The best traveling companions for visiting Truso Valley are locals, usually gathered at the beginning of the trail. Not only will these wonderful guides save you money compared to official organizations, but they’ll show you the most beautiful sites, cook you dinner over a campfire, and make great company.
  2. The road through the valley can only be done by off-road vehicles. Don’t trust drivers in other cars – you’re likely to get stuck along the way.
  3. The road on foot takes 3-4 hours, so do not set off if you do not have enough physical fitness. The valley is very large and beautiful, a great place for a two- or three-day trip with tents.
  4. Don’t make the trip right after it rains or the next day. At this time, the already rough, rocky road becomes even more dangerous, making drivers raise fares with no guarantee that there won’t be trouble on the way.
  5. Make an appointment in advance with the driver about the time. Usually, they are waiting for tourists only one hour, so if you are late without agreeing in advance, you can stay in the valley without an escort.
  6. The best time to visit the site is late summer and early fall. During this period, it is the most suitable temperature and is full of beautiful plants.
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Bethlem Cave

At the oldest cave temple

Another fascinating place on Mount Kazbek, located at an altitude of 4000 meters. This is the oldest cave temple of Christians, formed in the 6th century AD, found by a Georgian mountain climber in the 1950s.

View of the abyss from inside

The cave is located between the glaciers, it is one of the unique places in Georgia, which should be seen in Kazbegi. Here were found cells of monks, tombstones and many other monuments, which are now stored in the city museum.

  1. It is very cold in the caves, so you should bring a scarf and a hat. Do not forget a spare pair of shoes – one pair should be comfortable (for the climb), the second – warm.
  2. If you want to visit this place, but do not have enough training, you can visit one of the similar caves (there are several on Kazbek, all at different heights), located a little lower.
Kazbegi National Park.

Radde birch

This is one of the most visited and popular reserves in Georgia. It is located in the mountains, the lowest section is located at an altitude of 1,400 meters. Much of the park’s area is protected, with rushing mountain rivers.

There are several forests with rare species of trees on the territory of the attraction. Subalpine birches, mountain ash trees and pines grow here. In addition, it is the only place where Radde’s birches, which are listed in the Red Book, grow.

In the southern part of the park are meadows with various types of shrubs and green plants. It is home to rare species of fauna, such as lynxes and mountain eagles, if you are lucky you can see them up close.

Kazbegi National Park

To date, the territory of the reserve is not equipped, there is almost no developed infrastructure and there is no full-fledged reception center for tourists. In Kazbegi National Park there are always walking and bus tours, which can be ordered both in advance and on arrival. In addition, you have the opportunity to enjoy a horseback ride on the territory of the reserve or become a participant in a specialized educational tour, which is organized daily for everyone to observe the animals of the park.

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Learn how to get to Stepantsminda on this page.

Walking tour in Kazbegi National Park

For a walk in the park, you should take two sets of clothes – warm and light. Since the park is located at different altitudes, the temperature varies depending on the part of the reserve you are walking through. For example, in areas above 2,000 meters, there is no summer as such, it is always cold and everything is covered with snow.

We hope that our selection and tips will help you to visit the most interesting sights in Kazbegi, Georgia. It is a beautiful city where you can enjoy a relaxing holiday and insanely beautiful scenery. Have a great trip!

All attractions near Kazbegi are marked on the map in Russian.

Video: views of Stepantsminda from the air and sights in the neighborhood.

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Kazbegi (Stepantsminda) – a town at the foot of the mountain

Kazbegi (Stepantsminda)

Kazbegi in Georgia is the administrative center and the only town among the settlements of Kazbegi municipality, which is located in northern Georgia and is part of the Mtskheta-Mtianeti region.

Since 2007, this town was renamed Stepantsminda, but on some signs, shuttle buses and among the population uses the name “Kazbegi”.

Kazbegi (Stepantsminda) - a town at the foot of the mountain

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Location

Kazbegi is located in a mountainous area at the foot of Mount Kazbek in the central part of the mountainous region of the Greater Caucasus. This mountain is considered the highest in the whole Caucasus. Kazbegi is 165 kilometers from Tbilisi and 43 kilometers from Vladikavkaz.

Kazbegi (Stepantsminda) - a town at the foot of the mountain

Location of Kazbegi on the map

The city was named not in honor of Mount Kazbegi, but in honor of writer Alexander Kazbegi – a native of this region.

On this territory flows the river Terek and a small river Snotskali. Therefore, the whole area has a convenient location – in the river gorge.

Kazbegi (Stepantsminda) - a town at the foot of the mountain

Through Kazbegi passes Military-Gruzinskaya road – a road through the Great Caucasus Range, which connects Russia with Georgia.

Kazbegi (Stepantsminda) - a town at the foot of the mountain

Church in the village of Sno, not far from the Georgian Military Road

Since Kazbegi area is near the border, 12 kilometers from Stepantsminda is located Georgian International Automobile Checkpoint (MACP).

The town and other settlements in the region are between 1,300 and 1,880 meters above sea level.

People with high blood pressure should be careful, as they may have health problems at this altitude.

Stepantsminda – weather and climate

Since the city is located in a mountainous area, the constant phenomena here are snow and mountain glaciers. All the time the city is blown by mountain winds, so there is not much vegetation on the territory – mostly firs and pines.

Winters in Kazbegi are mild, and the average temperature is -5 degrees Celsius. Summers are moderately warm, with an average temperature of 15 degrees Celsius.

Kazbegi (Stepantsminda) - a town at the foot of the mountain

Stepantsminda is good at any time of the year

The best time to visit Kazbegi is August, which is the warmest and sunniest month of the year.

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The climate of this region is favorable for climatotherapy – is the use of weather conditions for the recovery of the human body. Here are carried out:

  1. Treatment and prevention of respiratory organs thanks to the mountain clean and fresh air.
  2. Treatment with mineral waters, which are also present on the territory of Kazbegi. The medicinal springs are located 2 km from the town in the village of Pansheti.

There is a factory for bottling curative mineral water in Kazbegi, based on the curative springs. The water is called “Kazbegi”.

Arrangement of the city

Since the main feature of this region is nature, there are no special privileges of civilized life here, only the essentials. The city is small in size and population.

Kazbegi (Stepantsminda) - a town at the foot of the mountain

Stepantsminda town at the foot of Mount Kazbek

From the main square you have a great view of Mount Kazbek. The square is decorated with a monument to the poet Kazbegi, and nearby is a spring with healing water.

Of establishments in Stepantsminda there are several grocery stores, cafes and hotels. In stores you can find basic food, but prices here are higher than in other regions.

Cafes in the city are small and serve only traditional Georgian food.

Population

Historically the region was called Moheve, and is populated by the Moheves. Like any mountain people, the local population is characterized by a certain harshness. But visitors are treated well.

In dealing with the Mohewa you have to be polite and respectful.

Sights of Kazbegi

The main attractions of this region are natural sites and several ancient architectural structures.

Mount Kazbek

Kazbek is one of the most famous peaks of the Caucasus Mountains (5033 m). Georgians call it Mkinvartsveri, which means “mountain with an icy peak,” it is covered with eternal snow and glaciers.

Kazbegi (Stepantsminda) - a town at the foot of the mountain

Kazbek can be photographed from the town of Stepantsminda, but it is not always possible, because clouds often cover the top. There is even a belief that Kazbegi opens its peak only for the pure of heart people.

This mountain is a great place for mountain climbing, but if your plans do not include conquering the top, you can organize a hike to the Trinity Church in Gergeti at 2170 meters or climb higher to the weather station at 3700 meters.

Meteorological Station

The meteorological station is a stone building, it is always inhabited, and representatives of the local population regularly come up here and bring food. There is a place for setting up a tent near the weather station and you have to pay 10 GEL for it. It is also possible to spend the night at the station itself, which costs 25 GEL. If you go a little lower, there is no charge for pitching a tent and spending the night.

Churches and temples

One of the symbols of Kazbegi is Trinity Church in Gergeti, in Georgian it is called Tsminda Sameba. This architectural monument dates back to the 14th century.

Kazbegi (Stepantsminda) - a town at the foot of the mountain

Church of the Holy Trinity on Mount Kazbek

The temple is popular with tourists because of its location. It towers over the mountain glaciers at an altitude of 2170 meters, it can be seen from the town of Stepantsminda.

Also in Kazbegi there is a temple of St. Nicholas. Next to the temple there is a museum of local history. On Saturday and Sunday, the museum is closed.

Another fascinating and mysterious place is Bethlehem Cave, which was the cells of the monks. It used to be closed with an iron gate. After the opening of the cave, the gate was placed in the Kazbegi Museum. The cave was discovered by a mountaineer in the 1940s. Ancient valuable objects and coins of 10-15 centuries were found in it. Who created this monastery among the mountains and glaciers is still unknown.

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For tourists will also be interesting walks along the Military Georgian Road and to the mineral lake, where everyone can collect healing water.

Entertainment and tourism

Kazbegi (Stepantsminda) - a town at the foot of the mountain

The paraglider flight

Entertainment as such in this region there is no, but there are good conditions for active recreation and extreme tourism.

  1. Mountain sports and mountain climbing on Mount Kazbek, as well as trekking (hiking).
  2. Paragliding – flights are performed by athletes who are professionally engaged in this sport. But tourists are also given the opportunity to admire Kazbegi from a bird’s eye view as paraglider passengers.
  3. Horseback riding.
  4. Cycling – there are bicycle rental shops in the city.
  5. Routes for motocross and enduro (motocross and enduro competitions).
  6. Rafting – rafting on mountain rivers.

How to get to Kazbegi

The only transport you can get to this region is a shuttle bus or a car.

From Russia you can get by car through the Georgian IACP, from Tbilisi – by shuttle bus (15 GEL) from Didube station or by car.

The only means of transportation in the region is by car. For a fee locals can take you to your destination, or you can rent a car. Climbing to the Gergeti monastery from Stepantsminda costs about 50 GEL.

Which hotel to stay at

You can stay in Kazbegi in a hotel, guesthouse or hostel. Also you can stay overnight with local people – people willingly let tourists stay in their homes for about 10 lari.

Hotel “Kazbegi Rooms” in Stepantsminda is a 4-star hotel at the foot of Mount Kazbek. The hotel is a 10-minute walk from the bus stop, where the shuttle from Tbilisi arrives.

The hotel has all the amenities, fitness center, casino, bike rental. There is a lobby bar with a library and free Wi-Fi, a restaurant and a terrace overlooking Kazbek. The restaurant serves international cuisine.

Kazbegi (Stepantsminda) - a town at the foot of the mountain

Kazbegi Hotel terrace overlooking the mountains

Stefantsminda Hotel – 3 floors and 21 rooms. The hotel has a restaurant and a terrace overlooking the mountains. There is no Internet at the hotel.

Cost: 50 GEL per person. If you include food, the accommodation will be 90 GEL per person.

Want to save money on your trip? Write us! Viva-Georgia was created to make your holidays in Georgia popular and affordable, so we offer 5-25% discounts for accommodation in hotels and help you to rent the best cars.

You can also stay at a guesthouse.

Gestahouse “Lomi” is located in the center of Kazbegi, in the central square. It has only 5 rooms – single, double and triple. Of amenities there is a common shower and toilet, a living room with a TV and a landline phone.

The price: for a night – 15 GEL, with double meals – 25 GEL.

Kazbegi captures your imagination with the beauty of its nature. If you are tired of the heat and noise of the big city, the Kazbegi region is a great place to enjoy the silence and serenity of wild mysterious nature.

Would you like to come here? Viva-Georgia team will organize a trip or a tour for you, we’ll make the best route and help you in your journey.

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