Khertvisi-Shalosheti Mountain-Atskvita

For hikers with a love of history, the route through the Aspindza Municipality of Samtskhe-Javakheti Region offers the chance to stretch one’s legs while also experiencing the greatest chronicles of Georgian history. 

About the Khertvisi – Shalosheti Mountain – Atskvita Route

Measuring 28 kilometres in length, this hiking route is best suited to the months of May through October.

It requires 2-3 days to cover the distance and you will need to spend a night in a tent.

Your hike begins in the village of Khertsvisi, approximately fourteen kilometres from Aspindza. Here, you’ll have the chance to see the medieval Khertvisi Fortress, which is on the tentative UNESCO World Heritage List.

From here, you’ll take the path towards Shalosheti Mountain, passing through some pristine wilderness on your way to the village of Atskvita. 

The Village of Atskvita

Despite its long and bloody history of invasion, the village of Atskvita has managed to preserve Georgian folklore and traditions to this very day.

Due to these frequent invasions, the people of Atskvita made use of subterranean shelters called darnas. These shelters were akin to a second house, so when invaders approached, the people of the village would retreat to these hidden dwellings. When the church above ground was being destroyed, the weddings ceremonies could still be held in these darnas. 

It is believed that these underground shelters come from the late Bronze Age.

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