Khikhani Fortress

Khikhani Fortress

Atop a steep cliff in the Khulo Municipality of Ajara stands the medieval fortress of Khikhani. While much of this historical building has fallen into ruins over the centuries, four towers, a church, the walls, a wine cellar, a well, and a tone oven still remain as a testament to the fortress’ existence.

The History of Khikhani Fortress

Historians believe that Khikhani Fortress probably dates back to the 10th - 13th centuries. With its lofty vantage point of 2,236 metres above sea level, it would have been able to watch over trade routes and, in times of war, serve as an impregnable shelter for Georgian nobles.

According to legend, a secret tunnel exists that connected Khikhani to Zarzma, where Queen Tamar used to go to pray at Skhalta Monastery. Indeed, the fortress’ construction is said to be linked to Queen Tamar, and lends the structure its other name: Tamar’s Fortress.

This place, where legends and history come to life, will be of especial interest to hikers and lovers of adventure tourism, as there is a gorgeous and quite challenging 1.5-kilometre hiking trail leading up to the fortress. 

The fortress is located 110 kilometres from Batumi. If you’re interested in adding some historical and cultural elements to your exploration of western Georgia, a visit to Khikhani is a must.

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