A Short Tour through Old Tbilisi
The majority of the sights of Tbilisi are located in Old Tbilisi, so, on this short tour, you will find yourself in the very popular district of Abanotubani, where you will see churches and museums, as well as going to the restaurants, night clubs, and café-bars of Shardeni Street.
1Abanotubani in Tbilisi
Tbilisi's historic districts on both banks of the Mtkvari river have survived many wars and raids. One of the oldest among those districts is Abanotubani, mentioned in the legend of the founding of Tbilisi by King Vakhtang Gorgasali (Vakhtang I of Iberia) in the 5th century. The existence of the previous city is confirmed by the 4th-century map created by the Roman geographer Castorius, where Tbilisi is called "Philado". Tbilisi, a fortress city, is also mentioned in the 360s chronicle "Moktsevai Kartlisai" which tells the story of how Georgians converted to Christianity.
2Great Synagogue
The Jewish diaspora in multicultural Georgia is one of the oldest in the world. According to historical sources, Jews settled in Tbilisi immediately after the city was founded where they built a synagogue. Today, there are two active synagogues in Tbilisi. The larger of the two, Sephardic synagogue is located on Kote Abkhazi Street and was built in 1910.
3Leghvtakhevi Waterfall
Leghvtakhevi Gorge is the birthplace of Tbilisi’s famous sulfur waters, the very same waters that gave Tbilisi its name. Nowadays, it is one of the many popular tourist districts in old Tbilisi. If you walk its narrow lands, you’ll come upon a truly beautiful corner of the city - the Botanical Garden.
4Meidan Bazaar
Meidani Square in Old Tbilisi is a kind of place where the distant past, with all its charm and exoticism, comes to life. This ancient district of Tbilisi has been known as the main bazaar since time immemorial, not only in Georgia, but in all of the Caucasus. Merchants were coming there to trade from all over the East, and there were craftspeople workshops around there as all. “The market area is both a meeting place and a bazaar at the same time. You will not find so many different foreigners in the world as you will there. There are Armenians, Greeks, Jews, Persians, Indians, Turks, Moscovites, and Europeans,” wrote the French jeweler, gem seller, and traveler, Jean Chardin, when he visited Georgia in 1672 - 1673.
5Tbilisi Botanical Garden
If you follow a steep ascent from the sulfur baths in Old Tbilisi and enter the main gates at  Botanikuri Street 1, you’ll begin your journey into a garden that is four centuries old, and has been a botanical garden for the past 180 years.
6Metekhi Church
Proudly standing on the rocky bank of the river Mtkvari, Metekhi church and the adjacent monument of equestrian King Gorgasali look at Old Tbilisi, making up one of the most iconic landmarks in Tbilisi.
7Tbilisi Catholic Church of the Ascension of the Virgin Mary
While the Orthodox religion is predominant in Georgia, the Catholic community in Tbilisi has been active for centuries. It was only at the beginning of the 19th century, however, that the community constructed their own place of worship. This church, the Tbilisi Catholic Church of the Ascension of the Virgin Mary, is now the main place of worship for Tbilisi’s Catholic community.
8Jumah Mosque
In Old Tbilisi, at the foot of Narikala Fortress, near the Botanical Garden, stands the Jumah Mosque.
9St. Nicholas Church, Narikala
Tbilisi has a lot of historical monuments with interesting, sometimes funny and sometimes sad stories behind. St. Nicholas Church in the yard of Narikala Fortress has rather experienced a tragic episode in its long history.
Tbilisi is like polyphonic music. Words cannot adequately describe it. You have to experience it for yourself: evaluating its harmonies, savouring its complexity, and soaking in its history as you uncover your own personal relationship with the city.
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