Safara Monastery

Safara Monastery

Ten kilometers away from Akhaltsikhe town, in the forest nearby Ghrele village, stands a 10th-century monastery. It’s name, Sapara, means “sheltered” and this fittingly describes the monastery, so wonderfully secluded from prying eyes by dense forest and yellowish cliffs.

The History and Architecture of Sapara Monastery

Sapara Monastery is not an easy place to find, but its popularity with worshippers and tourists is only growing. 

The grounds include buildings from various periods in the monastery complex’s rich history, among them churches, a bell tower, monks’ cells, agricultural buildings, and ruins of a fortified wall and palace of the Jaqelis. 

The Jaqeli Family ruled the Samtskhe Atabegate, the Georgian feudal principality, from the end of the 13th century, and this monastery was one of their residences.

The main structure is the domed, 13th-century St. Saba Gantsmendili Church. The oldest building, however, is the single-nave Dormition of the Virgin Church, which dates back to the 10th century.

The monastery is well-known for its unique frescos, which have been preserved in quite decent condition to this day.

During the Soviet period, Sapara was closed, albeit its revival was underway in the 1980s - even before restoring of the Georgian independence, after which it again began to flourish. Today, it is a functioning monastery.

You can reach the monastery through various forms of transportation from Akhaltsikhe. The landscapes along the way is dizzyingly beautiful - that’s why some tourists and worshippers preferring to walk the whole 10 kilometers to enjoy the sublime local nature.


We use third-party cookies in order to personalise your experience.
Cookie Policy