Hiking at Shaori Water Reservoir

If you love hiking through beautiful landscapes, then the hike from Shkmeri Village to Shaori is going to be a dream come true! Starting in Shkmeri Village, twenty-one kilometres outside the city of Oni, you’ll climb to the top of towering Khikhata Mountain, pass by the picturesque Lake of Love, see numerous historic sites, and eventually end at the popular playground of Shaori Reservoir, where you’ll have access to watersports, karst caves, birdwatching, and its generally relaxing vibe.
Racha-Lechkhumi & Kvemo Svaneti

The Route

Those attempting this lengthy hike should come adequately prepared, with practical shoes, warm clothes, and enough drinking water to see you through the day. While you can find drinking water in Mravaldzali Village and from the springs around Shaori, it never hurts to come prepared!

Your hike begins in Shkmeri Village, where you’ll cross the Kheori River and begin the six to seven kilometre hike towards Khikhata Mountain. Your view from atop the mountain, at 2,239 metres above sea level, will be one shrouded in clouds, and with a breathtaking view of the surrounding landscape.

From here, you’ll descend to Mravaldzali Village, next to the famous “Lake of Love”, Cholevi Lake. Due to its unique shape, this lake is a popular spot for photographers and lovers alike.

You’ll then head towards the city of Ambrolari en route to Shaori Reservoir. This impressive man-made lake covers an area of 7.1 kilometres.

What Will You Find? - Sights and Activities

Along the way, you’ll see a number of fascinating landmarks. In Mravaldzali there are beautiful Rachan houses and extraordinary views of the Caucasus Mountains. Saint George Church, an 11th-century hall-style church, with inscriptions and fragments of art from the 11th century, is also in Mravaldzali. 

At Cholevi Lake you will not only find exceptional views, but also picnic areas, excellent fishing conditions, and even the option to take a boat ride. 

Shaori Lake offers similar activities, but you can also try your hand at birdwatching or foraging for mushrooms in the nearby forest of box trees, rhododendrons, beech, and Caucasian firs.

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