The mountain pearl of the Caucasus region, Georgia has emerged as one of the trendiest European destinations. An easy visa regime coupled with affordable hotel stays and low cost of transport makes it a true backpacker’s delight. On top of that, add delicious food and wine, historic cities brimmed with culture, and unrivalled, and you’ve got an all-weather destination in Georgia. However, over the past few years, Georgia is also getting popular for its skiing and scenic ski resorts.
Complete Guide to Skiing in Georgia
Georgia in winters is magical. Snow in Georgia (December to March) turns the country into a white paradise, opening the country’s popular ski resorts and back-country skiing vistas, making the winter months of December, January and February the best time to go skiing in Georgia. However, it is possible to go skiing even in the months of March and April in ski resorts like Gudauri. Gudauri is the crown jewel of Georgia’s skiing but the country has few more resorts like Bakuriani, Tetnuldi and Hatsvali (Mestia), and Goderdzi. Among the top reasons to select Georgia as your next best skiing destination in Georgia are easy visa policies, delicious food and drinks, plenty of snow trails, well-maintained ski lifts, and safe and hospitable environment.
The ski resorts of Georgia were once a well-kept secret in Europe. Nowadays, tourists in large numbers are flocking the ski resorts of Georgia thanks to better and improved ski gear, hotel facilities, cheaper rates as compared to Alpine/ European skiing. The country has four amazing ski resorts that offer wonderful avenues for skiing and winter sports to beginners and pros alike.
Check out the 4 best ski resorts in Georgia
1. Gudauri – The best ski resort in Georgia
Gudauri is the country’s most popular ski resort because of its closeness to Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia. Located at an altitude of 2200 metres above sea level, it takes around two hours to reach the Gudauri through the Georgian Military Highway. This well-equipped ski resort offers a wide array of ski slopes that suits age and ability levels of different skiers. It has a well-developed ski town, hotels, restaurants, ski and chair lifts. The total length of Gudauri ski slopes is around 34.8 kms and the resort has around 14 ski lifts. Gudauri also has an English-speaking ski school that caters to international travellers. Gudauri lies in the Greater Caucasus Mountain Range and is blessed with stunning vistas of snow-capped peaks, snow-covered slopes, tree line; and the best part, it’s an avalanche-safe zone. One can try back-country skiing, heli-skiing, snowboarding, paragliding, and tobogganing.
2. Bakuriani – The family and kids-friendly ski resort in Georgia
Bakuriani is a wonderful ski resort that is perfect for families and children. Just a 4-hours drive from Tbilisi, Bakuriani is located near Borjomi. Positioned at an altitude of 1,700 meters above the sea level, Bakuriani is surrounded by coniferous forests and blessed with crisp, clean air making it a wonderful ski resort in Georgia. It receives plenty of sunshine and the average snow cover remains good for skiing and winter sports. The ski town has a fair number of hotels and restaurants and is reachable by train and car. Bakuriani ski resort mostly caters to domestic tourists and therefore, prices are also lower than other popular ski resorts in Georgia.
3. Goderdzi – The newest addition to Georgia’s ski resorts
One of the newest Georgia ski resorts, Godredzi is located in Adjara region, just two hours away from the seaside town of Batumi, and lies at an altitude of 2000 metres above sea level. This all-year-round resort offers several activities like hiking, horseback riding, and paragliding in summers while it turns into a wonderful ski resort in the winters, offering everything from skiing, snowboarding to freeriding, cat skiing and winter hiking! The area has wonderful landscapes and fresh, mountain air, making for a very soothing experience for travellers. The resort has two cable lines and around 8 km long ski tracks which are best for intermediate freeride skiers. One can also visit the local mineral spring waters and one-of-a-kind fossil forest.
4. Mestia – Skiing in Georgia’s special region of Svaneti
Mestia is the capital of the Svaneti region in Georgia. The region has its own unique language, architecture, and cuisine. The town is located in the Upper Svaneti and is known for its remote villages and medieval defence towers. Mestia boast of two amazing ski resorts – Tetnuldi ski resort and Hatsvali ski resort. These resorts are covered by beautiful pine forest and are ideal for enjoying glade Skiing. Mestia has well-developed tourism facilities and is becoming a popular winter destination. The town has a fair share of hotels and restaurants serving delightful Svan cuisine. However, due to lack of English speaking guides, skiing in Mestia is mostly meant for expert skiers. In Mestia’s two amazing ski resorts, skiers can enjoy backcountry skiing, glade skiing, and cross country skiing.
READ MORE: Interesting Fun Facts About Georgia, Europe