Discover Batumi
15 August, 2018
Discover Batumi
Batumi is the second-largest city of Georgia, located on the coast of the Black Sea in the country'ssouthwest. It is situated in a subtropical zone.

Since 2010, Batumi has been transformed by the construction of modern high-rise buildings, as well as the restoration of classical 19th-century edifices lining its historic Old Town.

Batumi has a humid subtropical climate and is the wettest city in both Georgia and the entire Caucasus Region.There are plenty of places to visit and see in the
city itself as well as nearby.

Batumi Boulevard
, probably the oldest attraction in Batumi. Construction of the Boulevard began in 1881, when the Governor of the Batumi District assigned the German gardener, Reseller, to create a park alongside the sea shore of Batumi’s Old Town. Nowadays, Batumi Boulevard has reached a length of around 7 kilometres and is approximately divided into ‘new’ and ‘old’ boulevards. The original and beautiful park is still there, with the addition of modern sculptures, benches and fountains. During the height of the summer season the seashore is busy with cafés, restaurants, beach bars and clubs. In the off-season it’s simply a beautiful sea-side boulevard. Stroll along at any time of the day, a quiet morning or hot afternoon, but you must also go there just before sunset. Seeing the sun sink into the sea is sublime and unforgettable.
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Batumi Boulevard

Statue of Ali and Nino, statue of eternal love, located at Batumi Bay is an iconic landmark in Batumi. Made by Georgian artist Tamara Kvesitadze, the figures move towards each other, merge into one piece and then move away from each other every 10 minutes.

The idea behind the creation of this magnificent statue came from a book of the same name by Kurban Said. The book is about a romantic relationship between Azerbaijani Muslim Ali and a Georgian Christian daughter of a nobleman in Baku in 1918.
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Statue of Ali and Nino

Piazza Square is one of the most beautiful places in Batumi, yet as its name suggests, it is distinctly Italian and so a little incongruous in Georgia. The Square covers about 5700 square metres and is surrounded by the Piazza complex, which includes a hotel, a couple of restaurants, a café and a bar. The architecture is distinguished by mosaics and stained glass art. Live music is performed here daily in café La Brioche and the square usually hosts concerts of world famous musicians visiting Batumi.
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Piazza Square

Batumi Dolphinarium
was opened in 1975. At the time it was the first dolphinarium in the whole of the Soviet Union. Its facilities were upgraded in 2011. New pools, water filtration and temperature systems were installed and seating capacity increased to 700 spectators.

The Dolphinarium is home to 8 Bottlenose Dolphins (called Zoro, Maya, Monica, Tsitsi, Flipper, Marco, and the little ones – Nini and Kviria) and several California Sea Lions.

The dolphin demonstration is an educational performance as well as an opportunity to show off the dolphin’s love of play.The dolphins perform dances, play with rings and balls, and balance on their tails.Visitors also have an opportunity to swim with the dolphins.

During the summer there are three shows per day at 14:00, 17:00 and 21:00. There are special facilities for people with disabilities.
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Batumi Dolphinarium, Photo courtesy: www.dolphinarium.ge

Batumi is full of skyscrapers, and the Alphabet Tower is one such example. It expresses the uniqueness of the Georgian alphabet and people. Situated near the Ali and Nino statue, the tower is a main landmark of the city. The 130-metre-tall building combines the design of a DNA strand holding 33 letters of the Georgian alphabet, with each aluminum letter being four meters tall. There is an elevator shaft situated within the building which leads to the very top of the structure, and which provides panoramic views.
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Alphabet Tower, Photo courtesy: https://theculturetrip.com

Batumi Cathedral of the Mother of God is a Georgian Orthodox cathedral, originally built as a Catholic church early in the 1900s. A Gothic Revival design church was built as a Roman Catholic church through the sponsorship of the Zubalashvili brothers, who were Georgian businessmen, between 1898 and 1902. During the Soviet period the church was closed and converted into a high-voltage laboratory. In 1989 the church reverted back again to a Georgian Orthodox Church. The Roman Catholics in Batumi now use the Church of the Holy Spirit, a modern structure consecrated in 2000.

There are also “must-see” places nearby, but outside the city of Batumi.
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Batumi Cathedral of the Mother of God, Photo courtesy: https://en.wikipedia.org

The Batumi Botanical Garden is a 108 hectare area of land 9 km north of the city of Batumi. Located at a place called Mtsvane Kontskhi ("The Green Cape") on the Black Sea shore, it was one of the largest botanical gardens in the former Soviet Union.

The Batumi Botanical Garden was created by the Russian botanist Andrey Nikolayevich Krasnov (1862-1914), brother of General Pyotr Krasnov, in the 1880s and officially opened on November 3rd, 1912. He was aided by two skilled gardeners and designers– the French D’Alphonse and the Georgian Yason Gordeziani.

Under the Soviet Union, the garden was further expanded and developed(from 1925) into a principal institution for the study of Caucasian maritime subtropical cultures.

Currently, the garden consists of eight floristic sectors, those of the humid Caucasus subtropics, East Asia, New Zealand, South America, the Himalayas, Mexico, Australia, and of the Mediterranean. The garden collection comprises 2037 taxonomic units of woody plants, including 104 of Caucasus origin.
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Batumi Botanical Garden, Photo courtesy: http://bbg.ge

Gonio Fortress
,
previously called Apsaros, or Apsaruntos, is a Roman fortification in Adjara, 15 km south of Batumi, at the mouth of the Chorokhi river.
The oldest reference to the fortress is by Pliny the Elder in the Natural History (1st century AD). In the 2nd century AD it was a well-fortified Roman city within Colchis. The town was also known for its theatre and hippodrome. In addition, there was a short-lived Genoese trade factory at the site.

The grave of Saint Matthias, one of the twelve apostles, is believed to be inside the Gonio fortress. However, this has not been verified as the Georgian government currently prohibits digging near the supposed grave site. Other archaeological excavations are however taking place in the grounds of the fortress, focusing on Roman layers.

Gonio is currently experiencing a tourism boom. Most tourists come in the summer months to enjoy beaches that are generally regarded as the cleanest.

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Gonio Fortress, Photo courtesy: www.georgianholidays.com

Mtirala (crying) National Park
is a protected area in Adjara region. Covering approximately 15,698 hectares (38,790 acres) in the western Lesser Caucasus.

The park's "pristine Colchic humid broad-leaved and mixed forests" include sweet chestnut and Oriental beech woods with pontic rhododendron, cherry laurel and Colcic box understories and a variety of lianas. Wildlife recorded here include Brown bear, Roe deer, and Wild boar. And birds including the Booted eagle, Eagle owl and Golden oriole. Amphibians inhabiting the park include the Caucasian salamander, Caucasian toad, Eurasian marsh frog and Caucasian viper. Mount Mtirala is one of the most humid areas in the country. The name Mtirala (meaning "to cry")and is derived from the 4,520 millimetres (178 in) of annual rainfall that falls here, making it one of the wettest areas of the former Soviet Union.
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Mtirala National Park, Photo courtesy: https://en.wikipedia.org

The Kintrishi Protected Landscape
is a protected landscape in Kobuleti District, near Batumi. It is located in a picturesque valley of the river Kintrishi, between the village of Tskhemvani and the Khino Mountains, at an altitude of 300-2,500 metres above sea level. Kintrishi State Nature Reserve was established in 1959 and its purpose is to protect forest and the endemic species, and flora and fauna of Shuamta.

The Protected Landscape was established in 2007 building on the earlier established Kintrishi State Nature Reserve: the total area of nature reserve is 10,703 ha, and protected landscape amounts to 3,190 ha. Protected Areas Administration their visitors two types of tourist trails, one on foot and another by horse. Tourist trails are located 300-2,000 metres above sea level. Picnic and camping places are arranged along the trails. Places where fires can be lit are also allocated. Visitors can visit the area at any time of the year. The Visitor Centre can help organize guides, horses and/or local transport.
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Kintrishi Protected Landscape, Photo courtesy: http://apa.gov.ge

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