Discover Georgia
Stunning Snowy Racha in March
07 March, 2019
Racha is a mountainous region in northwestern Georgia. The area is located in the upper Rioni river valley surrounded by the Greater Caucasus Mountains. Racha had been part of Colchis and Caucasian Iberia since ancient times and its main town Oni was said to have been founded by King Parnajom of Iberia in the 2nd century BC. Upon creation of the unified Georgian kingdom in the 11th century, Racha became one of the duchies (saeristavo) within it. Racha has always attracted
Georgian as well as international tourists and its popularity is increasing every year.

Places to visit in Racha

Shaori Lake

Oni is the municipal center of Racha. According to the legend, the city was founded in the 2nd century BC. Oni’s Local Museum founded in 1937 is a must-see place in the city as it houses various archaeological artifacts, architectural elements, and ethnographic objects such as textiles, coins, and painting books.
Shaori is the largest lake in the region. Each season of the year gives its beauty to the lake and its surrounding area. It is a perfect place for picnics in summer. In autumn, the colorful trees that embrace the lake are reflected in the water. When the area is covered in snow, it turns into a magical place.

Nikortsminda is a small mountain village in Racha. It preserves a 10th-century Nikortsminda cathedral. The 17th-century frescoes inside and the exterior stone carving are spectacular. The Cathedral is on the Tentative List for status as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Tskhrajvari, Racha

One should visit Tskhrajvari and Khidikari resorts hemmed in by the Caucasus Mountains. The venues boast old churches, breathtaking views, and interesting legends.
Khidikari, Racha

Local cuisine

Shkmeruli (roast chicken in garlic sauce) is a very old Rachan dish and it is one of the most popular dishes in Georgian restaurants. It has to be noted that the name derives from one of the villages in Racha region of Georgia, Shkmeri, which is said to be the place where this food has originated.
Lobiani is enjoyed all year round and especially eaten on the Georgian holiday Barbaroba, or St. Barbara’s Day (December 17) and during the fast. It is delicious bean filled bread or pie. In Racha, the beans are boiled with smoked ham giving Lobiani a very special flavor.

Photo courtesy: Shermazana

Related stories:

Gona – little Switzerland in Racha, Georgia

The emotional story of a Rachan, who migrated to the USA 100 years ago

How to prepare the delicious Rachan Shkmeruli and combine it with wine

Lobiani with Ham – How to bake Georgian bean bread