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Georgia

Welcome to Georgia

Explore Our Best Destinations Georgia

From its green valleys spread with vineyards to its old churches and watchtowers perched in fantastic mountain scenery, Georgia (Saqartvelo, საქართველო) is one of the most beautiful countries on earth and a marvellous canvas for walkers, horse riders, cyclists, skiers, rafters and travelers of every kind. Equally special are its proud, high-spirited, cultured people: Georgia claims to be the birthplace of wine, and this is a place where guests are considered blessings and hospitality is the very stuff of life.

A deeply complicated history has given Georgia a wonderful heritage of architecture and arts, from cave cities to ancient cathedrals to the inimitable canvases of Pirosmani. Tbilisi, the capital, is still redolent of an age-old Eurasian crossroads. But this is also a country moving forward in the 21st century, with spectacular contemporary buildings, a minimal crime rate and ever-improving facilities for the visitors who are a growing part of its future.

Discover Georgia is a multi-profile travel agency, which was founded in 2011. Our company serves for the proliferation of Georgian culture and traditions locally, as well as internationally. In the process of globalization maintaining of the national traditions is a big challenge.

Consequently, promotion of Georgian folk traditions, historical places, sports competitions and cuisine is important for fostering Georgia’s image as of an ancient European country.

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Tbilisi(Discover more Tbilisi)

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Gagra(Discover more Gagra)

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Capital of Georgia: Tbilisi
Official language: Georgian
Georgian language is a Kartvelian language spoken by Georgians. It is the official language of Georgia. Georgian is written in its own writing system, the Georgian script.

Georgian is the literary language for all regional subgroups of Georgians, including those who speak other Kartvelian languages: Svans, Mingrelians and the Laz.
The currency: Georgian lari
Climate: The climate in Georgia is a major reason so many people continue to move to the state. While climate varies among the state’s six land regions, all areas of the state are colored by four well-defined seasons.

A warm summer brings an average temperature of 80 degrees and the added benefit of “Indian summer” stretching into October.

Autumn is brisk, with brilliant fall foliage throughout the state, particularly in the mountains.

Winters are brief, with average temperatures in the upper 40s and light snowfall several times a year in the north.

Springtime is glorious, as Georgia is famous for its dogwoods, azaleas and other flora.
Population: 10.31 million (2016)
President: Giorgi Margvelashvili
Prime Minister: Giorgi Kvirikashvili
Calling code: The international calling code is +995

LOCATION, SIZE, AND EXTENT

Georgia is located in southeastern Europe, bordering the Black Sea, between Turkey and Russia. Comparatively, the area occupied by Georgia is slightly smaller than the state of South Carolina, with a total area of 69,700 sq km (26,911 sq mi). Georgia shares boundaries with Russia on the N and E , Azerbaijan on the E and S , Armenia and Turkey on the S , and the Black Sea on the W . Georgia’s land boundary totals 1,461 km (906 mi). Its coastline is 310 km (192 mi). Its capital city, T’bilisi, is located in the southeastern part of the country

Weather & Climate

Best time to visit

Settled between the Black Sea and Caucasus Mountains, the tourism of Georgia, Europe has grown manifolds over the years. Filled with quaint towns and beautiful churches and monasteries, the country of Georgia is known for its soaring mountains, incredible wine, delicious food, and friendly locals. What’s more, Georgia is a popular tourist destination all around the year!

As there is no peak-season or off-season variation, Georgia can be visited anytime of the year. Thanks to its geographical location, it enjoys a varied climate, which is mostly sub-tropical. The summers here are hot and humid, and winters are mildly cold. While the northern mountain peaks are permanently snowbound, the west coastal areas by the Black Sea enjoy a year-round balmy weather. So, in case you’re wondering what would be the best time to visit Georgia, or its capital Tbilisi, be assured that it can be visited throughout the year.

Georgia in summer

Summer (June to August) – Tbilisi weather in July

The average temperature during summers in Georgia ranges from 20 to 30 degree Celsius, which means it is pleasantly warm during this time. Most resorts in Georgia during summers are generally packed with tourists. Be warned however, that coastal areas will be awkwardly humid for those not used to tropical climates.

Autumn (September to November)

Georgia is beautiful in autumn, with frequent rainfalls, multi-colored trees, and frost-covered grounds. We recommend you pack quick-dry clothing and rain gear because autumn is typically Georgia’s wet season.

Georgia in winter
Winter (December to February)

The weather in Georgia during winters is usually very cold, with temperatures ranging from 2 to 6 degree Celsius (nights are even chillier, with temperature often dipping below 0 degrees). Snow is not uncommon, and thus, Georgia in winters is an ideal place for winter sports enthusiasts, especially those interested in skiing.

Geography

Northern Georgia is covered by the southern edges of the Appalachian Mountains.

The heavily forested Blue Ridge Mountains, famed for a bluish color when seen from a distance, form the eastern front of the Appalachians, from Georgia to Pennsylvania. The state’s highest point is located here; Brasstown Bald, at 4,784 ft.

The Appalachian Mountains, about 1,500 miles in length, extend through Georgia, up through the New England states and on into the Canadian provinces of New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Quebec.

Moving south, the land lowers into the rolling red-clay hills of the Piedmont Plateau, then continues to slope gradually south into the fertile lowlands of the coastal plain and the Atlantic Ocean coastline.

Stone Mountain, just east of Atlanta, is really not a mountain at all, but rather the largest single block of granite in the world. It’s almost 6,000 ft. long and stands over 800 ft. tall.

Numerous sea islands front its deeply indented Atlantic Ocean coastline. Also in the south, scattered swampy areas are found, with the largest one being the Okefenokee Swamp along the border with Florida.

Georgia is drained by numerous rivers. Major ones include the Chattachoochee, Flint, Ocmulgee and Savannah. In addition, the state contains many manmade lakes and reservoirs.

Population

According to the 2010 United States Census, Georgia had a population of 9,687,653. In terms of race and ethnicity, the state was 59.7% White (55.9% Non-Hispanic White Alone), 30.5% Black or African American, 0.3% American Indian and Alaska Native, 3.2% Asian, 0.1% Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander, 4.0% from Some Other Race, and 2.1% from Two or More Races. Hispanics and Latinos of any race made up 8.8% of the population.

As of 2011, 58.8% of Georgia’s population younger than age 1 were minorities (meaning that they had at least one parent who was not non-Hispanic white) compared to other states like California with 75.1%, New York with 55.6%, and Texas with 69.8%

In the 1980 census 1,584,303 Georgians claimed English ancestry out of a total state population of 3,994,817, making them 40% of the state, and the largest ethnic group at the time. Today, many of these same people claiming that they are of “American” ancestry are actually of English descent, and some are of Scots-Irish descent; however, their families have lived in the state for so long, in many cases since the colonial period, that they choose to identify simply as having “American” ancestry or do not in fact know their own ancestry. Their ancestry primarily goes back to the original thirteen colonies and for this reason many of them today simply claim “American” ancestry, though they are of predominately English ancestry.

As of 2004, 7.7% of Georgia’s population was reported as under 5 years of age, 26.4% under 18, and 9.6% were 65 or older. Also as of 2004, females made up approximately 50.6% of the population and African Americans made up approximately 29.6%.

Historically, about half of Georgia’s population was composed of African Americans who, before the Civil War, were almost exclusively enslaved. The Great Migration of hundreds of thousands of blacks from the rural South to the industrial North from 1914–70 reduced the African American population.

Georgia had the second-fastest-growing Asian population growth in the U.S. from 1990 to 2000, more than doubling in size during the ten-year period.[44] In addition, according to census estimates, Georgia ranks third among the states in terms of the percent of the total population that is African American (after Mississippi and Louisiana) and third in numerical Black population after New York and Florida. Georgia was the state with the largest numerical increase in the black population from 2006 to 2007 with 84,000.

Georgia is the state with the third-lowest percentage of older people (65 or older), at 12.8 percent (as of 2015).

The colonial settlement of large numbers of Scottish American, English American and Scotch-Irish Americans in the mountains and piedmont, and coastal settlement by some English Americans and African Americans, has strongly influenced the state’s culture in food, language and music. The concentration of Africans imported to coastal areas in the 18th century repeatedly from rice-growing regions of West Africa led to the development of Gullah-Geechee language and culture in the Low Country among African Americans. They share a unique heritage in which African traditions of food, religion and culture were continued more than in some other areas. In the creolization of Southern culture, their food ways became an integral part of all Southern cooking in the Low Country.

Marriage, Family, and Kinship

Marriage Marriage is based on the free will of the partners and rarely is prearranged, although that sometimes happens in rural areas, especially in the Muslim population. Mutual attraction is the most common reason for marriage, although for older couples, economic benefits or comfort may be more important. In Muslim areas, unofficial polygamy exists in rare cases. There is a significant incidence of early marriage, but there is a general tendency for later marriage. Married persons who maintain a joint household have equal rights to their possessions.

Domestic Unit The basic household in cities is the nuclear family, but frequently, grandparents live together with the family and help to bring up the children. In rural and mountainous areas, a few extended families exist, usually including several brothers with their parents and children. In this case the father of the family may control the resources, and assign tasks on the farm, while the mother is responsible for keeping the household. Younger members gradually split off, building a separate house in the neighborhood.

Inheritance If there is no will after a person’s death, the property is divided among all the children, including daughters, or among the closest relatives if there are no children.

Kin Groups People ascribe great importance to kinship. Relatives up to the third or even fourth generation are considered close, and are expected to share both happy events and grievances. They meet regularly at important social events such as weddings and funerals, and neglecting the social duty to attend is disapproved. The kinship system played an important role in cushioning the effects of economic crisis when the social welfare system was disrupted. Extended kinship relations may create clientelism and protectionism as well as organized crime.

Religion

Religious Beliefs The great majority of the population belongs to the Georgian Orthodox Church, an Eastern (Greek) Orthodox church. Confessional

An apple seller in Tbilisi A wide variety of fruits are grown in Georgia, although arable land is limited.

An apple seller in Tbilisi A wide variety of fruits are grown in Georgia, although arable land is limited.

Identity is a strong cultural factor that defines the prevailing system of social values. The majority of Georgians in Ajara are Sunni Muslims, as are a few inhabitants of the Meskheti region. There are also Shiite Muslims among the Turkic inhabitants in the southeast (Azeris) and Sunni Muslims among the Abkhaz, Ossetians, and Greeks. Several Protestant churches are active, with the Baptists being the most successful. Most ethnic Armenians belong to the Gregorian Christian Church. There are small groups of Yezid Kurds, Russian Molokans and Dukhobors, and Jews; the population of the latter two groups has diminished because of emigration. New emerging cults and sects, such as Jehovah’s Witnesses, meet with hostility and aggression from the established churches and the population.

Rituals and Holy Places The great majority of Orthodox religious ceremonies are carried out by priests in churches. The most important ceremonies, especially those celebrating Easter and Christmas, are carried out by the Patriarch in Svetitskhoveli Cathedral in the ancient town of Mtskheta, or in the Zion Cathedral in Tbilisi. Daily

Most Georgians belong to the Georgian Orthodox Church. Daily services are held, but many seldom attend.

Most Georgians belong to the Georgian Orthodox Church. Daily services are held, but many seldom attend.

Services are held in churches, as well as weddings and baptisms. In some cases priests are invited to other places to bless new initiatives, buildings or organizations. Many people claim to be religious but seldom attend religious ceremonies. In mountainous regions, people who self-identify as Christian continue to follow rituals of pagan origin.

Death and the Afterlife Many of popular beliefs and rituals regarding death and afterlife stem from a mixture of Christian and pagan concepts, with many superstitions and cultural borrowings. Respecting the deceased is a very important part of social life, and much time is spent attending funerals and wakes and caring for graves. Although people believe in an eternal afterlife, there is no clear understanding of its nature; people observe rules and try to reduce their grief by ritualizing the mourning process.

The Arts and Humanities

Support for the Arts. Although the state is supposed to support arts through the Ministry of Culture, there are few funds that rarely find the proper application. Some professional unions, once controlled by the government, continue to claim state support despite contributing little to cultural life. Artists whose work depends less on linguistic restrictions, such as painters and craftsmen, look for financial support and markets abroad. Many writers and artists work in politics or business or try to couple them with their art; it is not uncommon for film makers and writers to have a position in the parliament or other agencies of the government.

Literature:  Literature is in a dire condition because of the political and economic crisis that started long before independence. There are only a few young talented writers and poets and almost none from the older generation. The literary market is dominated by translations of bestsellers, detective stories, and erotica.

Graphic Arts: Graphic arts are popular, and many young artists are demonstrating high levels of creativity and skill. Many artists sell their work in the West.

Performance Arts: The performance arts are in a crisis because limitations imposed by language hinder the art from finding a wider audience. Several ballet dancers, opera singers, and theater directors have achieved success in other countries. However, in Tbilisi, performance art and dramatic art are alive and rich.

Food and Economy

Food in Daily Life: The greatest culinary divide is between the western and eastern region. In the west, there is a greater emphasis on vegetarian food, predominantly prepared with walnuts. Herbs and spices, especially tarragon, basil, coriander, feuille Grec, and pepper make western Georgian food hot and spicy. Cheese usually is made from cow’s milk and is eaten with either corn bread or a corn and flour porridge. Khachapuri, a kind of cheese pizza, is common.

In the eastern area, the food is heavier, with more of an accent on mutton and pork. Wheat bread is preferred to corn, and sheep’s cheese from

The municipal buildings in Gori Local governments have small budgets and limited power but may be fairly independent in their policies.

Tusheti is popular. Among people in the mountains, the most popular food is khinkali, a cooked meat dumpling that usually is accompanied by beer. The most popular vegetables are tomatoes, potatoes, radishes, pumpkins, eggplant, beans, cucumbers, and cabbage. The most popular sauce, tkemali, is made of wild plums; other sauces are based on walnuts with spices, or pomegranate juice. Wine are drunk everywhere, and stronger alcoholic beverages include araki, which is made of grapes and other fruit with honey. Fish, especially trout, is eaten universally. A wide variety of locally grown fruit is supplemented by wild and cultured berries, watermelons and other melons. Dried fruit and nuts covered with a mixture of grape juice and wheat or corn flour are eaten in the winter. Jams are prepared from fruit, unripe walnuts, watermelon, eggplant, and green tomatoes.

Food Customs at Ceremonial Occasions At the New Year’s festivity, ground walnuts boiled in honey are served, along with a turkey or chicken in walnut sauce. An Easter meal includes hard-boiled eggs dyed red and other bright colors, roasted piglet and lamb, and special cakes with vanilla and spices. Special dishes are served at a wake: rice with mutton in the east, and meat with sweet rice and raisins in the west. Special wheat porridge with walnuts and honey is served forty days after a person’s death.

Basic Economy Georgians were basically rural people until the beginning of this century, when industrialization caused a mass rural-to-urban migration, especially to the capital. Most families are still linked through kinship relations with the countryside and preserve some traditions of their native localities.

Industrialization and the urban economy have had a limited influence on the national culture. Today, most of the population is urbanized and works in services or industrial production. Industry has been slow in recovering from the economic crisis of the early 1990s. Agriculture has been quicker to recover and accounts for almost 30 percent of the gross domestic product. A significant portion of exports consists of processed or raw agricultural produce such as hazelnuts, tea and wine. However, the country is not self-sufficient in producing grain as a result of the limited arable land.

Land Tenure and Property. After independence, much of land owned by the state was privatized. Over half the cultivated land was privatized by 1994, and that proportion continues to grow. However, in the highlands, where there is little cultivated land, privatization may entail restitution, as families respect traditional ownership. The state continues to control almost all uncultivated land, forests, and pastures; further privatization is expected in these areas.

Commercial Activities Apart from agricultural goods, mineral water, soft drinks, and beverages, few goods are produced locally for the retail market. Cheaper goods from Turkey, Russia, China, and Bulgaria are sold in the shops. Some locally produced building materials, chemicals, and textiles are sold.

Major Industries. Major industries include metallurgy, metal and chemical works, mining (manganese, arsenic, copper, gold, oil, and raw materials for chemical production such as barite and mineral water), electronic devices, and machinery. A larger role is being played by transportation and especially transhipment because of the development of pipeline routes and transportation projects.

Trade The principle exports are food, drink, tobacco, metals, and chemicals. The major imports are energy and fuel, mineral products, machinery, and food, drink and tobacco. There is a significant trade deficit. The main trading partners are Russia, Turkey, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Bulgaria, the European Union, and the United States.

Division of Labor High-paying jobs is available for those with a good command of English and advanced computer skills, while older people remain in poorly paid occupations. However, workers in their forties and fifties continue to occupy leading positions in ownership and management, as result of their advantage in starting capital and business connections from the Soviet era.