Surrounded by mighty 5000 m peaks, Svaneti is one of Georgia’s most historic and unique areas and a real skiers’ dream.
Until recently, Svaneti was best known for its superb house-towers, most of them dating back to the 12-13th centuries, which line the valleys and served as look-out posts against the threat of invasion. Those towers belong to UNESCO World Heritage List.
This corner of Georgia is so authentic and beautiful, that it’s not surprising that it’s been a popular summertime holiday destination. Nowadays most tourists are looking to the mountains, not to the valleys.
In Svaneti, there are two modern white resorts: Hatsvali and Tetnuldi. The first one started operating several years ago. It is located in 8 km from the central village of Svaneti, Mestia. The upper cable car station is located on Mount Zuruldi (2347 m). The difference in altitude is 482 m. Currently, there are three runs: red (1900 m), blue (2600 m) and the trail for beginners (300 m). Basically, skiers of every level can enjoy one of the world’s most picturesque resorts. As the resort grows and develops, it is also possible to find tailor-made ski-tours, one or two-day trips to take you to places never skied before.
The second biggest winter resort (after Gudauri), Tetnuldi, is going to be opened in December 2015. It is located at the same-name mountain. Three POMA lifts will deliver you to an altitude from 1600 m to 3165 m. The trails have different difficulty level; the longest one is 9.5 km. As the resort is very young, the accommodation and après-ski is still in process of development. But as Tetnuldi is close to Mestia, it is possible to go there with bus or taxi every day and stay in Mestia overnight.
When you’re not skiing, enjoy your time exploring Mestia, local cuisine and a great museum, a treasure trove of exquisite icons and artifacts gathered from Svaneti’s many remote churches and villages, preserved in this natural mountain fortress from centuries of pillagers