Tusheti (Georgian: თუშეთი) is a historic mountainous region and national park in north-east Georgia. Tusheti is one of the most remote areas of Georgia offering incredible views of untouched nature dotted with ancient villages and stone towers.
The state owned website for the park has excellent additional information on tracks, nature and accommodation: http://apa.gov.ge/en/protected-areas/cattestone/tushetis-daculi-teritoriebis-administracia
- 1 Visitor Centre, ☎ , e-mail: email@example.com. This visitor centre also seems to be a hostel.
Flora and fauna
There is only one drivable road to Tusheti, passing over the 1 Abano Pass at an altitude of 2,850 m. The road is unpaved and is only open during the summer (may/June–October, depending on weather conditions); there is no public transport. Visitors can hire a private 4WD with driver from either Telavi or Alvani in Kakheti Region to the regional centre of Tusheti, 1 Omalo, for 200 lari. During peak times it is possible to find additional travellers to share the cost.
More adventurous travellers can go either by foot or horseback from 2 Shatili in Khevsureti to Tusheti over the 3,400 m 2 Atsunta Pass. See #Do for more details. Shatili can be reached by taking the road to Gudauri and turning off at the Zhinvali Reservoir. Horses and guides can be arranged either through guest houses in Shatili or Tusheti, or by the Tourist info office in Tbilisi.
Fees and permits
Access to the park, and its visitor centre are free.
A 4WD can mainly be used to move between the villages. Hiking and horseback are required for anything further.
- 1 Oreti Lake (south of Omalo, 15-25 km round trip). Quietly located high above Omalo.
- Horse-riding – Horse riding can be arranged on many of the hiking trails in Tusheti either through a guesthouse or the park visitor centre in Omalo. These can range from day trips, such as a one-day ascent to Lake Oreti, high above Omalo, and back, to multi-day journeys.
A few locally produced handicrafts can be bought from the locals, e.g. knitted slippers.
Home cooked meals can be bought in most of the guesthouses. There is a small shop in Omalo selling a few basics (bread and cheese).
Camping is possible almost anywhere in the park, although the park authorities advise camping near villages.
Homestays can be arranged in many of Tusheti's villages. Ask locals or arrange at the visitor centre in Omalo or Tourist information office in Tbilisi beforehand.
Bigger villages such as Omalo and Dartlo offer a range of guesthouses.
- 1 Tusheti National Park Visitor Centre, Kvemo Omalo village, ☎ . , Has 7 rooms available.