TbilisiTbilisi in some countries also still named by its pre-1936 international designation Tiflis. Tbilisi is the capital and the largest city of Georgia, lying on the banks of the Kura River with a population of approximately 1.5 million people. Founded in the 5th century AD by Vakhtang I Gorgasali.
Legend tells us that the present-day territory of Tbilisi was covered by forest as late as the AD 458. According to sources King of Georgia Vakhtang I Gorgasali went hunting in the heavily wooded region with a falcon (sometimes the falcon is substituted either by a hawk or other small birds of prey in the legend). The King's falcon caught/injured a pheasant during the hunt, after which both birds fell into a nearby hot spring. When King and his retinue found birds they were boiled!
King Vakhtang became so impressed with the discovery of the hot springs that he decided to build a city on this location. The name Tbilisi derives from the Old Georgian word "Tpili“ (ტფილი), meaning warm. The name Tbili or Tbilisi ("warm springs"), therefore was given to the city because of the area's numerous sulfuric hot springs. So now there is beautiful and warm city, with old tbilisian atmosphere left in some places.
Top places in Tbilisi
• Start your day at Rustaveli Square, in the heart of the city centre. Walk along Rustaveli Avenue, with its many restaurants, bars and upmarket shops.
• next block you can visit Kashveti Church
• Kote Afkhasi street, which will lead you to Old Tbilisi.
• walk up the steep hill to Narikhala Fortress and Saint Nicholas Church
• Next to the fortress is the 20 metre statue of Kartlis Deda (Mother Georgia), overlooking the city. On one hand she carries a bowl of wine, to show hospitality, and on the other a sword, just in case…
• From here, walk down Botanical Street and turn right to the area called Abanotubani, the Bath District,
• Next, take a cab to the Sameba Cathedral (Holy Trinity)
• From here walk down Metekhi rise, with its renovated old houses and you will get to the historical Metekhi Church.
• Peace Bridge, also the brainchild of architect Michele de Lucchi, is especially hypnotising at night, when its lights flash in a dance-like rhythm.
• To end your night, you can go for drinks and dinner at one of the many restaurants on Chardin Street in the Old Town.