Level of difficulty: simple
Type of route: linear, car (4X4), bicycle, pedestrian
Total length: 41 km
Route Duration: 2-3 days
Altitude: 2000-2300 m above sea level
Cellular network coverage: full
Best time to go: from late spring to late autumn
The Alpine route connects two high-mountainous municipalities of Adjara, Shuakhevi and Khulo, bypassing the central Batumi-Akhaltsikhe highway. You can start the route both from Goderdzi (Khulo), and from Chirukhi (Shuakhevi). The main part of the route passes through villages, alpine meadows and pastures (yaylas). The main activity on all yaylas takes place during the summer grazing period.
The route starts near the Chirukhi Mountain (Shuakhevi municipality), continues through the alpine zone and ends at the Goderdzi Pass (2025 m above sea level) in Khulo municipality.
As you move along the route, you will see a panorama of alpine pastures (yaylas) with small wooden shepherd’s dwellings where you can stay overnight or have a snack (e.g. “Mareti” guesthouse). In the Chirukhi mountains you can see Lake Chirukhi and Dzhinali waterfall. The route continues in the municipality of Khulo, where you will see Lake Karagoli, the Shuamta lakes and the most beautiful alpine meadows. Before visiting the Khikhani Fortress, you can spend the night in the nearby villages of Bakibako or Khikhadziri (e.g. guesthouses “Khikhani”, “Luka”, “Bako”).
From the Goderdzi Pass
The starting point of the route is Goderdzi (Khulo municipality, 2025 meters above sea level). Before starting the route towards Chirukhi, you can visit some attractions like Green lake (Mtsvane Tba) and Goderdzi Alpine Garden. There is also the hotel “Meteo” at Goderdzi Pass, where you can have rest before starting the route.
Before visiting the Khikhani fortress, you can see the Shuamta lakes and stop for overnight or have lunch in the villages of Tkhilvana, Tsiplnara, Bakibako and Khikhadziri (e.g guesthouses “Khikhani”, “Luka”, “Bako”) of Khulo municipality as well as in shepherd’s dwellings.
There are several small lakes along the route – Lake Karagoli in Khulo municipality and Lake Chirukhi in Shuakhevi municipality.
At the end of your route in Shuakhevi municipality you will again get to alpine pastures (yaylas) on the Chirukhi Mountain. Here you can see Dzhinali waterfall, small lakes and many seasonal shepherd’s dwellings where you can stay overnight and eat (e.g “Mareti” guesthouse).
After completing the route, you can move to the Batumi-Akhaltsikhe motorway through the Mareti Gorge and villages of Shuakhevi municipality. You can stay here in family hotels in Darchidzeebi (guesthouse “Mtisubani”) and Paposhvilebi (guesthouse “Mareti”) villages. As you move towards the highway, you can see the Darchidzeebi fortress (11-13 century), visit the ethnographic museum in Oladauri village and the Okropilauri fortress (11-13 century).
You can get to both starting points of the route by various transport, including public transport, which departs from the old Batumi bus station (address: 1, Mayakovsky street). The minibus goes through the villages of Shuakhevi municipality, where you can stay overnight. In Paposhvilebi and Mtisubani villages there are guesthouses “Mareti” and “Mtisubani”. Here, if necessary, you can rent a jeep and get to the starting point of the route.
Batumi-Shuakhevi. The minibus departs every hour daily from 07:50 to 18:50. Cost 4 GEL.
Batumi – Darchidzeebi village. The minibus departs twice a week, on Tuesday and Friday at 14:00. Cost 6 GEL.
From Shuhahevi to Chirukhi and Tetrobi yaylas. The minibus departs once a week from July to mid-September. Bus schedules are set in advance, travel is free of charge.
The emergency telephone number 112