Velistsikhe: one of the oldest villages in Georgia

Velistsikhe: one of the oldest villages in Georgia

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Velistsikhe is one of the oldest villages in Georgia. In the last years, it became more popular among tourists. That is why I decided to tell you about this lovely village that keeps old history. I will also tell you about the old wine cellars that can be found in this village. 

Village Velistsikhe, Kakheti
Village Velistsikhe, Kakheti
Velistsikhe, Georgia

History

Velistsikhe is located in the municipality of Gurjaani, in the Kakheti Region. We have records about this place from the 6th century. At that time, Velistsikhe was a very important settlement and a political center. The village was a summer residence of King Tamar, and that is why several churches were built there in the 12th-13th century. From the 18th century, the population on this territory was increasing. Between 1825-26, a German traveler Eduard Aichwald visited Velistsikhe and mentioned this village as a fortified city type settlement. Particularly, viticulture and agriculture were developed here, and the entire system of water mills was functioning as well. 

Picture © Credits to google/ველისციხე Veliscikhe
Picture © Credits to google/ველისციხე Veliscikhe

There are several architectural monuments in the village, including the Church of the Mother of God that exists from the 5th century, as well as the complex of Castle-Hall, that was built in the 9th century. Apart from this, Velistsikhe is interesting and different because of its planning, as it is an urban type of settlement. There are several residential houses, which are interesting in terms of art and history. Most of the houses have wine cellars. 

Tourism

Velistsikhe is gradually developing in terms of tourism. Apart from the historical monuments that you can visit here, you can also choose between several excursions, touristic hikes and you can get special tour catalogs that are prepared for the visitors. You can explore interesting places around Velistsikhe, that can be easily reached by car (even by horses), bikes or Quadro. From 2018, the rehabilitation of the village started more actively in order to transform it into a tourist zone. The main interest of tourists is wine, as there are many wine cellars in Velistsikhe. Especially family wine cellars are popular there, such as "Numisi," Velistsikhe Veranda Wine Cellar”, etc. My favorite one is the oldest winery “Numisi”, where you not only can taste the wine but also see many old things that were gathered by the owner of the cellar. 

Wine Cellar "Numisi", Kakheti
Wine Cellar "Numisi", Kakheti
Velistsikhe, Georgia
Picture © Credits to storybuilder/Veko Iashvili
Picture © Credits to storybuilder/Veko Iashvili

So, for those who want to have the real, original Georgian wine and Chacha, this village is the perfect place to visit. You can also get some nice gifts there.

While being in Georgia, try to visit Velistsikhe. It is one of the oldest villages in our country, and it will make your experience enriching. Also, don’t forget to visit one of the wine cellars to explore its ancient history and enjoy their tasty wine.

Cover Picture © Credits to iStock/Ozbalci

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The author

Anano Chikhradze

Anano Chikhradze

I am Anano. I Iove travelling, history and getting to know people from all over the world. I write about Georgia, my country, and I am sure everybody will fall in love with it.

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