Photographer's Note

Ushguli - Georgia's final frontier

For many visitors of Georgia the region of Svaneti is the final adventure.
Those seeking the unknown will find there a part of the country that like no other has preserved its original medieval appearance and where most of the ancient traditions of its inhabitants has been retained.

Due to the remoteness of this region in the Caucasus and by building high stone defensive towers, the inhabitants of Svaneti managed to keep foreign rulers out. Svaneti has never been tamed by anyone.
Even in the era of the Soviet Union it has largely retained its traditional way of life.

Today visitors who don’t have their own transport, will easily get in Mestia by marshrutka (minibus). To get to Ushguli will be a bit more difficult (or a bit more pricey). A taxi jeep will take people from Mestia to Ushguli in just over 2 hours. The distance is only 47 kilometers.

There aren’t hotels in Ushguli but residents rent rooms to visitors and prepare meals for their guests.
Ushguli comprises 4 settlements at walking distance from each other and they’re situated at 2.100 to 2.200 meters above sea level. This makes Ushguli the highest permanently inhabited village in Europe.

The border with Russia is formed by several high mountains and in Ushguli you can see the top of Mt. Shkhara.
Depending on the source the summit is 5.068 meters or 5.201 meters.

In the summer months the mountain peaks are best seen early in the morning. Afterwards the peaks disappear regularly in the clouds as you can see on my picture here. More pictures will follow sometime.

Information from Wikipedia, Lonely Planet Guide and Dominicus Guide.

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Additional Photos by Paul VDV (PaulVDV) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5077 W: 17 N: 12171] (49032)
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