About Sights – New Life for Old Tbilisi

Tbilisi’s Old Town (Georgian: ძველი თბილისი) is one of the oldest parts of the city and nestles on the mountainside under the 4th century Narikala fortress (Georgian: ნარიყალა).

Tbilisi’s Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

Tbilisi’s Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

The Old Town is part of the Tbilisi Historic District and contains a number of officially designated monuments, churches, cobbled streets and picturesque pastel colored wooden houses with open, carved balconies. The houses are mainly 19th century as much of the city was destroyed by the devastating Persian invasion of 1795.

19th century hand colored photograph of Tbilisi's Old Town

19th century hand colored photograph of Tbilisi’s Old Town

Engraving of Tbilisi dated 1888

Engraving of Tbilisi dated 1888

Much of the Old Town has been restored under a scheme introduced by the Tbilisi government in 2009. Called “New Life for Old Tbilisi”, the scheme is restoring and rehabilitating Tbilisi’s historical districts and neighborhoods.

Pastel colored wooden houses of Tbilisi's Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

Pastel colored wooden houses of Tbilisi’s Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

“New Life of Old Tbilisi”. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

“New Life of Old Tbilisi”. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

Restored houses in Tbilisi's Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

Restored houses in Tbilisi’s Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

Balconies in Tbilisi's Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

Balconies in Tbilisi’s Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

Balconies in the Abanotubani part of Tbilisi's Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

Balconies in the Abanotubani part of Tbilisi’s Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

The Old Town contains the Abanotubani district where there is a whole street (Abanos kucha) of public bathhouses that use the sulphurous waters of the many hot springs in this area. Abanotubani is the place, where according to legend, King Vakhtang Gorgasali’s falcon fell, leading to the discovery of the hot springs and, subsequently the founding of a new capital. The bathhouses are located below ground level with only beehive-like domes visible on the surface.

Beehive like domes of the public bathhouses in Abanotubani district in Tbilisi's Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

Beehive like domes of the public bathhouses in Abanotubani district in Tbilisi’s Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

“Abanotubani” public bathhouses in Tbilisi's Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

“Abanotubani” public bathhouses in Tbilisi’s Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

“Abanotubani” district of Tbilisi's Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

“Abanotubani” district of Tbilisi’s Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

Leghvtakhevi, in the Bath District (Abanotubani) of the Old Town was restored in 2012 as part of the ‘New Life for Old Tbilisi’ scheme. Paths and bridges were constructed, trees planted and houses renovated. Leghvtakhevi is popular with both residents and tourists as a place to stroll and relax.

Leghvtakhevi, in the Bath District (Abanotubani) of Tbilisi's Old Town.  Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

Leghvtakhevi, in the Bath District (Abanotubani) of Tbilisi’s Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

Leghvtakhevi, in the Bath District (Abanotubani) of Tbilisi's Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

Leghvtakhevi, in the Bath District (Abanotubani) of Tbilisi’s Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

The Old Town is also beautiful at night and popular with Tbilisi residents as well as tourists who come to enjoy its unique atmosphere, shops, superb restaurants and music.

Tbilisi's Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

Tbilisi’s Old Town. Photo courtesy of Tbilisi Government.

Tbilisi’s Old Town is a must see!

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  2. […] city’s aerial tramway is located in the park and takes visitors over the Mtkvari River and Old Town and up to Narikala […]

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