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Title: Abastumani  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: (1390) Abastumani, Tkibuli, Lagodekhi, Naruja, Gulripshi
Collection: Cities and Towns in Samtskhe-Javakheti, Spa Towns in Georgia (Country)
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia


Abastumani is a small Czarist era spa town and Soviet built astrophysical observatory in the Samtskhe-Javakheti region.


  • Understand 1
  • Get in 2
  • Get around 3
  • See 4
  • Do 5
  • Buy 6
  • Eat 7
  • Drink 8
  • Sleep 9
  • Connect 10
  • Go next 11


Relatively undiscovered by foreign tourists Abastumani was once a thriving spa and resort town during the last part of the Russian Czars. Today it sits quiet for most of the year waiting for the summer rush of Georgian tourists who come to breathe it's clean air and walk in the pristine forests.

Get in

Abastumani is reached by either taxi or marshutka(mini-bus) from the Akhaltsikhe bus station. The drive takes approximately 30 minutes in a taxi or around 50 minutes in the marshutka depending on how many stops it makes.

Get around

The lower town is 7km from one end to the other and relatively flat so it is easily walkable. The observatory is 4km above the town. To reach it you can either take a cable car which has a sporadic schedule, or walk one hour up a trail or a little longer by road.


There are many wooden, mostly abandoned, Czarist era buildings to view and photograph. Visit the Czar's Bath that is now under renovation but the guard will probably let you look around. Ride up the cable car and walk around the surreal and seemingly abandoned astrophysical observatory complex. The Romanov palace complex was probably once a great site but it barely warrants the walk out of town to visit them. Of the three original buildings only one remains in its former state and lies fenced off, without any windows and is slowly deteriorating. Several years ago one building caught fire and is currently being rebuilt and the main house was sold to private owners who have altered the original appearance beyond recognition.


  • Forest Walk. Walk in the dark forest surrounding the observatory and look for animals such as bear and wolves.
  • Astrophysical Observatory. Visit the astrophysical observatory and look at the stars and moon through the old telescopes. The moon is best seen when it is half because you can see the shadows of the craters better.
  • Hiking. Hike the Abastumani loop trail in the Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park.
  • Czar's Bath. Visit the Czar's Bath at night and get the caretaker to let you soak in the therapeutic spring water with friends and some local wine.
  • Mountain Biking. Rent mountain bikes from the Abastumani Tourism Association and ride down the mountain from observatory to the town.
  • Cable Car. Ride up (or down) the Soviet era cable car from the town to the observatory and get a bird's eye view of the surrounding region.
  • Local Homestay. Stay with a local family and eat the traditional Georgian food and hospitality.
  • Horseback Riding. - Rent horses and have a guided ride in the forest.
  • Tamara's Castle. - Explore the ruins of Tamara's Castle sitting on the ridge high above the town.


There is a small bazaar on Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday from 8-12:30 where you can buy local products such as fresh cheese, milk, vegetable, wine, and honey.





Go next


Environs of Abastumani
Environs of Abastumani
Location in Georgia
Country  Georgia
Region Samtskhe-Javakheti
Municipality Adigeni
Elevation 1,340 m (4,400 ft)

Abastumani (

  1. ^ (Georgian) Population statistics and settlements. State Department for Statistics of Georgia. 2002
  2. ^ National Astrophysical Observatory of Georgia. Retrieved on July 2, 2009
  3. ^ (Russian) Амиреджиби К.Н., Джанелидзе Т.М., Гоциридзе Г.Г., Хурцидзе М.К., Градостроительное проектирование курорта Абастумани с применением современных геоинформационных технологий (Amirejibi K.N., Dzanelidze T.M., Gotsiridze G.G., Khurtsidze M.K. "Advanced geoinformation technologies for urban planning of Abastumani resort") ArcReview № 3 (46) 2008
  4. ^ (Georgian) აბასთუმანი საქართველოს ტურისტულ რუკაზე (Abastumani on the tourist map of Georgia). 24 Saati. November 8, 2008
  5. ^ (Georgian) აბასთუმანი//ქართული საბჭოთა ენციკლოპედია. ტ.I. - თბ., 1975. - გვ.14 ("Abastumani", in: Georgian Soviet Encyclopaedia, vol. I, p. 14. Tbilisi: 1975)
  6. ^ Abastumani. Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park. Retrieved on July 2, 2009
  7. ^ (Russian) В Абастумани обнаружены уникальные средневековые фрески. RIA Novosti. June 24, 2009
  8. ^ Queen Tamar's Castle. Abastumani Tourism Association. Retrieved on July 2, 2009
  9. ^ New Zarzma. Abastumani Tourism Association. Retrieved on July 2, 2009
  10. ^ Thermal waters of Abastumani. Abastumani Tourism Association. Retrieved on July 2, 2009
  11. ^ (Russian) В Абастумани (Грузия) сгорела летняя резиденция российской императорской фамилии ("A summer residence of the Russian Imperial Family burned down in Abastumani, Georgia). The Moscow Patriarchate. March 13, 2008


  • The 14th-century church of [7]
  • The 13th-century ruined castle and a single arch bridge named after the medieval Queen Thamar.[8]
  • The "New Zarzma" (Akhali Zarzma) church of Mikhail Nesterov.[9]
  • A bathhouse constructed on the Abastumani hot springs between 1879 and 1881 by the St. Petersburg-born physician of German descent Adolf Remmert (Адольф Александрович Реммерт; 1835—1902). Remmert died in Germany and, according to his will, was buried at a Catholic church in Abastumani, which has not survived.[10]
  • Winter and summer mansions of Grand Duke George designed by Otto Jacob Simons and built of stone and wood, respectively. Located on the opposite banks of the Otskhe, they were connected through a small bridge. The summer mansion was frequnted by the party officials in the Soviet era. In the 1990s, it was turned over to the St. Panteleimon nunnery. The building was destroyed in a fire on March 12, 2008, and is currently being rebuilt.[11]

Beyond being a spa town with functioning hotels and sanatoria, Abastumani houses several cultural landmarks documenting the townlet's medieval and modern history. These are:


Abastumani possesses a moderately dry mountainous climate, with relative humidity reaching 50% only in summer. The annual average number of hours of sunlight is 3,000. Average annual precipitation is 626 mm. Average annual temperature is 6.4 to 6.5 °C (44 to 44 °F) in January and 17.2 °C (63 °F) in July. Abastumani's three hyperthermic springs (39-48.5 °C) are little mineralized, rich in sulfate-sodium chloride waters. They have long been used in the treatment of tuberculosis.[5] Abastumani is also a starting point for hikes into the Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park.[6]


[4] Tourism infrastructure has been renovated since the mid-2000s.[3] In medieval Georgia, the area of modern-day Abastumani was part of the district of



  • History 1
  • Spa 2
  • Landmarks 3
  • References 4


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