6 FAQs about Georgia
Up until a couple of years ago, Georgia was yet another hidden gem in the Eurasian region but lately the country has decided to put its rich history and natural beauty to a better use. As a result of the flexible visa policies, the country has undoubtedly surfaced as the next big tourist destination for people living in Europe, America and the Middle East.
You can count on all the details that I shall be sharing here because Georgia was a potential destination for my babymoon and since I had been in the loop for over a year (before we actually ended up in this beautiful country) I’m confident that this blog will turn out to be very helpful.
1. Where to stay
First things first, lets address the most daunting decision of all. “Where to stay??”. Given the perimeters of the city, I would say not to stress yourself and find a place either on Rustaveli Avenue or any street that runs parallel to the famous Rustaveli within a distance of a kilometer or so. The approximately 2 km long avenue is the center for activities and every tourist attraction in Tbilisi is either situated on Rustaveli or leads to it eventually, so you can easily start your day late(my first priority of course) and manage to cover all the tourist sites in a day since everything is within easy reach.
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~When old meets new~ That is exactly what Georgia is all about, the union of cultures, continents and eras 🏤🏛🏰 ……….. It is truly unfortunate that the country has not included people living in Pakistan in its new and improved visa policies but hopefully people who do qualify for the ‘Visa on arrival’ will not miss out the oppurtunity 😊 …………. I have put together answers to 6 very basic questions about the country in todays blogpost. Questions that got me worried from a desi perspective (such as the availibility of biryani and a muslim shower) and a few others of course 😉 ………….. So click on the link in bio amd enjoy.
2. Language barrier
Time to put your “English-speaking” superiority complex aside because that is not getting you anywhere in Georgia. The good news is that people directly involved with the tourism industry such as tour operators and local guides understand the need to learn the language and are not as bad as the rest of the population. If you speak Russian, you would be pleased to know that 90 percent Georgians speak the language despite their political differences with the country and it is treated as the unofficial second language of the locals.
3. Getting around
Lets just say getting around is easy but communicating with taxi drivers is not. The drivers understand very little English to almost none and mobile apps like uber , taxify or any other that saves you the hassle of haggling in sign language are a blessing in disguise. You may also opt for their Hop on Hop off bus service within Tbilisi. The guided bus tour almost covers all the major landmarks and gives you the freedom to HOP ON and HOP OFF at whatever stations you like for the next 24 hours. If you plan to travel to other cities such as Kazbegi, I would suggest you take a guided tour with an English speaking guide.
Also watch out for my blog on Kazbegi, where I shall share the details of our guided tour.
Georgia is almost as baby friendly as Pakistan. To put it into simpler words, the bathrooms don’t have changing stations and you may find the medieval era inspired architecture of the cities not too stroller friendly either, but however the good news is that Georgians love kids and I mean it, the love for children is on national level. Never have I ever been chased by strangers in the street just to have a look at my baby and as opposed to the European culture locals don’t hesitate to stop and offer you help with holding your baby or folding your stroller or in whatever way possible.
Therefore Moms and Dads I have faith in you, a stroller and a dirty diaper are reasons not strong enough to hold you back from this vacation.
Kachapuri, yep that is what the bread in the picture is called. Call it a pie or a bread it is considered to be Georgia’s national dish. Cheese, herbs and eggs are the ingredients Georgians play around with when creating this culinary masterpiece so basically its halal. Looks tempting doesnt it? Lobio is another constituent of the Georgian cuisine. It’s the same as Kachapuri only with a filling made out of finely grounded kidney beans.
Speaking of halal food, there are a more than a few non georgian options also available. Red Chillis, Mado, Taj Mahal for example. Spectra is another eatery that even delivers halal food.
So its either this or fish macs and veggie pizzas. Your call! If you ask me I would rather Catch-a-Puri. Get it? No? Okay you are allowed to ignore the silly pun.
If you run an efficient search on hotels, there are places that offer a halal breakfast buffet too. One of them is Iveria Inn.
6. Night Life
Okay mommies and daddies you are welcome to skip this part and go put your kids to bed or maybe if you could negotiate something with your significant other you can continue reading.
Georgia does not boast a very happening night life but most of the night clubs and pubs are in the old city. Rustaveli Avenue and Shardeni street are two streets 5 mins away but in the opposite direction from one another considering Freedom Square as our starting point. Both streets offer a variety of cafes, Inns, clubs and what not. So do remember to pack a pair of your dancing shoes before you catch that flight.
Come back to find out more about things to do in Tbilisi and Kazbegi 😉