Georgia in January: does it snow in the subtropics

There are quite a few reasons to travel in cold weather. Some people are attracted by new holiday traditions. Someone is going skiing. Some people prefer the sun, the sea and the beach. And almost all tourists appreciate the warm welcome.

What Georgia does not have in winter is the warm sea. But there are ski resorts, and unusual Christmas decorations too. As for hospitality, the locals are always sincerely glad to see guests. And guests know how to be grateful.

How to dress for a trip to Georgia in January, what to visit and how to fill a family vacation, read the Kid Passage review.

Georgia in January: is there snow in the subtropics

Rest in Georgia in January: pros and cons

Look at the reviews about holidays in Georgia in January and think about it – is it worth going? It seems to be either rain, or snow, or fog, and you can’t lie on the beach, and you can’t rest in amusement parks…

The weather remarks are correct. But it's not just about them. In the same reviews, they write about how only baked khachapuri warms hands in January, how merrily the cypress trees in the capital's botanical garden turn green, how the sea roars, finally having received the shore in undivided power, how snow caps shine in the sun on the tops of the mountains. All this – those details that make the trip unique and memorable.

Here are the main plusesGeorgia in January:

  • predominantly positive temperature in Tbilisi and Batumi;
  • excellent conditions for skiing in Gudauri and Bakuriani;
  • calmness in the mineral resort of Borjomi;
  • special customs on New year and Christmas;
  • small number of tourists after the New Year and Christmas holidays;
  • good conditions for a short trip.

Well, praise Georgian cuisine and wine is redundant, because they are beautiful at any time of the year. Below you can read about dishes that are safe for the baby's stomach.

K cons still have to attribute the unstable weather of January. You also need to take into account that many tourists come to Georgia for the winter holidays, and on weekends, locals like to visit mountain resorts. This affects prices and the ability to plan a trip at the last moment.

Another disadvantage of – short daylight hours in January. This is good for those who love evening skiing, and in the city, a trip to the theater, cinema or indoor entertainment center will brighten up the evening.

So where to relax in Georgia in January? Let's sort it out in order and start with the weather data.

The weather in Georgia in January

If you look at the photos of local residents, you can get a false impression of what the weather is like in Georgia in January – February. It is not customary to wrap up here, people walk around in unbuttoned jackets and without hats, but you should not count on special warmth.

The weather in early January is more like late autumn in the middle latitudes. A slight above zero temperature, often fog, overcast and windy, it rains periodically. There is snow in the mountains, sometimes even Tbilisi is covered with snow.

The weather in Georgia at the end of January remains the same. If you have excursions and walks in your plans, a windproof demi-season jacket and wet-resistant shoes will come in handy. You also need an extra warm layer of clothing, a hat, scarf and gloves.

If the purpose of the trip to Georgia in January with a child – skiing, you will need three layers of clothing: thermal underwear, fleece, ski jacket and pants. For a holiday in Borjomi, it is better to take not demi-season, but winter clothes and shoes.

Air and water temperature

Climate of Georgia – in any case, its western part – considered subtropical. Does this mean that there is no winter here? It happens, and with snow and frost. Yes, on the Black Sea coast, January is more like spring, but in the mountains, winter is firmly established.

  Day t< /th>

Night t t water
Tbilisi +3°C -1, 4°C
Batumi +8.8°C +4°C +10.9°C
Gudauri -4.4°C -11.5°C; С
Bakuriani – 3°C -7°C
Borjomi +0.3°C -6.7°C

The air temperature in Georgia in January varies from one region to another. In the capital, it ranges from -3°С to +8°С, in seaside resorts it can be both +1°С and +15°С, and in ski resorts it ranges from -10°С; up to +5° (it can also be -15°C at night).

The water temperature in Georgia in January is not for bathers: only +9-12°C.

Is it possible to swim

< p> Who really wants to swim in Georgia in January, he, of course, swims. But this is by no means  place for a beach holiday in winter. The weather is damp and windy, the sea is cold, often stormy.

Where to swim in January if you came for relaxation? In the pools of hotels and health centers. In indoor complexes, there are sometimes children's pools with small slides and fountains. In Tbilisi, the indoor part of the Gino Paradise water park is open in winter, but the Batumi water park is closed.

Skiing holidays

An approximate plan for a winter trip to Georgia can be as follows: arrival in Tbilisi, a day or two acquaintance with the capital, and then – mountains.

By the beginning of January, the slopes of the Caucasus are covered with a thick snow blanket. The sky either frowns and pours snow, then it pleases with the sun. At the same time, the temperature rarely rises above zero, and severe night frosts are possible.

Gudauri – the most modern resort in Georgia and a good place for those who love freeride: there are quite extensive areas for off-piste skiing. There are 13 lifts leading to the upper stations, and there is a “magic carpet” in the children's learning area.

The ski area is located at an altitude of 2000-3258 m. In January, there are usually no problems with snow, but if necessary, snow cannons work. Of the 75 km of trails, most of them are for beginners. There are trails for night skiing, a snow park. Ski schools can be used by children aged 7 and over.

A day of skiing in the high season costs approximately 70 GEL for an adult and 35 GEL for a child. Prices are reduced only in mid-March. On weekends, the resort can be crowded with locals, and if possible, it is better to choose weekdays for skiing.

Bakuriani – the oldest ski resort in the country. It is good for experienced skiers, and also suitable if you want to visit the Borjomi springs.

January at the resort is gloomy, snowy, with a slight frost during the day and quite a significant cooling by the night. A stable cover on the slopes is formed already in December, and by mid-January the snow thickness is always sufficient for skiing.

Skiing heights in Bakuriani – 1800-2850 m. The total length of the tracks is 29 km, the main part is designed for those who ride confidently. There is a freeride area and a children's educational and play town.

The price of a ski pass is approximately 30 GEL for an adult and 20 GEL for a child.

A general lack of – poor après ski program and few activities for children. Gudauri hotels sometimes have a games room, a children's menu is provided (usually for a fee).

Please note that sometimes there is a threat of avalanches, some of the slopes and lifts may be closed.

Sightseeing holidays

Is it winter outside, is it summer – there is no bad weather for travelers to explore new cities. The capital of Georgia, Tbilisi, is filled with tourists for the new year, and at the end of January it is empty: you can safely walk the streets and wander around the museums.

They usually start with walks through the old quarters, along the beautiful houses in their aging. Be sure to linger at the Rezo Gabriadze Puppet Theater to inquire about the schedule of performances and watch a philosophical mini-performance in the window of the clock tower. And then they rise to the ancient fortress of Narikala. The powerful building is not in vain called the soul of the city: from a height, the whole of Tbilisi is visible at a glance.

If it rains – in winter this is a frequent occurrence – We suggest moving to one of the museums. For example, Historical, where the past of Tiflis comes to life. At the National Museum, the exposition is more restrained, but it deals with serious topics, including the causes and consequences of Georgia's being part of the USSR.

A real children's territory – museum “Experimentorium”. Children independently find answers to their many “whys”, and parents will learn a lot of interesting things.

But to visit the ethnographic museum, it is better to choose a fine January day, because its exhibits are located in the open air. Dwellings and other buildings from different regions of Georgia are collected here: already by the difference in construction, one can judge the features of the landscape and climate, say, Adjara or Svaneti.

There is also something to see outside of Tbilisi. Nearby is Mtskheta – the ancient capital of Georgia, taken under the protection of UNESCO. With schoolchildren, you can go to the cave city of Uplistsikhe, the rocky Vardzia Monastery, to the David Gareji monastic complexon the border with Azerbaijan.

< p>Choose Batumi resort for winter holidays – a chance to see the city with different eyes. Probably, you will first look at it from the height of the alphabet tower, but then we recommend stepping over the threshold of the Nobel Brothers Museum and finding yourself in the past of the city of Batum, namely in the period when an enterprise for mining and oil refining.

An even more distant past is revealed in local history and archaeological museums. It's amazing how similar are the filigree metal patterns on the weapon and those made of thread – on knitted and embroidered things.

The small Museum of Fine Arts of Adjara is worth a visit just because there are several paintings by Niko Pirosmani on display there: children understand his work very well.

Entertainment for children

Occupy the younger generation is a little more difficult in winter than in summer. But you can’t say that children get bored in the cold season?

Preschool children are always happy to spend time on the playgrounds. One of the best such places in Tbilisi – Rike Park, where there are a lot of interesting things for children. By the way, there is the lower station of the cable car leading to the Narikala fortress.

There is also a playground in the botanical garden. And this is not the only reason to come to the garden in winter. There is quite a lot of greenery there even in January, and in the greenhouse you can admire blooming tropical plants.

In winter, an amusement park on Mount Mtatsminda also operates. True, whether the rides will work depends on the weather. But the park has a Woodland playground, a video game area, and shooting ranges – all this is open regardless of weather conditions. 

No less enjoyable will be a trip to the Gino Paradise water park. The indoor children's pool is equipped with a complex of slides and sprinklers. For adults there is a swimming pool with a fountain and hydromassage. Several water slides start from an indoor tower, and the finish line is also indoors, so they can run in the winter. But most of the slides, the swimming and wave pool, the Lazy River located in the open air, so there will be a reason to return to Tbilisi in the summer.

In Batumi, the main place for walking – Wonder Park. Even if the Ferris wheel does not work, from which the entire Batumi bay is visible, you can look at the unusual sculpture “Ali and Nino”, see in the “Alphabet” tower Georgian letters and DNA helix, fit into the installation “Me, you and Batumi” and take an original photo.

There are playgrounds in the city parks, and in the May 6 park – also a small zoo. There is also an aquarium here. It is not impressive in size, but it gives you the opportunity to see the fish that inhabit the rivers of Georgia and the waters of the Black Sea. You can immediately compare whether there is a similarity between an ordinary fox and a sea fox. Children will note the long tail characteristic of both.

From Batumi, it is worth going to Shekvetili, where the Georgia in Miniature complex is located. There is also Narikala, and old Tbilisi houses, and ancient buildings of Mtskheta. In the evening, artistic lighting turns on in little Georgia.

Ureki, a famous beach resort, is visited in winter for a walk around the Musical Park. It is decorated with sculptures depicting famous composers and musicians from different eras. And these are not monuments that need to be viewed with reverence (and poorly hidden boredom), but very lively compositions.

  • The best entertainment in Georgia for the whole family

Treatment

Where to go in Georgia in January to take a break from the noise and improve your health? The famous resort of Borjomi does not lose ground even against the backdrop of modern health centers. The role in this is played partly by the habit of riding the waters of the Caucasus, partly – proven value of mineral water “Borjomi”, which is useful in diseases of the digestive system.

January in the resort is quite mild, without heavy rainfall, but with a lot of cloudy days. There are frosts at night, during the day the temperature ranges from -5°C to +5°C. Dress warmly and go to enjoy the mountain scenery. Particularly beautiful is the Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park, along which tourist routes are laid.

Borjomi has several upscale hotels with health resorts. You can also rent an apartment. There are few tourists in the middle of winter, so there are no difficulties in finding a suitable option.

Holidays, events and festivals

The Georgian holiday calendar in January starts predictably – Happy New Year. Celebration traditions are familiar: with a Christmas tree, with tangerines, with champagne at midnight.

Chichilaki – an ornament made of walnut rod, planed so that thin shavings are held in its upper part. Toys are hung on chichilaki or a plate with fruits and sweets is placed next to it.

But on January 2, something unusual wedges in: Fate Day, or Bedoba, as it is called in Georgia. To make the coming year successful, they try to spend the day as pleasantly as possible, with family or good friends.

Christmas celebrated on January 7th. Special treats are prepared for this day, differing from region to region, but almost everywhere they put honey, dried fruits and nuts on the table. After the church service, the “Alilo” procession goes from house to house, congratulating the hosts on Christmas and receiving treats in return. Recently, “Alilo” sometimes it resembles a carnival procession, in which hundreds of people participate.

On January 19, Epiphany is celebrated in Georgia, and this is a day off, like Christmas. Here they revived the tradition of dipping into the water after the liturgy, and many even go to Batumi for this to dive into the sea.

After Baptism, chichilaks are taken to the wine cellar, leaving until next year, or burned as a symbol of farewell to hardships last year.

Rest prices

Prices in Georgia in January are not the same: they are overpriced at the beginning of the month and drop noticeably from the second week. This is a popular destination for winter holidays, and it is worth taking care of tickets and accommodation in advance.

Air tickets

The average price of tickets in Tbilisi in January is quite high. Most of all, this is influenced by the New Year and Christmas holidays: after they end, air travel becomes cheaper. Already in February, the cost of tickets drops by a quarter.

Hotels

A hotel room or apartment in Georgia in January will cost much less than in summer. During the holidays, you can expect a rise in price by 15-30%. After that, prices decrease and remain almost unchanged in February.

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Tours

End of December – the beginning of January brings a strong rise in the price of package holidays. As soon as the holidays pass, tour prices are reduced by 20-30%.

Food

The colder it is outside, the more you want to dive into a cozy restaurant and order something hot. Khachapuri (from 6 lari), khinkali (from 0.5 lari apiece), chikhirtma (from 7 lari) will seem especially tasty. The spicy kharcho soup also has a warming effect (its estimated cost is 5 GEL).

We have quoted prices in mid-level tourist restaurants, and in establishments where locals go, you can have a hearty meal for 10 GEL. Khachapuri in street stalls cost only 2-4 GEL – and they are also very tasty.

We add that all types of khachapuri and achma are very popular with children, while other dishes may seem too sour, spicy or spicy. But dolma – cabbage rolls in grape leaves – children eat with pleasure. Ajapsandali stewed vegetables, kvari dumplings, buglam meat baked with vegetables are also suitable for the children's table. The filling in lobiani and kubdari is often quite spicy.

Something too spicy can be washed down with delicious Georgian lemonade or sour-milk yogurt drink.

The market in January abounds with local citrus fruits and pomegranates, as well as imported fruits. For 1 kg of oranges and tangerines you need to pay about 2-4 lari, pomegranates and quince – 4 lari, grapefruit – 4-5 lari, apples – 3-4 lari.

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Shopping

In reviews of holidays in Georgia in January, they often write about shopping. Perhaps it's the weather, but most likely, few people are able not to buy one or two bottles of local wine or pickled cheese. We recommend that you choose alcohol only in company stores, you need to buy cheese for transportation in a supermarket, in its original packaging.

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Churchkhela, dried fruits, nuts, Georgian spices are often bought at the market. Before leaving, you can buy fresh baklava or gozinaki. And from fruits, give preference to persimmon – here they know a lot about its preparation.

A very exquisite gift – decorations in the technique of cloisonné enamel, or minankari.  And practical for those who are not indifferent to cooking, – ketsi clay pan, in which meat and vegetables are fried or baked.

  • Family holidays in Georgia: Kidpassage guide

Recommendations for traveling with children

Holidays in Georgia in January with children are undoubtedly different from a trip to this country in the summer. The main tasks in preparing – think over clothes and a program taking into account the weather. We have compiled a list that will help you plan your trip.

  1. In Batumi, it makes sense to take demi-season things, in Tbilisi and Borjomi, most likely, you will be comfortable in winter clothes.
  2. In a travel first-aid kit, put drugs that help with SARS, in particular antipyretic, vasoconstrictive drops, cough medicines.
  3. It is advisable to book accommodation in ski resorts in advance. High demand for it remains, as a rule, almost the whole of January.
  4. Take compact entertainment for children with you. It will be easier for you to organize your baby's leisure time on the road or in a hotel if the weather is not conducive to walking.
  5. There are small shops and restaurants in the mountains, so you can safely stay in an apartment. However, it is difficult to find baby food in stores. If you are traveling with a baby, stock up on the right mixtures, cereals and purees for the entire stay. All this you can bring with you or buy in Tbilisi.

Gather information about attractions and entertainment – this is only half the battle. Then you need to study the map and get directions to see everything interesting. If you are going to Tbilisi with your family, use the children's route developed by Kidpassage. It includes, among other things, a cafe where there are dishes suitable for children.

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