Kazbegi region, located in northern Georgia, is named after famous Georgian writer Alexander Kazbegi, an educated person who knew languages and yet worked as a shepherd at the same time. The small town of Stepantsminda is the center of the Kazbegi region, situated along the banks of the Terek River, 157 kilometers from Tbilisi and at an elevation of 1740 meters above sea level. Stepantsminda’s climate is moderately humid with relatively dry, cold winters and long and cool summers.
There are a number of hotels in Stepantsminda with good infrastructure. Hotel administration can organize trips and camping in beautiful Truso, Sno and Khte gorges, to Juta village and hiking up to the marvelous Holy Trinity Gergeti Church, constructed in the XV century and located at the top of the Gergeti mountain. Even if you are not an enthusiastic hiker, the hike up to Gergeti Trinity church is very nice, taking about one and a half hours on a mild slope if you follow the gravel road. The view of the church and mount Kazbegi from the opposite hill is magnificent, especially at sunset.
Mount Kazbegi is one of the highest mountains (5033 m) and the seventh highest peak in the Caucasus Mountains. Kazbegi Mountain and its vertex Mkinvartsveri, translated as “glacier” or “Ice Mountain,” is an especially attractive destination for alpinists.
While in Kazbegi region, you can also visit other truly awesome sites, such as: Juta village at 2150 meters above sea level – isolated from civilization but a real paradise for alpinists; Truso gorge – if you walk the route from Okrakano village along the Terek river gorge you will be sure to come across colorful mineral waters – a kind of natural decoration on the steep slopes. Other must-sees are Sno and Arshi castles and the Betlemi cave at Mkinvartsveri massif, at 4100 meters above sea level and of particular interest to history-lovers and adventurers.