It’s been a long time, we have experienced a lot and now everything in turn…
Batumi, also known as Las Vegas on the Black Sea, was our first highlight in Georgia. The very modern city has many casinos, which mainly attract tourists from surrounding countries, especially Turkey, as they have a ban on gambling. What we especially liked was the beautiful promenade along the sea, the vacation feeling with the good food and the many palm trees as well as the good vibes of the people.
Through the Facebook group “Long distance Cyclists” we accidentally became aware of two Swiss bicycle travelers who were staying in Batumi at the same time as we were. How small the world is sometimes! They even come from Baden, the neighboring village of Beni’s hometown Wettingen. We contacted Lisa and Dario, met them for dinner and quickly it was clear, it harmonizes very well between us and therefore we decided to tackle the road towards Tbilisi together 💪🏻😃.
It was really fun to be on the road with like-minded people. This allowed us to share what we had experienced, discuss plans, cook together and enjoy the evenings together.
Four fully packed cyclists do stand out quite a bit, which we quickly noticed from the increasing number of Georgians honking with joy and the invitations to chacha and beer 😆.
The closer we got to our first stage destination, the Goderdzi Pass at 2025 m.a.s.l., the more pleasant the traffic became. The landscape resembled Switzerland more and more with increasing altitude, which also triggered some homesickness 🙃.
We enjoyed the first evening with Dario and Lisa at a river where we could take a welcome cool down and watch the locals fishing. Shortly after our arrival, the Georgians waved us over and shared food and drink with us.
In the morning we briefly jumped into the river, we are fresh again and ready to take the next kilometers under the wheels in the sweltering heat. Along beautiful gorges, the road led us to Khulo, where we decided to stay in a Guest House, which still turned out to be a stroke of luck, more about that later 😅.
The Guest House was very comfortably furnished and ideal for the four of us. It had two large rooms and a common area with kitchen, living room and balcony with magnificent views of the valley as well as the mountain landscape opposite. Only the water supply left much to be desired; due to the lack of infrastructure, there was water only twice a day for a few hours.
After a good dinner in a local restaurant we fell into bed dead tired. The night was unfortunately anything but restful, Beni must have eaten / drunk something wrong, he spent in any case the whole night on the toilet 💩🙈. “Fun fact, do you remember what we wrote about the water supply, which includes flushing the toilet 😄? Luck of the draw – not to be imagined if we had camped somewhere in the pampas.
Unfortunately, aching limbs and fever also joined in, so we were forced to take two break days in Khulo. So we also had to separate from Lisa and Dario. Very sad, but we will definitely see them again in Tbilisi!
After three nights Beni felt able to manage the last 1’400 hm (in 30 km) up the Goderdzi Pass to Green Lake. At the beginning he struggled forward meter by meter, for Nicole strange to see Beni once in the rearview mirror. Fortunately, the strength returned during the day, as Beni was able to keep the food.
So we actually reached after 5 hours over partly fist-sized gravel the beautifully situated Green Lake at 2’058 m.a.s.l..
We were rewarded by a fabulous campground right on the lake. After a little swim in the cool water, it soon got dark and a fabulous starry sky shone above us.
The following morning we met the “Green Lake park ranger”, he is the perfect example of everlasting hospitality without ulterior motives. He asked us if we wanted tea and coffee, normally you would expect him to charge for it afterwards – not so in Georgia.
Especially for us he made his way to his cabin and came back 10 minutes later with a tray full of tea, coffee and cookies. Later, we were even allowed to take his pedalo for a spin on the lake – we know how to pedal now 😅.
At the moment, we are treating ourselves to a few break days in Tbilisi, where, among other things, we finally have time to write the blog once again. In a few days part 2 of our route to Tbilisi will follow.
For even more insight into our everyday cycling life, check out our latest video:
By the way, Lisa & Dario also have a great blog with lots of videos. If you want to have a look, here is the link.