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Bolnissi

Practical information on Bolnissi

  • Place or Religious Monument
  • Museums
  • Place or Historical Monument
  • Off the beaten track
4 / 5 - One review
How to get there
1 hr 30 min from Tbilisi by car or public transport
When to go
All year round
Minimum stay
One day

Reviews of Bolnissi

Nicolas Landru Seasoned Traveller
106 written opinions

Bolnissi is a small town of Kvemo Kartli, south of Tbilisi. It is visited for the curious testimonials of its German past and for its church, a few kilometres from the centre, which bears the oldest inscription in Georgian (fifth century).

My suggestion:
Eat a lamb kebab in a restaurant in the city, the specialty of the Azeri shepherds of the region: it's deliciouse
My review

Bolnissi is a strange city. Rather dynamic for the region, it is populated mainly by "new" inhabitants, the mountain people who were displaced here in the 1990s. Its main interest: here and there it boasts houses with quite a unique architecture...

In the nineteenth century, German settlers were brought here to the border of the empire by the Russian imperial power to develop agriculture. Until the war, "Katharinenfeld", then "Luxemburg" (renamed Bolnissi after the name of the ancient church in 1944) was a little Germany at the gates of the steppe.

These Swabians settlers built typically German houses in Bolnissi, adapted to the local climate (balconies) and using local materials. If the Germans were deported by Stalin, many of their constructions have remained and can be discovered in the streets of the centre.

5 km to the south, in the hills, don’t miss the admirable basilica of Bolnissis Sioni, one of the oldest of the country, which bears the first attested inscription in Georgian.