In Vashlovani National Park, the guest is the visitor, while nature is the host. Wandering the semi-desert, you may be lucky enough to see a wolf pack , lynx, wild boar, endangered Egyptian vulture, threatened rock partridge,black-tailed gazelle – and even the rare Caucasian leopard, which has recently reappeared in the area. The million-year-old seashells found in the rocks indicate that Kakheti was once underwater.
Vashlovani Protected Areas preserves territory unlike anywhere else in Georgia. The area of 25-hectares is covered in Badlands – deeply-eroded barren soil, as can be found in the American states of Nebraska, Wyoming or South Dakota. The contrast to the rest of the country makes Vashlovani National Park such an amazing place to visit.
What to see at the Vashlovani National Park:
There are seven different tourist routes available in the Vashlovani Protected Areas:
- Eagle Canyon – The road begins at the Visitor Center, goes via viewpoints of the gorge, and up to the St. Elia’s Church, originally built in the 6th century, but later destroyed and refurbished. The moderately-difficult auto and pedestrian trail is a 10km round-trip with an estimated time of one day (on foot).
- Pantishara–Datviskhevi – The trip begins in Dedoplistskaro, goes through the Pantishara Gorge and Datviskhevi, where million-year-old molluscs and the bones of an ancient southern elephant can be seen. The moderately-difficult auto and pedestrian trail is 120km round-trip, with an estimated time of one day (by car).
- Takhti-Tefa–Mud Geysers – Several geysers spew mud that is regarded as medicinal. The moderately-difficult auto trail is 110km round-trip, with an estimated time of one day.
- Kakliskure–Alazani Floodplain – The journey goes through Kakliskure – a gulf of the River Alazani where walnut trees grow. Themoderately-difficult auto trail is 150km round-trip, with an estimated time of one day.
- Mijniskure–Black Rock –On one side of the road the semiarid desert can be seen, while on the other is a green forest landscape. The length of the difficult auto and pedestrian trail is 220km round-trip, with an estimated time of two days.
- Mijniskure–Recreational Fishing – Fishing rods and rifles are permitted in the Mijniskure Gulf, with more than 20 species of fish. The difficult auto trail is 160km round-trip, with an estimated time of two days.
- Bugha Square–Dark Rock – Starts in Dedoplistskaro and goes through the Alesilebi Badlands. The Caucasus Mountains can be seen from the semi-desert. The moderately-difficult auto and pedestrian trail is 200km round-trip, with an estimated time of two days.
Upon the request additional products and services are available for hire and planning:
- Tent: 10 GEL
- Backpack: 5 GEL
- Sleeping Bag: 3 GEL
- Camping Mat: 3 GEL
- Binoculars: 10 GEL
- Conference Hall (35 persons): 130 GEL
- Safari Tour: Visitor Center – Kornabuji – St. Elia’s Mountain – 60 GEL/person (10 persons)
- Safari Tour: Visitor Center – Takhti-Tepa Natural Monument – 160 GEL/person (10 persons)
- Safari Tour: Visitor Center – Vashlovani – Patishara – Datvis Khevi – 175 GEL/person (10 persons)
- Safari Tour: Visitor Center – Kakliskure – Shavi Mta – 200 GEL/person (10 persons)
- Camp Site: 5 GEL/person
Best time to visit Vashlovani Natural Park: Late April – Late October.
How to get to Vashlovani National Park:
- Tbilisi – Dedoplistskaro (115km)
- Marshutka (minibus)
- Dedoplistskaro City Center – Administration of Vashlovani Protected Areas (2km)