Short Break in Tbilisi: Travel Itinerary and Expenses | Lady & her Sweet Escapes

Feb 28, 2019

Short Break in Tbilisi: Travel Itinerary and Expenses


Georgia, the country, is one of the places I haven't heard about until it became a popular vacation spot for Filipinos in the UAE. Being a budget-friendly destination situated at the intersection of Europe and Asia, I often hear my friends rave about it. 

Those raves did spark curiosity, so one day, I found myself spontaneously booking a flight to Georgia's capital - Tbilisi. 

Tbilisi Georgia Travel Itinerary



Here are the things to know before you go to Tbilisi, Georgia:

Visa
Residents of United Arab Emirates can obtain a visa on arrival in Georgia, and can stay in the county for 90 days. The following documents are required at the airport before you check-in to your flight:
  • Passport with a valid residence visa
  • Return Ticket
  • Accommodation booking
  • Travel Insurance: We purchased ours from RSA website for 50 AED each.
  • Proof of funds: We were simply asked by the staff about our pocket money and we informed her that we have 300 USD on hand for our 3-day trip. And that's it, off we go to the immigration gate!

Money
The currency in Georgia is called Georgian Lari. As of writing, 1 GEL is equivalent to 1.37 AED or 0.37 USD. We had half of our travel money changed to the local currency because 300 USD is actually more than enough for a short break, provided that accommodation is already pre-booked and paid!


Language
Kartvelian is the official language of Georgia. Russian is also widely spoken. But worry not, getting lost in translation can rarely happen as most people working in restaurants and hotels can understand English.

Tbilisi the city that loves you
The city that loves YOU!

Tbilisi river
This charming capital is just a short-haul flight away from Dubai!

And it's visa-free for UAE residents!
One of the main reasons why a lot of people LOVE Tbilisi!


Weather
With its location in the Caucasus region, Georgia is blessed with a varied climate in four beautiful seasons. Spring is not too hot and not too cold. Summer is pleasantly warm. Autumn is crisp and cool. Winter is mildly chilly compared to other places, but temperature can dip below zero degrees in the mountains.  


What to pack for Tbilisi, Georgia?
Ed and I went last October. It was autumn and the weather was perfect for long walks! So make sure to pack a comfy pair of shoes, leather jacket or light trench coat, and leggings if you intend to wear dresses.

Early autumn in Tbilisi Georgia
Early autumn in Tbilisi, Georgia

view of Botanical Garden of Georgia
The leaves are starting to turn gold! I can only imagine how dreamy this place is during the peak of Autumn!

what to wear in Tbilisi
The breeze is cool and it gets chilly at night, so make sure to pack clothes that you can layer.

House of Justice Tbilisi
More golden trees near the House of Justice Tbilisi 



Transportation
From the airport
Taking the public bus from Tbilisi Airport to the city is cheap and convenient. Bus #37 stops in front of the Arrival Hall. One way fare is 0.50 GEL. Travel time from the airport to Freedom Square takes an hour since it has a lot of stops along the way.

If you're in a hurry, you can book a private transfer ahead. We booked ours at Holidays by FlyDubai along with our flights and hotel stay package because we were not aware about the public bus.  

Getting around the city center
The must-visit attractions in Tbilisi can be easily reached by foot. There are public buses and a metro system as well. But since we stayed in the city center and our trip was purely for rest and relaxation (and eating good food... ahem grilled pork!), we opted to explore by simply walking around.  

Tip: Download Google Maps Offline to track your journey. 

The streets of Tbilisi
The streets of Tbilisi

To the Old City Wall Tbilisi
To the Old City Wall



Where to stay in Tbilisi?
As mentioned, this trip was spontaneous planned. We decided to book flights and accommodation a day before our actual departure; hence, we settled for an affordable travel package at Holidays by FlyDubai. Our FlyDubai round trip flight was paired with a 2-night stay at Citadines City Centre Tbilisi. 

I honestly didn't expect much from this aparthotel, but it turned out to be a wonderful base in the capital of Georgia. It is located in Freedom Square, a few steps away from Galleria Tbilisi shopping mall, Liberty Square Metro Station, and National Museum of Georgia. A lot of good restaurants are within the area, and famous attractions are within walking distance. 

We stayed in a Studio Classic accommodation. It is a super spacious room with a fully equipped kitchen and a living area with a sofa bed!

Citadines City Centre Tbilisi
Citadines City Centre Tbilisi

view from Citadines City Centre Tbilisi
You can see the Sameba from the hotel roof deck!



What to eat in Tbilisi?

  • Khachapuri: traditional Georgian cheese bread with a runny sunny-side up  egg in the center
  • Khinkali: Georgian dumpling filled with meat or mushroom or potatoes
  • Mtsvadi: juicy grilled pork
  • Churchkhela: candle-shaped candy made from natural juice and nuts
Khachapuri in Tbilisi
Breakfast in Tbilisi: Khachapuri!

what to eat in Tbilisi Georgia
Local candy (chuchkhela), local dumpling (Khinkali), and the super tasty grilled pork! 



Tbilisi Travel Itinerary and Expenses

Day 1
Time
Activity
Expenses
11:00
Flight from Dubai to Tbilisi via FlyDubai
  • Roundtrip airfare with 2 nights hotel stay
  • We traveled on October 2018. Flight time and package price might have changed.

1,100 AED/person

14:30
Arrival in Tbilisi International Airport


15:00
Private transfer to Hotel
  • Pre-booked and paid at Holidays by FlyDubai
  • Cheaper option: Take Bus #37 for only 0.50 GEL/person

80 AED for 2
16:00
Check-in at Citadines City Centre Tbilisi



Change USD to local currency (GEL) in a money exchange shop near the hotel.


17:00
Walk to Bridge of Peace and Rike Park


18:00
Dinner in a Local Restaurant
  • Khinkhali, Mtsvadi, Wine

32 GEL for 2
19:30
Grocery in Galleria
  • Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Water

5 GEL
20:00
Back to the hotel





Tbilisi Freedom Square
Tbilisi Freedom Square

Bridge of Peace
Bridge of Peace

Mtkvari River
Mtkvari River


Day 2
Time
Activity
Expenses
06:30
Wake alarm


07:30
Walk to Old City Wall and Clock Tower


08:30
Walk back to Freedom Square for breakfast
  • Initially planned to have breakfast in Old Tbilisi, but forgot something in the hotel. So we had to go back.


09:00
Breakfast in DeGusto in Freedom Square

12 GEL for 2
10:00
Do-it-yourself Walking Tour:
  • Freedom Square à Gallery 27 à Old Tbilisi à Cable Car to Narikala à Mother Georgia à Back to Old Tbilisi

Two-way cable car ticket: 12 GEL for 2 
13:00
Lunch in Lost Crayfish Hermanos
  • Crayfish platter, bread, drinks
  • Please note this restaurant is closed during winter as the lakes where they take the crayfish are frozen.

68 GEL for 2
14:00
Walk to Metekhi St. Virgin Church


15:00
Walk to Sameba (Holy Trinity Cathedral of Tbilisi)


16:30
Walk to Dry Bridge


17:00
Walk to Café Leila in Ioane  Shavteli St
  • Georgian Tea, Kaklucha, Pistachio cake

20 GEL for 2
18:00
Sightseeing while strolling to Freedom Square


19:00
Dinner in Sakhli # 11
  • Fine-dining restaurant: 2 main dishes, 1 glass of red wine, 1 water

83 GEL for 2
20:30
Back to the hotel



Alternatively, the second day in Georgia can be spent visiting other towns and ski resort. We saw tour banners while we were walking around Tbilisi and noted that one day excursion price starts at 34 GEL/person.    


Old City Wall Tbilisi
Old City Wall

The Leaning Clock Tower of Tbilisi
The Leaning Clock Tower of Tbilisi

Georgian wine in the streets of Tbilisi
Wine wine wine!

Kaleidoscope House in Gallery 27 Tbilisi
Kaleidoscope House in Gallery 27

Cable car from Rike Park to Narikala Fortress
Cable car from Rike Park to Narikala Fortress

The cable car ride offers the best views of Old Tbilisi
The cable car ride offers the best views of Old Tbilisi! 

Mother Georgia
Mother Georgia watches over the city

Aerial view of Tbilisi from the fortress
Aerial view of Tbilisi from the fortress 

Los Crayfish Hermanos Tbilisi
Cray cray for lunch at Los Crayfish Hermanos! :) 


Metekhi St. Virgin Church
Metekhi St. Virgin Church

view of Old Tbilisi from Metekhi Church compound
view of Old Tbilisi from Metekhi Church compound

Holy Trinity Cathedral of Tbilisi
Holy Trinity Cathedral of Tbilisi


Day 3
Time
Activity
Expenses
06:00
Wake alarm


07:00
Walk to Old Tbilisi


07:30
Breakfast in the restaurant with the I Love Tbilisi sign
  • 1 Full Breakfast, 1 Khinkali platter, 2 Coffee

30 GEL for 2
08:30
Explore Old Tbilisi


09:00
Walk to Abanotubani Sulfur bath houses and Love Lock Bridge


10:00
Walk to Rike Park and Bridge of Peace


11:00
Walk back to the hotel
  • Pass by Erekli II street cafes and Kote Afkhazi street churchkhali shops


11:30
Check out


12:00
To the airport
  • Take Bus #37 from Galleria bus stop

 0.50 GEL/person
13:00
Lunch in the airport
  • Kubdari, Pelmini, and drinks

40 GEL for 2
15:30
Flight from Tbilisi to Dubai



Abanotubani district
Abanotubani district

Love Lock Bridge Tbilisi
Tbilisi's very own Love Lock Bridge 

View of Narikala Fortress from Abanotubani
View of Narikala Fortress from Abanotubani

The Sculpture Tree of Life in Rike Park
The Sculpture Tree of Life in Rike Park

view from the steps of Rike Park
Hiked up at the steps of Rike Park to Avlabari to see this amazing view! 

Rike Park in Tbilisi
I love Rike Park! I could see myself relaxing here every weekend if I live in Tbilisi.

At the entrance of Tbilisi Concert Hall and Exhibition Centre
At the entrance of Tbilisi Concert Hall and Exhibition Centre

Tbilisi Bridge of Peace
Crossing the Bridge of Peace for the last time? Nah! We'll be back for sure! :) 


Estimated Budget for this 3-day Itinerary


Details
Expenses in 
AE Dirhams 
per person
Flights and Accommodation
  • Booked as a package at Holidays by FlyDubai

1,100 AED
Transportation
  • One-way private transfer from airport to hotel
  • One-way bus ride from hotel to the airport

41 AED
Food
  • 2 Breakfasts, 3 Lunches, 2 Dinners, 1 Coffee Break

200 AED approx
Activities and Extras
  • Cable Car and Grocery

15 AED

Total

1356 AED


Love this? Pin it for later!
And also READ my other blog post: Instagrammable Spots in Tbilisi!

Tbilisi Travel Guide for pinterest








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