“Day 2, Post 2.”
In my head, I kinda said that like a narrator reading a play and announces the change in the scene- Act 1, Scene 3. But, maybe that’s just an English major thing.
Anywhoo. Day 2 was something I was very excited about. It was, as I called it ‘Snow Day’. I didn’t mention it in my previous post, but this one would be incomplete without their introductions, as would have been my trip.
So on day 1, while breakfast, on the table next to me was a very lovely Indian lady, who was wearing this big chuda on her hand. So, I figured she must be North Indian.And I was right. She was also from Delhi- like me and lives in Sharjah. We hit it off straight away. She was with her husband- straight from their marriage. (Note: This was NOT their honeymoon!!) I shared my very anal itinerary with her on the same day and we ran into them at Meydaan. Well, a really long story, short- they ended up joining us to Gudauri.
So next morning- this time I was cautious and decided to carry 2 pairs of extra socks ( I was already wearing two), 2 big jackets, my Fox hat- which is a beloved souvenir from Helsinki and a big smile.
Anyway, we set off on our journey. First stop by the side of the road to have the best view of the Tbilisi sea. Lucky Bhaiya* stopped the car so we could really admire the view and take some pictures and then piled us back in. While heading to Gudauri, we had many stops and many stories from the same.
We stopped by the roadside shops for some Churchkhela, which is a traditional Georgian candy made from fruits and nuts. Really weird looking stuff, but incredibly delicious.
Once we left the city behind, the snowcapped trees began. As we drove by the Aragvi river, the mountains got closer, the view got even more breath-taking than before. It literally looked like we are standing in some kind of a studio and taking pictures – that’s how beautifully unreal and pleasant it was. There was a chill in the weather- but the best kind. Again, we stopped by this little place which will be the background in many pictures to come. I have run out of synonyms for breath-taking, so imagine similar words as description of the view.
We headed to Ananuri after, which is on the way to Gudauri. Ananuri is a fortress which dates back to the 13th century and is by the Aragvi river. When you walk into it first, it looks like a ruined castle- which basically it is. Fun fact- it’s actually on UNESCO tentative list. Within the complex of the Castle, there are two churches- Church of the Virgin and Church of Assumption. They both date back to the 17th century. With scriptures and carvings on the wall, the Churches are well preserved. We went inside the Church of Assumption, it was beautiful with paintings on the walls.
The Fortress looks over to the Zhvervali reservoir and surrounding mountains is a spectacular sight.
We packed up in the car once more and moved again towards Gudauri.
There was a little patch where we saw a lot of snow by the river, and we stopped again to frollick in the snow. Read: we did absolutely frollick in the snow. Someone might or might not have convinced me that the water is actually hot because there’s sulphur so it would be a brilliant idea to take it out of my gloves and dig in. All I can say is, it was very, very cold.
No more stops after this and we finally reached Gudauri. In the first glance, it was a white snow blanket.There was snow everywhere! People were skiing, and running around, throwing snow at each other. We went up in the cable car to a higher point and it was fun. We played in the snow- I’ve never played in the snow before. It got too cold for me, so I took a 15 minute refuge in the little coffee shop by the heater.
We had plans to go paragliding, but because the snow had just fallen the day before, platforms weren’t ready. Maybe, next time.
We headed back to Tbilisi at 5 pm before the roads got too dark… Back in Tbilisi, we had a quick dinner and went back to the hotel..
Some pictures from the fun day before: