Jvari Monastery and Beyond

It was a pretty drive from Telavi through the mountains to the Jvari Monastery, not far from Tbilisi.  We saw lots of farmers making honey in the mountains.I thought honey might be a welcome addition to our breakfast so I bout a jar.  We ate much of it during the trip but a bit came home to Vermont.

Like many Georgian churches and monasteries, Jvari was built on top of hill, accessible only to those who really want to go and easily defended.  The church was completed in 605 on the site where a cross had stood since early in the 4th century.  Now a  replica of the cross is inside the church.



The monastery towers above the old capital of Georgia, Mtskheta.  The capital was moved to down the river to Tbilisi because it was more easily defended.

Orthodox visitors to any church buy candles to burn.

The church is full of icons and other religious symbols.  But no chairs for worshipers!

Little in the old capital of Mtskheta has been preserved other than the Svetitskhoveli Cathedral of the Twelve Apostles completed in 1029.


The inside of the church was crowded with icons, grave markers and paintings.The frescoes on the walls were painted in the 17th century.

Outside was a large plaza enclosed by stone walls. We could look up and see Jvari Monastery above us.

Now it was lunch time.  Of course I took the picture before we started to eat and all the other food arrived.  Then I was too busy eating to think about pictures!  Every meal had bread, cheese and tomato salad as starters.  And usually there were various vegetables with different kinds of walnut sauce.  Here we had eggplant, red pepper and spinach.  And that was before the main courses arrived!

After lunch we headed up the Georgia Military Road into the mountains.  Click here.

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