Poti, Georgia’s main port, is visited by travellers for two main reasons: the Ukraine ferry and the nearby Kolkheti National Park.
Once a centre of the Ottoman slave trade, Poti developed after coming under Russian control in 1828. In 2008 Russian forces controlled Poti for a month and sank several Georgian naval vessels in the port.
The centre of the city is marked by Poti’s cathedral, which is modelled on Istanbul’s Hagia Sofia and was completed in 1907. Ten streets radiate from Rustavelis rkali (Rustaveli Circle), the very large roundabout surrounding the cathedral. Davit Aghmashenebeli, the main street, runs northwest from here across a branch of the Rioni River to reach a junction after 1.5km. Here Gegidze heads to the right (east), while the port is 400m to the west. Parnavazi runs 600m eastward from Rustavelis rkali, through the market area, to a square with another bridge leading to the train station on Reqvava.