Budget airline Ryanair has announced that it's launching cheap flights to Georgia, with flights to Kutaisi from Bologna and Marseille beginning in November. Flights from Milan to Tbilisi also begin in November and Cologne to Tbilisi in April 2020. With that in mind, here are some of the things travellers can do once they get there.

The Old Town and Narikala Fortress in Tbilisi. Image: Frans Sellies/Getty Images Getty Royalty Free

Georgia is one of the most beautiful countries on earth and a marvellous canvas for walkers, horse riders, cyclists, skiers, rafters and travellers of every kind. It has green valleys spread with vineyards and old churches and watchtowers perched in fantastic mountain scenery. Its deeply complicated history has given Georgia a wonderful heritage of architecture and arts, from cave cities to ancient cathedrals to the inimitable canvases of Pirosmani.

The Vardzia cave city complex in Georgia. Image: gmstockstudio/Shutterstock

One of its big attractions is Gelati Monastery, a Unesco World Heritage-listed monastery complex situated on a wooded hillside 8km northeast of Kutaisi. It's an outstanding example of Golden Age architecture and is one of Georgia's most important churches. In addition, the remarkable cave city of Vardzia is both a cultural symbol and a spectacular natural phenomenon. King Giorgi III built a fortification here in the 12th century, and his daughter, Queen Tamar, established a cave monastery that grew into a holy city with over 400 rooms, 13 churches and 25 wine cellars, with many more still being discovered today.

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Narikala is an ancient fortress overlooking Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia. Image: Oleg Chyrva/500px

Tbilisi is Georgia’s capital and it has spectacular contemporary buildings and ever-improving facilities for the visitors who are a growing part of its future. It's the vibrant, beating heart of Georgia and home to more than one in three of its citizens. Its hipster culture, techno scene and general cool vibe confidently seals its reputation as the South Caucasus' most cosmopolitan city. Attractions include the Chreli Abano thermal baths, Narikala, an ancient fortress overlooking Tbilisi, the Georgian National Museum and the Kartlis Deda monument, a 20m-tall aluminium symbol of the city.

For further inspiration, read Lonely Planet's six reasons to visit Georgia. 

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