Narikala Fortress, Tbilisi

Narikala Fortress, Tbilisi (must see)

Narikala Fortress, perched on a steep hill overlooking the picturesque city of Tbilisi and the flowing Mtkvari River, stands as a testament to Georgia's rich history and architectural heritage. This ancient fortress, consisting of two walled sections, is situated between the renowned Sulfur Baths and the enchanting Botanical Gardens of Tbilisi.

The Narikala Fortress has a rich history. It was constructed by King Vakhtang I Gorgasali of Iberia, but humans settled in the Tbilisi region long before that, around the 4th millennium BC. The earliest written records of the settlement date back to the 4th century AD when King Varaz-Bakur built a fortress in 364. It changed hands briefly but was recaptured in the 5th century. The fortress expanded under the Umayyads in the 7th century and during King David the Builder's reign (1089-1125). The Mongols later renamed it "Narin Qala." Most of the fortifications we see today were built in the 16th and 17th centuries. Sadly, an earthquake in 1827 damaged and demolished parts of the fortress.

Within the lower court of Narikala Fortress, visitors can marvel at the recently restored St. Nicholas Church. This church, built in 1996-1997, is a reconstruction of the original 13th-century church that had tragically succumbed to a devastating fire. The new St. Nicholas Church follows the design of a "prescribed cross" featuring entrances on three sides. Its interior is adorned with intricately painted frescoes, depicting scenes from both the Bible and the captivating history of Georgia.

Today, Narikala Fortress stands as an iconic symbol of Tbilisi, offering visitors breathtaking panoramic views of the cityscape and the Mtkvari River. Exploring its ancient walls and the restored St. Nicholas Church is a journey through time, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in the history, culture, and architectural splendor of Georgia's capital city.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Tbilisi. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Narikala Fortress on Map

Sight Name: Narikala Fortress
Sight Location: Tbilisi, Georgia (See walking tours in Tbilisi)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Tbilisi, Georgia

Create Your Own Walk in Tbilisi

Create Your Own Walk in Tbilisi

Creating your own self-guided walk in Tbilisi is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
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Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.5 Km or 1.6 Miles
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Tbilisi Introduction Walking Tour

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According to legend, the king's falcon found the hot springs, near which the...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.8 Km or 2.4 Miles