A Great Introduction to Georgia
Once a sleepy backwater in the former USSR, Batumi is emerging as one of the most popular destinations on the Black Sea. To truly get a sense of just how far it’s come, go for a spin on the waterfront Ferris wheel. Keep your eyes peeled for unique buildings like Alphabet Tower, replicas of the great Alexandria lighthouse and the Acropolis, and even an upside down White House.
After dark, the city is awash in purple, red, and blue lights, while pop music blares from speakers along the promenade. Wander into one of the newly constructed casinos, and you could almost think that you’re in Vegas—minus the heat and the Cirque du Soleil shows, of course.
But before you get too carried away with all the “where the heck are we?” moments, Batumi’s café-lined Old Boulevard will bring you firmly back to the old world. Find a quiet spot to enjoy a glass of wine, the pride and joy of Georgia. Whether it’s a humble homemade batch pressed from backyard grapes or an award-winning vintage from the Tsinandali region, there’s plenty to try.
Of course, all that wine pairs perfectly with khachapuri—dough baked into the shape of a boat, cradling melted cheese and an egg, and then slathered in butter. (Go ahead. Your diet will forgive you.)