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Sighnaghi (Georgian: სიღნაღი) is a town in Georgia's easternmost region of Kakheti and the administrative center of the Sighnaghi District. It is one of the country's smallest towns with a population of about 3000.
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Points of Interest
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- Civic property
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Points of Interest in Signagi
- XVIII century Sighnaghi town wall (Take the cobbled road down to Tsnori, enter through the tower at the arch.). Sighnaghi's fortifying wall is one of the biggest in Georgia, its area occupies 40 hectares. Town wall has 23 towers, each one named for a nearby town, and 6 gates, its width is 1.5 m, height 4.5 m and total length is 4.5 km. A small section of the wall has been restored for tourism. You can enter this portion through the tower at the gate on the road to Sakobo/Tsnori where there is also a restaurant. This "tourist track" as the signs call it, will spit you out on the same road, above where you entered.
- XVII century St. Giorgi church.
- St.Stephen church in Sighnaghi fortress (take the road to the left of Hotel Sighnaghi at the highest square. The church is up the road on the right.). The church tower commands an excellent view of Sighnaghi's surrounding areas and tourists can climb over the fortifications. There is often an old man here who tries to extract a fee from visitors, but there is no price for admission to the church or the tower. -.
- Bodbe Convent (Located 2 km outside of Sighnaghi it is one of the most important places of pilgrimages. St.Nino, IV c. apostle of Georgia is buried here. Monastery itself was constructed in the end of V century by Vakhtang Gorgasali. Bodbe monastery was reconstructed in XIX century.).
- St.Nino spring (If you go down the hill from Bodbe Convent you'll find St.Nino spring. You can wash your self in holy and allegedly healing water here).
- Khornabuji fortress (Located near Dedoplitskaro this is an ancient fortification on the rocks, first mentioned in V century. It was invaded by Mongols in XIII century).
- Pirosmani museum (Neighboring the square at the summit of Sighnaghi, can be reached by taking the stairs to the left of the large building with a clocktower.). Working hours 11.30-18.30. The ground floor holds an impressive exhibit of archeological artifacts, many of which were discovered locally. The upper floor features 16 original paintings by the famous Georgian folk artist Nikolos Pirosmani, as well as a gallery for special exhibitions. Ticket 3 gel, 1 gel for students.
- Sunday market in Bodbiskhevi, village of Bodbiskhevi, adjoining Tsnori (Marshrutkhas to Tsnori currently are not running from Sighnaghi on the weekends. You can hire a taxi to take you to the market and bring you back for 15 gel or less if not shared with other passengers.). morning. The largest market in the region, Bodbiskhevi offers the traditional Soviet Sunday market day experience.
At Bodbiskhevi market the prices and variety of goods are unmatched, selling such things as fresh produce, meats, cheeses, crafts, clothes, livestock, and house and farm goods.
Popular events in Signagi in the near future
Sighnaghi's economy is dominated by production of wine and traditional carpets. Sighnaghi has recently undergone a fundamental reconstruction program and has become an important center of Georgia's tourist industry. Although for Sighnaghi itself half day of sightseeing will be more than enough, but this town is probably the best base for exploring the region on daily trips. You can follow the road from Sighnaghi to Telavi via Gurjaani visiting wineries on the way, escape for a day to Kvareli lake resort or Lagodekhi National park, go visit David Gareja monasteries on Azerbaijan border.
Do not expect wild night life here. Sighnaghi is the place to drink local wine and enjoy delicious Kakhetian food in one of the many restaurants.
- Pheasant's Tears Restaurant, Wine Bar, and Fine Art (close to Populi, on the road to Tbilisi). Pheasant's Tears wine bar offers wine tastings and interesting takes on traditional Georgian cuisine with an eye towards wine and food pairings. A must-see for wine tourists, as the winery produces organic wine made in the traditional qvevri method and focuses exclusively on Georgian varietals. Their restaurant and wine is considerably more expensive than other restaurants. Pheasant's Tears can also organize wine tours throughout the region or even arrange an acclaimed folk ensemble to provide Georgian polyphonic song during your feast.
Pheasant's Tears also sells traditional and antique Georgian carpets, as well as fine art painted by the primary partner in the winery, a graduate of the Surikov Institute in Moscow. English and Russian friendly.
- Host of Sighnaghi, Baratashvili str., first restaurant you see entering Sighnaghi coming from Tbilisi. Delicious khinkali, mtsvadi and other Georgian specialties.. For full meal plus wine you shouldn't pay more than 15-20 gel per person.
- Nikala (Across from the clocktower building). Nikala boasts excellent Kakhetian food and some of the best khinkali and mtsvade in town. Their menu includes several more rare Kakhetian delicacies than most restaurants in the area. English friendly.
- Pancho Villa (From the highest town square, take the lower road to the right of Hotel Sighnaghi, towards Tsnori). Pancho Villa may be one of the few, if not the only, Mexican restaurant in Georgia. The restaurant does an excellent job at recreating Mexican flavors and dishes with Georgian ingredients and mentality. They also offer the most exotic liquors in Sighnaghi, and the only margarita for miles. The food here is more expensive than other restaurants, but the gastronomical variety they offer is invaluable. Make sure you at least stop by for their incredible desserts and a Mexican hot chocolate!
- The Knitting Ladies (On the cobblestone road toward Tsnori). In a small section of Sighnaghi, several ladies offer a picturesque array of knitted goods for sale for astoundingly cheap prices. Here you cay buy Georgian socks with traditional patterns and local wool, hats, scarves, slippers, and baby booties. 1-20 gel.
This article is based on Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike 3.0 Licensed text from the article Sighnaghi on Wikivoyage.