Perched atop rolling green foothills of the Caucasus mountains in Kazbegi, Gergeti Trinity Church has become the postcard view of Georgia. Giant rippled mountains dusted brown, grey, white, and green surround the small church which stands proudly from its summit. Nature in the Caucasus is fierce and bold. Yet, the tawny brick towers of the Gergeti Trinity Church stand proudly amongst the mountains, despite their difference in size.
The short and steep 2-hour climb from Stepantsminda is a warm-up for many hikers making their way to Gergeti Glacier or to the summit of Mount Kazbek. Hikers are drawn by the region’s vast wilderness and rich folklore.
It’s easy to believe these parts were once home to heroes and gods. A hero by the name of Amirani stole fire from the hands of the gods, which he then gifted his fellow mortals, so the tale goes. His punishment – eternity chained to Mount Kazbek’s perilous icy slopes.
Today, trekkers rather than heroes explore the green breadth of the Caucasus mountains. Most will pass by the brown and grey brick turrets of the Gergeti Trinity Church. Built in the 14th Century, the church overlooks Stepantsminda village and the valley below. Its small size pales in comparison to the surrounding layers of mountains.
Getting to Gergeti Trinity Church
Walking to Gergeti Trinity Church is the only way to fully enjoy the surroundings. Eagles circle above your head as you pass quiet streams and green pastures to reach the church. The walk begins in Stepantsminda village. Starting from the Red Stone Guest House, follow the road uphill. Take a left at the t-junction when the road becomes a dirt track. Follow this road and you will pass a water spring before seeing Cafe Gergeti. Walk into the carpark of the cafe and look for the steep path to the left. The path leads around a crumbling stone tower that is visible from the carpark. Keeping the stream on your left, follow this path to reach Gergeti Trinity Church.