This fortress was built in the 4th century and has been expanded and reoccupied over the centuries. Parts have been destroyed by either fire or earthquake.
Walking along the wall this wall leads you left, to the pathway that takes you to the bottom entrance of the fortress. Below this right side of the wall of the fortress is the botanical gardens.
This part of the fortress was destroyed by an earthquake in 1827:
Walking down a pathway, along the left side of the fortress to get to the main entrance:
Entering through the main entrance of the fortress. I’m wearing a crown of fresh flowers Dachi bought for me!
Now inside, walking along the base of a wall, looking up at the bell tower:
And then up these old, narrow stone steps:
At the top, in one of the guard stations – you see a narrow hole where the soldier could aim his gun through at approaching enemies:The hole is located in that floor archway:
Next was walking here…
View of St. Nicholas church. It’s newly restored. What is left of the old church is the dark brown stones along the base:
Bathhouse next to the church:
Looking down at one of the walls that has been restored…..
Next we walk up here…..
And find these, cairns made by those who’ve visited the fortress!
I added that wee stone on the very top of this cairn:
Dachi added two stones on this one:
Here we walked to this part of the fortress, where, in his youth, Dachi and his friends would come to sit on, drink beer – look out at the city – and have big dreams for their future!
Walking back out…
AS we leave through the main entrance, Dachi knows this woman asking for money. She helps poor children in the area. She is the only person asking for money that Dachi recommended helping because he knows of her charity work with local children.
Along with a small picture of Mary and Baby Jesus she framed and two fridge magnets for my 30GEL I gave her – she handed me two small sweet breads that she told Dachi were made in the monastery. I didn’t eat them – she handed them to me with her bare, really dirty hands….I left them out for the birds to eat… 🙂
Next stop…..the waterfall located at the bottom of the hill, below the fortress!