Yew and Lake Tbikeli
/ 37 km, 2 days, pedestrian/horse riding, difficulty: average /
Main sightseeing: old yew trees, Khinotsminda church ruins, Lake Tbikeli
The route starts from theTskhemvani Visitor Shelter and heads to the village of Khino through the villageofDidvake, where we come across old giant yew stands, which are one of the relict species of the tertiary period and which are included in the Georgian Red List. Yew is the only coniferous species whose fruit are not cones. Except for its fruit, every part is poisonous and it includes essential oil and such substances that are poisonous to animals. German scientists consider this yew as 30-40 centuries old.
Afterwards the trail continues to the ruins of the Ninotsminda Church in the village ofKhino, which belongs to the VIII-IX centuries with its construction techniques and masonry formation. Some of the wall fragments reach 2-3 meters. According to the measurements (18X10), the church might be considered a relatively large building. The architecture of the KhinotsmindaChurch reveals signs of relatively late Georgian basilica. Nowadays KhinotsmindaIoaneNatlismtsemeliChurch is functioning and is 44 km from Kobuleti. Visitors can have a rest there and use the picnic spot.
After some break, the visitors can continue on the way to Lake Tbikeli through untouchable chestnut and beech forest, which is located at an altitude of 1900-2000 meters. The lake has an elongated, oval shape, with a depth of 7-8 meters. It is fed by atmospheric precipitation, fused snow and ground waters. In winter the lake is covered by snow and ice and is inhabited by Caucasian Newt, which are included in the Red List. The trail distance from the ruins of the church to the lake is 12 km.
The tourist shelter on the protected area includes 6 places.
- MindiaKupatadze 591-81-12-83