Visit Georgia in winter by 4×4, camper or van: tips, activities, places

Winter in Georgia brings a unique beauty to the Caucasus mountains and offers an exceptional opportunity for vanlife lovers. Snow-covered landscapes, picturesque villages and the warm atmosphere of the mountains create the perfect backdrop for a winter adventure in a van, motorhome or 4×4. In this article, let’s dive into the joys and challenges of vehicle life in winter in Georgia, with tips for staying warm, suggestions for winter activities and everything you need for a memorable experience in the heart of the snow-capped Caucasus mountains.

We can define the Georgian winter season as running from late November to mid-March. It depends on the year and the region. Contrary to popular belief, winter is the least rainy season of the year in Georgia.

Rav4 in front of a snow-covered mountain

1. Winter weather in Georgia – how cold is it?

You can find all the weather data (graphs, history, etc.) on this website:““. Here’s a short summary of the data, optimized with our experience to save you time and make things clearer.

In large cities (on the plains)

In major cities such as Tbilisi, Koutaïssi or Batoumi, daytime temperatures are generally close to zero degrees Celsius, but rarely go into negative territory. However, at night, and even in the early morning, temperatures are generally negative and have even reached -15°C in some cases. Sub-zero temperatures are most likely to occur between late December and late February.

In the mountains

In the mountains, temperatures will be much lower, both in the Lesser Caucasus (to the south) and the Upper Caucasus (to the north). There may be snowfalls, or even storms of icy snow, but it’s also not unusual for several weeks in a row to go by with no snowfall and plenty of sunshine, which delights the ski resorts. The sun quickly warms up as soon as it appears, which is not unpleasant in winter.

Note that some villages, and even some areas of Georgia, are completely cut off from the world during the winter, due to “roads” that are totally impassable with snow and landslides. Rest assured, these roads are known and closed every winter, so it’s not possible to find yourself on one of them by chance. The two best-known examples are the Tusheti area and the village of Ushguli in Svaneti.

We strongly advise vehicular travellers to visit these mountains in winter in a 4×4 vehicle, with snow tires and chains just in case. We did it with a high-guard motorhome and double rear axle, and encountered no particular difficulties. The main roads are very well cleared of snow (not always the secondary roads).

Mean maximum and minimum temperatures in Georgia

2. What to visit in Georgia in winter Which regions?

Georgia may be a “small” country, but the variety of climates, types of terrain and activities available in the different regions means you’ll have plenty to choose from, depending on your personal preferences.

The Kakhetia region: you’ll be warm!

Georgia has a region in mind for those with a cold feet, and not just any region – the wine region of Kakhetia.

You may not get sunburned (although you will), but if you don’t have a good heating system in your vehicle, if you don’t like the cold, or if you’re simply craving better temperatures, visit this region to the east of Georgia, towards Azerbaijan.

It’s a fairly flat region, and there are plenty of things to do and see here. All this is detailed in the following section: winter activities in Georgia.

The mountainous regions of Kazbegui and Borjomi

Winter is synonymous with mountains, snow, sliding and greasy food. You’ll find it all in these two regions (there are others, but these are the most developed and easily accessible from Tbilisi).

As Kazbegui is located in the High Caucasus, it’s in these mountains that you’ll find the earliest snow in the season, and often the latest too. You’ll be at the foot of one of Georgia’s highest peaks: Mount Kazbek, at 5,047 metres. The Kazbegui region is very well served by a good main road. The main ski resort, Gudauri, can be reached from Tbilisi in just over 2 hours. You’ll be in a real complex for snow sports and other mountain activities.

Borjomi is located in the Lesser Caucasus, between Koutaïssi and Tbilisi. Much lower than Kazbegui, its ascent should be easier in terms of weather conditions. There are also plenty of activities available in the surrounding area. A short distance from the village of Borjomi, you’ll find the Bakuriani ski resort. Further south, you’ll be captivated by Rabati Castle, which features an all-wood hall. You can also simply stroll through the unspoilt forests with marked trails, so you won’t get lost.

The Koutaïssi region

Koutaïssi is the country’s third-largest city in terms of population, but this is Georgia, so it’s still a human-sized town with 150,000 inhabitants. Geographically speaking, it’s interesting because it’s “at the center” of the country, between the Black Sea and Tbilisi. If you’ve decided to visit the country from east to west, this is the place to be.

As far as activities are concerned, there’s plenty to keep you busy. You can visit the famous Prometheus cave, or admire the view, feet above the void, from Okatse Canyon. In terms of monuments, there’s plenty to visit, including the Ghelati monastery, which has a very important and interesting history for Georgia, which we’ll leave you to discover on the spot. Then there’s the town of Tskhaltoubo, with its many Soviet-era Stalinist sanatoria that have been left to decay. A unique urbex experience! Not to mention the region’s free natural hot springs, and plenty of other things to discover.

Regions we advise against in winter

To start with, all the Black Sea coastline and surrounding areas, including Batoumi. Being a region that relies heavily on summer tourism, once the good weather disappears for the opposite hemisphere, the region becomes almost desert-like, and many shops and activities close down. Unless you’re fond of casinos, we don’t recommend Batoumi, especially in winter.

The second region we don’t recommend is also to the west, but not for the same reasons. Indeed, Svanetia is one of Georgia’s jewels, its landscapes, nature, traditions and history giving it a very special value. However, during winter, weather conditions become very difficult and roads are not always safe due to these conditions (snow, ice, precipices, damaged roads, etc.). In our opinion, it’s best to wait for the fine weather to discover this treasure.

Ice-covered motorhome in Kazbegi

3. Georgian winter activities

Georgia’s exceptional topography means there’s plenty to do in winter, including all the well-known mountain activities. Let’s expand on that here.

Mountain activities (skiing, etc.)

Mountainous regions are synonymous with snow sports. Georgia is no exception – in fact, it’s one of the best! You’ll find 7 ski resorts in the Georgian Caucasus mountains, including Gudauri and Bakuriani, which we recommended earlier in this article. These resorts are modern, offer all the comforts you could wish for and are much less expensive than French ski resorts. International competitions are regularly held here, proving the quality of the services offered, the quality of the slopes and the safety measures in place.

Depending on the resort, you can ski and snowboard on pistes of all levels and also off-piste. You can go paragliding,heliskiing, ice skating, snowmobiling and more. With less adrenalin but more conviviality and more time to enjoy the scenery, you can enjoy snowshoeing, cross-country skiing or simply walking.

You can also relax in hot springs (free or for a fee), spas and fine restaurants.

Activities in the Kakhetia region

What can you do in a flat region in winter in eastern Georgia?

Firstly, Kakhetia is the wine region of the country that “invented” wine. You’ll have the opportunity to visit a wide range of wineries. You’ll be treated to quality, varied and lively tastings. Then, as it’s forbidden to drive under the influence of alcohol, you can stay overnight in your 4×4, van or camper.

Secondly, there’s the Vashlovani desert to visit. Located in the extreme south-east of the country, you’ll sometimes find yourself on the border with Azerbaijan. In this desert, you’ll be much warmer than in the mountains, and it would be very surprising if there were snow. That said, you’ll need a 4×4 to enjoy it, given the state of the roads, or at the very least a high-capacity vehicle. In this desert, you’ll feel cut off from the world, the ideal place to recharge your batteries amidst Hollywood landscapes. A wildlife preservation and rehabilitation program is in place, and you may even come across gazelles.

Thirdly, the romantic village of Signakhi. You can visit this very pretty village on your way to the desert and spend a very romantic day and evening in the cradle of Georgian love.

Finally, there are many other places to visit in Kakhetia. Numerous monasteries, including the most famous at David Gareja. Magnificent ruins such as the Ujarma fortress. Or canyons like Artsivi Canyon. And many more places to enjoy your trip.

Activities in Georgia in general

Let’s take a more general look at possible activities. For a start, it’s easy to go where you want and sleep with your vehicle wherever you want. There are no Western European restrictions on vehicle travel.

If you likeurbex, you’ll be delighted to come across old abandoned buildings on a regular basis. There are also plenty of hot springs in the countryside, so it’s easy and free to bathe outdoors in winter. You’ll also find plenty of opportunities to hike, visit monasteries and find out-of-this-world places with a view from on high. And there’s plenty to satisfy your taste buds and stomachs all over Georgia.

Adjarian khatchapuri

4. Discover Winter Cuisine

Winter is also an ideal time to discover Georgian winter cuisine. Taste comforting dishes such as kharcho (a spicy meat and rice soup), chashushuli (a meat stew), khatchapuri (bread dough filled with cheese), Ghomi (cornmeal with melted cheese).

As you can see, Georgian cuisine is highly diversified, and each dish has a multitude of variations. For example, khatchapuri comes in at least 7 varieties, including our favorite: adjarian khatchapuri, in the shape of a boat, served with an egg and a knob of butter to mix with the melting cheese.

You’ll also find it easy to cook whatever you like, as the local markets are full of fresh produce and culinary delights typical of the winter season.

5. Tips for enjoying Georgia in winter by car

Make sure you’re well prepared with warm clothing, sleeping bags suitable for low temperatures and extra blankets. If you rent a vehicle from Caucasus Roadtrips, we provide comforters and/or blankets to keep you warm at night. You can also add an electric hand warmer, which can replace a hot water bottle and fits in a pocket.

If you don’t have snow tires, make sure you have chains in your vehicle. Likewise, if you’re heading for the mountains, make sure your engine coolant can withstand very low temperatures.


Winter vanlife in Georgia offers a unique and memorable experience in the heart of the Caucasus mountains. With the right preparation, exciting winter activities and the discovery of local cuisine and culture, you can make the most of this magical season. So get ready to face the cold temperatures while wrapping yourself in the warmth of winter adventure in a 4×4, van or camper van. Embark on an unforgettable winter experience amidst spectacular snow-covered landscapes.

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