Blog / Why Gudauri is cheap and interesting Georgia, Outdoor & Action, Blog | 09.11.2018

Why Gudauri is cheap and interesting

Gudauri, one of the first and the most popular winter resort in Georgia, was listed among the must-visit resorts of Austria, France, Italy, Germany and Ukraine. This mountainous resort is located in Kazbegi district, facing the south plateau of the Greater Caucasus mountain range and about 120 km north of Tbilisi, making it convenient for locals and guests for short weekend ski trips.

The ski season lasts from December to April. Actually, snowy weather starts in the mid of November but officially ski lifts and resort start working in the wintertime. The mountain’s average skiable elevation is 2,133 m above sea level, so the weather can be chaotic and unexpected.

Panoramic view from the pistes in Gudauri

Gudauri became popular in 2006

Several years ago, skiing here was a well-kept secret known by only a handful of locals and the most adventurous ski lovers. This is rapidly changing as the Georgian ski hype spreads throughout Europe and the rest of the world. From 2006 the resort became very popular. Nowadays it is the most developed ski town and is growing very quickly, with new hotels, restaurants, ski lifts, and activities opening each year.

The resort offers high-quality skiing opportunities and is certainly one of the best places for extreme sports lovers. Gudauri has seven lifts to reach its different slopes, this year two new lifts have been constructed which raised the slopes and makes skiing much more interesting. Most of the ski lifts levels feature enclosed cable cars while the lifts that go higher peaks are chair lifts. The lifts are a mix of new and old. It can feel particularly cold while just sitting there during the ascent while the wind is whipping around you, so be sure to be well prepared for it.

Gudauri ski resort in Georgia

3 helicopter flights from 650 EUR only

The hills in Gudauri offers different types of opportunities to every kind of skier, beginners or professional ones. If you are looking for a freeride run, you are able to hire a helicopter for an affordable price (650 EUR p.p. for 3 rides per day; minimum group size: 4 people) and enjoy the mountains only by yourself. With helicopters granted almost unrestricted access to local mountains, skiers can experience some of the most sublime runs in Europe, at altitudes between 1,500 and 4,200 meters above sea level. The helicopters drop clients off on mountain tops, glaciers, fabulous ridges, and in the hands of highly experienced guides.

If you are just starting to learn skiing or snowboarding, experienced and qualified instructors can be found nearby ski lifts giving hourly lessons (20 EUR) and ski trips for individuals or groups. It is the only ski resort with an English speaking school catered to Western travelers and with discounts for hitchhikers.

Skiing in Gudauri, Georgia

Much cheaper than in Western Europe

All in once Gudauri is a very cheap ski resort compared to other luxurious resorts of Europe. Ski pass prices are the main reason for Gudauri’s popularity among European skiers and tourists. Daily tickets for ski passes are around 10 EUR for adults and 5 EUR for children. Normal operating hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. with night skiing available on weekends. Hours and availability are subject to conditions, holiday schedules, and specials.

In Gudauri you can eat at less price and huge portions. In addition, you will have a great choice of living places here. You can stay both in a hostel or a 5-star hotel. Hostels range is from 15 to 30 EUR, typically includes breakfast and dinner.  There are not many nightclubs and café-bars in Gudauri. The nightlife lovers might get a little bit bored there. 

In a restaurant in Gudauri

Only 2 hours from Tbilisi

The ski resort is well equipped for families, solo travelers, and friends, and is easily accessible from Tbilisi in only 2 hours by car or Marshrutka. It is interesting to rest here for a 4-5 day trip, and expert skiers can happily ski the never-ending backcountry possibilities for years without getting bored. Everything in Gudauri is above the tree line and the entire resort is south facing.

Gudauri ski resort by night

Interesting facts about Gudauri

  • In 2014 there were only 54 people living in the village.
  • The very first hotel in Gudauri was built in 1988 and it was called «Marco Polo», which is now called «Gudauri».
  • Russian Georgian friendship monument was built to celebrate the ongoing friendship Between Russia and Georgia in 1989. Within this structure, there are huge tile murals that depict historic scenes from Georgian and Russian History.
Author: MyCaucasus
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