The sun shines on its shores and the horizon is almost visible. Unsure if I'm on the beach edging an ocean or a lake, a national park ranger passes behind me bringing light to my wonderment. The water is turbid and the shores of the lake only filled with concrete constructions used for private housing arrangements. Grand hotels aren’t in sight and the only excitement I receive is from nature itself.
The Kolkheti National Park is a true sleeping beauty, protected by vigorous rangers. At the west side of the lake, the small town of Poti occupies the shores. Still undeveloped for tourists, it's not really the perfect immersion into a national park but, boarding a small white vessel for tourism transport, a ranger takes control of the rudder before we motor across the lake to the real amazement of the park.
An estuary marked by an iron cross peeking out of the water indicates the entrance to a seemingly holy place. Green bushes, water reeds and aquatic birds cordon the river on both sides, taking over the banks. Slowing progressing up the Pichori River, numerous occasions provide for a perfect photo of this isolated and deserted natural habitat. At times, a little hut appears on the left of the river, hiding between the ferns. Available to rent, they symbolize the perfect spot for a picture-book love story.
After the tour, my mind still dreams about the gorge, like the Miami Everglades, yet without the danger of alligators. Lake Paliastomi is a hidden spot for tourists looking for a bit of tranquility, while the staff offers fishing equipment and many other tours.
Kolkheti National Park offers a wide variety of boating tours, bird watching and eco educational tours.
You can hire or plan:
- Tent: 10 GEL
- Camp site, Anaklia (Churia district): 5 GEL
- Tour by kayak, Okros Tba (Golden lake): 1 seat /1 hr - 10 GEL; 2 seats /1 hr -15 GEL
- Tour by motorboat Paliastomi - Pichori: 3 persons, 2 hr - 90 GEL
- Tour by pontoon Paliastomi- Pichori: 16 persons/3hr - 300 GEL; Pupils, professional colleges and university students - 200 GEL
- Tour by pontoon Lake Paliastomi: 16 persons/1hr – 160 GEL; Pupils, professional colleges and university students - 100 GEL
- Tour by kayak (Pontoon+kayak) Gorge of River Pichori: 4 persons/4 hr - 350 GEL; 8 persons/4 hr - 430 GEL
- Rowing boat, Okros Tba (Golden lake) or Anaklia: 3 persons/1 hr - 20 GEL
- Binocular: 10 GEL
- Tour by motorboat, River Churia: 1-3 persons/2 hr – 100 GEL
You can enjoy tours year round
The best period for bird watching is early spring and late autumn
Note: For visitor safety, tours are not arranged in bad weather
- Double room at visitor center, Poti: 50 GEL; Pupils, professional colleges and university students: 30 GEL
- Double room at visitor center, Poti: 25 GEL
- Tourist shelter, Anaklia: per person - 15 GEL; Pupils, professional colleges and university students: 10 GEL
For more information please contact:
Nino Gujabidze, Visitor Service Specialist,
By Benjamin Music
222 Guria Str., Poti
(+995) 591 96 87 85