UNESCO HERITAGE

The list of World Heritage Sites in Georgia with properties of  culture and nature include: Gelati Monastery and Bagrati Cathedral; Historical Monuments of Mtskheta and Upper Svaneti.

Gelati Monastery, a masterpiece of the Georgian Golden Age, was built in 1106 by King David IV and was one of the main cultural and intellectual centers in Georgia throughout the Middle Ages. It had an Academy which employed some of the most celebrated Georgian scientists, theologians and philosophers, many of whom had previously been active at various orthodox monasteries abroad, one of which was the Mangan Academy in Constantinople

Bagrati Cathedral of the Dormition is an early-11th century masterpiece of medieval Georgian architecture. In 1692, it was devastated in an explosion by the Ottoman troops but was gradually restored in the 1950s and later, the 2000s. The site was designated endangered by UNESCO, which was concerned that the continuing restoration was not carefully prepared. Despite this, proponents of restoration argued that the site was more likely to fall apart if it was let to soak in rainwater, as it had done for centuries.

Historical Monuments of Mtskheta –The classification includes two of Georgia’s most ancient religious structures: the Svetitskhoveli (Cathedral of the Living Pillar) and the Jvari Monastery (Monastery of the Cross), as well as the historical area of Mtskheta in which the two are situation. The monuments trace their origin to the dawn of Christianity in Georgia in the first half of the first millennium A.D. and were judged by UNESCO to be a testament of “the high artistic and cultural level attained by this ancient kingdom.”

Upper Svaneti – These upper lands of Georgia’s alpine region of Svaneti were recognized by UNESCO as an “exceptional example of mountain scenery with medieval-type villages and tower-houses”, which were often family-built and served to protect against invaders for centuries.