I read on multiple blogs that Filipinos, who have a US visa, can enter Georgia without applying for the country’s visa. On top of that, Filipinos who have residency in any Gulf country can enter upon showing our residency cards. Luckily for me, I happened to have both the card and a US Visa.
So off I went to Tbilisi, Georgia’s capital city, for my four days off. It was wonderful. Basically, I did all the important things in just half a day and saw the extras on my second and third day. Here’s a sample of my first day’s itinerary for your perusal, should you have limited time to see Tbilisi in the future.
- Arrive in Renaissance Hotel Tbilisi (a review to follow)
- 1 minute walk to St. Trinity Cathedral/Sameba Cathedral, the biggest catheral in Georgia and third tallest Eastern Orthodox cathedral in the world (lucky for me, this was literally just outside my hotel)
- 6 minute walk to the Presidential Palace. (people are only able to see the back of the palace, and the area is heavily gated. There’s no way of seeing the front as how one would see the White House. Tourists can only see this while driving on the road or when on the Narikala Fortress)
- 2.50 GEL metro ride (+4 GEL for the card) to Marjanishvili Square for lunch
- Lunch at Barbarestan, paid 59 GEL (24 USD) for good food.
- 2.50 GEL metro ride to the city center
- 2.50 GEL cable car ride to the Narikala Fortress for an awesome view of the city (the metro card can be used for the cable car as the latter seems to be part of their usual “public transportation,” even though everyone using it is a tourist)
- went down the pathway to get to the I LOVE TBILISI sign. Yes, this is just right below the Narikala Fortress
- walked our way to VinoGround for some 10 GEL wine tasting. (I believe we ended up drinking with the owner -he refused to admit that he was the owner- and he vehemently wanted to waive our payments as a gift to us. But we refused and insisted we still pay.)
- 3 GEL taxi back to the hotel and end the day (there is no Uber in Tbilisi, so I used the app Yandex.Taxi)