08 August 2005

By car from Europe to Georgia

I get very often asked about tipps wich is the best route to go to the Caucasus Countries by car. I drove three times from Berlin to Tbilisi. Here is the best way: Germany- Italy (to one of the Ferry ports: Venice, Ancona or Brindisi)- Greece/Igoumenitsa- Alexandropolis/ Turkey- Bosporus-then direction to Ankara, before Ankara turn north to Samsun- then Trabzon- Georgian border at Sarpi- Batumi- Tbilisi. From Tbilisi you can follow on to Baku or Yerevan. Berlin- Tbilisi is around 3900 km. Normal and relaxed driving needs about a week. If you have more time, then you can visit all the historic spots near the road in Italy, Greece and Turkey. Its also possible to spare Greece by booking a Ferry ticket from Italy directly to Turkey, what gives you more time to relax on these quite luxurious ferries.
Sometimes I get asked about the Northern route around the Black Sea. Its possible to cross Ukraine and Russia to Sochi, then taking the Ferry to Poti or Batumi. Tickets for that ferry can not be bought in Tbilisi as far as I know. The landroute via Abkhazia is still not open for political reasons. Its also not possible to cross the Russian-Georgian Border via Vladikavkaz/Kazbegi.

Please comment on your own experiences making the way to Georgia by car. I am especially interested in any information regarding the Ferry from Sochi to Georgia.

If you plan to sell your car f.e. in Georgia, do not forget to sign your car off in its country of origin for export, otherwise it becomes difficult in Georgia to sell it and declare it at the Tax Department.


Katy said...

Lots of people sell cars in Armenia that they drove from Georgia.

Anonymous said...

The ferry from Sochi to Poti/Batumi leaves from Sochi twice a week on Tuesdays and Fridays afternoon. The tickets should be bought in theory a day before. There is place only for two cars so I'm really not sure if it's possible to buy tickets for cars. I used this ferry in July 2005.