Georgian souvenirs and gifts
It’s no secret that almost every traveler dreams of bringing a memorable souvenir from his trip or buying an unusual new thing. In Georgia, this feeling is especially acute in the last days before leaving, because tourists are constantly surrounded by warmth, care and insane hospitality of the local population. By and large, gifts for every taste, color and cost can be found in Georgia. As in any other country popular with travelers, there are points with purely tourist prices and goods.
It will not be easy to choose gifts on the spot. There are souvenir stalls on every corner, but they mainly sell a variety of trinkets. If you want something unusual, exclusive and unique, it is better to know in advance what and where to look for. It is quite easy to find very good souvenirs in Georgia. They will not cost very much, and look 100 times better than all the bored magnets or mugs. We have collected the most interesting, relevant and useful options for souvenirs that you can buy in Georgia.
Wine is an art souvenir, without which many people from Georgia do not return. A real Khvanchkara or Kinlzmarauli is already a great gift. And if you buy good wine in an original ceramic vessel, it will not only be a good souvenir, but will also remind you of the Georgian feast for a long time. Good local wine should not be bought from supermarkets, but only from small private wineries. First you try, then you decide which variety you like best and then buy. Homemade Chacha is a Georgian analogue of grape vodka, a good gift and it is also better to buy it at small wineries, where it is driven according to old recipes.
There are a lot of cheeses in the country and they are all delicious and varied, and most importantly natural. But we recommend only two types for transportation: Imeretian and Sulguni. By the way, it is Imeretian cheese that is used as a filling in khachapuri. In stores, usually only a few varieties are found. There are much more varieties on the market – salted, slightly salted, smoked, braided and regular cheeses. And also, at the bazaar they are allowed to taste, and this is important, since the taste can be specific. If you choose cheese as a gift, it is better to buy those varieties that are stored longer. For example, smoked Sulguni can be stored for up to a year, and fresh (unsalted) for 7 to 10 days.
For those who have friends or acquaintances who are fond of culinary delights, we recommend taking a closer look at the local spices and sauces. The most famous Georgian spice is Svan salt, which is an aromatic, relatively inexpensive and very popular spice in Georgia. In addition to Svan salt, look at other spices: dry Adjika, Coriander, khmeli-Suneli, and the like. You can buy condiments at the market or in the supermarket. The spices will look more presentable in the store, and aromatic in the bazaar. If you decide to buy seasonings on the market, roll them in several bags, otherwise you risk getting your things with a characteristic smell upon arrival.
With sauces, things are easier. During your rest, you will surely have time to try, if not all, then at least a couple and take note of the most delicious. It is impossible to imagine Georgian cuisine without them. Spicy, aromatic, made exclusively from natural vegetables, fruits and spices. You can choose sauces where it is more convenient (in the market or in a store). Such a gift will not quickly deteriorate and will certainly delight the happy owner with the taste. Most often brought: Satsebeli, Tkemali and Adjika. In Georgia, these sauces are simply unrealistically tasty. You can safely take both factory and homemade sauces, they are stored for an equally long time.
The first to come to mind is a variety of Churchkhela. You can buy in the markets (worse quality) or in small farms (subjectively tastier and definitely cheaper). There are Churchkhela with walnuts and hazelnuts, and depending on the syrup: dark from the Saperavi variety and light Rkatsiteli (but in the bazaar there are all kinds of colors and sizes). A fresh product bought still shiny and soft is not stored for a long time, although it is very tasty. It can be transported, but it is worth warning the recipient about quickly eating the dessert. But Churchkhela with a little sugar bloom is suitable for long-term savings, harder and sweeter
Separately, it is worth talking about Georgian jam. The assortment of this product is large and it is not easy to choose an interesting option. Georgia is famous for a wide variety of jams, ranging from traditional berry and fruit jams to exotic jams. On the market you can buy homemade jams, and in stores, jams made at factories: from Figs; Pine cones; Dogwood; Quince; Walnuts; Eggplant; Watermelon and others. We advise you to pay attention to jams made from exotic fruits: feijoa, which grows here, from tangerines or kiwi.
Honey in Georgia is an exquisite sweetness. The country has a huge variety of natural, viscous and aromatic honey. As a gift, you can buy, for example, unusual citrus honey or wild bee honey, which is considered a real delicacy. Mountain honey collected on the high slopes of Georgia cannot be compared with anything. It is natural, fragrant, viscous. The variety of types of honey is amazing. Popular among tourists are tangerine, acacia, walnut blossom, chestnut honey. There is a specialized honey store in Tbilisi, where you can taste any kind of honey.
Georgian dried fruits
Of course, not all fruits grown in the country are convenient and expedient to transport. Especially too soft and juicy. But hard ones, such as Chiri (dried fruits), are worth a try. In Georgia, dried fruits are produced from almost all types of fruits – Apple, kiwi, pear, fig, tangerine, grapes, watermelon, melon, tkemali, plum, bushmal. Dried persimmons are also called natural sweets. It is just as sweet, but there is not a single gram of artificial products in it. The fragrant southern fruit in ancient times received the title of “fruit of the gods”. We also recommend that you bring your friends a feijoa. This unusual fruit is very healthy.
Georgian “Tklapi” (pastila)
Another unusual dessert is marshmallow or Tklapi (dry thin round sheets of fruit puree). It’s both sweet and versatile. In direct translation from the Georgian language “Tklapi” means “dried plum puree in the sun”. In form and composition, it is not at all similar to the well-known oriental pastille. It is prepared from natural fruits (traditionally from cherry plums or plums), but today there are many varieties of Tklapi, including berries, nuts and exotic fruits (for example, from kiwi). Especially popular with children. The composition of the marshmallow does not include sugar, therefore, such a dessert is often “sour”.
On the territory of Georgia, as before, the local population grows delicious and aromatic tea, although, they say, not in such quantities. A lot of products are exported. The famous Georgian tea is an inexpensive but pleasant gift. It is better to buy it in a tea shop or at a grocery market. Supermarkets sell elite varieties of Georgian tea – for example, “Prince Gurieli”. This variety takes prizes at various tea exhibitions and tastes very good – tart, strong, rich in shades. You can buy tea directly in the place where it is grown, in the regions of Adjara and Guria.
Nice pottery will be a good gift for real hostesses. It is especially worth paying attention to Ketsi – a kind of frying pan. It is “multifunctional” and is suitable for almost any heating surface (including stove or open fire). In Georgia, dishes are often served on it even in restaurants. A jug for wine or other alcoholic beverages is quite suitable for the male part as a gift. Such a present will surely be remembered for a long time. The easiest way to buy pottery is during a tour of the country or at the market in the city.
Vitreous Enamel (Minankari)
he fair half will undoubtedly appreciate the original jewelry gift (ring, pendant, bracelet or brooch) from the famous Vitreous Enamel – Minankari. The present is quite bright, distinctive, typically Georgian and quite affordable for a beloved and dear person. There are jewelry made of silver, gold, copper and platinum. All products are unique in every sense – they are made by hand. In addition to Minankari, more customary gold and silver jewelry is sold in Georgia. Vitreous Enamel is a labor-consuming and complex enamel technique and everything you find will be handmade.
Georgian Theka (felt)
Theka, felt products are ideal for a gift. Felt technique in Georgia is one of the oldest in folk applied art. The first felt samples were discovered during excavations, which date back to the 2nd millennium BC. In Georgia, many talented designers work with this technique and use felt in their art. Almost everything is made of felt: scarves, blouses, dresses, bags, toys, hats, slippers and even beads. All the variety of products of all colors and shades can be purchased or just looked at the souvenir markets of Georgia.
Georgia is a very religious country. It is not surprising that in every city there is a huge number of temples and, accordingly, church shops. The range of some of them is amazing. In addition to icons, crosses and chains, you can see cute boxes, fragrant honey and quite presentable wine. As an option: a thin bracelet with the words “Save and Preserve” inscribed in Georgian, bought in the church, will be a good gift. It even happens in gold or silver.
Unusual items are best found in antiques stores. They look bright and always catch the eye of tourists. Alternative – Flea market “Dry Bridge”. Here you can also find original items of Soviet, Eastern European and Georgian origin. Exquisite candlesticks, ancient musical instruments, magnificent paintings, silverware and much more. If there is a desire and time, you can visit the Samgori market (or Navtlugi, the locals call the bazaar this way and that). Sometimes you can find very good things on it (much more attractive and cheaper than on a dry bridge).
Paintings by local artists.
What better way to preserve memories of a place than its image. Images of their native country were transferred to their canvases by David Martiashvili, Elene Akhvlediani, Niko Pirosmani, Zurab Tsereteli, Lado Tevdoradze. And if not everyone can afford the picture of the famous master, then the Flea Market on the Dry Bridge will help out the budget tourist. pictures are sold there are very good and can be found for different tastes. It is here that contemporary artists present their works on various topics: from urban landscapes to funny animal painting.