The Georgian City of Love – with a Tuscan feel

1043 Reviews

Star Travel Rating


Review type



Date of travel

June, 2023

Product name


Product country


Product city


Travelled with


Reasons for trip


Sighnaghi, said to be one of Georgia’s most attractive towns, is known as the City of Love as you can get married at any time of day or night. We stopped on the outskirts for photographs of the town in the distance, and romantically posed next to a heart bearing the words ‘Love of City’.

In town, we walked up a steep incline past 18th and 19th century buildings with colourful wooden balconies, said to create a Tuscan feel. Having crossed a bridge with views across the Alazani Valley to the snow-capped Caucasus in the distance, it was hard to miss the large verdigris statue, Doctor on a Donkey.

We continued through three squares:

The first, Erekle II, had an elegant municipal building, fountain and the ‘House of Love’, but sadly there were no weddings at 10am on a Wednesday.

The second, with a bust of Georgia’s most famous painter Pirosmani, was named after Davit Agmashenebell, also known as David IV of Georgia, or more simply, David the Builder.

Solomon Dodashvili had a large statue of the philosopher standing with a book in his hand: having provided free education during the communist period, he was deported to Russia and kept in captivity. There was also a memorial made from clay tiles with battle scenes and the names of those killed in World War II.

Continuing onwards and uphill through an arch in the fortress walls, we reached St. George’s basilica where we climbed the separate 12-sided bell tower set on one of the 23 defensive towers for views of the 4km long walls.

On our return we stopped at the Sighnaghi Museum. As well as paintings by local artists, the second floor contained the country’s largest collection of Pirosmani’s paintings outside Tbilisi (he was born in a nearby village). According to legend, he bought a French dancer a million red roses, and having fallen in love with him, she moved to Georgia.
When his money ran out, she ran back to Paris. Due to his dire financial position, restaurants provided him with wine, food and lodgings in return for paintings, but he died unrecognised and in poverty in 1918. However, he gained posthumous recognition and in 2018 Sotheby’s sold ‘Georgian Woman Wearing a Lechaki’ to an unnamed buyer for £2.23 million. His paintings were very distinctive although the most famous, featuring animals like giraffe and lion, which he would never have seen, were in the capital Tbilisi (unfortunately when we visited, the paintings were on tour in Denmark and Switzerland).
The ground floor had displays of archaeological and ethnographic displays, including some Stone Age pieces. It was our idea of a good museum: not too big, bright, light and interesting.

Helen Jackson

Join the club

Become a member to receive exclusive benefits

Our community is the heart of Silver Travel Advisor, we love nothing more than sharing ideas, inspiration, hints and tips between us.

Come feel the love on a Princess cruise. You’ll enjoy the MedallionClass experience others simply can’t, and it’s exclusively for everyone. Visit incredible destinations and be involved in the best experiences around each one of them.

Experience more with Princess and connect effortlessly with the world around you, spend time away with loved ones, take a moment for yourself, and fall in love with your holiday of a lifetime, every time.

With over 20 years of experience, Wendy Wu Tours has mastered the art of creating exceptional, fully inclusive tours which showcase the very best of each destination.

Each tour is led by a world-class guide, who will highlight the very best of their homeland, and includes authentic cultural experiences so you are not just seeing the sights, but truly immersing yourself in local life.

Say hello to ease at sea. Ambassador’s purpose is simple: they want to inspire every guest to experience authentic cruising, effortlessly and sustainably. Passionate about protecting our oceans and destinations, their ships comply with the highest industry emission standards and there is no single-use plastic on board.

On your voyage, you will receive the warmest of welcomes from the Ambassador community as you sail upon the friendliest ships afloat.

This is a global co-operative co-owned by local partners using real local experts and guides, which supports local communities, environments and wildlife. It offers travellers quirky places to stay, activity holidays and learning experiences. Not In The Guidebooks gets travellers off the beaten track into local culture with day experiences and longer, immersive adventures.

From wild wellness breaks in Wales to painting in Portugal, sustainable adventures in Mauritius to food safaris in Brazil, this is immersive, exciting travel.

Seabourn’s five intimate ships carry guests to the heart of great cities, exclusive yacht harbours and secluded coves around the world, while two new purpose-built expedition ships will combine exhilarating adventures in remote destinations with the sophisticated amenities of the world’s finest resorts at sea.

From the luxury of all suite accommodations to complimentary fine wines and spirits, and a no tipping policy, Seabourn exemplifies the definition of travelling well.