Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park
Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park – The national park is located in central Georgia,
in the Lesser Caucasus region, southwest of Tbilisi. It is one of the largest national parks in Europe, located on the territory of Samtskhe-Javakheti,
Imereti and Shida Kartli.
A new phase of environmental protection in Georgia began in the 19th century, when the country lost its independence
and became part of the Russian Empire. In 1862, Mikhail Romanov, the brother of the then emperor, was appointed Crown Prince of the Caucasus.
He liked the Borjomi gorge very much and decided to build a summer residence here.
In 1871, the Russian ruler Alexander II gave his brother the entire Borjomi gorge.
Soon Mikhail Romanov fenced off much of the forest and banned illegal logging and hunting.
Borjomi State Reserve was established in 1935.
After more than a hundred years of history, the foundation of Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park laid the foundation for the establishment
of the first national park in the Caucasus region.
It was established in 1995 with the support of the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and the German government.
The administration of Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park includes – Borjomi State Reserve (IUCN Category I,
established in 1935, area 14,820.6 ha), own Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park (IUCN Category II),
spruce reserve (IUCN Category IV, established in 1995) , Area 8992 ha),
Ktsia-Tabatskuri reserve (IUCN category IV) and Goderdzi fossil forest nature monument (IUCN category III).
Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park is located in the central part of the Caucasus Ecoregion.
Due to its distinctive biodiversity and vulnerability, the ecoregion is included in the World Conservation
Fund’s 35 priority ecoregions and 34 conservation hotspots for international conservation.
Protected areas are located on the edge of two such hotspots (Caucasus and Anatolia).
Moreover, according to the Caucasus Ecoregional Conservation Plan,
the protected areas cover a significant part of the Caucasus Ecoregion, one of the 56 priority areas (№27).
Flora The main wealth of Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park is the forest (75% of the territory).
Large areas of pristine sections of mixed forests of the Caucasus are preserved here; Fragments of unique,
relict Colchian forests are found. About a quarter of the park is occupied by subalpine and alpine meadows,
as well as Decian (relict Caucasian rhododendron birches).
In addition, there are massifs of sacred spruce (Picea) and pine (Pinus),
which are spread in the range of 1400-1800 m above sea level. All forest-forming conifers are endemic to the Caucasus:
Oriental spruce (Picea orientalis), Caucasian spruce (Abies nordmanianna) and Caucasian pine (Pinus kochiana).
Georgian oak (Quercus iberica) and hornbeam (Carpinus caucasica) predominate in the lower belts from broadleaf,
beech (Fagus orientalis) in the upper belts; Chestnuts included in the Red List of Georgia (Castanea sativa) etc. are frequent.
These species form many combinations in different belts and habitats. Subalpine tanbretsil birches (Betula litwinowii) are also found here and there in the area.
Apart from chestnuts, Ostrya carpinifolia, Staphylea colchica, Eastern oak (Quercus macra№thera), Bare Teladuma (Ulmus glabra) are among the species of reeds included in the Red List of Georgia.
Among the typical relict species characteristic of the typical moist Colchis forest are shrubs such as Rhododendron ponticum,
Rhododendron flavium, Laurocerasus officinalis, Ilex aquifolium, and Hedera colchicus.
The location of the protected areas on the edge of the Iranian-Anatolian ecoregions has led to the richness of its southern species,
such as: Caucasian acacia (Celtis caucasica), Khuchucha machita (Campanula crispa), Oriental poppy (Papaver pseudoorientalis) and others.
There are 12 hiking marked tourist routes in Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park, it is possible to arrange a hike from 1 to 5 days in the territory of the National Park.
Overnight hiking trails are possible in specially arranged tourist shelters or in tents set up in specially designated tents.
To go hiking routes in the National Park, you need to register at the Borjomi-Kharagauli
National Park Administration Visitor Centers: Borjomi or Kharagauli.