The price you pay is inclusive
The only extras you need to budget for are drinks and shopping. We include lunches and gratuities to guide, driver and hotel staff.
2018 Price: £1,625, Single Supplement: £295, Travel Insurance Premium: £49/£74
Flights, Hotel accommodation, Breakfast, lunches and dinner daily, Sightseeing programme, Entrance fees & guiding, Gratuities
Travel Insurance, Single Room supplement
A local guide and driver will accompany you throughout the pilgrimage. Touring is by air-conditioned private coach. Days generally start at 9am and finish around 5pm with dinner served around 7 or 7.30.
Passports, visas and health
All passport holders from the Britain, Europe, Australia, Canada and the USA will be issued with a complimentary visa on arrival. Passports must be valid for the duration of your stay, but there is no additional period of validity required. If you are holding a passport from another country, please let us know and we will advise about visa requirements.
The McCabe recommended insurance policy is designed for the older traveller. The premium for a Georgia pilgrimage is £49. Travellers over 75 pay £74 and we also recommend that older travellers obtain a note from their doctor stating that they are fit to travel. Do feel free to shop around as there are many suitable insurance options including annual policies on the market. We do insist that all travellers take out medical insurance.
A key feature of our recommended policy is that there is no requirement to call a Medical Help Line as most pre-existing conditions are covered.
You can read the full policy wording here.
Flights are with Turkish Airlines flying between Gatwick airport and Tbilisi, with a change of plane in Istanbul. We recommend a Friday departure, but other days are possible.
Our preferred hotels are locally graded three and four stars; all rooms have private facilities.
The Citrus Hotel in Tbilisi enjoys a very central location just a short walk from Rustaveli Avenue. The Plaza Hotel in Tskaltubo is a modern hotel in the centre of the town. Tskaltubo, with its healing mineral waters, was a popular health resort for tourists throughout the Soviet Union. The Carpe Diem Hotel in Gudauri offers fantastic views of the surrounding Great Caucasus mountains. The Royal Batoni Hotel near Kvareli is set in a beautiful woodland location with excellent views over Lake Ilia and has an outdoor swimming pool.
You can click on the hotel websites below:
Citrus Hotel in Tbilisi
Plaza Hotel in Tskaltubo
Carpe Diem Hotel in Gudauri
Royal Batoni Hotel in Kvareli
Georgians are very proud of their cuisine. As Georgia is agriculturally a very rich country, ingredients are fresh and seasonal with a variety of fruit and vegetables. Dishes are placed in the middle of the table to share. Favourites are the various varieties of Khachapuri (cheese bread) which is made with different types of cheese depending on the region, Khinkali are dumplings stuffed with minced meat which are popular in the mountains, eggplants are wrapped and dressed with a walnut sauce. Although Georgian cuisine is rich with meat dishes, there is also a large variety of vegetarian dishes, including Lobio, a delicious bean stew.
Wine, cultivated in Georgia for over eight thousand years, is for Georgians an inseparable part of the experience, and there will be many opportunities to try local wines.
A buffet breakfast in your hotel will include breads, meat, cheese, eggs, yoghurts, cereals, salad vegetables as well as fruit juices and tea & coffee. Lunches and dinners are included each day; dinners in Tbilisi and all lunches will be taken in restaurants, outside Tbilisi dinners are taken in your hotel.
Bottled water is provided on the coach as well as at lunch and dinner. Local beers, wines, vodkas and brandies can be ordered to accompany your meal. Usually when paying for drinks you should round up a little, say 5% or to the nearest round figure.
Best time to Travel
We recommend travelling in May or June when previous parties have commented particularly on the abundance of wild flowers. If you chose September or October, you would participate in the festivities surrounding the wine harvest.
Many of our passengers travel alone and object to expensive single room supplements. McCabe Pilgrimages will accept individual bookings on a 'guaranteed share' basis. We charge the basic price and accommodate you with a person of the same sex also requesting shared accommodation. If we do not find someone to share with you, you will be accommodated in a single room at only 50% of the usual single room supplement. For single travellers who do require single accommodation this should be requested when booking and, if available, the normal supplement will be payable.
The McCabe Educational Trust
For many, meeting the ‘Living Stones’ of The Land becomes a real highlight of their pilgrimage. The McCabe Educational Trust is an independent registered charity with the aim of helping inspiring people we meet on pilgrimage. On your pilgrimage you will meet some of these people. As ‘the haves’ encounter the ‘have nots’ the Trust has become a practical tool for one to help the other.
McCabe Pilgrimages invite all travellers to become partners in this work. A £15 voluntary donation to the Trust’s work is added to every pilgrim’s invoice and all money raised in this way is given in full to the projects the Trust supports. This scheme is voluntary and confidential with nobody put under any pressure to participate.
Full Financial Security
All money paid to McCabe is fully secure. Holidays including flights are covered by our ATOL license from the Civil Aviation Authority, and holidays without flights are protected by our membership of the ABTOT bonding scheme. If a pilgrimage is cancelled, for instance through lack of numbers or for political considerations, McCabe will promptly refund all monies paid.
AITO Quality Statement
McCabe Pilgrimages is a member of the Association of Independent Tour Operators. The Association represents Britain’s leading independent tour operators and encourages high standards of quality and service. McCabe abides by the Association’s Code of Conduct and adheres to the AITO Quality Charter.
You can read McCabe reviews on the AITO website HERE