Georgia is at the crossroads of Western Asia and Eastern Europe in the region of Eurasia. It borders the Black Sea to the east, Russia, Turkey, and Armenia to the north, and Azerbaijan to the northwest. The modern nation of Georgia was established in 1991 following the dissolution of the Soviet Union it was previously part of, after which the country suffered a period of the civil and economic crisis up to the peaceful Rose Revolution. The country has a population of 3.75 million people according to the 2015 census and covers an area of over 69,000 square kilometers. Georgia is marked by the presence of several large cities, the most notable of which are looked at below.
Tbilisi is Georgia’s capital and largest city, and is located on the banks of the Kura River. The city has a population of about 1.3 million people. Tbilisi was established around the 5th Century by the monarch of the Kingdom of Iberia and has been the capital of several Georgian’s kingdoms and republics. Historically, the city was home to diverse cultural, ethnic, and religious groups although it is dominated by the Eastern Orthodox Christian. The location of the country at the crossroad of Europe and Asia makes it a lucrative east-west trade route. The architecture of the city is a mix of Medieval, classical, and modernist structure which reflects the country’s history. The city is governed by the Tbilisi City Assembly which is elected once every four years. Tbilisi is divided into raions or districts for administrative purposes.
Kutaisi is a legislative capital of Georgia and the second largest city. It is situated along the banks of Rioni River to the west of Tbilisi. The city has a population of 198,808. Geographically, the city is surrounded by deciduous forest and experiences humid subtropical climate. Kutaisi was the ancient capital of the Kingdom of Colchis in the 6th Century and subsequently a capital of several other kingdoms including the United Kingdom of Georgia and the Imeretian Kingdom. Kutaisi remains a cultural center with several cultural sites including Kutaisi State Historical Museum, Kutaisi Museum of Sport, and Kutaisi State Historical Archives. The city is served by different transport network including the David the Builder Kutaisi International Airport, rail terminals, and roads. Kutaisi city celebrates a holiday known as Kutaisoba which is marked by a gathering of crowds in the central park to celebrate together.
Batumi is located on the coast of the Black Sea near the feet of the Lesser Caucasus Mountains. It is the third largest city with a population of 166,420 and a popular tourist’s destination in Georgia because of its varying weather and bustling seaside resort. The economy of Batumi revolves around tourism and gambling, but it is also an important sea port with several industries including shipbuilding and food processing. The modern city of Batumi is characterized by modern skyscrapers and restoration of the classical 19th Century architecture. The city continues to attract international investors, especially in real estate. The Constitutional Court has its seat at Batumi.
Other Major Cities in Georgia
Other major cities of Georgia include Rustavi, Sukhumi, Zugdidi, Gori, Poti, Tskhinvali, and Samtredia. These cities play both administrative and economic functions in Georgia. Administratively, most of these cities are the capital of some of the districts and regions of Georgia with several administrative seats established in the cities. Economically, the cities are home to some of the major industries and financial institutions in the Georgia. The cities of Georgia are still on the growth path and are expected to expand significantly over the coming years.