Georgie, nationaal park Borjomi e.v.

**Georgia Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park
**The Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park is the first National Park in Caucasus that corresponds to the international standards. It was established in 1995 and was officially opened in 2001. According to the area it is one of the best Protected Areas of Europe. In 2007 the Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park became a member of European network of Protected Areas – Pan Park that is a guarantee for highest level protection of these Protected Areas and sustainable development of tourism.
Geologically, the Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park belongs to the fold system of the Lesser Caucasus Mountains and covers the central subzone of Achara-Trialeti fold zone. The region is mainly constructed with so called Borjomi flysch sediments of lower Eocene: marl clays, marls, limestone sandstones and marl limestones; its construction also includes the sediments of Oligocene and Neogene ages and volcanic sediment formations.
The National Park covers the territories, which are the marginal parts of several historical regions of Georgia. The Park is located in the territories of Tori, Imereti and Samtskhe. Total area is about 61235 ha.
Forests of the Kharagauli part of the Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park are presented by dark coniferous, deciduous and mixed forests. Mixed deciduous forests are mainly consisted of chestnut trees (Castanea sativa), beech trees (Fagus orientalis), hornbeams (Carpinus orientalis), Caucasian lime (Tilia begoniifolia), Colchis oak (Quercus hartwissiana), Caucasian rhododendron (Rhododendron caucasica)and ash tree (Fraxinus excelsior).
Together with the changing in altitude one deciduous forest is replaced with the other one:in some areas beech forests are replaced by mixed deciduous forests with subforest of colchis type, and further – the hornbeam groves, beech-chestnut groves, spruce-groves and silver fir-groves. In the Borjomi gorge the coniferous forests are spread including spruce-groves, silver fir-groves and spruce and silver fir-groves.
In the upper zones of the forest belt the dark coniferous forests of spruce-groves and silver fir-groves dominate, which are composed of Oriental spruce
(Picea orientalis),
Nordmann Fir (Abies nordmanniana) and pine *(Pinus sosnowskyi). *In subalpine belt the subalpine forests and bushes, subalpine high grasses and meadows are spread.
In the territory of Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park can be found Georgia’s Red Data Book rare and endemic species as follows: chestnut *(Castanea sativa),*Colchis oak (Quercus hartwissiana), yew *(Taxus baccata),*Steven’s peony (Paeonia steveniana) and Vinogradov’s iris (Iridodictyum winogradowii).
The fauna of Borjomi-Kharagauli is diverse. The beauty of the National Park is its mammal habitants. Among large carnivores one can find Gray wolf (Canis lupus), lynx (Lynx lynx) and Brown bear (Ursus arctos). Among the hoofed animals Roe deer *(Capreolus capreolus)*and Wild boar *(Sus scrofa)*can be found frequently in the territory of the National Park. Borjomi gorge was always famous for its population of Caucasian Red deer (Cervus elaphus). The number of deers reached to 140 in the Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park. Bezoar goats *(Capra aegagrus)*lived on local rocks since the ancient times, though nowadays only the reintroduced Bezoar goats live there, which were brought from neighboring Armenia by support of Borjomi-Kharagauli Administration and World Wild Foundation (WWF). Most of the large mammals of the Park are included in the Red List of Georgia.
Among small mammals here inhabit several species of mice,dormouse,weasel, Pine marten, Stone marten, Caucasian squirrel. Nearly everywhere can be found Red fox *(Vulpes vulpes)*and hare (Lepus europaeus).
Among reptiles several species of lizards and snakes cen be found in the National Park. Among them the Caucasian agama (Laudakia caucasica) andGreek Tortoise (Testudo graeca) are distinguished.
Among native birds of Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park the following rare species are distinguished: Golden eagle
(Aquila chrysaetos)
, Griffon vulture *(Gyps fulvus),*Black vulture (Aegypius monachus) andCaucasian Black grouse (Tetrao mlokosiewiczi).
We can observe amazingly different life and traditions in the territories bordering the Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park, which is expressed in interesting ethnographical diversity and have an additional impression over the visitors of the National Park.
The adjacent territories of the National Park are rich in historical monuments. For the lovers of antiquity and history, it is surely very interesting to see such monuments against the beautiful sights such as the doomed temple of Timotesubani of the thirteenth century, Nedzvi church (9th century), Nunisi church (9th century), Sakvirike basilica near the village of Dviri 10 century), Green Monastery of Chitakhevi (9th century), Gogia and Petra fortresses near Likani borough (9th century), Vakhani and Gold fortresses in Adigeni District.
There are even older archeological monuments in the adjacent territory of the National Park, e.g., cyclopean former settlement of Bronze age at the village of Boga, crypts of the Bronze age and cultural layers of the Antique age.
Borjomi-Kharagauli National Park has the best tourist infrastructure. The comfortable shelters located in the Park will host the visitors in its different sectors in Merelisi (Imereti sector), Atskuri (Samtskhe area), Likani and Kvabiskhevi (Borjomi area). Besides, in the Borjomi town and Bakuriani borough there are several big and small comfortable hotels.
For more information, Georgian Tourist Board :