Narikala Fortress, Tbilisi
Narikala Fortress, is also called as the Mother Fortress of old Tbilisi, Narikala is an ancient symbol of Tbilisi defense.
Narikala Fortress is located in old Tbilisi, which is also known as Shuris Tsikhe (the Rival Fortress), is an ancient symbol of Tbilisi defensive brilliance. The fortress walls date from various periods, the earliest from the 4th century, when it was a Persian citadel. The foundation of the towers and most of it present walls were built in the 8th century by the Arab emirs who had a palace inside the fortress.
The best preserved tower stands alone, southwest of the lower fortress of old Tbilisi. This roofless turret is the 16th-century Istanbul Tower, so called because during the Turkish occupation of that period it was used as a jail. The imposing Shakhtakhti Tower in the west dates from the 7th to 9th centuries.
The interesting fact is that in Arab times it served as an observatory!
The archaeological excavations revealed that there was a twelfth century church inside the Narikala Fortress. The church was rebuilt and designed in keeping with the fortress surrounding it. The interior is decorated with frescoes, depicting both biblical scenes and the history‚ of Georgia.
Historians assert that Narikala located in old Tbilisi, was standing on the Silk Road was the most fortified and impregnable of all in Tbilisi. The fortress was destroyed by the earthquake and since then the citadel has not been restored completely.
The surviving stone towers of Narikala remain the silent witnesses of the ancient city's history!
While being on holidays in Tbilisi you can have a glance to the history of the city from early centuries to nowadays by walking in narrow streets of the city and will explore the religious and secular architecture of old Tbilisi.
In the Tbilisi old town will find churches, synagogues, mosque as well as famous 19th century houses with wooden balconies. In old Tbilisi you will visit the sulfur baths and enjoy the superb panoramic views of the Tbilisi old town.