After paying a small fee for entering the national park and most importantly, getting a permit from the border police, we left Dedoplistskaro and were on our way south, where shortly after the town the tarmac ended and we were driving over farm tracks.
Some advice: Don’t expect any roads in this national park, not even to get there. Don’t expect many signs, if you see one and you can decipher it, you can call yourself lucky. Always take the most beaten track and hope that it is the right one. If the track is easy to drive, be assured, that will change sooner rather than later. For sure, with a good off-road car you will have no difficulties on the roads through the park. With a big 4×4 camper, there will be tricky parts, especially when the track gets narrow, steep or very washed out. And in case it starts to rain, better leave the park as soon as possible – when the tracks get muddy you will be in difficulties.
Our first destination was the Pantishara Canyon and the Bear Gorge, where we wanted to go for a hike. (41.2376 46.3655) From the plateau the track leads down into the canyon, where you drive the same route the water takes when it rains. The canyon takes many turns and the landscape is fascinating with great vegetation.
The Bear Gorge is a smaller version of the Pantishara Canyon and great to explore by foot. We could watch many lizards and also discovered the bones of the bear which are stuck in the wall of the gorge.
This family from the Netherlands was touring the national park with a rented 4×4 and recognized us from Instagram. Thats was a first!!
After a hike and lunch at the Bear Gorge, we continued through the canyon until it got wider. We turned around and drove back up to the plateau, where we followed the canyon along the edge to the Pantishara viewpoint ( 41.2234 46.4061). Shortly after the viewpoint we came to a ranger station, where we spent the night.
The Pantishara Canyon truly was spectacular and it for sure is a part of Vashlovani National Park which you shouldn’t miss. Tomorrow we will go further south to Mijniskure at the border to Azerbaijan, depending on how the tracks are. Find out what we could do on our next post!