Mtatsminda is a hill in the middle of Tbilisi. It literally means “the sacred mountain”. It is also a district that covers the area between the hill and the river Mtkvari. The neighborhood is bordered by the Vera and Sololaki districts.
Life in Mtatsminda
The Mtatsminda neighborhood has a lot of character. You can wander on the famous Rustaveli Avenue and see its beautiful buildings like the Opera, the Parliament and the National Museum. Or walk in smaller streets with old Georgian houses and their colorful balconies. You can also take the funicular or walk up to Mtatsminda Park to escape the city and get some fresh air.
However, living in Mtatsminda might not be for everyone. Accommodation is more expensive than in most neighborhoods. Houses are old and are often decorated like in soviet times. Also, if you live on the hilly side of the district, the nearest middle-size grocery store is the Goodwill in the Galeria Mall. But if you’re ok with these inconveniences, then it is a great district to live in.
Transport to and from Mtatsminda is easy. There are several bus lines and the metro stations “Liberty square” and “Rustaveli” are reachable by foot. You can also walk to the old town, which takes 15 to 20 minutes.
There aren’t many schools in Mtatsminda, so if you have specific school requirements, you should be aware of it before moving.
From Kindergarten to High School
There are one or two kindergartens in the area. Schools for older children and teenager are mostly public. One of them is the beautiful Public School #1 on Rustaveli avenue next to the Parliament.
Mtatsminda is loved by tourists and locals for its memorable landmarks.
Liberty Square: Liberty square marks the end of the district. With the Galeria Mall and the statue of St George, it is one of the most famous landmarks in Tbilisi.
Rustaveli Avenue: a portion of Rustaveli avenue (from the Opera to Liberty square) is part of the Mtatsminda district. Rustaveli avenue itself has many landmarks: the Opera, the National Museum, the Parliament, the 9th April park and the National Gallery to name a few.
Mtatsminda Park: Mtatsminda park is located at the top of the hill. It is accessible via the funicular or by foot (but be ready for a steep climb). The views up there are amazing. The park includes an amusement park for kids that is empty most of the time, a restaurant building, the TV tower and a Ferris wheel. On sunny days, you can see up to Mount Kazbegi from up there.
Public Service Hall: Located just next to the river, the Public Service Hall is the strange mushroom-like building. That’s where you have to go for everything administration-related, from residence permits to opening a business and registering a wedding or a birth.
Mtatsminda is a safe district. Police officers patrol the area every day to regulate traffic and give their help if needed. Like everywhere else in Tbilisi, underground passages are under video surveillance. Streets are well-lit and there’s always people outside, so you can go out alone at night safely.
Restaurants and cafés
Mtatsminda is a touristic area so there are a few restaurants, but not as many as in Sololaki. Fortunately, Sololaki is reachable by foot. Also, restaurants in Mtatsminda are a bit more expensive than average.
The best Georgian restaurant in the area is the Funicular Restaurant. Located in Mtatsminda park, just next to the upper funicular station, it serves delicious food and the views are unmatched.
There aren’t many international restaurants in Mtatsminda. Here are a few one that are worth trying.
- American restaurants: Respublika Grill Bar,
- European restaurants: Melograno, Brasserie Buvette, Dinehall
- Vegan restaurant: Mama Terra Veggie Corner
Cafes & Bars
There are a few nice coffee shops in the district. These include Skola, Kvarts, Corner by the river and erti kava. There are some great bars as well, mostly located by the river such as BauHaus and Dive bar.