Kutaisi is a city in Western Georgia, administrative centre of Imereti Region. Located on the banks of river Rioni. Official status as a city Kutaisi obtained in 1811, though early historical sources (730, 980-1072 A.D.) name it among important cities of Georgia. Population - 182,000 men (2002). Kutaisi is the second city in Georgia by importance. Many enterprises of heavy and light industries, food processing and other were operating in the city. It is rich also in cultural and educational intitutions - universities, theatres, museums, galleries.


First mention of Kutaisi refers to III century B.C., though many ancient sources consider it as a capital city of old Kolkheti Kingdom (VIII c., B.C.). The old names of the city are: Aia, Kutaia, Kutatisium. From VIII to XIX centuries (A.D.), it was the centre of Western Georgian State (later - Imereti Kingdom). During 1810-1917 Kutaisi Province was a part of Russian Empire.


In the medieval period Kutaisi was mainly related with the name of king David The Builder, in modern history - with the activities of famous Georgians like Akaki Tsereteli, Zakaria Paliashvili, Kote Marjanishvili.


Main sightseeings in Kutaisi and around it are - Bagrati Temple (XI c.), Gelati Monastery (XII c.), Geguti Fortress (XII c.), Sataplia Cave Protected Area, Balneological Resort Tskaltubo. Georgian Orthodox Churche's Kutaisi-Gaenati Eparchy's residence and pulpit is also in Kutaisi.



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