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Hamam in Tbilisi

A Hamam is a Turkish bath, richly decorated, very hot and mostly in private chambers. But you will find them not only in Turkey, but even sparely in Europe or on the trail of the former osmanic empire.

The first time I have been to Hamam was in Tbilissi, the capitol of Georgia. I really wanted to go for a long time and on my last travel to the Caucasus I suddenly had the chance. Most of the Hamams in town are situated in Abanotubani, the bath-area. There are several, probably private, enterprises running them. One bath looks from the outside like a glamorous medressa. Others are only recognized through round bumpers in the roof. The looks are highly influenced by the vivid history. Seeing Romans, Turks and other ethnic groups passing through the Caucasus.

All the baths have in common, that they are underground. That is probably so because the use the hot sulfurous sources of water. I did some reading and it´s said, that the hamams from Georgia differ very much from the Turkish ones. The lack in spiritual significance and are more important for the social interaction. There are big fountains for everyone but also sepereés. You can rent cabinets even for mixed sexes for a certain time. And sometimes reservations prior your visit would be quite smart, hence the spots are highly requested. Each cabinetry is connected to a sauna and hot baths. And we talk hot. You run around naked and you can ask for a massage by a hefty therapist. And we are talking massage! He will touch and rub any imaginable part of you body.

That part always scares me a bit. This underground hamam has a certain roman flavor, but maybe it is only the smells. You can stay as long as you have paid and there is a bar to order new drinks. The workers there are not too friendly, but who cares. I started a political discussion there, which is really en mode at the moment. This experience should be one highlight of your Caucasus travel and a pretty treat. Best way to get there is to walk or to take the cab. Everyone knows the area and it is really close to the highest sightseeing platform at the mountains.

Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tbilisi

written by wil6ka

5 comments

  1. eyecon

    eyecon

    For these kind of location you don´t need a filter to make the shots blurry...which camera did you use? A Frogeye?

    over 5 years ago · report as spam
  2. stouf

    stouf

    Excellent shots herr Willie !!!

    over 5 years ago · report as spam
  3. -a-l-b-e-r-t-o-

    -a-l-b-e-r-t-o-

    I like the shots, I like the story, I like these places

    over 5 years ago · report as spam
  4. wil6ka

    wil6ka

    it´s hot and humid but i used a lc-a+. The blurr comes through the longtimexposure and ultimately the crossing, i guess ;)

    over 5 years ago · report as spam
  5. madventurer

    Well, it's a nice article. Besides that Hamam originally is a Persian bath not Turkish. It was just introduced by Turkish to the world during Ottomans.
    about 2 years ago · report as spam

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