TRUSO VALLEY, ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW – HITCHIKING AND MORE
What is the Truso Valley?
Truso Valley is in my opionion a must-visit when you are in Kazbegi.
How to get from Kazbegi to the Truso Valley?
If you are like me, you get nervous when you hear the sentence “You need to go there by taxi”, because -in general- it’s expensive and the struggle of arguing over a decent price for a taxi can be a pain in the ass. However, in this case, I highly recommend you take one to go to the Truso Valley (and back). Let me explain the options you have down below.
1 – Go hitchinking to Truso Valley
Because there is only one way in this part of Georgia, the Military Highway, you would think that hitchhiking is the best and easiest option. Well, you are wrong. Yes – there are only two ways to go: to the Russian boarder or back towards Tbilisi, so you can’t really go wrong. But there is one big problem. The Truso Valley is far, very far away from the main Military Highway on which you will be hitchhiking. “Okay, so I get out on the Military Highway and then go hitchhiking to the Truso Valley.” I wish you the best if you want to give it a go, but the realistic view is that there are no cars – apart from some taxis with tourists – going there. Meaning you would need to hike all the way to the valley, and that is a pretty far hike itself. (4.2 km one-way from the Military highway to the point I reccoment you start hiking, and 8,7 km to the start of the Truso Valley) It would cost you a couple of hours more, and don’t forget about the amount of time it can take to find a car who is willing to take you. Plus, you also need at least (!) 6 hours to explore the valley itself.
2 – Take local transportation aka marshrutka
It comes down to the same story as going hithching: you get dropped off very far from where you want to go, and there are no cars (unless your very lucky) to take you to the Truso Valley. You need to get on the masrutka back to Tbilisi and get out in Almasiani next to the police station. Unless you speak Russian or Georgian, you probably need to pay full price as if you would go to Tbilisi, and you need to scream stop when you are in the right place and hope the driver is willing to stop for you so you can get off.
Getting back is a bit harder, as the masrutka is always – even off season – full when drives passed Almasiani. If you are alone, you might have a change, but if you are with more people there’s a big change you end up hitchhiking back to Kazbegi.
Take a taxi from Kazbegi to Truso Valley
Despite me being anti-taxi – going to the Truso Valley by taxi is the best and easiest option. On the main square / parking lot – same place as the masrutka starting point are plenty of taxis waiting to take you somewhere. Some speak English and even have a map with them with all the sights in the area explaned, others don’t really deal with the tourists because they don’t speak English. Expect to pay 80 – 100 (off season) for a taxi to drop you off and pick you up.
I had the best time picking someone without ANY English language skills and you could tell he was super exited driving a couple of tourists around. blbablablaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa