Alaverdi Monastery is a Georgian Eastern Orthodox monastery located 25 km from Akhmeta, in the Kakheti region of Eastern Georgia.
While parts of the monastery date back to 6th century, the present-day cathedral was built in the 11th century by Kvirike III of Kakheti, replacing an older church of St. George.
Despite being on my travel bucket list in Georgia for a very long time, I first visited it in the middle of September 2017, during a two-day trip to Kakheti. See: Day Trip to Kakheti in Georgia
Alaverdi Monastery in Georgia
The monastery was founded by the Assyrian monk Joseph (Yoseb, Amba) Alaverdeli, who came from Antioch and settled in Alaverdi, then a small village and former pagan religious center dedicated to the Moon. At a height of over 55 meters, Alaverdi Cathedral is the second tallest religious building in Georgia, after Holy Trinity Cathedral of Tbilisi, which was consecrated in 2004.
Its overall size is also smaller than the cathedral of Svetitskhoveli in Mtskheta. The monastery is the focus of the annual religious celebration Alaverdoba. Situated in the heart of the world's oldest wine region, the monks also make their own wine, known as Alaverdi Monastery Cellar.