Tbilisi , the capital and the largest city of Georgia is located in
the South Caucasus at 41° 43' North Latitude and 44° 47' East
Longitude. The city lies in Eastern Georgia on both banks of the
Mt'k'vari River. The elevation of the city ranges from 380–770
meters above sea level (1246–1968 ft.).The city covers an area of
726 km2 (280 sq. mi) and has 1,480,000 inhabitants.
The climate of Tbilisi can be classified as moderately humid
subtropical. The average annual temperature in Tbilisi is 12.7 °C
(54.9 °F). January is the coldest month with an average temperature
of 0.9 °C (33.6 °F). July is the hottest month with an average
temperature of 24.4 °C (75.9 °F).
Tbilisi is governed by the Tbilisi City Assembly and the Tbilisi
City Hall .The City Assembly is elected once every four years. The
mayor is elected by the City Assembly.
According to an old legend, the present-day territory of Tbilisi
was covered by forests as late as 458. One widely accepted variant
of the legend of Tbilisi's founding states that King Vakhtang I
Gorgasali of Georgia went hunting in the heavily wooded region with
a falcon. The King's falcon allegedly caught or injured a pheasant
during the hunt, after which both birds fell into a nearby hot
spring and died from burns. King Vakhtang became so impressed with
the hot springs that he decided to cut down the forest and build a
city on the location. The name Tbilisi derives from the Old
Georgian word "Tpili", meaning warm. The name 'Tbili' or 'Tbilisi'
('warm location') was therefore given to the city because of the
area's numerous sulphuric hot springs that came out of the
King Dachi I Ujarmeli, who was the successor of Vakhtang I
Gorgasali, moved the capital from Mtskheta to Tbilisi according to
the will left by his father.
Located strategically in the heart of the Caucasus between Europe
and Asia, Tbilisi became an object of rivalry between the region's
various powers such as Persia, the Byzantine Empire, Arabia and the
Seljuk Turks. The cultural development of the city was therefore
heavily dependent on who ruled the city at various times. Even
though Tbilisi was able to maintain a certain degree of autonomy
from its conquerors, the foreign domination of the city began in
the latter half of the 6th century and lasted well into the 10th
Tbilisi has been historically known for religious tolerance that’s
why the city has been home to peoples of diverse cultural, ethnic,
and religious backgrounds. This is especially evident in the city's
Old Town, where a mosque, synagogue, and Eastern and Oriental
Orthodox churches can all be found within less than 500 metres
(1,600 ft) from each other.
The architecture in the city is a mixture of local (Georgian), with
strong influences of Byzantine, European/Russian (neo-classical),
and Middle Eastern architectural styles which make it favorite
destination for tourists from the world.