About Attraction

Vani Archaeological Museum-Reserve

UNESCO tentative list since 2007

Vani Archaeological site in Imereti, Georgia, is renowned for its ancient Colchis civilization findings. Founded in 1985, the museum houses over 4,000 items excavated from Vani. It's the first archaeological museum in Georgia and plays a vital role in scientific and educational programs.

The permanent exhibition showcases cultural development between 800 BC and 100 AD, featuring goldwork, silver, unique bronze sculptures, coins, and more. Highlights include a stunning jewelry collection, imported items from the Greek world and Persian Empire, ritual figurines, and a life-size bronze torso.

Vani is the most excavated site in Colchian hinterland, offering evidence of the region's development during Greek colonization and the Roman period. Systematic studies since 1947 revealed a rich city with four distinct phases of occupation.

In the first phase (8th-7th centuries BC), Archaic Vani emerged as a cultic center. The second phase (end of 7th to 4th century BC) marked political-administrative significance. The third phase (2nd half of 4th - 1st half of 3rd century BC) saw changes in material culture, possibly due to Iberian influence. The fourth phase (3rd-mid-1st century BC) showed a decline, followed by an attack and destruction in the middle of the 1st century BC.

Despite its history, Vani declined to a village and was officially granted town status in 1981. The archaeological complex underwent a 4-year infrastructural project (2016-2020), turning it into a standout museum meeting international standards. The four-story building now hosts exhibits, scientific conferences, educational events, and serves as a local hub.

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