Since the rain had not let up and the hike to the Queen Tamar Tower was steep and difficult, we elected not to risk it and instead to walk from Ushguli’s upper village, down through the middle village, and end up in the lower village, where the vans would pick us up for the ride back to the hotel. Sofie informed the local Ushguli guide who had been hired to lead us up to the tower that we would be canceling the hike. He responded that he was relieved because the wet and muddy conditions were to dangerous for anyone to attempt.
Ushguli is actually three villages: an upper village, where about 60 families live year-round; the middle village, which has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site; and the lower village, where there are still a few residents and small agricultural buildings. We first visited the Chapel of the upper village, before walking down the hillside into the core of the village.