Tbilisi is the capi tal and th e largest city ofGeorgia, lying o n the banks of the KuraRiver. The name is derived from an earlyGeorgian form T` pilisi and it was officially known as Tbilisi or Tiflis until 1936.Thecity covers an area of 726 km2 and has1,480,000 inhabitants.
• Founded in the 5th century by Vakhtang Gorgasali, the monarch of Georgias precursor Kingdom of Iberia, Tbilisi has served, with various intervals, as Georgias capital for nearly 1500 years and represents a significant industrial, social, and cultural center of the country Tbilisis varied history is reflected in its architecture, which is a mix of medieval, classical, and Soviet structures.
Climate• The climate of Tbilisi can be classified as moderately humid subtropical . The citys climate is influenced both by dry air masses from the east and humid subtropical air masses from the west. Tbilisi experiences relatively cold winters and hot summers. Because the city is bounded on most sides by mountain ranges, the close proximity to large bodies of water and the fact that the Greater Caucasus Mountain Range blocks the intrusion of cold air masses from Russia, Tbilisi has a relatively mild micro-climate compared to other cities that possess a similar continental climate along the same latitudes.
Demographics• Tbilisi is a multicultural city. The city is home to more than 100 different ethnic groups. Around 89% of the population is ethnically Georgian, with significant populations of other ethnic groups such as Armenians, Russians, and Azeris. Along with the above mentioned groups, Tbilisi is also home to various other ethnic groups including Ossetians, Abkhazians, Ukrainians, Greeks, Germans, Jews, Estonians, Kurds, Assyrians, and others.
Religion More than 95% of the residents of Tbilisi practise various forms of Christianity. The Russian Orthodox Church, which is in Full communion with the Georgian, and the Armenian Apostolic Church have significant following within the city as well. A large minority of the population practises Islam . Judaism is also common, but to a lesser extent . Tbilisi has been historicallyknown for religious tolerance. This is especiallyevident in the citys Old Town, where a mosque,synagogue, and Eastern and Oriental Orthodoxchurches can all be found within less 500 meters from each other.
Sports• Tbilisi has a fairly rich sports history. Like many other towns of the Near East with strong Asian cultural influences, Tbilisi historically had a special area of town that was designated for sports competitions.The present-day districts of Saburtalo and Didube were the most common areas where such competitions were held. Up until the beginning of the 19th century, sports such as horse-riding, wrestling, boxing, and marksmanship were the most popular city sports.
. At present, the largest stadium in Tbilisi is the DinamoArena and the second largest is the Mikheil MeskhiStadium . The Sports Palace which usually hostsbasketball games with high attendance and tennistournaments can seat up to approximately 11,000people.
Main sights• Tbilisi has a number of important landmarks and sightseeing locations. The Parliament and the government buildings of Georgia, as well as the Supreme Court of Georgia, are all located in Tbilisi. The city also has important cultural landmarks such as the Tbilisi State Conservatoire, Tbilisi Opera and Ballet Theatre, Shota Rustaveli State Academic Theatre, Marjanishvili State Academic Theatre, the Sameba Cathedral, the Vorontsovs Palace , many state museums, the National Public Library of the Parliament of Georgia, the National Bank of Georgia and other important institutions. During the Soviet times, Tbilisi continuously ranked in the top 4 cities in the Soviet Union for the number of museums.
• Out of the citys historic landmarks, the most notable locations are the Narikala fortress (4th–17th century), Anchiskhati Church (6th century, built up in the 16th century), Sioni Cathedral (8th century, later rebuilt), Church of Metekhi (13th century), etc.
Education• Tbilisi is home to several major institutions of higher education: The biggest Georgian university is Tbilisi State University which was established on 8 February 1918. Tbilisi is also home to the largest medical university in Caucasus region — Tbilisi State Medical University. Georgias main and largest technical university, Georgian Technical University, is in Tbilisi. The two most popular private higher educational institution in Georgia — Caucasus University and Free University of Tbilisi — are in Tbilisi.