Back in the 6th Century AD, David Gareja, one of the thirteen Assyrian fathers, settled in the natural cave in Gareji desert, where he founded the first monastery that today is famous under the name David's Larva. In the same century, David's disciples and followers Dodo and Lukiane erected two more cloisters: Dodo's Rka and the Monastery of John the Baptist. The peak of the construction of the David Gareja Monastery was achieved during the time of national and cultural-political rise, golden age of Georgia, in 12th-13th centuries when the new monasteries were built: Udabno, Bertubani and Chichkhituri. The private art school of fresco painting functioned in the Udabno monastery and David Gareji, which elaborated the private rules of building and monastery life. Gareji art school represents one of the most significant events in the cultural life of medieval Georgia.
Location: 67 km east from Tbilisi, Kakheti Region