Gori has long been synonymous with just one man: this is the town where Stalin was born and went to school. The large Stalin Museum is Gori’s best known attraction.
In the 2008 war over South Ossetia (whose border reaches within 13km north of Gori), Gori was bombed by Russia, with at least 20 civilians killed, and most of the population fled before the town fell under Russian control for 10 days. Rows of single-storey refugee houses visible at Tserovani on the Tbilisi – Gori highway, and on Gori’s northern edge, are reminders of that war.
The centre of town is the wide Stalinis moedani (Stalin Sq). The main street, Stalinis gamziri (Stalin Ave), runs 600m north from here to the large Stalin Museum.
We stayed at a old Intertourist hotel, something left over from the Soviet times, smelling of smoke and decay.