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Review Highlights
The Trip of A Lifetime ... Flat Out Excellent Private Tour

My husband and I worked with John Graham to schedule a private tour of the Tusheti and Khevsureti... read more

Reviewed 1 week ago
StThecla
5 reasons John Graham Tours should lead your group through Georgia

John Graham led our large choral group through Tbilisi, Kutaisi, and Kazbeghi over 9 days but... read more

Reviewed 1 week ago
tofumidget
,
Washington DC, District of Columbia
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14 - 19 of 24 reviews
Reviewed December 6, 2018

We enjoyed touring a place where the destination is still so unusual, not many fellow travelers have experienced the locale. I don't think I have yet seen a Rick Steves' travelogue from Georgia. Be the among the first!

Date of experience: May 2018
1  Thank barbdefoe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 13, 2018

Personable, beyond knowledgeable, and talented John Graham takes such good care of his guests - from first class accommodation and meals to buying lozenges for sore throat and serving champagne in real glass flutes at picnic lunches.. In our "Walking in the Caucasus" tour, he facilitated an amazing experience of unforgettable places and people. His encyclopedic knowledge of Georgian history - both religious and political, culture, music, and language (he is English-speaking by birth) makes his tours unique, meaningful and extremely educational. Sing Georgian chants with him in medieval monasteries, toast with him at supras, and walk hiking paths surrounded by mountain splendour: John aims to show his guests only the splendid, unusual and remarkable. Don't like travelling in groups? No worries - the personal way John approaches his guests helps to make a collection of individuals into a group. If you really love to travel, you must see Georgia and you must see it with John Graham!

Date of experience: September 2018
1  Thank Joan S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 23, 2018

John Graham Tours went beyond my expectations and is a MUST when planning to explore Georgia and the gems she holds within in her treasure trove!! John was a fabulous host with attention to detail to his large group of just over 30 "guests". Born and raised in America, John's love for his new home in Georgia and her beauty within it is apparent. He's a master in Georgian history and its current state of affairs, enlightening us as we travelled the country. We enjoyed scrumptious traditional Georgian cuisine and the most delicious wines I have every tasted!
As a faith based tour we marvelled at the ancient sites of the churches, monasteries and fortresses. We were further elevated spiritually by the singing of John and his two companion tour guides, Giorgi and Tornike. The trio, all skilled and trained musically sang in the traditional Georgian chant at each site that brought our visits to life. We were also priviledged to have our hearts warmed by their singing while we dined at lunch and supper. On multiple ocassions OTHER TOURING GROUPS, as well as local Georgians would leave their tables and gather around ours to take pictures or videos. Yes, they were that GOOD!!! We visited museums, UNESCO sites, trekked through Vardzia Cave Complex above ground, Prometheus Caves below ground, a jeep ride or optional hike up to a monastery on a mountain top, we attended a comedic play about the traditional life of Georgian families, and so much more.
John was attentive and quick to respond to the needs and special requuests of his "guests". Giorgi and Tornike were also attentive and always ready to lend a helping hand. These two gentlemen treated us to soft singing accompanied by the playing of a unique string instrument on the longer bus rides.
I'll conclude by saying, I'LL BE BACK GEORGIA !!

Date of experience: September 2018
1  Thank Cathy K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 15, 2018

I have traveled the world a fair bit and have had some very good experiences with local guides, but John Graham has surpassed all of them by leaps and bounds in a myriad of aspects.
Language is one of the first challenges with many local guides, sometimes struggling with vocabulary or heavy accents. John, who was born and raised in the US, speaks at length on any topic and is able to convey his wealth of knowledge clearly. But, the added bonus is that he has lived in Georgia for many years, is married to a Georgian lady, and speaks Georgian fluently. And that means he is able to provide extra help in any situation (even ordering extra medications at a local pharmacy) and knows the ins and outs of any situation.
John is a master planner. The tour we were one was a 12-day Orthodox Christian Pilgrimage (though we did learn that he has various other tour options). As an active member of the Georgian Orthodox Church, he was able to share the spiritual treasures of the country as an insider, not an observer, but as one of our community of believers. Yet his plans also included various cultural highlights that reflected his genuine love of his adopted country.
As an added bonus to the church tours, John was able to provide our group with an amazing repertoire of Georgian music. A musicologist (with a PhD from Princeton), John has a deep love for Georgian chant and brought along with us two fellow chanters from his own church. The three of them provided us with soul-stirring music in the various churches and cathedrals and enlivened our meal times with local folk songs. Wherever we happened to be, other tourists would stop their tours or stop talking at the restaurants and slide on over to our area and begin recording. We all felt so privileged to have John, Torniqe and Giorge with us.
With his encyclopedic knowledge of virtually every aspect of Georgian life or history, and with his familiarity and love for the countryside, John was able to talk at length on any topic and make the longer bus rides seem quite short. Yet he was able to convey his knowledge in a way that was interesting, but not bursting with any self-inflating pride. In fact, he has a rather humble way about him and takes care to meet the needs and interests of his audience, not simply show off his wealth of knowledge.
John's caring nature is readily apparent from the onset. He is a very pleasant, genial host who treats every visitor with genuine respect and concern. With his winning smile and gentle nature, I think each individual felt that John was looking out for their own personal interests. He was never too busy to help someone who needed further explanation, to assist people who needed extra medical attention, or even to accommodate those with extra physical challenges. ( My sister cracked her ankle just before arriving and had crutches and a cast on her leg, but we never once felt we were a burden.) Unexpected challenges appeared among our group, but John was unflappable and handled things in a professional, efficient, yet personable manner.
With most travel tours, one can often think of something that could have been handled differently or improved upon. Not so with John Graham. I highly recommend his tours as being worth every penny. (Maybe there will be a statue of him in the town square one day as being the one who brought the love of Georgia and Georgian music to the world. :-) )

Date of experience: September 2018
2  Thank Paulette H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 9, 2018

I was not sure I was a 'group tour' person, but this small personalized tour turned out to be the best possible way to experience the spectacular history, culture, scenery, food and wine of Georgia. John Graham, an American settled in Georgia, together with his 2 excellent assistant guides, was personable, fun, and knowledgeable about everything from ancient churches to current politics, and musical traditions. The atmosphere in the group was truly convivial. It was an adventure underpinned by excellent planning and organisation. Accommodations ranged from authentic village guesthouses to comfortable hotels, and hikes were tailored to our energy levels. I would definitely travel with John Graham Tours again.

Date of experience: September 2018
Thank sifaka2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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