Being a tourist can be a gruelling experience. It’s hard to find a moment’s peace when you’re trekking up a steep mountain or pushing your way through the crowds. Worse still, it turns photography into a competitive sport. You always hope the view you’ve seen hashtagged a millions of times over will still be worth it — and breathe a sigh of relief when you finally hear the shutter sound.
British photographer Oliver Curtis had the right idea when he decided to direct his camera away from famous tourist sites like the Eiffel Tower, the Pyramids, and Stonehenge, to reveal the mundane reality beneath their feet (if you haven’t seen it, you can find his playful and sardonic photo story right here).
Eugene Mokrousov did not seem to have this problem when he made the journey up to Gergeti Trinity Church in Georgia. One of the country’s most famous landmarks, the 14th-century building sits at the foot of Mount Kazbegi, at an altitude of 2,170 metres. The Russian photographer flew to Tbilisi last October. From the capital city, it’s a three-hour drive to the town of Stepantsminda along the Georgian Military Highway. The church can then be reached by a steep climb for three hours.
Mokrousov’s photo shows not the church but the jaw-dropping view behind it, of one of the highest peaks in the Caucasus. The photographer describes his time in the Caucasus “as a meditative journey”. If you need yet another excuse to travel to Georgia, this is it.