Blogs from Chisinau, Centre, Moldova, Europe


Europe » Moldova » Centre » Chisinau January 1st 2020

1st Jan: The journey from Bender to Chișinău didn't take took long, only a hour or two if I remember correctly. The journey was pretty smooth sailing even the 'border' between Transnistria and Moldova proper was quick and straight forward. There wasn't much to see on the journey as it was dark outside. When we reached our hotel, it felt like I was back in the real world. Our hotel felt like a palace compared to the place we had stayed in Transnistria, in reality it probably wasn't that nice, but it was a definite step up. After checking in and chilling for a bit, we decided to head out for some dinner. Since it was New Year's Day, not too many places were open. We had really wanted to try Andy's Pizza as it is ... read more
Cosmos Hotel
National Hotel

Europe » Moldova » Centre » Chisinau May 7th 2017

In the morning we went by coach with our Moldovan guide, Natalia, to Orhei Vechi . First we visited a small museum with various archaeological finds. Following this we walked up to a very small monastery church carved into the rock. As we weren't going to be having lunch until mid afternoon I bought a pretzel from a girl selling them part way up the hill to the monastery. It didn't taste as good as I thought as it took all the moisture away from my mouth! The monastery church was very atmospheric. In the corridor, leading down to the church, was what I presumed to be the monk reading aloud. The church was filled with the smell of incense and the flickering of candles, including people crossing themselves in front of the various icons. This ... read more

Europe » Moldova » Centre » Chisinau May 6th 2017

From the railway station to our hotel was a market, which looked more like a car boot sale. The unusual thing was that all the items were laid on the floor. It included old TVs, mobile phones, many clothes and shoes. We were staying at the Hotel Cosmos which certainly looked very soviet in style. The hotel had 22 floors but I don't think there was anyone staying higher than floors seven or eight. There didn't seem to be many guests, apart from us and the players in a Moldovan football team. Some of met our Moldovan guide, Natalia, for a short walking tour of Chisinau, the capital of Moldova. I liked Chisinau, and it was certainly not as bad as some of the descriptions I had read about it before the trip. I felt very ... read more
Our Moldovan guide, Natalia, holding up a Soviet Union passport!
Parliament building

Europe » Moldova » Centre » Chisinau May 6th 2017

Left Manchester on Friday 5th from Liverpool to Bucharest. The flight was with Blue Air, a Romanian low cost airline, who I've never heard of before. I was lucky to have all spaces free next to me so I was able to stretch out. No food was provided apart from a small sweet given before we landed! Landed on time and then met my pre-booked taxi to take me from the Airport to the Railway station. I tried to explain where I was going to visit in Moldova but I had problems with my pronunciation and so it took some time for him to understand where I was going. Had some time to wait at Bucharest airport to meet rest of the group I was travelling with. I was travelling with Lupine Travel and there was ... read more
Looking from our carriage

Europe » Moldova » Centre » Chisinau April 11th 2017

Geo: 47.0167, 28.8497Kyla and Paul went up to the restaurant for brekkies, but I slept in and had room service. Clever me. We were ready to go at 9:30am.We drove out of the city to visit three monasteries. The first two had been destroyed during Soviet times and had been repaired in the last 25 years. The frescos were new, and the buildings were redone. The first monastery, Hincu, had been a summer camp for medical students during Soviet times. It sits nestled in the woods part-way up a hill, with a bit of view of the valley below. The legend is: the daughter of the local lord ran away from home and got lost in the woods. She stayed there all winter, in a hut for shepherds. When the shepherds returned in spring, they found ... read more
Around Moldova
Around Moldova
Hincu Monastery

Europe » Moldova » Centre » Chisinau April 10th 2017

Geo: 47.0167, 28.8497A very relaxing day. We had a long, lingering breakfast upstairs. Then I worked for six hours on a proposal while Kyla and Paul went for walk in town (just over an hour) and then read while I finished up work. At 3:30pm, we went downstairs to use the hammam (yummy), herbal bath, and very, very hot Finnish sauna. Then we had body treatments (more yummy). At 7pm, we walked to a nearby Moldovan restaurant for very delicious traditional cuisine. Our wine choice, Pucari's Freedom blend, was well-loved by all. After 10am, we walked home and I collapsed, as I'm getting a terrible cold.... read more

Europe » Moldova » Centre » Chisinau April 8th 2017

Geo: 47.0167, 28.8497Our day began at 4:45am, with a 5am departure for the airport. We returned the rental car (easy) and went to the terminal … which was very crowded. Then realized we were in Terminal 2A, went there, and had no lines at all. Quickly for check-in and through security. We then went to get a cup of coffee … and ended up chatting with a young woman who was at Kyla's college at the same time as Kyla. Small world! They didn't know each other, but Kyla later discovered they have 31 mutual friends on facebook. How funny!Easy flight to Munich. We went briefly to the (very empty) lounge in Munich, then to the gate for our flight to Chisinau. It was delayed, but only slightly. Fine flight, though very bumpy upon arrival. Easy ... read more
Kyla in Chisinau

Europe » Moldova » Centre » Chisinau September 15th 2016

"Why are you going to Moldova?" asked the Romanian border officer. "Why are you going where?" you might ask. The average European may have heard of this country wedged between Romania and the Ukraine, but the average person from outside of Europe very likely has not. Certainly before I set out travelling, I had only heard of Moldova because the country's football team occasionally popped up on fixture list for European qualification campaigns - I believe England played them home and away in qualification for the 2014 World Cup - and because I saw it on a map. It is very much Europe's final frontier of sorts - its last unknown state. So to answer the Romanian border officer's question, I was going to Moldova because no-one has heard of it and therefore I was intrigued. ... read more
Grand Dining Hall
Moldovan Parliament Building
Inside The Cathedral Of Christ's Nativity

Europe » Moldova » Centre » Chisinau June 7th 2016

The countries of the former Soviet Union hold a special appeal for your intrepid travel writer, partly due to the difficulties Australians face in obtaining a visa. The life of a traveller includes destinations that are more challenging to get to, which can add to the allure of travelling there. To be honest I knew next to nothing about Moldova before I began chatting with an online friend over the last few months, but once my interest was piqued I did some research into the country as a potential travel destination. To my surprise Australians don't require a visa in advance to visit Moldova, as opposed to the other countries of the former Soviet Union. This proved the catalyst for a visit to Moldova which shares a border with Ukraine and Romania, and pondering the dilemma ... read more
Orthodox church
Lovely boulevard
Building in the city

Europe » Moldova » Centre » Chisinau March 18th 2016

It was a Bank Holiday in Moldova. We wondered why it was so quiet in the streets of Chisinau. International Women's Day apparently. It was worldwide, but the Other Half didn't get a day off in the UK or she could have added Transnistria to her collection. An open air concert was in full swing. Well, not quite - but it was happening. The combined total crowd was about 150. The compere was a reincarnation of a 60's version of Sonny Bono. He looked pleased with himself, as he introduced the top acts of Moldovan music. The enthusiasm of the crowd suggested perhaps, but the numbers did not. The Matt Munro of Moldova came on. He failed to ignite the crowd. A blonde bombshell spruced herself up in the changing area - a van - and ... read more
Victory Monument
Cathedral of Theodor Tiron

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