Taking the road less travelled in Moldova: The Ultimate European Escape
Take it from an extroverted American that has lived far too long in the tiny country of Moldova. This detailed itinerary will have you see more than what most travellers see when in Moldova and takes you to experiences far beyond the capitol of Chișinău.
There is more to see in Moldova besides its capital city Chișinău and this tour will prove it. Beyond Chișinău, villages, vineyards and farmland dot the rolling-hill-landscape where the traveler on these three days can experience homemade Moldovan cuisine and hospitality at its finest. After spending the first day exploring Turkish ruins, cliff caves and the famous Old Orhei Monastery, the traveler will be able to relax with a homemade meal in a memorable Moldovan village retreat resort/bed and breakfast.
The following day includes biking to a local small winery followed by lunch and a stroll in the small city of Orhei. Orhei has a very simple downtown that is easy to grab lunch at, visit the piata and see a Chernobyl monument all in one swoop midday. Following the simple excursion in downtown Orhei, the traveler can walk or take a taxi to Chateau Vartely, the famous winery and hotel in the area situated not too far from the downtown. After a tour and wine tasting, another Moldovan dinner will be served before retiring to the Moldovan sauna for a few hours.
The third day is a busy day traveling an hour north to see two more monasteries and their famous waterfalls. Țipova monastery is the oldest Monastery in Moldova and is off the beaten path surrounded by beautiful nature along the Nistru/Dnister River. Saharna is by far the most beautiful monastery and one of the biggest in Moldova and also is home to natural springs and waterfalls and is in the same region as Țipova. Take a picnic on top of one of the hills surrounding either monastery and enjoy a birds-eye view of the river over lunch.
Within this itinerary is a useful appendix filled with common words, phrases and advice on things from tipping in a restaurant in Moldova to expected prices for tours and taxi rides. The author has also included directions via private car (rental or personal driver) or by public transport.