Moldova holiday, tailor made
Description of Moldova holiday, tailor made
The Republic of Moldova, to give it its official name, is sandwiched between Romania and Ukraine and is probably most well known for its world class wine production. However we feel there is a lot more to this tiny land-locked country and our Essentian Moldova holiday hopes to introduce you to some of the best.
With the main city of Chisinau as 'home' for the next five nights, take the time to explore this pretty green city ringed with parks, lakes and tree-lined avenues. Stroll to the Arc de Triomphe and visit Cathedral Park home to the magnificent Orthodox Cathedral and explore the many museums available including the National History Museum and the Art Museum.
Depart the city and head to Cricova, site of the wonderful underground wine town which amazingly stretches for more than 60 kilometres and is thought to store over one million bottles of various wines including 'Soviet champagnes'. Moldova is a major producer of fine wines and this day trip will introduce you to some of their finer vintages and allow you to sample a glass or two.
Journey out to the fascinating Orheiul Vechi Monastery complex which was carved into the cliff in the 13th century and is currently home to a small number of monks working to restore the site to its former glory. The site itself is a wonder to explore and the wild rugged surroundings is another draw for many visitors.
|Day 1||Fly to Chisinau. Upon arrival you will be met and transferred to the Stella Delux Hotel for a five night stay. The afternoon is at leisure.|
|Day 2||Enjoy today to explore Chisinau at your own pace. The city is a sleepy provincial capital with tree-lined boulevards and pretty parks. (B)|
|Day 3||Depart Chisinau and drive to Cricova, the site of a huge network of underground wine storage converted from an pre-war mine network. Travel on the electric train through streets named called Cabernet Street, Merlot Street etc and sample some of the wine which the country is famous for. (B)|
|Day 4||Drive to visit Tiraspol, the self-proclaimed capital of Trans-Dniestr, which has a virtual Soviet era museum like quality. The city has an interesting array of Lenin statues and Soviet street names - the tour will include visits to the Pokrov Church, the Lenin and Suvorov Monuments and Kirov Square amonth others. (B)|
|Day 5||Journey to Orheiul Vechi situated roughly 40 miles rom Chisinau. Visit the 19th century Adormirea Maicii Domnului Church and visit the functioning cave-monastery, the Geto-Dacian fortress. Enjoy lunch in a traditional Moldovan house with ingredients picked from the family's organic garden. (B,L)|
|Day 6||This morning is at leisure. This afternoon return to the airport and fly back to the UK. (B)|
PlanetOn this itinerary you will visit the Cricova underground wine city and experience the electric train which was introduced to avoid CO2 emissions. The Stella Delux Hotel has adopted the standard international practice of requesting guests do not request bedding or towl changes every day thereby avoiding excessive energy use for washing.
Clients will receive a copy of our responsible travel notes which offers advice on how they can minimise their impact on the local environment and our local agents also offer advice in-country on the same.
The day tours, where possible, are conducted as walking tours to minimise emissions and all the entry fees paid to museums etc are an important part of the funding required to maintain the sites: Moldova is not a wealthy country so these entrance fees are essential to allow for site maintenance. All meals are sourced from local produce and of course there is plenty of time to sample the excellent wine which all helps to support the local communities.
PeopleOur local Moldovan agents pay fair salaries to all employees and regular training is provided to support future career development. Only local guides who are aware of local customs and cultures are employed which not only keeps the funds paid to staff within the local community but also helps avoid any potential cultural clashes between visitors and locals. The hotel we use in Chisinua, Stella Delux, is locally owned, managed and staffed.
On the visit to Orheiul Vechi lunch is taken in a Moldovan house “Casa Verde”, where you can sample some traditional Moldovan cuisine made from home-grown, organic vegetables and fruits, home-made food and locally produced wine. This lunch contributes an extra income for the home owners and allows visitors to experience local Moldovan life. Transport to and from Casa Verde is by horse and cart which is a great way for visitors to learn how local residents live.
We will donate £25 to ChildAid for every booking to Moldova made through Responsible Travel. ChildAid was established in 1973 and, over the years, has evolved into a charitable organisation involved in helping street children and those from families living in crisis in Belarus, Moldova, Russia and Ukraine. This is done through the sponsorship of children and abandoned babies with funds going towards providing long-term care. As one of the poorest countries in Europe, Moldova has limited resources to care for its disabled children. ChildAid has worked in Moldova since 2000 and seek to create opportunities for children living with disabilities, either though free therapies for the poorest families, social welfare support or educational and social inclusion.
ChildAid works with Children's Health Centre in Chisinau to provide free treatment to over 200 children each year from the poorest families. The centre is now called The Tony Hawks Centre in recognition of the great support provided by the writer and comedian Tony Hawks, whose book “Playing the Moldovans at Tennis" is a humorous must-read book for anybody visiting Moldova. We can arrange visits to the Tony Hawks centre where you can meet the staff and learn more about their work. Any gifts, clothes or toys for the children are greatly appreciated. Child Aid is also running an appeal to raise vital funds – to make a donation or sponsor a child please visit their website: www.childaidrr.org.uk
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From £1140 6 days excluding flights
A cultural tour through the fascinating country of Moldova