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Sandwiched between Romania and Ukraine, Moldova is a dreamland of vineyards and untamed forests, where you will come across the world’s largest wine cellar and some of the world’s best wines. Undulating hills, picturesque villages and nature reserves make up the beautiful Moldovan landscape and you will be surprised to know that this landlocked country is one of Europe’s least-visited.
The capital Chisinau has been in existence for over 600 years, but was almost completely destroyed during WWII. The architecture you see today was mostly built in the Soviet-era. Along with numerous wineries, the city also boasts a lively nightlife. The city’s highlights include Parcul Catedralei and the National Museum of Ethnography & Natural History, which focuses on Moldovan culture. About 15km from Chisinau is Cricova – one of the largest wine cellars in Europe with an underground winery. It is a popular day trip from Chisinau, where you can discover interesting facts about the history of Moldova’s wine culture. Orheiul Vechi (also known as Old Orhei) known for its Cave Monastery and archaeological complex which includes ruins from over 2000 years is another popular day trip from the capital.
Bendery (also known as Bender), is a riverside city and known for the Bendery fortress with its walkable ramparts and a few museums. The Ottoman fortress dates back to the 16th-century and is one of the most well-preserved monuments in Moldova. In northern Moldova, you will find the beautiful 15th-century Soroca Fortress, with its chain of bastions.
If you have heard of Moldova, it was probably because of its fine wine. Being a hidden European nation, Moldova offers a more natural and laid back vibe than its more popular neighbours. However, it is one of the least expensive European destinations, and this has sparked an interest among globetrotters to explore the charm of this tiny nation.
Moldova has the world’s largest wine cellar.
big, diverse, and largely undiscovered
Black Sea coastline and forested mountains
gold-domed churches and soviet architecture
Greek, Roman and Ottoman heritage
13th-century Treskavec Monastery
hiking and skiing in Mavrovo National Park