Summary

Enjoy this Extended Tour of Moldova (almost two weeks) and let yourself discover its traditions, monasteries, churches, fortresses, beautiful landscape, tasty traditional dishes and amazing wines. You will taste delicious wines and discover the process of producing sparkling wines using the famous French-style Méthode Champenoise at Cricova winery – one of the largest wine cellars in the world (120 km). You will have a wine tasting and fabulous lunches at Château Cojusna (Migdal-P), Castel Mimi and Château Purcari wineries. You will enjoy tasting caviar with sparkling wine at Aquatir Sturgeon Complex and you will be acquainted with the taste of amazing spirits at Kvint wine and brandy factory in Tiraspol, Transnistria. While visiting Castel Mimi you will be amazed by the beauty of the castle, which is currently listed among the most beautiful architectural masterpieces in the world of wine. During this guided tour you will have unique experiences while discovering Moldova accompanied by an experienced guide who will take you on a journey you will never forget.

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Alla

Alla

Local travel expert in Moldova

I am a representative of a local tour operator in Moldova that has over 10 years experience in the organization of travel. I mainly specialize in wine, gastronomic and cultural tours around Moldova.

Itinerary


On arrival at Chisinau International Airport, you will be transferred to your accommodation in Chisinau. After settling in, you can have a walk through downtown and explore the city centre on your own.

The day will begin with the city tour of Chisinau, which is the main administrative, scientific and cultural centre of Moldova. During the tour, you will discover pieces of history and culture of the city such as the Nativity of Christ Cathedral, the Bell Tower, the Arch of Triumph, the Monument of Stephen the Great, etc.

The day will continue with the excursion at the National Museum of Ethnography and Natural History built in 1905 in the oriental style, thus being a unique building of this kind in Moldova. Here, you will discover famous archaeological treasures, carpets, national costumes and other valuable exhibits and you will be able to see the “millenary smile” of the nicest deinotherium of Moldova.

In the afternoon, you will have lunch at a traditional restaurant in Chisinau.

After lunch, you will discover Cricova winery – the only wine enterprise that was awarded more the highest state prize “The Order of the Republic” and has been declared by law a national cultural heritage. During the excursion at Cricova winery in the tourist train, at a depth of 80 m, you will discover the wonders of this place. Cricova underground galleries are formed by over seventy streets covering an area of nearly 120 km, each bearing Bacchic names: Sauvignon, Cabernet, Cahors, etc. The jewel of the underground treasure is the National Collection, including over 600 types of wine totaling about 1 million bottles. Here you will admire the oldest bottle of wine - "Jewish Easter Wine", dating from 1902. You will also visit the unique production of sparkling wine, where a professional guide will tell you about all the process of producing sparkling wines using the famous French-style Méthode Champenoise. In one of the tasting rooms, the sommelier will explain the rules of wine tasting and help you better reveal the taste and bouquet of each type of wine.

In the morning you will visit Saharna Monastery - one of the oldest monasteries in the country. The monastic complex is composed of a cave monastery (the Annunciation) and a stone monastery (the St. Trinity). The complex is located in a picturesque valley on the right bank of the Dniester River, near Saharna village. It is surrounded by rocks covered by forest. The legend says that the Virgin Mary left her footprint on the highest rock, named Grimidon. The history of the monastery is little known. The first prior of the holy place is considered the monk Bartholomew (1776-1790) who settled in a deep gorge, built a church, a few cells and enclosed the monastery with a stone wall. In Saharna there is a beautiful landscape created by the waterfalls. The River Saharna has 22 waterfalls on its way. The biggest waterfall is 4.5 m high.

Then, you will travel to Lalova village where you will have lunch more at a local guesthouse.

After lunch, you will discover Tipova Cave Monastery. Located near Tipova village, the monastery with the same name is considered one of the oldest monastic establishments on the territory of Moldova. The heritage, which consists of 18 rooms, dug into the rock at an astounding altitude, represents an impressive museum in the open air. The Tipova River, on its flow to the Dniester, creates many waterfalls with the height above 10-16 meters, which a long time ago used to move the millstones of the numerous watermills.

The first stop of the day will be at Asconi winery founded in 1994 and located in Puhoi village. The winery achieved a lot due to modern wine making technologies. Nowadays at Asconi estate European varieties are grown, but special attention is paid to indigenous varieties such as Rara Neagra, Feteasca, etc. One of the features of Asconi winery is that they pick up the grapes mechanically at night when the grapes are still cold. During the excursion and wine tasting at the winery you will be able to discover the wonders of this place.

Next stop will be at Castel Mimi winery located in Bulboaca village - a destination of interest unique in Moldova. Castel Mimi is currently listed among the most beautiful architectural masterpieces in the world of wine. The story of the castle begins at the end of 1893, when Constantin Mimi, the last governor of Bessarabia, plants the first grape vines on the more place that would become legend over the years. Here, you will taste Castel Mimi wines, including Rosu de Bulboaca wine, an incomparable wine with outstanding features and elegant flavor. Lunch will be served at Castel Mimi restaurant and will culminate with “baba neagra” - a local dessert of Moldovan cuisine representing a cake garnished with vanilla.

In the morning, you will travel to Capriana Monastery, founded in medieval Moldova, which is one of the oldest monasteries in the country. It is located in Capriana in a picturesque forested area once called Codrii Lapusnei. The first significant reference dates from a document issued in 1429 that gave Capriana the status of royal monastery on behalf of Alexander the Good. During a long period, Capriana Monastery acted as the residence of the Moldovan archbishop. Being closed and devastated in the post-war years, it was one of the first monasteries that reopened in 1989, becoming soon the symbol of national revival.

Next, you will discover Château Cojusna (Migdal-P) winery in Cojusna village. Here you will enjoy a tour through the complex, where you will discover the underground streets, the tasting rooms and climb to the roof of the château where you will see the panorama of Cojusna village more and the vineyards of the winery. The wines produced in Cojusna can be tasted in two special rooms - one of them has an atmosphere of Medieval Moldovan cellar and it is trimmed with natural tree and stone, the other one has a European classic style. After the excursion and wine tasting, you will enjoy a fabulous lunch at the winery.

After lunch, you will travel to Hincesti where you will visit the Manuc Bei Manor that now houses the Museum of History and Local History. The actual house is a real castle in the French style, with a winter garden, guard towers and a park - built in the second half of 19th century based on the project of Alexander Bernardazzi, and for decades was the estate of family Mirzoyan, descendants of Manuc Bei. In the 70-ies of the 20th century, Manor House Museum was opened, including a collection that now numbers more than 20,000 artifacts. The most valuable is the collection of the Moldovan national costumes and textiles.

In the morning, you will travel to Soroca town and visit Soroca fortress, the “pearl of fortification art” built by the Moldovan Prince Stephen the Great in 1499. It was a unique historical monument of defensive constructions architecture of medieval Moldova composed of a huge tower holding five smaller towers surrounding it. Currently, it is an important attraction in Soroca, having preserved cultures and kept the old Soroca in the present day.

In the afternoon, you will have a traditional lunch at a restaurant in Soroca.

After lunch, you will visit the Candle of Gratitude monument, erected on a steep cliff on the bank of the Dniester River. The visitors who get here will be rewarded with picturesque and unforgettable views after climbing 600 steps that start at the Dniester River. The inscription before the way up is as follows: “Traveler, stop! There is a Candle of Gratitude more on top. And if you consider thankful to someone in this life – get up, pray and continue your way!”

The first stop of this day will be at Curchi Monastery. The monastery is surrounded by a high wall of stone, set with towers at each corner, creating the impression of a fortress. The Nativity of Virgin Mary Church built in 1775 by Iordache Curchi is an example of neo-byzantine style, while St. Nicholas Church has monumental forms built in classicism style with baroque elements.

You will continue your journey to Château Vartely winery in Orhei town where you will enjoy an excursion, wine tasting and lunch. Château Vartely is a modern complex, which comprises 4 hotel-type houses, 2 restaurants, 3 tasting rooms, and a huge inner yard. In the cellars and then in tasting rooms you will be acquainted with the particularities of Château Vartely wines, you will learn how they are made, kept and served.

You will have lunch at a guesthouse in Butuceni village where you will taste dishes from more the local cuisine.

Next, you will set off on a time travel to Orheiul Vechi (Old Orhei) to see a natural amphitheater revealing a territory which was first inhabited 40 000 years ago. The Cultural, Natural and Landscape Reserve Orheiul Vechi includes a series of historical and cultural monuments as well as natural landscapes in the gorge of the Raut River. Ancient fortifications, cave monasteries, monks and hermits – here you can follow the history of this region. The remnants of the first human settlements were found in the stone caverns from here. On the rocky hill, you will find the ruins of a strong Geto-Dacian fortification, which acted as a sanctuary for celebrating religious holidays and rituals in this prehistoric community. The originality of Orheiul Vechi landscape is due to the gorge of the Raut River, dug under the form of a canyon in the limestone layers of the former Sarmatian Sea, about 14 million years ago.

In the morning, you will set off on a time travel in Transnistria. While in Tiraspol, you will discover a real treasure – Aquatir Sturgeon Complex, one of the largest hatcheries in Europe. The complex is equipped with the latest technologies and the fish can reach the size of a man. You will get the chance to taste one of the most expensive culinary delights – caviar with brut sparkling wine or vodka.

During the city tour in Tiraspol, you will discover Vladimir Lenin’s monument and the tank left from the Second World War. The city seems to be a vestige of the Soviet past. Nevertheless, you will be amazed by the contrasts, one of which is the football complex „Sheriff” - a pearl of contemporary architecture.

In the afternoon, you will have lunch at a restaurant in Tiraspol.

After lunch, you will visit Kvint wine and brandy factory where harmony, refinement and more tradition underlie the oldest and most genuine spirits. Here you will be acquainted with the taste of Kvint, Doina, Tiras, Nistru and Surprise spirits.

You will start the day by travelling to Besalma village in Gagauzia where you will visit the National Gagauz Museum of History and Ethnography “D. Cara-Ciobanu” in Besalma village. The museum presents the history, culture and everyday life of the Gagauz people from ancient times until nowadays. One of the personalities of this small nation was the writer D. Cara-Ciobanu, who spent his life promoting this culture. He founded this museum, which features more than 6,000 exhibits, including works by famous writers, poets and famous artists in Gagauzia. One of the most valuable items in the museum is the collection of original films produced during the Gagauz colonization of the steppe of Bugeac.

Next, you will travel to Comrat where you will enjoy a city tour. Comrat is the capital of the autonomous region of Gagauzia, located in southwest Moldova. This is a very interesting territory since the more majority of its habitants are Gagauzians. These are the only representatives of Turkic origin that affiliated with the Eastern Orthodox Church. Gagauzians migrated from Bulgaria together with ethnic Bulgarians and settled in Moldova in 19th century.

In the afternoon, you will have lunch at a local restaurant in Comrat during which you will have the opportunity to taste Gagauz cuisine dishes.

After lunch, you will take a ride to Milestii Mici winery located at a depth of 40-85 m in Milestii Mici village. Measuring about 200 km, all underground streets make up the largest network of caves ever dug by a human being, which appeared after the extraction of limestone deposits. The winery holds an impressive collection of more than 2 million bottles. The "Golden Collection" of Milestii Mici winery, which has over 1,5 million bottles, is the pride of the whole country, as in August, 2005, it was registered in the Guinness World Records as the biggest wine collection in the world. You will feel like a king/ queen here, admiring the beauty of this place, tasting wines in which you will feel the fire of sun and vigor of earth.

In the morning, you will visit Et Cetera family winery in and take part in the excursion and wine tasting carried out by the owner of the winery who will inform you about the methods of wine production and maturation.

The trip will continue to Château Purcari winery in Purcari village. If you are a wine enthusiast or just love to be in beautiful, pristine surroundings and listening the songs of birds, Purcari estate is definitely the place you need to visit. The old mansion’s galleries feature great collections of Purcari wines, some bottles dating back to 1948. The winery is famous all over the world due to the legendary wine “Negru de Purcari” - the elixir that in 1878 was highly appreciated on the international arena by being awarded the gold medal at Paris World Exhibition. In the tasting room, decorated in royal style, you will have the opportunity to taste Purcari wines, including more “Negru de Purcari” wine, which has been the choice of some of the world's most recognized dignitaries. At Château Purcari winery, you will also enjoy an exquisite lunch.

On departure day, you will be transferred from the hotel to Chisinau International Airport. If your flight is in the afternoon, you will have the option to explore Chisinau for a while on your own in the morning and buy some souvenirs.

Prices

Travel dates

Upon request

Price per person in €

2 Pers.

6 Pers.

18 Pers.

Vila Verde Hotel 3*

1881€

1185€

951€

City Park Hotel 4*

1931€

1235€

1001€

Bristol Central Park Hotel 4*

2006€

1310€

1076€

Travel dates Accommodation Price per person in €
2 Pers. 6 Pers. 18 Pers.

Upon request

Vila Verde Hotel 3* 1881€ 1185€ 951€
City Park Hotel 4* 1931€ 1235€ 1001€
Bristol Central Park Hotel 4* 2006€ 1310€ 1076€

What's Included

  • 10 nights accommodation in a double (DBL) or twin (TWN) room at the hotel of your choice in Chisinau;
  • Breakfast at the hotel of your choice;
  • Lunch on day 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 of the itinerary;
  • Excursions on the entire itinerary;
  • Entrance fees according to the itinerary;
  • Tasting of 4 types of wine at Cricova winery, 5 types of wine at Asconi winery, 4 types of wine at Castel Mimi winery, 6 types of wine at Château Cojusna (Migdal-P) winery, 2 types of wine at Château Vartely winery, 3 types of wine at Milestii Mici winery, 5 types of wine at Et Cetera winery and 5 types of wine at Château Purcari winery;
  • Tasting of 2 types of caviar at Aquatir Sturgeon Complex;
  • Tasting of 5 types of brandy at Kvint wine and brandy factory;
  • Transportation during the entire itinerary;
  • English speaking guide.

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