AdvertisementChristmas Fair in Chisinau is like a small village of cozy lanes full of winter and Christmas decorations, booths strung with colorful lights, handicrafts and treats around every corner, local artists singing and dance all day, and Mos Craciun and Alba ca Zapada, Santa Claus and Snowgirl, ready to distract you and make for the most unique Christmas holiday!
A short distance outside Chisinau is two of the countries most unique gems. Milestii Mici is a vineyard with the world’s largest underground wine cellar, with literally millions of bottles and more like an underground city with endless kilometers of tunnels best explored on a bike! And the ancient city of Orheiul Vechi between the narrow bend of the Raut River with eroded limestone rocks and the archaeological vestiges of the Trypillian civilization. You’ll find cultural layers of different epochs from the Paleolithic, Eneolithic, and Iron Age. Inhabited since ancient times to this day, Orthodox monks still guard the churches and grottos of this natural fortress.
Transnistria, officially the Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic, is a breakaway state recognized as part of Moldova but under military occupation by Russia. It’s territory is a narrow strip of land between the Dniester River and the Moldovan-Ukrainian border. To enter Transnistria is to take a time-machine back to a lost Soviet era, you’ll think you were still in a cold-war geopolitical no-man’s land, with strange flags, statues of Lenin, vodka for a dollar, and more hammers and sickles than you’ll see anywhere else!
Day 0 // Dec 23 // Departure to Bucharest
After arrival in Bucharest and immigration clearance, hop on the train to Chisinau for overnight on the rails.
Day 1 // Dec 24 // Arrival in Chisinau
We reach Chisinau in time for breakfast and first taste of Moldovan cuisine. We’ll stretch our legs on a walk through the greenest capital in Europe! Pass by Cathedral Park and Bell Tower, Victory Arc, neoclassical monuments and quaint bookstores, and best of all, the Christmas Fair! In the afternoon, check-in to hotel for a well-deserved rest before Christmas-eve dinner and more wandering through the bright lights and cozy lanes of winter decorations.
Day 2 // Dec 25 // Christmas in Moldova
We’re going to celebrate Christmas with a toast! After breakfast feast we head to the wine galleries of Milestii Mici and have most unique experience of underground bike ride through the world’s largest cellar with kilometers of tunnels filled with wine! With a few tastings along the way, we’ll head back out into the open air for a taste of Christmas in the countryside.
Next, we wander the Orheiul Vechi, a monastery complex of caves, grottos, churches, and hermitages before lunch at guesthouse and some festive caroling of Moldovan Christmas songs! We’ll head back to Chisinau in the afternoon and a taste of holiday cheer in the evening.
Day 3 // Dec 26 // Transnistria
After early breakfast of brânzoaice and strong coffee, we start our journey to Transnistria, the self-proclaimed independent republic with its own currency, border guards, and government. First stop will be the 16th century Tighina Fortress on our way to Tiraspol, the capital of Transnistria, founded by the Russian general Alexandr Suvorov in 1792. We’ll pass by his statue in the square as we walk around the city, with stops at monuments, theatres, parliament houses and all manner of curiosities. We’ll warm up over leisurely lunch before heading back to Chisinau.
Day 4 // Dec 27 // All-aboard to Bucharest
Enjoy a late breakfast and maybe a few last minute stops for souvenirs and Christmas gifts before we head to the train station in the afternoon for journey to Bucharest, arriving early morning next day.
Day 5 // Dec 28 // Return to Dubai
Arrival in Bucharest, head to airport for return flight or continue your trip in Romania.
Level of difficulty: easy to moderate
Activities: sightseeing / indulging in Christmas markets ambience / leisure cycling / train rides
Duration: 5 days
Accommodation & meals: 4 star hotels, double sharing rooms, single room subject of extra fee and availability. Meals excluded except home served lunch and Christmas dinner.
Cost: 3480 AED excl. flights to Bucharest.
Specifically excluded: visa (Schengen), insurance, entry fees if any.
Trip starts and ends in Bucharest with train ride Bucharest - Chisinau (return).
See yah in Moldova x
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