Moldova - a land of contrasts
With a population of less than 4 million, Moldova is a small, but very beautiful country tucked between Romania and Ukraine. Blessed with delicious food and warm people, this is the ideal destination for nature lovers, wine aficionados and travellers of all kinds. The capital of Moldova is Chișinău and the local language is Romanian, but Russian is also widely used. The dominant religion here is Orthodox Christian.
Coincidently, Moldova's borders form the shape of a cluster of grapes and with over 140 wineries, the country has a well-established wine industry, with longstanding winemaking traditions, stunning vineyards and incredible underground wine cellars (Moldova boasts the longest wine cellar in the world!).
In this country you will find a real diversity of red, white, sparkling and sweet wines as well as deeply-rooted traditions and a rich cultural heritage. See below for more to explore…Read less
At Winerist, finding the perfect wine tours and experiences to enhance your holiday is what we do best. See below for our top picks of the region from short, gourmet tours of the city, to full-day activities, like cycling around vineyards with an expert guide and a sumptuous picnic. The choice is yours…
We’ve teamed up with some of the best wineries in the region to bring that extra special something to your visit. From centuries-old Châteaux to brand new wineries at the cutting edge of production, we’ve got winery tours to suit every palate and personality.
Whether you’re after a quaint little local bolt hole for the night or the full, wine spa and hotel experience complete with michelin-starred restaurants, here are our hand-picked partners to make sure that your stay is pitched exactly to your budget and tastes.
Fly into Chişinău, Moldova's only international airport. There are several international train lines that terminate in Chişinău too. Chisinau Airport is located 12km (7mi) from the city centre. The closest airport for connecting flights is Bucharest, but other alternatives are Vienna, Munich and Kiev. There are also a couple of direct flights available through Air Moldova and from Christmas, CarpatAir will be offering great connections too. Many tourists will fly into Bucharest and take the overnight train to Chisinau. It's a memorable experience, but not one for the faint hearted, although First Class tickets are available too.
Take a taxi from the airport into the city. As they come in all colours and types, it can be confusing so it is advised to accept rides only from clearly marked taxis. Chisinau is ideally located in the centre of Moldova within short driving distance to the best wineries.
By car, the border checkpoints with Romania are Leuşeni, Criva and Sculeni. The border checkpoints with Ukraine are Otaci and Tudora/Palanca. Giurgiuleşti is a border checkpoint both with Romania and Ukraine.
The best time to go to Moldova is from May to June and from September to October. Summers can get quite hot (around 35 degrees) and winters can be snowy and very cold. It is worth staying at least 3 days to have enough time to explore the capital of Chișinău, the monasteries and wineries.
Local currency is the Moldovan Leu. There are about 22 Leu to £1 and 17 Leu to 1$ U. Many places accept US Dollars and Euros, but it’s harder to pay with English sterling. Moldova is much more cash driven than a lot of countries, so card payments aren’t always an option.
January: The Cricova wine run
February: Underland Music Festival
September: Purcari Wine Run
October: National Moldova Wine Day