Transfers Lviv - Warsaw - Lviv
Travel to Moldova
- Type of the tour: cycling / by bus
- Accommodation: mostly in 3-4 stars hotels
- Starting point: Kamianets-Podilskyi (reachable from Lviv or Kiev)
- Finishing point: Chisinau
- Countries: Ukraine, Moldova
- Duration: 8 days
- Difficulty: moderate
- Average distance per day: 82 km
- Total distance of cycling: 574 km
Surrounded by ancient rocky landscapes, castles and waterfalls, the Dniester valley is viewed as one of the most interesting geo-regions in Ukraine. The picturesque Dniester rises in Ukraine, close to the border with Poland, and flows toward the Black Sea. Its course marks part of the border of Ukraine and Moldova, after which it flows through Moldova, separating the bulk of Moldova's territory from Transnistria. It later forms an additional part of the Moldova-Ukraine border, then flows through Ukraine to the Black Sea. Dniester River is one of the major trans-boundary rivers in Eastern Europe.
The limestone walls of the Dniester valley do receive a lot of attention, but visitors can also look forward to discovering caves and grottos, breathtaking waterfalls and stretches of bryophyte rocks. Within the caves there are subtle signs of old settlements, indicating that this region was once inhabited.
Moldova is famous first of all for its wines. With top rate wines at inexpensive prices relative to other countries, it is Moldova’s main tourism draw. Historians have discovered evidence that grapes in these areas grew naturally in the forests... even in prehistoric times. With this background, you'd expect the wines to be good - and Moldova does not disappoint.
The European wines like Chardonnay, Pinot, Riesling, Cabernet, and Aligote are produced along with the local, high quality wines -- Rara Neagra, Feteasca and Plavai. The names of these wines comes either from the type of the grapes, or from the name of the places where the famous wineries are located, such as in Purcari, Cricova, Ciumai, Romanesti, Cojusna and Milestii Mici.
The cognac from Moldova is known as divine - that's not just the experience, but the actual name of the distilled wine. Vermouths, sparkling wines and balsamic vinegars add to the grape uses in this country. The city of Cricova claims the biggest wine cellar in the world, and the Milestii Mici cellars are an amazing 200 kilometers of natural limestone caves...
Moldavian Orthodox Monasteris
Holly sanctuaries appeared in Moldova in ancient times. Later the medieval Moldova's orthodox churches have been carved out of cliffs rising above rivers or constructed of wood or stone in the Codri forests, serving local people as a place of pray or as a fortresses against invaders. There are lots of cave monasteries on the rocky hills above the Dniester and Prut rivers. According to some records these cave monasteries already existed before the ХII-th century. Though traditionally the orthodox churches were constructed from wood. The architecture of these churches followed either typical Moldovan folk architecture or the byzantine style. The later period orthodox churches - made from stone - could be found in most Moldovan villages and towns. Architectural styles of these churches vary from peasant house style to new byzantine and national romantic styles.
There are more than 30 monasteries between the Prut and Dniester rivers, situated mostly along these rivers or in the Codrii forests in the middle of Moldova. Each monastery is located in a remote and beautiful surroundings. Visitors will be fascinated by the monastic lifestyle and by the traditional cuisine, with its wide variety of recipes and drinks enjoyed by the monks and nuns.
Visa information: for the citizens of EU countries visa to Moldova and Ukraine is not required.
The best period for cycling: June - July
DAY 1. LVIV - KAMIANETS-PODILSKYI (by mini-bus 270 km. = about 4,5 hours)
Staying overnight: Kleopatra VIP Hotel (4 stars)
DAY 2. KAMIANETS-PODILSKYI – STARA USHYCA (55 km. +)
Staying overnight: agritourism farm Sonyachna Dolyna (modest conditions)
Sightseeing: rocky monastery near Bacota village on the Dniester river bank.
DAY 3. STARA USHYCA – MOHYLIV-PODILSKYI (104 km. +)
Staying overnight: Gubernskaya Hotel (3 stars)
Sightseeing: rocky monastery near Nahoryany village on the Dniester river bank.
DAY 4. MOHYLIV-PODILSKYI (UKRAINE) - SOROKI (MOLDOVA) (75 km. + the optional 78 km.)
Staying overnight: Central Hotel (3 stars)
Sightseeing: Hajdamacky Jar – stones and rocks in forest – geological reserve, Casauti monastery, Soroki fortress, + optionally 2 more monasteries
DAY 5. SOROKI – REZINA (SAHRANA) (104 km. +)
Staying overnight: hotel Hanul Lui Hanganu (3 stars)
Sightseeing: Tipova and Saharna monasteries, canyons, waterfalls.
DAY 6. REZINA – ORCHEIUL (105 km. +)
Staying overnight: Chateau Vartely hotel (4 stars)
Sightseeing: Tsipova monastery - on the rocky side of the Dniestr river is the biggest Orthodox cave monastery in Moldova and in Eastern Europe. The Tsipova complex is absolutely unique in its size and number of rock premises, connected by numerous passages. It is interesting also to hike through "Tipova" nature reserve. In ancient times (IV-III c. BC) there was a Geto-Dacian fortress here. Its remains can still be seen today.
DAY 7. ORHEIUL - ORHEIUL VECHI - CRICOVA - CHISINAU (56 km. +)
Staying overnight: Favorita Apartment
Sightseeing: Cricova - Moldova’s second largest wine cellar has over 120 kilometers (75 miles) of underground roadways. Orheiul Vechi - Moldova's best known sight is a 13th century Cave Monastery. Just up the road is a tourist center with a small museum, restaurant and hotel. +373 235 34 242. In the vicinity are huge cliffs that contain another six complexes of interlocking caves. The remains of a Turkish bath house is also just off the river.
DAY 8. CHISINAU – MILEŞTII MICI – CONDRICA AND CAPRIANA MONASTERIES – CHISINAU (75 km. +)
Staying overnight: at the same hotel
Sightseeing: Mileştii Mici wine cellars - Stretching for 250 km, of which only 120 km are currently in use, the Mileştii Mici cellar complex is also the largest in the world. In 2007 Mileştii Mici wine cellars were noted in Guinness World Records 2007 Yearbook, for having the largest (2 million) wine collections in the world. There are several museums in downtown Chisinau, including the museum of Archeology and Ethnography, the museum of Natural History, and the National Museum of Fine Arts.