Monasteries Day Trip

About Tour

In most religions, the life inside monasteries is governed by community rules that stipulate the gender of the inhabitants and require them to remain celibate and own little or no personal property. 

The life within the walls of a monastery may be supported in several ways: by manufacturing and selling goods, often agricultural products, by donations or alms, by rental or investment incomes, and by funds from other organizations within the religion, which in the past formed the traditional support of monasteries. 

Unlike Roman Catholic monasticism, the Orthodox do not have separate religious orders, but a single monastic form throughout the Orthodox Church. Monastics, male or female, live away from the world, in order to pray for the world.

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1 st Day

Monasteries adventure

Included highlights:

Start the day with a visit to the largest cave monastery of Eastern Europe – Tipova monastery. We will discover a magnificent cave complex, which was created in the 6th century in the cliffs above the Nistru river and reached its heyday in the 18th century. The last hermit left his cell in 1947. 

Next to Curchi Monastery, a real pearl of our religious life. Here you’ll see several churches, and among them - the “Virgin’s Assumption” Cathedral, built by the drawings of genius architect Bartolomeo Rastrelli. 

Optional stop for lunch to Chateau Vartely.

Further drive to the Old Orhei reserve, the most picturesque and amazing site of Moldova. Here you will have the possibility to experience the real village life of Moldova and also photo shooting of local people/life. Enjoy a visit to the Orthodox cave monastery called “St. Maria Dormata” which was expanded and modified inside the cliffs by the monks over the centuries ago and preserved in a functional state. You’ll have excursion about this fascinating complex and then transfer back to Chisinau. 

 

Optional highlights:

Optional stop for lunch to Chateau Vartely.

What People Say

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I am very glad and thankful with the cooperation that we have had during these 3 years. All our tourists – groups and individuals – were satisfied with your work. One of the main things that I appreciate in you is the following: it does not matter what category clients are – tourists, VIP, government delegations or even international organizations (as OSCE) – you can find the best words, the best way, the best “direction” to each of them to make them interested in given information. 

In each review which we had from our clients there were words of thankfulness to your services. Some of our partners even in advance ask us to choose you as a guide for their groups. Thank you for your professionalism and waiting for the future cooperation!

Have you ever wanted to go on a culture-wine-food tour? In California? France? Italy? Please, have some imagination! Be a little adventurous and go on one in Romania and Moldova. 

It was my good luck to participate in a tour organized by Ways Travel, during which i checked out the many wonders of Romania and Moldova. 

Our group on the bus was an international gang of nine – a Belgian, a German, a Norwegian, an Australian, a few Americans of interesting ethnic alloys and me, dual Dutch and American citizen. What can I say, it was an experience just sitting on a bus with these people and hear their war stories and get initiated into the workings of the behind-the-scenes travel industry. 

Leader of our tribe was the fabulous tour guide Victoria, who speaks four languages, English, German, Russian, Romanian, one of those people who makes a simple bilingual person such as myself feel humble and uneducated. 

The trip was a symphony of history, food, drink, music and dance. Dancing with the Gypsies no less. I tell you, it was fabulous, it was intoxicating. We got history – a dizzying whirl of wars and battles and bloody strife. Of conquests and annexations, of armies rampaging through the countryside, raping, pillaging and impaling. We heard colorful tales about Dacian tribes, the Roman Empire, the Red Horde, the Saxons, the Ottoman Empire, the communist era under Ceausescu. And let’s not forget to mention good old Count Dracula, Vlad the Impaler, who hailed from Transylvania. Really, we deserved every drop of hootch we got along the way to recover from all the tragedies we vicariously suffered through. 

In Romania we loved the beautiful towns of Sibiu and Sighisoara. In Sighisoara we missed seeing the house where Dracula was born because a movie was being filmed and they’d closed it off for visitors. Fortunately, we had a liqueur and brandy tasting to cheer us up. We hadn’t had lunch yet and our stomachs were empty, which helped raise the mood quickly. 

A highlight was our visit to the home of a Roma family in Transylvania and learning more about their culture and lifestyle. (You can read a story about this on my blog here.) Not all Gypsies are beggars living in the streets of large cities. It’s always a good thing to be disabused of your prejudices and preconceived notions. 

We stayed in excellent hotels and lodges, as well as in a humble hostel run by a monastery. We ate fancy restaurant food as well as simple village fare. We saw exquisite as well as cheery architecture, visited opulent cathedrals as well as the modest underground monastery chapel in Orhei Vechi, not far from Chisinau. The vino flowing across the miles was a charming mix of the good, the bad and the holy. The holy being the wine we tasted in a monastery, blessed by the priests. Unfortunately, the blessing did not transform it into nectar of the gods, but the dinner there was quite gourmet, all prepared from food grown by the monks without chemical assistance. 

We also visited Transnistria, which is a rather unique place, as most of you will already know. It is also home to the famous Kvint brandy factory and would you believe, we went there for a brandy dégustation – seven varieties of brandy. It was very informative, interesting and intoxicating. It was also lunch time, but fortunately there was food. We eventually struggled out of there, back on the bus, across the border that is not a border, and traveled down to the Purcari wineries in the south of Moldova where we were treated to . . . you guessed it . . . a wine tasting. Of ten types of wine. Not just any old village plonk, either. No, we got to sip the wine of kings, queens and tsars. Our livers got a workout that day. 

I’m going to stop here. There was more, much more, but I don’t want to give away everything, because what you should do, really, is check out Ways Travel’s website at www.ways.md .

I could give her at least fifteen stars... Cristina is an exemplary guide, makes you know Moldova like no one ever. On a par if not better than those who work in destinations definitely more popular. Experience to be done without any doubt.