What to see and photograph in Chisinau
Chisinau is the capital city of Moldova which is landlocked between Romania and The Ukraine. The following are notable points of interest in the Moldovan capital;
- Triumphal Arch
- Stephan the Great Park (Stefan cel Mare Central Park)
- Stephen the Great Monument
- The Cathedral of Christ’s Nativity
- Liberation Monument
- Museums of Chisinau
Located in the center of Chisinau is it’s very own Triumphal Arch. It’s purpose is very similar to those of Paris and Bucharest. It was built in 1841 to commemorate the victory of the Russian army over the Turkish. It’s also known as the Arc de Triomphe or the Holy Gate.
Moldova is a young country which gained independence in 1991 when the Soviet Union broke up. The main independence celebrations were held at the Triumphal Arch. There is talk about Moldova unifying with Romania and joining the EU but for now it’s an independent European country outside of the EU.
Stephan the Great Central Park (Stefan cel Mare Central Park)
Located in central Chisinau is the Stephan the Great Central Park, formally know as Pushkin Park. In the 1820’s Puskin himself used to take strolls around the park. The park is a popular meeting place for lovers and often referred to as the ‘park of lovers’. If you are meeting someone in Moldova, you may want to meet in the park! You’ll find an avenue which is full of statues and busts whilst strolling around the park. These busts are famous Moldovan and Romanian authors and social figures. There are a few rides for kids, so if you are visiting Chisinau with kids you may want to check out this park.
Stephen the Great Monument
Located in the center of Stephan the Great Central Park is the Stephan the Great Monument of Chisinau. Stephan the Great founded some of the painted monasteries in Suceava which I wrote about. During Soviet times the monument was moved to Vaslui in what is now Eastern Romania. The Pushkin monument was the main monument of the park whilst the Soviets were ruling which is why it used to be called Pushkin Park. This park was the second park in the world to get a Pushkin monument after Moscow.
The Cathedral of Christ’s Nativity
The Nativity Cathedral built in the 1830’s is the most important orthodox church in Moldova. It’s also a stunning and very Instagrammable building. The church has twice been seriously damaged, particularly during world war 2. The church you see nowadays was refurbished and reconstructed in 1997.
The Liberation monument of Chisinau was erected to commemorate the liberation of Moldova in 1944. The Soviet Union annexed Moldova from Romania at the end of the second world war. This is why Romanian is spoken in Chisinau. The monument looks like a smaller version on the Washington Monument in the USA.
Museums of Chisinau
Museum lovers have plenty of museums to visit in Chisinau;
- National Museum of History of Moldova
- National Museum of Ethnography and Natural History
- National Art Museum
- Military Museum
The Noul Neamt Monastery (above) is a building worth photographing. Ciuflea Monastery is another Instagrammable building. If you require a visit to a mall whilst in Chisinau then I’d recommend Malldova.
Chisinau to Odessa by Minibus
The minibus from Chisinau Nord station to Odessa takes around 3 hours. You have to be careful which bus you take to Odessa because some pass through Transnistria. Transnistria is a country not recognized by the UN, the UN classes Transnistria as being part of Moldova. You may be questioned by immigration whilst passing through the unrecognized country, in fact you may not get stamped out of Moldova at all. I chose a minibus which did not pass through Transnistria but afterwards I wish I had. It would have been another country (debatable) to add to the list.