Replies: 6 - Last Post: Oct 27, 2012 2:01 AM Last Post By: chaika
Oct 20, 2012 4:42 PM
sorry if this thread already exists, but I spent an hour reading and couldn't find anything that quite worked with my questions (I'm new at this). My boyfriend and I are planning an Eastern European backpacking trip. We're looking at 50-75 euro a day budget and like hostels and private accomodations. We're planning on 6-8 weeks and this would be the last leg of the trip.
We're going to spend a bit more time in Romania, because on top of Bucharest and Transylvania, I'm trying to make arrangements to meet my World Vision sponsor child (no idea what part of the country she is in). I've heard Constanta isn't really worth visiting, but am tempted to vitit the Biosphere. Do you think all that can be done in 1 week, or is 10 days more appropriate?
We were planning on flying home from Kiev and want to see Odessa. Rather than going up through Lviv, all the way down and back, we were talking about going through Moldova, which is becoming more and more appealing. Was thinking of just stopping for a day or two to see the monastery and a vineyard before continuing on. Is this enough time?
I would really love to stop in Tiraspol when making the Chisinau-Odessa trek. I know you can't stop for more than 24 hours without paying, but I think that would be sufficient. However, I'm getting really mixed reviews on the ease of that border crossing. Is it worth it, or should I just avoid it?
Oct 21, 2012 5:52 AM
If you can only spare a week for Romania you could split your time like this: one day in Bucharest, 3-4 days in southern Transylvania (Brasov, Sibiu and a few castles/old villages nearby) plus 2-3 days in the Delta.
But it would really be best to spend 10 days and add to the above mentioned places a few days in northern Romania (Maramures or Bucovina).
Oct 21, 2012 6:12 AM
2You don't have to pay to stop in Tiraspol,unless you are talking about visas to go in Moldova or something.The border crossing is no problem,just take the Chisinau-Odessa train at 0730,get off in Tiraspol,register at the immigration window in the station and you are done.Either get the train again next day to Odessa,or do the whole thing by bus,as long as your documentation is correct there's no problems,stay with Tim at Tiraspol hostel.
Moldova is well worth a stop,visit the monastery at Orhei Veche for a day,visit the Winery if that is what you mean,have a stroll around Chisinau centre,Transnistria and Moldova are wonderful places to explore,the more you look,the more you find.
Oct 23, 2012 8:14 AM
3My husband and I just spent a week in Romania and loved it. As a matter of fact, we are traveling around the world for two or more years and Romania has been one of his top favorites. I've heard negative things about Bucharest from everyone from travelers to locals so we decided not to spent time there. We enjoyed Transylvania and everything from Brasov and north. The west of Romania was rather disappointing. We also spent a few days in Lviv a few months ago and weren't that impressed. We had planned to go to Kyiv to see Chernobyl but found out that there is now an 11 day waiting period to get a permit for a tour. Check out our recent write-ups on Romania and Ukraine for some info, tips, and stories if you'd like. Happy, safe travels!
Oct 24, 2012 5:46 PM
Oct 26, 2012 1:27 PM
I am sorry for such a belated reply, but I hope this post will come in handy now that your preparations are underway!
I spent 3 weeks in Romania, Moldova, Transnistria and Kiev this last summer and may have some information on my blog that can help you out in terms of what to see. I, too, spent 10 days in Romania and seem to have traveled roughly the same path you are intending to follow. Of the countries you mentioned, I really think it would be wise to focus more of your time on Romania. It is truly a fascinating and beautiful country and I think you will love it! Moldova does not have much to offer in terms of places to visit, but it is worth visiting nonetheless.
Two days in Moldova should be sufficient. The country is tiny and all of the highlights can be done as a day trip from Chisinau. When I visited, the bus from Chisinau to Tiraspol was efficient and the border control did not give us any problems. I have heard that the border crossing can cause issues as well, but I think the situation has gotten a lot better recently. I planned for a long day at the border and ended up being whisked through in less than 10 minutes! Tiraspol really only needs half a day, since all the sites to visit are along the main drag. That being said, though there are few things to see in Transnistria, a trip to Moldova would not be complete without stepping in the bizarre, self-declared country.
Note that public transportation in Moldova is pretty unreliable and if you want to visit the monastery (I'm assuming you are talking about Orheiul Vechi) and the wineries, you should rent a car. I tried to do the monastery on local buses and never made it out of Chisinau.
There are two direct overnight buses from Chisinau to Kiev (the experience is an adventure in itself), but I would likely suggest you go Chisinau-->Odessa-->Kiev, since you are interested in seeing Odessa too. The route shouldn't pose any problems. Do not count out spending some time in Kiev though! I found it to be fascinating and one of my favorite cities in Europe. Definitely make sure you allow yourself a few days there to visit the splendid monasteries and cathedrals.
Here are my thoughts on some of the places you are planning on visiting. They may be helpful as you are planning your itinerary!
Romania (Maramures, Transylvania, Bucovina): http://bisboccigoesabroad.blogspot.com/search/label/Romania
Moldova and Transnistria: http://bisboccigoesabroad.blogspot.com/search/label/Moldova
Ukraine (Kiev): http://bisboccigoesabroad.blogspot.com/search/label/Ukraine
Have a great trip!
Oct 27, 2012 2:01 AM
6Ther's nothing wrong at all with public transportation in Moldova.I spent a week there recently and got everywhere I wanted to go without any problem whatsoever.It is incredibly simple to get to Orhei Veche,you just go to the Central bus station for 10am and there is a minibus departing at around that time,clearly marked in the window destination sign.It drops you off at the bottom of the hill to the monastry.Coming back,the bus leaves from there at 4pm,but if you walk back up to the crossroads where the bus goes down to Butuceni,there is a bus coming out of Butuceni at 3pm to Chisinau,and you get some great views of the monastery,the river and surrounding countryside while you walk back.
Tiraspol,the more you walk around the more you find interesting,beautiful park,churches,monuments and classical well preserved older buildings,Bendery town and fortress near to Tiraspol is also well worth visiting,very green,tranquil and situated on the river,perfect place to relax on a summers day.Moldova is a country that rewards people who have their eyes wide open and who want to dig beneath the surface,not rush on the next so called 'tourist friendly hot spot' and are willing to accept and embrace the difference and individuality of the country,without any preconcieved ideas of what it should be like or comparing it to anywhere else...it is what it is,and long may it continue like that.
Edited by: chaika
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