The northern city of Soroca occupies a prominent position on the Dniestr River and as such it has played an outsized role in the defence of the Moldavian principality through the ages. The main attraction is the Soroca Fortress, part of a chain of medieval military bastions built by Moldavian princes from the 14th to the 16th centuries to defend the principality's boundaries. This fortress was founded by Ştefan cel Mare and rebuilt by his son, Petru Rareş, in 1543–45.
In addition to the town's historical role, Soroca is home to a sizable Roma community and is commonly regarded as Moldova's unofficial 'Roma capital'. The incredibly gaudy, fantastical mansions of the Roma 'kings' that line the streets up on the hill above the centre are a sight to behold.