Chisinau doesn`t offer a lot of attractions for tourists. Stolling around with open eyes maybe you will find out that even this city has is own charme. Many nice, old houses in small lanes are one of them.
If you have time enough take time for a walk to the Chisinau cemetery. It looks more like a nature reserve area than a graveyard and gives you an insight of the diversified history of a former Soviet country as well. Following Ismail street uphill you will find the entrance.
Through this gate along Dacia Boulevard you enter to Kishinev from the airport. On the left you will find the Zoo. I was ashemed about the bad condition for the animals in there. On the right hand there is the Botanical Garden (you have to pay a small entrance fee) with a nice rosen garden and lakes.
The name of Chisinau comes from the old Romanian word chisla ("spring", "source of water"; the word is not used anymore, but was replaced by cismea, which has the same meaning), and nouã ("new"), because it was built around a small spring.
Nowadays, the original spring which gave the name to the city is located at the corner of Pushkin Street and Albisoara Street.
Church of St. Pantelimon (in Moldovian: Biserica Sf. Pantelimon) is located on the corner of Veronica Micle and Eminescu street. It was designed by A. Bernardazzi and built in 1891. It is a small but cosy church. The is a shop inside and there was a pope inside and I asked if it is possible to make a photo. Before making a decision he asked where am I from. Maybe he has a lost of countries from wich people cannot kame photos inside...:)
High quality of construction works and real development became possible only due to the outstanding architect A. Bernardazzi. He had designed and had built the most significant edifices that form the Chisnau unique look. Benardazzi was one of those who appreciated the decorative characteristics of the natural white coquina quarried in the Chisinau outskirts. Before that all the constructions were plastered, and only in the end of the 19th century came into use the neat stone-work with the redbrick insertions. This kind of fronts design became the local peculiarity. At the same time, municipal improvement was carried out very slowly. Paving was started only in 1862.
Lacul Valea Marilor (this is the full name of the lake) is situated in the city center. This is the biggest lake in Chisinau (at least in the center of the city). Moreover, it has great steps down or up (as you wish:). I have seen lots of young people in love walking here. And this is probably not only because the lake is close to the State Univeristy, but also because it seems to be the best place in Chisinau to be close to the nature, rest or just walk.
In the late 19th century, especially due to growing anti-semitic sentiment in Russia and Poland and better economic conditions, many Jews chose to settle in Chiºinãu, so in the year 1900 43% of the population of Chiºinãu was Jewish. Today, about 20,000 Jews live in Chisinau (Kishinev), 2,500-3,000 in and around the city of Beltsy, and more than 2,000 in Tiraspol (the capital of Transnistria). Substantial communities also exist in Bender, Soroky, Rybnitsa and Orgei, with smaller communities in at least 45 villages across Moldova. About 1,5% of the Moldova's populations are Jews.
Interesting history of Jews in Moldova below. The Monument commemorates people from the Chisinau's Ghetto.
This is an Armenian Apostole Church of St. Mary the Mother of God in Puskin street. It was built in 1803. I like Armenian churches. They have the very atmosphere of mysticism. However, this one has something in but you cannot compare the Church for example with the Armenian Cathedral in Lviv. Anyway, be careful as the dog look after the properity near the Church.
Cricova is a village some 15km away from Chisinau. The village is world famous in Moldova for its excellent wine which bottled and preserved underground. There is a very large network of tunnels. A visit to Cricova is something not to be missed on a visit to Moldova! You can get to Cricova by local bus but the only way to get in the cellars is on an organized tour. I was lucky enough to get in for free, but then I have connections :-)
You really need to find the Rose Park at all costs. It is really big and it is nature at it's best. You need to ask around. Many people will understand you if you say "Rose Park" in english. It is worth the time. There are lakes (some people swim in them -- I wouldn't if I were you! They are slimy at the bottom) that look wonderful. You can feed the duck and perhaps ride a boat or canoe. It is fun. Give the park a try.
If you are looking for recorded music , you should of course have a look at the major shops, where you may find the one or the other cd. And don't forget, that some of the music (e.g. from some Russian lables) may not be available in western countries.
But don't miss those smaller places , like the cassette shop in the underpass of Stefan cel Mare blvd. crossing Ismail str. When we asked for the more traditional kind of folk music, the vendor picked some nice examples of it and played it on his tape deck. We bought several cassettes there.
Very nice,I think this city has more red haired lirls then anywhere else,I took this picture in a bus without her knowledge.
Oh yes Moldovians also fall in love and marry just like all over the world,this at city centre glad I had my camera with me..
Old streets (even in the center of the city) are really forgoten and look lost. But there is beauty in all those stones on the road...
An underground cave monastery 40km from Chisinau, another place not to be missed. For more info on this place please visit my 'Orhei' page.