Moldova – Old Orhei Vechi

I wanted to take the bus from Chisnau to Orhei because it was only 26 leu ($1.45) and I didn’t want to join a tour.

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I read from these two blogs:

http://dontstopliving.net/backpacking-in-moldova-visiting-orheiul-vechi-monastery-in-remote-countryside/

http://katieaune.com/orheiul-vechi/

Also, this site had a bus timetable: https://vilaroz.com/en/directions-to-vila-roz/

I’ve seen it written Orheiul or Orhei and it sounds like Jorge.

The bus leaves from Chisnau at

8:30 AM
10:20 AM
1:15 PM
3:00 PM
5:15 PM
6:15 PM

and returns from the monastery at

6 AM
8 AM
10 AM
11:45 AM
3 PM
4:20 PM

I got on the 10:20 AM and returned on the 3 PM bus.

The bus station is called Gara Centrala (blue dot is where the van is) and is just southeast of King Stephen the Great park and the Arc de Triumph. There are 30 vans here so I just kept asking the drivers for “Monastery” and they pointed me to the correct van.

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Minivan sign:

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This is the bus route:

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I went in May 2017 so the day was sunny and bright. The van was almost full, but it was very warm inside because you can’t roll down windows and there is no AC. He would stop to pick up people so at one point, we had 25 people in the van, and a lot of people had to stand up. He will drive you to the base of the monastery. I think a few years ago, he would drop you off at the top of the hill, but they’ve changed the route. There is a hotel and restaurant here, so some people get off to work. You will pay the driver when you exit. It takes about 70 minutes to arrive at the monastery. Walk up the gravel hill to your left and you will see the church. There were about 10 people looking at the church with me. They were open every day of the week. You could walk downstairs into a little chapel.

I walked through the church grounds and exited the other side and kept walking up the hill. After a 30 minute walk, I was close to the next town and I saw some caves cut into the hill. I walked down this path and it was much cooler in the caves. I saw a yellow church in the distance and had a lot of time to waste until the next van, so I did a lot of walking. Bring your own food and water! I didn’t want to walk back to the monastery, so there was a little convenience store where some people where congregating. I assumed this was the bus stop, so I waited there for an hour. The bus came at 3 PM!

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The Moldcell sign above the red door was a little store and it’s where the bus stops in Trebujeni. This guy passed us. I wanted to jump on! : )

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