CHURCHES & MONASTERIES: MOLDOVIAN SPIRITUAL TREASURE
Moldovian tourism provide tours to the churches and monasteries which represent the most valuable spiritual treasure of the republic and remind of the country's rich historical background.
If you visit Moldova then a tour that includes short trips to the Moldovian monasteries will be a good choise for spending your time in a plesant way.
Here you can find a brief decription of the monasteries that you should visit in Moldova.
Located in one of the most picturesque places of the Codry, about 40 km from Chisinau city, the oldest Moldovan monastery - Capriana - dates back to the early 1420s being initially built of wood.It was much later, in 1545, that the Church of St. Gheorghe was erected in stone on the territory of the monastery . For a long time the monastery was the residence of the Metropolitan of Moldova and it was patronized by many Rulers of Moldova including Steven the Great (Stefan cel Mare). And it is known that the Moldovan State chronicler Eftimie as well as the first poet of Moldova Chiprian lived here.Capriana monastery - one of the oldest and beautiful monuments in the Republic of Moldova, the cradle of the Moldovan literature, music and architecture!!!
Situated about 110 km north of the Moldovan capital, the Holy Trinity Monastery of Saharna is considered to be one of the biggest centers for religious pilgrimages in Moldova. According to one of the local legends, one day a monk saw the shining figure of St. Maria on top of one of the highest rocks. When the monk reached the rock he discovered a footstep left by St. Maria on the ground. see more
Many legends are kept in the ancient woodland "Codri".The convent was erected by a Moldovan ruler for his daughter who decided to leave the ordinary world and live a religious life in a community. She became a nun under the name of Parascheva. In the late 17th century the wooden church of St. Parascheva and its cells were frequently invaded by the Tartars.see more
The Hirjeuca Monastery is situated about 70 km north-west of the Moldovan capital city, it was built by the lake Hirjauca, by the hill covered with ancient oaks. It is the first religious community emerged there in 1740 on the lands of the Moldovan boyar Nekulce. Later, a number of wooden churches with small dark cells were constructed. In the middle of the 19th century the monastery was surrounded by a wonderful park with lakes, fountains and alleys.Today, at the monastery there is a well-known "fountain of youth" that has the special healing properties. Visitors to this area can walk to the local forest, which is rightly being a real botanical monument.
Raciula convent is located in the heart of Raciula village. The cells are compactly arranged by the summer church "God Mother Birt" and "St. Nicholas" winter church creating a unique and unconfined composition. Monastery was founded in 1797 and originally it was for men. In 1811 it became a convent. In 1959, the monastery was closed and in 1990 it was revived.
Frumoasa Convent - The name "Frumoasa" in translation from Moldovan language means "beautiful" due to the beauty of terrains and picturesque landscapes of surrounding vineyards, orchards and forests. Today it is a convent, though initially it was founded as a monastery. The monastery founders first lived in earth-houses, and worked at the construction of the church, built of wood all days long. Today, there is a museum opened in one of the restored buildings. Real rarities are held there: ancient church books and icons, spinning wheels and jugs.
Noul Neamt Monastery
Noul Neamts monastery is located 5 km from Tiraspol city in the village of Chitcani. The history of this holy monastery is closely linked with Neametskaya Lavra from the Prut River region. When it was forbidden to the monks of Lavra to make worship in ancient Slavonic language, they fled to Bessarabia and as a result in 1859 Noul Neamts monastery was founded being under construction for 50 years.
This monastery is the same important for Moldova as Kievo-Pecherskaya Lavra for Russ and nowadays it is the largest religious architectural complex in Moldova.
Churches of the monastery are the real architectural pearls and from the highest belfry in Moldova a magnificent view over the picturesque landscape of neighborhoods is being opened.
Located about 100 km to the north from Chisinau city on a rocky bank of the Dniester River represents a marvelous complex of hystorical monuments and natural landscapes that affects by its pure beauty, it is an "isle" of the untouched nature of Moldova. A small Tipova River brings its waters to the Dniester River and forms several beautiful waterfalls of 10-16 meters height.There is a legend that the mythological poet Orpheus lived his last years in these rocks and the remains of the poet rest in the niche of one of the cascades gorge. Monastic community of the monastery was founded here before the creation of the Moldovan feudal state.
The monastery complex consists of 15 caves on the dizzying height in the middle of a huge rock. An active monastery is located in the upper part of the complex, but the cave complex remains attractive for both pilgrims and tourists.
According to the legend, the monastery was founded in the time of Steven the Great. Here are three churches, one of them - the "Virgin’s Assumption" Cathedral, is almost an exact replica of "St. Andrew" Cathedral in Kiev, built by the lay-outs of Bartolomeo Rastrelli. In all churches there is an amazing acoustics, and the voices of monks singing during the service, enshroud you in full, fascinate and make you forget about the vanity of life.
Is situated on the shore of Nistru River at the distance of 10km from Camenca town, is the only monastery from Basarabia which was never closed by the Soviet authorities.The first mention about the hermitage dates to the 25th of May, 1693; not being registered in other historical records, this date remains a disputable one.Japca Monastery follows Russian rules and traditions. Here, nobody eats meat and the Psalm book is read.The tourists who visit this monastery are impressed by the conservatism that reigns all the place - there is no electric power, because it is considered to be evil.
The monastery is situated on the bank of Catargul River at the distance of 25 km from Chisinau.There are no precise data about the monastery foundation. It is said that in 1783, hieromonk Iosif along with other monks coming from Capriana were the funders of the Condrita hermitage.There is an old stone with an unclear inscription and a spaded cross sign on it located on the monastic territory. According to monks, stone indicates the place an old wooden hermitage dating from XVIII century was situated.
Veverita Monastery is a recent monastic complex situated at the border of the village with the same name.According to the available records, it can be stated that the monastery was funded approximately in 1922-1924, having a large household and a beautiful church, the festival of which is not known.hese buildings have a special design plan: on the right wing, where the winter church is standing, everything is made in Russian style, on the left wing – in Gothic style. Above the vestibule, which separates the building in two parts, there is a belfry in Gothic style that is 35 meters high. The internal shape of the church is rectangular without any delimitation between the pre-nave and the nave. The altar is separated by the nave by a simple iconostasis. The ceiling of the church is straight, but the walls are adorned with different icons. On the roof, above the nave, three spires raise up.
Rudi Monastery also known as Rughi Monastery is located on the beanch of the Nistru River, at the distance of 15 km from Otaci town. It is a friary. In 1777, with the blessing of bishop Inochentie from Husi (1752 – 17820) a Moldovan style stone temple celebrating Holy Trinity festival was funded. It was built on the estate of brothers Andronachi and Teodor Rudea with the financial support of the noble man Donciu from Mavilau (Podolia). In 1921, Rudi temple was included into the list of historical monuments well-formed according to the old Moldovan style.
Surrounded by hills, forests and beautiful orchards,Dobrusa Monastery is situated at the distance of 20 km from Soldanesti town. According to some sources the monastery was funded in 1772, by a monk whose name was Ioasaf, the monk came from the Probota Monastery (Suceava). Initially, Ioasaf along with other man devoted to religion – Eufemie who came from Curchi Monastery built a wooden temple. Hardly, the build was finished in 1785 by Eufemie and other friars from Curchi Monastery. n 1847, the temple for winter orations "Schimbarea la fata" was built. In 1890, 89 Moldovan monks and Superior Porfirie of Russian origin were enlisted at the Dobrusa Monastery. The orations occurred in Romanian until 1863, later it was ordered to spend orations in Slavonic language.
At the beginning of the 18th century this monastery was the hermitage of Saint Sava Monastery, dedicated to the Saint Grave.In the records it’s mentioned that among the funders was Maria Cantacuzino, who shared her lot of land approximately in 1747. In 1780 the old church couldn’t be used anymore, but Hagi Marcu Donici from the Moghilau "Movilau" fair at the other side of the Nistru River, built a church and a belfry, which he hallowed in 1782 and chose the Holy Virgin Dormition to be its festival. Blessing Patriarchate appointed Donici the monastery’s guardian for all of his life due to his contribution to the monastery.