It is definetely not a typical tourist destination and I didn’t go there for a holiday but rather for a 2-day data journalism workshop. My first impression was really positive. I got picked up by a taxi driver who didnt speak any English but he spoke fluent Spanish so I was happy to practice my espanol. After he brought me to the hotel, he invited me for a dinner and gave me a tour of the city. I haven’t seen Chisinau at day light only during the night and I have to say it looks quite scarry as there are barely any lights on the streets. My first cultural schock was observing old, poor people walking on the busy road between the cars and asking for money. My taxi driver said „Oh thats completely normall here” I was just wondering if it would not be more effective to walk on a pedestrian road rather than to risk your life but I haven’t seen so many pedestrians in Chisinau.
There are around 700.000 people living in the capital of Moldova but a lot of people are not registered so the number is much higher. It reminds me a bit of a soviet architecture and like it was in Poland 20 years ago. I ordered „Solanka” soup which was really good full of different stuff including meat and vegies. The taxi driver presented me a bottle of home made red wine so I was very happy to be able to bring it with me to Brussels. I dont know if all the people are so nice in Moldova like my taxi driver but I cant imagine getting a bottle of wine from a taxi driver in Poland or Belgium.
The next day we had workshops at Regency Hotel. In the evening my new friend from Moldova- Victoria took us for dinner to restaurant called Eli Pili , where the food was really good and most importantly cheap. I paid fora dish and 4 glasses of wine(well i might had one to omanyJ 6e. After dinner everyone still had energy to go out dancing so Victoria took us to Tipografia, which used to be an old printing house. The music was moslty electronic and everything looked like it was a basement. We stayed there for a while and moved to „Washing machine”- Teatrul Spalatorie-very small but charming place with nice ambiente and great music. It was set up by a writer and its a place where you can have a drink but in the same time is a small theater where you also have exhibitions. We met there lot of international people and were dancing untill the early morning.
The nightlife scene in Chisinau is definitely different from the one in Western Europe and even from Poland. Unfortunately I didn’t have time to see the city during the day so this is definitely the reason to go back as my friend Victoria said summer time is great cause there are lot of festivals happening and lot of parties outdoors. Unfortunately Moldova is not very well connected my flight back to Warsaw took altogether almost ten hours as I had over stay in Bucarest for 6h(thank God I got upgraded to the first class and could use the business lounge with good wifi and all you can drink and eat.) Unless you live in London or Venice where u have promotional flights its quite expensive expedition but it is definitely worth the visit.