A touristic route is created in the centre of Moldova, with natives’ support

Three localities from the central part of the country, Cioresti, Dolna and Micleuseni, launched the rural touristic route “Dor de Codru” (Longing for the Forest). Beautiful places, secular Codri, popular crafts persons and agro-touristic pensions are among the 20 sightseeing places included in the route.

The establishment of “Dor de Codru” route is a project initiated by local authorities and natives with the support of the UNDP Migration and Local Development Project. The development of the touristic route was funded by the Swiss Government in amount of USD 50,000, the local administration allocated about USD 22,000, and natives invested over USD 8,000.

“The project reflects the priorities of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation in Moldova. The three communities demonstrated that no efficient local governance can take place without the participation of the community and the development of economic dimension,” noted the Director of Swiss Cooperation Office in Moldova during the inauguration event of the touristic route.

The touristic route will boost the attractiveness of this region. An increase in the number of tourists will support the residents of the three communities to develop additional services and products, generating additional income. Hence, more families will be able to secure decent revenues at home, without the need to emigrate to earn a living.

“I truly believe that today we are launching a functional engine to bring new economic and income generating opportunities for the benefit of over 6,000 people living in the covered rural area. This particular project is a truly special and unique endeavour illustrating a real bottom-up approach,” noted Dafina Gercheva, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in the Republic of Moldova.

The inter-municipal cooperation for rural tourism’s development is reflected in the strategic plan of the community.

“We welcome the idea of developing new services and opportunities for those willing to return home. We are very content that the neighbouring localities take over our practice of cooperation between the Town Hall and natives in local development, with joint efforts. This means that people actually want to make beautiful changes at home,” said Dumitru Marza, President of the Hometown Associations Cioresti – Bastina mea. The Association was created with the support of the UNDP Migration and Local Development Project, funded by the Swiss Government.

The route consists of six touristic paths: ecologic, fishing, cultural, gastronomic, historical-religious, and sportive. 

“This area has a rich touristic potential that has to be managed jointly to optimize efforts and enhance positive results,” said Valeriu Gutu, Mayor of Cioresti village.

The tourists will be able to test the pottery technique in Cioresti at the house of Zaharia Triboi, the only craftsperson in the Republic of Moldova who creates black ceramic objects. In Vulcanesti village, inhabited predominantly by Roma, ourists will find out more about the traditions and customs in a museum organised as an open-air Roma camp.

The community has several historical monuments such as the cemetery of Romanian heroes. On the same touristic route, in Micleuseni, guests will be able to taste the famous honey of the Honey House, known for its healing characteristics.  

“After many years of hard work, we are happy to successfully combine the beekeeping with rural tourism. We are ready to receive visitors and provide them with best honey products,” said Victor Ciolacu, owner of the Honey House.

The business card of Dolna village includes the Mansion Museum that accommodated temporarily the Russian poet Aleksandr Puskin, the cellar of Boyar Zamfirache Arbore-Ralli, as well as Zamfira spring and meadow.

To be able to receive tourists and provide a full set of services, some residents renovated and opened agro-touristic guesthouses with own resources, where tourists can rest and serve traditional meals.