Old Orhei Old Orhei

Archeological complex Old Orhei

When entering the archeological complex Old Orhei a fabulous, carved in stone world suddenly emerges ahead of you. The shock of the first contact with it renders difficulties in perceiving the end sign of the present civilization. Located in contrasting scenery amazingly with the usual for the Basarabean geographic morphology landscape, the Old Orhei is a grand and overwhelming surprise. Unconditional of how many explanations will be sought by the naturalist geologists and historians, no one would be able to explain thoroughly the fantastic assembling of the unique diversity of Basarabean landscape into a thrilling harmony. It is a genuine work of art, in which the overflowing natural generosity is supplemented in a perfect way by the human impact.
Old Orhei is an open air museum and is located in the valley of a right tributary of Dniestr – Raut River, between the villages Trebujeni and Butuceni, district of Orhei, 60 km North East from Chisinau. It is formed out of several high-grade rocks: the central rock Pestere that consists out of many graven caves in it. It creates a balanced complex together with Butuceni rock. This place is also famous for rocky monasteries that were graven by ancient tribes. By the time the caves were widened and new caves were built. A part of them was preserved till nowadays. The rocky monastery of the Assumption of the Virgin was peserved with several changes since Middle Ages. Cave monasteries are also represented by two complexes: monastery Pestere and monastery Bocy which are dated by a period of XI-XX century.
The museum of archeological diggings and museum-house of national customs are placed on a territory of this complex.
Turkish washhouses of 15-16 century also attract the attention of tourists.
The stone rood is placed on the top of one hill. There is a popular belief that if you touch this rood it will realize any of your dreams.
The surface of the archeological complex is extraordinarily small for the great number of natural and archeological monuments, descending directly from the history and legends, it holds. Each of these monuments originates in another time, has its own story and its own scenery. Each monument, seen in different seasons, changes its appearance, offering each time a new site. All of them together, assembled in a strict harmony form the wonder named Old Orhei. Old Orhei actually is a challenge from the nature and historical destiny of these places to the human ability to reproduce in words the spiritual and visual impressions.
Standing in a fixed point, up on the rocky headland’s edge, lined by the Raut’s meanders winding on the bottom of the lyre shaped narrow strait, and contemplating the surrounding view, the feeling of space and time compression arises, as if someone placed them here, bringing the priceless treasures in this secret hiding place to keep them safe from any danger. Nevertheless, we witness lately a total degradation, weathering of one of the most valuable historical, ethnographic and natural monuments. Therefore, on this site, we will let you know about the monuments’ history, about the scientific researches performed, about the past and the present of these lovely places, hoping that together we will manage to preserve what represents us.
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