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"Tiraspol" Top 5 Page for this destination Tiraspol by pure1942

Tiraspol Travel Guide: 106 reviews and 499 photos

'Capital of Transdniester'

Tiraspol isn’t one the prettiest places I have ever been but it is one of the strangest and most interesting! Tiraspol is the de facto capital of the self-proclaimed capital of the Republic of Transdniester or Pridnestrovskaya Moldavskaya Respublika (PMR). This breakaway republic lies within the internationally recognised borders of Moldova but is in effect an independent state in all but name. It has its own border control, president, government, police and army force, currency and taxation system. However it is not recognised by any member state of the UN and is still internationally recognised as being part of Moldova.
Tiraspol is the ‘capital’ of this political oddity and lies 70km east of Chisinau. If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to be ‘back in the USSR’, then just take a trip to Tiraspol. A step back in time to the soviet era awaits all who venture across the disputed and unnerving border where you will be greeted with rows of grey housing blocs, statues of Lenin, soviet style monuments, streets named after Karl Marx and more hammers than you could shake a sickle at :)

Transdniester (literally ‘across the Dniestr) occupies a narrow strip of land on the eastern bank of the Dniestr River and is populated by a predominantly Russian speaking people who have traditionally looked to Moscow for guidance and support and communism as a system of politics. With the dissolution of the USSR, Transdniester declared independence from Moldova in 1990 amid fears they would be subjugated by the Romanian/Moldovan speaking people to the west. A civil war broke out with the Transdniestrians pushing for sovereignty and autonomy from their western leaning neighbours. Aided covertly by the Russians the Transdniestrian rebels managed to keep out the Moldovan army and a cease fire was reached in 1992 with a Russian peace keeping force put in place. This Russian military presence is still in place and is viewed by Transdniestrians as a safeguard to their autonomy.

Today there is a calm but unstable relationship between Moldova and Transdniester and there is still a heavy military presence on the ‘border’ and streets of Bendery and Tiraspol. Moldova refuses to recognise Transdniester independence and Transdniester in turn refuses to be ruled by Moldova with little prospect of a lasting solution in sight. For now, relations have grudgingly improved with the resumption of rail links through Tansdniester linking Chisinau (Moldova) and Odessa (Ukraine) via Tiraspol. It is also easier than ever for visitors to cross into Transdniester through what was once a risky, corrupt and unnerving affair for foreigners.

  • Last visit to Tiraspol: Aug 2011
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (18)

Comments (2)

  • HORSCHECK's Profile Photo
    Nov 7, 2011 at 1:07 PM

    Brian fantastic page. Moldova and Transdniester are the only countries in Eastern Europe I haven't visited yet. I haven't heard of Kvint Brandy before. You haven't told us how many bottles you bought and if you had any problems at the customs. We had the same problem with "taking photos" in Belarus. We heard and read loads of stories, but couldn't really figure out which one are true. I finally took photos of almost everything except the presidential palace.

  • Nov 5, 2011 at 3:38 AM

    Great page on a destination I definitely want to visit! Were you not allowed to take a picture of Suworov monument?


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