Republic. Gained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991.
Head of state:
President Nicolae Timofti since 2012.
Head of government:
Prime Minister Iurie Leanca since 2013.
240 volts AC, 50Hz. European plugs with two circular pins are used.
Rich with history and fertile soils that produce abundant vineyards, Moldova is an unjustifiably forgotten tourist destination, as yet untouched by the budget airline brigade. In this land-locked eastern European country, you can wander round vast monasteries, sample the local wines, or trek through ancient forests.
Despite remaining one of the poorest countries in Europe, the people are friendly and welcoming, and the main centres, such as the capital Chisinau, have everything a visitor could need. Chisinau's cathedrals, monuments and museums survived severe WWII bombings to the city, including the house where Pushkin spent his days in exile penning some of his most famous works.
Last updated: 25 November 2014
The travel advice summary below is provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in the UK. 'We' refers to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. For their full travel advice, visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.
The British Embassy, Chisinau is monitoring the situation in Ukraine closely. At present there appears to be no immediate threat of the destabilisation spreading to Moldova, and there is no information suggesting an increased threat to British citizens or businesses in Moldova.
There is a low threat from terrorism.
If you visit Transnistria you should be aware that the region is outside of the control of the Moldovan authorities, and the British Embassy may be able to offer very limited consular assistance.
Most visits to Moldova are trouble-free.
The Moldovan authorities strictly enforce penalties (including deportation) against those who overstay.
You should be vigilant to petty crime, particularly in Chisinau. Leave your passport, travel documents and other valuable items in a safe place, and carry a photocopy of your passport for identification purposes.
There are strong penalties for possession or use of drugs. Avoid taking photographs of military or government installations.