Beginner’s Guide to Romania’s Painted Monasteries of Bucovina

Beginner’s Guide to Romania’s Painted Monasteries of Bucovina

As a MIR tour manager for more than 17 years, I've led many MIR tours to the Bucovina region of Romania and to its painted monasteries, constructed in medieval times. Bucovina is a remote province tucked in the northeastern corner of Romania near Ukraine. Today the painted monasteries are pilgrimage sites for Romanian Orthodox believers, as well as highlights for travelers from all over the world. Nuns live and work at most of these monasteries, standing out in their distinctive black habits and veils. Here are some notes on what to look for when you visit four of Bucovina's most notable monasteries: Voronet, Sucevita, Moldovita, Humor. Read More


Celebrating Orthodox Easter in Russia, Ukraine, East & Central Europe

Celebrating Orthodox Easter in Russia, Ukraine, East & Central Europe

Yes, there are two Easters! The holiest day in the liturgical calendar, Orthodox Easter is celebrated April 28, 2019 in Russia, Serbia, Ukraine and beyond. There's no Easter bunny, but the food is fantastic. Read More



Active Adventures: 6 Hikes We Recommend in Siberia, Ukraine, Romania and along the Silk Road

Active Adventures: 6 Hikes We Recommend in Siberia, Ukraine, Romania and along the Silk Road

“There’s always a great hike in or near any of MIR’s destinations,” says tour manager extraordinaire Martin Klimenta, who has been leading tours for MIR since the 1990s. An active guy who loves to hike, bike and climb, Martin often explores on foot after his MIR travelers have retired to their hotel rooms for the night. “Sometimes on a tour there will be a client who loves to walk, too, and after dark we’ll head out together, just walking around a city for hours until we get hopelessly lost. Then we’ll call a taxi to take us back to the hotel.” Check out a few more formalized hikes recommended by some of MIR's adventurous destination experts. Read More


4 Marvels of Moldova: Wine Country and Time Capsules

4 Marvels of Moldova: Wine Country and Time Capsules

Moldova, in spite of its growing reputation as prime wine country, remains one of the least-visited countries in Europe. Moldovans have imbibed a Slavic way of enjoying life, which shows up especially in the increasingly hip capital, Chisinau. Moldova remains in a more relaxed, simpler time and place. Here are four of the little-known highlights that intrepid travelers deserve to experience. Read More



8 Must-See Places in Central and East Europe: Hot Spots in Poland, Ukraine, Moldova, Bulgaria and More

8 Must-See Places in Central and East Europe: Hot Spots in Poland, Ukraine, Moldova, Bulgaria and More

Changing with every moment that goes by, the hip and historic countries of Central and East Europe should be visited now before they are fully and irretrievably “discovered”... but where to start? Born and raised in Poland, MIR’s Director of Sales Joanna Millick has traveled all over Central and East Europe. Here are some of her personal favorite places. Read More


4 Must-See Places in Belarus: Soviet Nostalgia and Chagall

4 Must-See Places in Belarus: Soviet Nostalgia and Chagall

Belarus is a country of wooden houses, factories, forests, and farmland where time slowed drastically after the devastation of WWII. If you didn’t get a chance to visit the Soviet Union before its demise, Belarus is the place to catch a glimpse of it. Read More



Orthodox Christmas: January’s Holy Holiday

Orthodox Christmas: January’s Holy Holiday

Thirteen days after the traditional Christmas in the West, Orthodox Christmas is celebrated on January 7th. It may not be coded into your smartphone or laptop calendar automatically, but it is, indeed, a holiday celebrated by millions around the world, including many MIR destinations like Russia, the Baltics, Balkans, and Eastern Europe. Read More