The hiking trails support ecotourism in Moldova and help stimulate regional economic growth.
The USAID EDGE Moldova Competitive Transition Activity (MCTA) Buy-In has helped launch the Central Moldova Hiking Trails Network in the protected area of Codri, allowing tourists to discover natural, cultural, and historical sites in the region and reach Bălănești Hill, the highest point of elevation in Moldova.
The opening of the trails demonstrates the effectiveness of public-private partnerships that enable and support the development of tourism in Moldova. With the support of the National Inbound and Domestic Tourism Association of Moldova (ANTRIM) and tourism operators, the hiking trail was developed in November 2020. In May 2022, the route was extended to a 48-kilometer network thanks to the joint efforts of USAID, Slovak Aid, ANTRIM, private companies, and local authorities.
The hiking trails expand tourism opportunities and seek to capitalize on the existing attractions and infrastructure for tourists in this region, bringing economic benefits to the local communities and contributing to the conservation of natural and cultural sites. The trails promote sustainable tourism and the great potential of ecotourism in Moldova. The hiking trail has been marked with signposts and displayed on map panels in the villages where the route passes.
About MCTA: MCTA supports and develops the tourism sector in Moldova, seeking to place Moldova on the international ecotourism map while stimulating regional economic growth. Especially in light of the COVID-19 Pandemic, MCTA aims to build resilience to future challenges by expanding tourism opportunities and promoting a business-enabling environment for the tourism industry.