Bălţi is the second largest city in Moldova, after its Capital, Chişinău. Located in the northern part of the country, it is called sometimes "The Northern Capital". Here it is the headquarter of all the economic pulsation for this region. In Balti there are many supermarkets, including a METRO, Family Market and GreenHills, Restaurant SALAT, clubs and also the National Theatre "Vasile Alecsandri", State University of Bălţi "Alecu Russo," a branch of a Romanian University, a water park and many other attractions.
Bălţi is a major transportation, cultural and economical hub, having a population of 145,000 inhabitants. The main traffic bearing street is Strada Ștefan cel Mare. One block south, the city's commercial centre continues on the pedestrianized Strada Independeţei - here you can visit different shops, boutiques, cinema, theatre, Central Market and malls.
There are two railway stations. The main one is the north station, Gara de Nord (confusingly tickets will have this station as Bălţi Sloboziya - Бэлць Слобозия). The other, more central, south station is Gara de Sud (labelled on tickets as Bălţi Orash - Бэлць Ораш, meaning Bălţi Town). All trains stop at the north station (even those heading south), though Orash station may be more convenient to travellers heading south towards Ungheni on the Romanian borer and Chisinau.
Firstly, if you're coming from Chisinau you have a few types of transport to pick from:
Official Marshutkas - these leave from the Gara de Nord every 30 min or so and take about 2.5 hours (they stop a lot and pick people up. Cost: 65 Lei Private Marshutkas - these leave from the near the central gara (on Columna - people will just be saying "Balti Balti" and take about 2 hours. They never pick people up on the way and are more comfortable. Cost 65 Lei Private Cars - also leave from the central gara at the same place as the cars. Cost is 80 lei
No matter what transport you take, you'll wind up at the gara in Balti. There you can take any trolleybus or bus 25A to get the center (there are also lots of marshrutkas with "center / центр" in their sign. You'll know the center cause the bus pulls off the road into a turnaround.
When you get off at the center cross the street and walk through the park there (behind the usual kiosks) to get to Independencia Ave. This is an all pedestrian walkway and pretty much has all the coolest stuff in the city from cafes to parks to the bazaar.