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Highlights of the Baltics & Scandinavia

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Stay in seven countries on one escorted rail tour

You are viewing the 2020 itinerary. Select your departure year
20202021
19 daysSold out

2020 Tour code: BEG20

About the tour

Discover the contrasting cultures of the fascinating Baltic region, from colourful Scandinavia to the splendour of Russia, via the historic countries of Latvia and Estonia. Explore glorious palaces and UNESCO World Heritage sites on this unique Baltic Explorer rail tour.

Highlights

What’s included

Itinerary

Days 1-2 - London to Denmark

After meeting at our dedicated Departure Office, we leave St Pancras on the Eurostar to Brussels in Standard Premier Class. We change trains and travel in First Class to Bremen for the night, via Cologne. On Day 2 we travel by high-speed rail (Standard Class) via Hamburg to Copenhagen, the Danish capital that is home to the world's oldest monarchy. We spend two nights at the Scandic Copenhagen Hotel.

Includes
  • Day 1 - Eurostar meal, Dinner
  • Day 2 - Breakfast, Dinner
Eurostar
Day 3 - Discovering Copenhagen

This morning we enjoy a sightseeing tour of Copenhagen, passing the Amalienborg Palace, a large octagonal structure, surrounded by four identical rococo palaces, one of which is home to the reigning monarch, Queen Margrethe II. We also visit the famous statue of the Little Mermaid and enjoy a cruise in the colourful canal area of Nyhavn.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Copenhagen
Days 4-5 - By train to Stockholm

This morning we join the high-speed service to Sweden's beautiful capital, travelling over scenic Øresund Bridge along the way. On arrival, we walk to our hotel for two nights, the Scandic Continental. On Day 5 we take a city coach tour to visit sights such as the Royal Palace, the cathedral and the Old Town. The afternoon is free to explore Stockholm, a wonderful maritime city.

Includes
  • Day 4 - Breakfast, Dinner
  • Day 5 - Breakfast
Stockholm
Day 6 - The Ferry to Riga

Today you are at leisure until the evening, when we join the ferry for the overnight cruise to Riga. Enjoy the fabulous views as we pass the Stockholm archipelago.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Stockholm
Days 7-8 - Discovering Riga

The ferry docks in Riga shortly after breakfast and we transfer to our hotel, the Radisson Blu Daugava Hotel. Day 8 is then spent taking a guided tour the city's main attractions; travelling back to the year 1201, we enjoy a pleasant walking tour that takes us through Riga's 900 year-old history as we explore the old winding streets of Old Riga and have a tasting of the area's unique 'black balsam', a traditional liquor brewed with local botanicals.

Includes
  • Day 7 - Breakfast, Dinner
  • Day 8 - Breakfast
Riga
Days 9-10 - Exploring Tallinn

Today we travel by coach along the Gulf of Riga to the Estonian capital, Tallinn. At the heart of this historic city is the hill of Toompea, a maze of cobbled streets and alleyways filled with medieval houses; Tallinn's colourful Old Town is UNESCO-protected. On arrival we enjoy a guided tour of the city, which includes the Dome Church, the Town Hall Square and views of the Toompea Castle, Estonia's seat of power. We then transfer to our hotel for two nights, the Nordic Forum C Hotel.

Day 10 is free to explore Tallinn; in the Old Town there are plenty of historic sites to visit, including the House of the Brotherhood of Blackheads, the only preserved Renaissance building in Tallinn. Another option is the unusually named "Keik in de Kok", which means "Peek into the kitchen". This historic tower is believed to have acquired its name due to its height, which allowed those in the tower to see through the windows of the surrounding buildings. The tower houses a permanent exhibition of Tallinn's military history and serves as an entrance to the Bastion Tunnels, a network of hidden tunnels built in the 17th century during Swedish rule.

Includes
  • Day 9 - Breakfast, Dinner
  • Day 10 - Breakfast
Tallinn
Days 11-12 - To Helsinki

This morning we depart for Helsinki by ferry, arriving in the early afternoon. We continue by coach on a tour of Helsinki, including Senate Square and the elegant Lutheran Cathedral. Following the tour, we transfer to the Scandic Park hotel for a two-night stay. Day 12 is free for you to explore Helsinki. Finland's capital lies on an archipelago surrounded by many smaller islands, many of which are connected by regular ferry services.

Includes
  • Day 11 - Breakfast, Dinner
  • Day 12 - Breakfast
Helsinki Cathedral
Day 13 - St Petersburg and The Hermitage Museum

Today we travel by train (Standard Class) to St Petersburg*, arriving this afternoon in this, by far the most cosmopolitan of Russia's cities. On arrival we visit the Hermitage, founded by Catherine the Great in 1764, in the magnifi cent Royal Winter Palace. We check in to our hotel for three nights where we enjoy a Russian welcome ceremony.

*Please note: due to border restrictions, you will need to transport your own luggage for this rail journey.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
St Petersburg
Days 14-15 - Peterhof Palace, Fabergé Museum & Vodka Museum

We enjoy a tour to discover the stunning architecture and history of this fascinating city, during which we see the vast St Isaac's Cathedral with its gold dome, the lavish Church of the Saviour on Spilled Blood and the grand Nevsky Prospect We continue to Peterhof Palace. This majestic complex is a UNESCO World Heritage site, renowned for its beautiful grounds filled with spectacular fountains and waterways.

Our excursion on Day 15 sees us take a private tour of Saint Petersburg's Fabergé Museum, an opulent building home to the world's largest collection of works by Carl Fabergé, including nine of his famous Imperial eggs. We also visit St Petersburg's impressive vodka museum, the only one of its kind in the world! Synonymous as the drink of mother Russia, vodka has long played a fascinating role in the lives of the people here - from Tsars to peasants - and during your visit, you'll learn all about Russia's history, culture and drinking traditions. There'll even be some tastings for that extra touch of authenticity.

Includes
  • Breakfast
Peterhof Palace
Days 16-17 - Helsinki or return home (rail/air)

You fly* back from St Petersburg to London today if you chose our air option. Please note: you will need to take your luggage back to th UK with you on your flight as opposed to it travelling via our luggage transfer service.

Otherwise, we leave St Petersburg by train (Standard Class), travelling on the Allegro service to Helsinki. On arrival, we transfer to the port for the overnight ferry* to Travemünde, a Baltic resort. As we depart Helsinki we enjoy a scenic view of the Baltic, sailing past islands dotted around the coastline, before continuing our 611 nautical mile journey through the Gulf of Finland. After dinner on board the ferry, we arrive in Travemünde in the evening of Day 17, and spend the night at the Maritim Strandhotel Travemünde.

Please note: your luggage will travel on the ferry with you, as opposed to via our luggage service.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Helsinki
Day 18 - Travemünde to Cologne

This morning we transfer by coach to the city of Hamburg, where we board the train and travel to Cologne. We spend the night in Cologne where we enjoy a farewell dinner as a group, the perfect way to round off our holiday.

Includes
  • Breakfast, Dinner
Cologne
Day 19 - To Brussels and London

We leave Cologne and travel by rail to Brussels, where we join the Eurostar to London.

Includes
  • Breakfast
  • Eurostar Meal
Homeward Bound

Additional information

Please note

We are happy to offer a fly home version of this tour which runs at 16 days in length. On Day 16 (after breakfast) you will be transferred to the airport in St Petersburg for your flight back to London.

Departure times

Provisional departure and return times, where available, can be found together with our dates and prices by clicking on the 'Prices & Availability' button. We write to all booked customers approximately 10 weeks prior to the start of their tour to advise the exact departure and return time for their particular group.

Mobility information

Please note: This may be suitable for reduced mobility passengers, please call for further information.

Hotels

Maritim Hotel, Bremen

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Scandic Copenhagen

Scandic Copenhagen, Copenhagen

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Scandic Park

Scandic Park, Helsinki

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Radisson Blu Daugava Hotel, Riga

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Angleterre Hotel, St Petersburg

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Hotel Ambassador

Hotel Ambassador, St Petersburg

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Scandic Continental Hotel, Stockholm

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Nordic Forum C Hotel

Nordic Forum C Hotel, Tallinn

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Maritim Strandhotel Travemünde, Travemünde

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Trains

Allegro
Eurostar

Enhance your holiday

Upgrades

Inclusive Luggage Upgrade
Cabin Upgrade
Extending your European holiday in Brussels
London Hotels
UK rail connections

Reviews

100% of travellers would recommend this tour

Based on 11 verified reviews

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Anonymous

Submitted 8819

on the whole accommodation was excellent Scancia in

Anonymous

Submitted 7819

The holiday covered a wide range of experiences. The schedule allowed time for savouring the various locations. The hotels were generally located to give easy access to the main places of interest.

Mrs J Wilson

Submitted 41018

Tour manager was excellent. All the other people on the tour were very friendly and this made the tour extremely enjoyable.

Mr B Arnold

Submitted 16818

Very well organised, an interesting and varied itinerary with useful down time for personal use, and the services of an excellent tour manager.

Mrs C Palmer

Submitted 12818

No of travellers on the tour was far too many for one tour manager to control, given that many were well over 70yrs. On one occasion the train doors closed as the group was disembarking, leaving 5 still on board! I also was not happy with the meal arrangements in hotels. Too many, barely adequate buffets, both in quality and quantity. The quality of Tour Guides varied from excellent to mediocre.

Mrs P Thompson

Submitted 9818

Superb tour manager, great local guides and a full but interesting Itinerary in many beautiful cities. We have wanted to make this tour for a few years and we were not at all disappointed! The ferries were an interesting aspect of a Great Rail Journey and the journey from Helsinki to Travemünde was wonderful, flat sea lovely weather, stunning sunsets, comfy cabin, great food and friendly helpful staff. Those guests who flew home missed an absolutely relaxing treat!

Highlights of the Baltics & Scandinavia

Stay in seven countries on one escorted rail tour

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Luke Simpson
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Helen
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