Discover the two incredible and powerful cities that have both
driven and shaped Russia on this magniﬁcent journey. Starting in
Moscow, we visit iconic attractions including the Kremlin and Red
Square, before travelling to St Petersburg - a city so rich in
history its entire centre is an UNESCO World Heritage site.
Experience a Russian welcome ceremony with bread and salt - a tradition associated with warm hospitality
Tour the vibrant metropolis of Moscow, seeing the iconic Kremlin, Red Square, and Sparrow Hills
Explore the spectacular stations of Moscow Metro, one of the most beautiful underground systems in the world
Taste 3 unique vodkas at St Petersburg vodka museum
Take afternoon tea at the literature café in St Petersburg
Explore Peterhof Palace and the Hermitage in St Petersburg
The services of a professional UK Tour Manager from start to finish
UK Tour Manager from start to finish
All rail and coach transfers
Food & Drinks
10 meals including 6 breakfasts and 4 dinners
Flights and airport transfers
Return Scheduled Flights
Flights from London Heathrow to Moscow and from St Petersburg to London Heathrow, via Helsinki
What’s not included
Cancellation & Travel Insurance is not included in the price of the tour but can be arranged
Day 1 - London to Moscow
We fly from London Heathrow to Moscow and on arrival to our
hotel, we experience the spirit of Russian hospitality, with a
Russian welcome ceremony that includes being served bread and salt
- a tradition associated with long friendship.
Day 2 - Exploring Moscow
Having played a pivotal role both in Russia's political history
and on the world stage for centuries, Moscow's enormous array of
cultural heritage is virtually unmatched.
Today we discover some of these attractions on a guided tour of
the city. Moscow is in a constant state of flux; all of the
resounding changes that sent seismic shock waves through the
country originated here, yet there are reminders from every chapter
of the city's long and fascinating past at every turn. From
medieval cathedrals to towering Stalinist skyscrapers, with hints
of the regal Tsarist influence, this incredible city has to be seen
to be believed.
Among the highlights today we see the Sparrow Hills, which marks
one of the highest points in Moscow and offers a wonderful panorama
over the bustling frenzy of the sprawling city below. Situated on
the bank of the Moskva River from which the city takes its name,
here you will also find the Temple of the Holy Trinity, a
whitewashed Russian Orthodox temple with aquamarine domes. We'll
also spend time in Red Square, surrounded by many of the most
iconic sights of the city, including the multi-coloured domes of
Saint Basil's Cathedral. Also on the square is Lenin's Mausoleum,
where it is possible to view the body of the Communist leader. Our
final stop is Moscow State University.
Day 3 - The Kremlin
Today we visit the Kremlin, a UNESCO World Heritage site and
arguably the most famous landmark in all of Russia. The imposing
citadel is surrounded by twenty 18th century towers, and is home to
cathedrals, palaces and museums. It is also the seat of government.
On arrival we take a tour of the extensive grounds, seeing some of
the edifices that have shaped the country.
We also visit one of the stunning cathedrals, which are famed
for their intricate and detailed interiors. In the afternoon we
visit the lively Arbat Street, a pedestrianised shopping
thoroughfare that claims to be one of Russia's oldest streets.
Much-loved by locals, this prestigious road is lined with grand
townhouses built for the nobility. Here we have time to admire the
charming setting, where street vendors proudly display their
souvenirs and passing shoppers are entertained by energetic street
artists. Later we enjoy a tour of Moscow's amazing Metro
Dating back to the 1930s, the Metro is more than a simple
transport system; it is a true highlight of the city. Marble,
bronze, chandeliers and stained glass adorn the entrance halls, and
the vaulted ceilings are supported by elegant columns. The
magnificent stations feature art and sculpture spanning from Soviet
philosophy to the Modernist, avant-garde movement. We return to the
hotel at the end of an unforgettable day
Day 4 - By rail to St Petersburg
Today we leave Moscow and travel by rail to St Petersburg,
enjoying a journey on the modern Sapsan service. Named after the
Russian for Peregrine Falcon, the sleek high-speed train reaches
speeds of up to 150 miles per hour along the route.
Our journey takes us from the heart of Moscow and through the
industrial towns in its outer suburbs, then across farmland and
pastoral scenes as we continue to gather speed. Before long we
arrive in St Petersburg, one of Russia's largest cities and a
former Imperial capital. On arrival we transfer to our hotel.
Day 5 - Sightseeing in St Petersburg
Located at the head of the Gulf of Finland, St Petersburg is a
vibrant, outwardfacing city. It was developed just 300 years ago to
reduce the threat of a Swedish attack, but was clearly influenced
by the architectural movements taking place in the rest of Europe
at that time. Today the former swamp has blossomed into a
magnificent city; with its grand boulevards, open squares and
network of canals, it is a delight to explore, boasting a wealth of
historic monuments and celebrated cultural attractions.
We enjoy a guided tour of the city's main sights today,
including the Peter and Paul Fortress. Originally designed as a
defensive fort, the complex was also used as a prison, holding
distinguished activists including Dostoevsky and Gorky. Today the
site is preserved as an enthralling museum, and we are free to
admire its exhibitions. Later we transfer to the Vodka Museum where
we sample 3 types of vodka - classic, juniper, and Żubrówka that
contains bison grass blade - along with a light snack of mushroom
and cabbage pies.
Day 6 - Peterhof Palace and the Hermitage
Today's excursion takes us to a real highlight of St Petersburg,
the spellbinding Peterhof Palace & Park Ensemble. Sometimes
referred to as a 'Russian Versailles', the opulent complex is a
UNESCO World Heritage site, renowned for its beautiful grounds
filled with spectacular fountains and waterways. The string of
glittering palaces were constructed by Peter the Great with no
expense spared, and as such they display some of the finest and
most lavish artworks and ornaments that the world has to offer,
whilst the impressive gardens stretch out almost all the way to the
sea shore. We explore the incredible grounds and the many
attractions on show.
We continue to the Hermitage, founded by Catherine the Great in
1764 and set in the magnificent Royal Winter Palace. This
mesmerising museum is one of the most famous in the world, offering
an incredible collection of over 3 million artefacts from numerous
countries and eras. Of course, the setting of these artefacts are
equally as enthralling, with gilded marble columns, patterned
mosaic floors, and huge crystal chandeliers providing an exquisite
backdrop for the collection. While here, be sure to look out for
the clock stopped by Tsar Nicholas at the moment the Palace was
stormed in 1917, situated at the head of a corridor in the
Tonight, we commemorate the end of our holiday with a farewell
dinner in a local restaurant.
Day 7 - Return to London
Leaving St Petersburg behind, today we transfer to the airport
for our flight back to London.
Please note that while every departure of this tour will feature
the same excursions, the order may differ from that shown
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.
Please note: This may be suitable for reduced mobility passengers, please call for further information.
Excellent organisation and management. Loses a star due to the Visa issues.
Mrs F Carmichael
great tour, guide spot on and others in group easy to get on with.
Very well organised trip. The guide, Jilly, was under pressure at times due to other issues but coped well and remained professional
Mrs D Conway
We felt the Moscow section of the tour was a bit rushed . We saw lots but did not have time for a reasonable lunch stop. The guide was helpful and told us many things. The St Petersburg section was much better. We still saw plenty but there was time to relax too.
It really was a good introduction to Russia.
The hotels were good and the staff helpful The guides were knowelegeable
Mr A Hartup
A very enjoyable holiday. Things ran very smoothly with the guiding hand of an excellent tour manager - Cecile - and two very good local tour guides.
I would given a five star rating but for the last dinner in a Russian restaurant which did not run smoothly (pre ordered menu not delivered in our case) Service was not very friendly.