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Moscow to St Petersburg

from $1,649.00

Explore three of Russia’s grandest cities

  • Reviews 26 Reviews
    5/5
  • Vacation Style Holiday Type
    Guided
  • Activity Level Leisurely / Moderate
  • Group Size Small Group
    6 - 16
All about the Moscow to St Petersburg.

This trip reveals the best of Russia’s three most fascinating cities and includes entrance fees to the key monuments and museums. Free time is also essential to absorb the atmosphere and make the most of other optional visits, such as the Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow, or a hydrofoil ride out to the stunning Peterhof Palace in St Petersburg. A short stop in Novgorod, the birthplace of Russia, completes this cultural experience and offers a respite in a busy itinerary.

The tour package inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What is included in this tour?Items that are included in the cost of tour price.

* 6 breakfasts

* All accommodation including sleeper train

* Airport transfers (at designated times)
* Letter of invitation (required for visa)

What is not included in this tour?
  • Flights
  • Single Accommodation (available on request, inquire for supplement)

Highlights

  • Guided tour of Moscow’s Kremlin and Armoury
  • Discover Novgorod, the birthplace of Russia
  • Visit the famous Amber Room at Catherine Palace in Pushkin
  • Enjoy St Petersburg’s sites including the Hermitage Museum & Faberge Museum
  • 6 nights at comfortable 3 star hotels and 1 night sleeper train
  • Group normally 6‐16, plus leader. Min age 16 yrs
  • Travel by minibus, train and metro
  1. Day 1 Start Moscow.

    Arrive in the early evening and transfer to our centrally located hotel in Moscow. The journey takes approximately 1 hour from Domodedovo Airport, during peak season this can be longer due to heavy traffic. The closest subway station to our hotel is Arbatskaya on the blue line (the only station where all four lines meet).After dinner, we recommend an evening walk to Red Square*Arbat House Hotel or similar*

  2. Day 2 Morning orientation tour including Red Square and Lenin’s Tomb. Free afternoon to explore St Basil's Cathedral or one of the many galleries.

    This morning we enjoy a guided walk across Red Square, past Lenin’s Mausoleum visiting the infamous leader’s tomb. After we gain our bearings, there is free time to visit the magnificent St Basil’s Cathedral, which was built by Ivan the Terrible and remains one of the world’s most iconic landmarks. We then hop aboard the efficient Metro system, for a short tour of some of the most beautiful stations.Later there is time to see Moscow’s premier art collection at the Tretyakov Gallery, where the priceless Russian Icon collection is kept along with other highlights. Or you may choose to do some shopping at the souvenir market.Evening visits to the Bolshoy Theatre are very popular and are available to book online (subject to availability). The circus is also a popular choice – however, live animals are used in some acts so this may not be to everyone’s taste. Please note that Exodus are unable to pre-book these tickets as we are not official ticket agents and tickets can only be booked in advance.*Arbat House Hotel or similar*

  3. Day 3 Guided tour of the Kremlin grounds and Armoury Museum. Free afternoon for shopping or sightseeing. Overnight sleeper train to Novgorod.

    Today we head straight to the highlight for many who visit Moscow, the Kremlin – a city within a city. It is still the seat of much political power and contains many of Russia’s greatest treasures. We visit the magnificent cathedrals of St. Michael the Archangel, the Annunciation and the Assumption, as well as the Tsar Bell and the golden domes of Ivan the Great Bell Tower. Also included is a visit to the famous Armoury, a museum of opulent treasures including fabulous gold coaches and the famous Faberge eggs. There is some more free time in the afternoon before we meet at the hotel for the short transfer to the train station. There will be time to visit the shops to buy some snacks and drinks for the journey, before boarding our late night sleeper train to Novgorod.*Sleeper train*

  4. Day 4 Morning walking tour including visits to Novgorod Kremlin, St Sofia's Cathedral and Yaroslav's Court; optional afternoon to visit to the Museum of Wooden Architecture.

    No other Russian city can compete with Novgorod in the variety and age of its historical monuments. We spend a relaxing morning on a gentle walking tour through the riverside Kremlin dating back to the 10th century. We take in the sites of St Sofia’s Cathedral Yaroslav’s Court and the Millennium Monument, created to celebrate 1000 years of Russia. The afternoon is free, a chance to experience a less visited city with a truly Russian feel. Most choose to head out into the countryside to enjoy the Yuriev Monastery and the Open-air Museum of Wooden Architecture, to learn more about rural life in RussiaFor many Novgorod is a real highlight and a welcome break from hectic Moscow before moving on to St Petersburg.*Volkhov Hotel or similar*

  5. Day 5 Transfer to Pushkin; visit Catherine Palace including the Amber Room. Free afternoon.

    In the morning we transfer to the small town of Pushkin to see the incredible Catherine Palace and gardens. Every room in this huge palace is as opulent as the last, lined with gold and marble. The highlight, however, is The Amber Room, which was dismantled by the Nazis during the war and its content lost somewhere in East Prussia. It has recently been restored to its former glory and is a sight to behold. After the tour there is free time to enjoy the gardens, visit Peter & Paul Fortress, or return to the hotel for a traditional banya a traditional Russian sauna.*Hotel Natalia or similar*

  6. Day 6 Early departure to St Petersburg to explore the historic city centre; free afternoon. Evening visit to the new Fabergé Museum.

    After a short transfer, by train, we arrive in one of the finest and most extravagant cities in Europe – St Petersburg. This is a relatively young city, which only celebrated its 300th anniversary in 2003. It was the vision of Peter the Great and was part of his desire to bring ‘old Russia’ into the modern European age. Much of its design and work was contributed to by foreign designers and craftsmen – the result being some of the finest 18th and 19th-century buildings to be found in Europe, but with a distinct Russian influence. Our hotel is located just off Nevsky Prospekt, St Petersburg’s most famous street, full of fine mansions, cathedrals and shops, all with a story to tell. We enjoy an orientation tour before free time for an optional visit inside the Peter and Paul Fortress and the famous cathedral that contains the tombs of the Romanovs, St Isaac’s Cathedral or the Church of the Spilt Blood. We will meet again in the early evening, for a visit to the new Fabergé Museum housing 4,000 pieces of fine decorative art, the highlight of which is a group of nine imperial Easter eggs created by Fabergé for the last two Tsars.*Asteria Hotel or similar*

  7. Day 7 Morning tour of the Hermitage. Free afternoon to see more of the sites of St Petersburg. Art lovers can choose to stay in the Hermitage.

    We make the most of our final full day in Russia, with a guided tour of the Hermitage Museum and Winter Palace. One of the largest and oldest museums in the world, it was founded in 1764. Here every room is a piece of art in its own right, you will marvel at the Pavilion Hall, Peacock Room, and Hanging Gardens and that’s before you’ve even seen any art! The afternoon is free. Why not take in the sights of the city by boat on a relaxing canal trip?Please note that this day may operate in reverse due to entrance slots at the Hermitage.*Hotel Asteria or similar*

  8. Day 8 End St Petersburg.

    After breakfast, there is some free time before the transfer to the airport for flights home.

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Where you stay

Hotel and Sleeper Train

You will spend 6 nights in comfortable 3 star hotels and 1 night on a sleeper train. All accommodation is offered on a twin share basis. Our properties in all three cities are in a central location within walking distance of the main sights (no more than 20 minutes). Wi-Fi is available free of charge but may only be accessible in public areas and is often temperamental. Every hotel offers a buffet breakfast.

The sleeper train is based on 2nd class, 4 berth cabins. Linen is provided. If you have trouble climbing into an upper bunk, please let Exodus know at the time.

Single supplement starting from USD$279, excludes sleep train between Moscow and Novgorod.

Eating and Drinking

6 breakfasts included.

There are not many restaurants and cafes in these cities where you can try pure Russian cuisine. Nowadays Russian food is a mixture of cuisine from neighbouring countries such as Georgia, Azerbaijan, Ukraine and those of Central Asia. You can try pancakes and pies with different fillings, delicious khachapuri (traditional Georgian pie with home-made cheese suluguni), caucas kebabs, Uzbekistani plov (rice dish with meat and vegetables) and soups (traditional Russian schi with solty cabbage or Ukrainian borsch with beetroot).

Your leader will arrange group dinners in different restaurants to get the most out of this gastronomic mix throughout your journey. Restaurant Chekhov in St Petersburg and Cafe Chekhov in Moscow can be considered as places to try Russian cuisine (fish soups, solty black milk mushrooms, aspics, poultry, jellies). Vegetarians are well catered for in Moscow and St Petersburg but lesser so outside of these main cities. Expect to pay USD$30-50 equivalent per person for dinner and between USD$12-16 equivalent for a lunch snack.

This trip is graded as Leisurely/Moderate (2) and visits as much as possible in three of Russia’s most historical cities. There is a lot to see in a week yet the pace is not rushed and plenty of time is left for self-exploration. Should you choose to take part in all the offered optional activities, the week will seem more demanding. As this itinerary is mostly sightseeing, please be prepared for a reasonable amount of walking between sites, especially in Moscow.

For the overnight train journey, we use second class compartments comprised of 4 berths and are of a reasonable standard, with bed linen provided, please note that cabins can rather hot. Breakfast is served on the train.

Entrances are included for Kremlin and Armoury, Catherine Palace & Park and the Hermitage Museum. On occasion, the government may choose to close Red Square without warning.

If you are travelling during June, July and August then please be prepared for queues and crowds at major sites, such as the Armoury, Catherine’s Palace and the Hermitage.

Should you require tickets for either the recently renovated Bolshoy Theatre in Moscow or Mariinskiy Theatre in St. Petersburg then please book your tickets direct via their websites (see Optional Excursions for details). Due to limited availability at certain times of the year and the theatres only being available to book 3-6 months in advance then we are unable to provide this service.

Many visitors find St. Petersburg a little overwhelming as there is so much to see. Exodus strongly recommends a couple of additional nights at the end of the tour. By which time you feel comfortable navigating the city alone.

All nationalities require a visa for Russia. These requirements will vary depending on your nationality. It is your responsibility to arrange a visa prior to travel, but we will provide you with more information after booking to help and advice with this.

Overall Rating
5/5
Reviewed On 25/06/2020
5/5

From Russia with Love!

  • What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    This is a tough one but think the look on my face the first time I set eyes on St Basil's was a pure kodak moment, I can safely say it surpassed all my expectations and is a sight I could literally stare at all day. Alongside this having the experience of Moscow's annual city day celebrations and watching the military music parade on red square were truly 'one off' experiences. St Petersburg for me was all about the Romanovs, so seeing their resting place was a touch emotional. However, drinking with my fellow travellers in The White Rabbit in Pushkin and then attempting to order some chips whilst being photographed by the local police was also a highlight!
  • What did you think of your group leader?

    Boris aka Bob was exceptional, genuinely likeable individual for who nothing was too much trouble. His knowledge and delivery of information was enthusiastic and we all felt taken along for the ride. He involved the whole group and succumbed to joining us at an Irish bar in St Petersburg as well as karaoke style singing on the bus after the train journey.
  • Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Check the trip notes as all of ours were different and feel this is unfair in the local guide when the admin team in the UK should make sure everyone has the same info. Although Russia is said to be expensive it is no more than a city in the UK, as an example a pint of Russian beer, which might I add the Russians think is rubbish but is actually very drinkable, will set you back £3/4 in Moscow. You walk a lot on this tour but this means you see so much, but pack comfortable shoes and plenty of socks to keep your feet up to the challenge. Go with the flow and you won't go far wrong, this is a great taster of Russia and left me eager to see more.
  • Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Stop thinking about all the reasons not to go and just book it! Russia will surprise you as it certainly did me and forget all the horror stories you hear- pure fabrication in my opinion!

Reviewed On 25/06/2020
5/5

MOSCOW TO ST PETERSBURG

  • What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Going to a housing estate to pain our own Babooshka dolls and seeing how real Russian live (rather than just palaces all the time)
  • What did you think of your group leader?

    Bob was wonderful, I would have him for all my trips if it were possible.
  • Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take mosquito spray, especially for St Petersburg.
  • Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I don't regret a thing!

Reviewed On 25/06/2020
5/5

From Russia with love

  • What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Hard to pin point as SO many awe inspiring moments- The Hermitage, Church of spilt Blood and that ceiling , Faberge , The Kremlins size and St Basils, I could go on.....
  • What did you think of your group leader?

    Marsha was adorable- her knowledge, her love of Russia, her concern for our enjoyment and well being, her smile again I could go on....
  • Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Check weather! Took far too many winter clothes as was expecting -20 temps but it was not! MAYBE if ice on streets take studs for shoes! I took mine but did not need them! But could see times when essential! when not outdoors you can boil alive they do not skimp on heating in Russia!
  • Is there anything else you would like to add?

    In the mornings get up early and explore on your own rather than lounge in hotel bed and likewise go out after group meal at night as by night places are so lit up just as they are grey and mysterious at this time of year in the morning!

Reviewed On 25/06/2020
5/5

Russian adventure

  • What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Catherine Palace in Pushkin was a blaze of good bling! Red Square at might
  • What did you think of your group leader?

    He was excellent, patient and sociable. He was always ready to answer questions about Russia and give practical information where he could. He really wanted to fill the group with enthusiasm about this rather misunderstood country (it's not perfect but where is?)
  • Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    I wish I had looked up the highlights of some of the galleries I visited. In particular I would have liked to go to the Pushkin museum in Moscow - but this was closed on Monday when I thought of visiting! There are so many pictures etc in the Hermitage (and the impressionist paintings have been moved to another building). So a bit of advanced preparation would be a good idea. I would recommend an extra day or tow in St Petersburg like the trip notes suggested. The train from Moscow to Novgorod is not very comfortable and was quite noisy. But the washroom remained spotless throughout the 8 hour trip.
  • Is there anything else you would like to add?

    A map of Pushkin would have been useful - it is small but I am quite good at getting lost!

Reviewed On 25/06/2020
4/5

Russia in June

  • What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    There were a few! Stepping into St Saviour's Cathedral in Moscow and feeling very, very small; comprehending the workmanship behind the mosaics in the Church of Spilled Blood; and overcoming my fear of heights on the colonnade at St Isaac's Cathedral and looking out over the extravagant city of St Petersberg!
  • What did you think of your group leader?

    Julia was lovely! Very approachable, chatty, and brilliant with organising and translating. As a slightly less inexperienced guide (this was her third tour) I felt that she didn't 'sell' the optional trips to the group as much as she could have done in terms of just plugging how good they were. This means that a lot fewer people went on the optional trips than I've experience on previous trips. They missed out!!!!
  • Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Enjoy the scale and the opulence of both Moscow and St Petersberg. Whilst optional, I thought the boat tour in Moscow was better than those in St Petersberg, and definately worth doing.
  • Is there anything else you would like to add?

    It was a great trip! I felt a little more could have been made of Russian life outside of the two big cities, particularly in Pushkin where there wasn't much to do other than the Summer Palace. But Moscow and St Petersberg are spectacular.

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