Starts any day. January to December10 days from $5995.00
Arrive Moscow, Russia
Welcome to Russia. You are met on arrival at Moscow airport, and then transferred by private car to your hotel.
Enjoy time at leisure to relax or explore this incredible 900-year-old city.
This morning discover Moscow – Start in Red Square, featuring the Cathedral of St. Basil built in 1552 for Ivan the Terrible. Explore ‘Our Lady of Kazan,’ the largest history museum in Russia. View the grounds of New Maiden Convent, a fortress and monastic ensemble from the 16th century, known for its world famous cemetery.
This afternoon, appreciate the grand tradition of Russian art at the famed Tetyakov Gallery, the national museum of Russian fine arts gardens. (B)
Return to Red Square this morning to explore the Kremlin necropolis – one of the largest museums in the world. View the Lenin Mausoleum where his body is preserved in a crystal crypt. Visit the Armory Museum, the oldest museum of Russia, containing a unique collection of icon covers, crosses, thrones, carriages, coronation robes, clergy vestments and Byzantine cameos. Of special note are the bejeweled Fabérgé Easter Eggs and the throne of Czar Alexei that is inlayed with more than 800 diamonds.
This afternoon, experience Moscow’s famous subway, the Metro, literally an underground marble palace – the stations are decorated ornately with sculptures, paintings, mosaics and chandeliers. This remainder of the day is at leisure to relax or explore more of the city – perhaps take a walk through GUM; stretching along Red Square, it is the largest department store in Russia. (B)
Moscow to Vladimir, Star City & Suzdal
Depart Moscow this morning to embark on a journey into Old Russia. Get the flavor of the nation’s pastoral past as you drive along Russia’s ‘Golden Ring,’ bound for the historic towns of Vladimir and Suzdal.
Arrive in Vladimir, Russia’s former capital, in time for lunch. Tour the city, visiting the Uspensky Cathedral to see the Last Judgment frescoes from the Middle Ages.
Continue through the countryside to Star City for a visit to the State Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center to learn about Russia’s space travel. Spend time in the Hydrolaboratory Hall, Centrifuge Hall and the Soyuz TM Spaceship. Afterwards, continue to Suzdal, a picturesque village of one-story cottages, ancient cathedrals and monasteries. (B,L,D)
Today you explore 1,000 year-old Suzdal. Visit the Museum of Wooden Architecture to see a recreation of an 18th century rural Russian village, showing the everyday life and traditions of the Russian peasant. Visit the Cathedral of Nativity with its blue and gold domes and remarkable 13th and 17th century frescoes, and the Spasso-Yefimiev Monastery.
After lunch, explore Suzdal’s Kremlin, (fort) in the oldest part of the city, dating back to the 11th century. Then drive to the nearby village of Kideksha. Here you view the Church of Saints Boris and Gleb, all that remains of a notorious 12th century palace complex. (B,L,D)
Suzdal to St. Petersburg
This morning, drive back to Moscow, before embarking on your high-speed train journey through the Russian country-side to St. Petersburg. You are met upon arrival, and transferred to your hotel, ideally situated on Arts Square, near the iconic Hermitage and Mariinsky Theatre.
Built on 42 islands in the delta of the Neva River, St. Petersburg is called the “Venice of the North.” This city is filled with Baroque palaces, picturesque canals, and elaborate cathedrals, along with splendid avenues and some wonderful restaurants. (B)
St. Petersburg Sightseeing
Enjoy a tour of this stoic city this morning, including the Peter and Paul Fortress. Built in 1703 by Peter the Great, it the oldest building in the city. The heart of the fortress is the Baroque style Cathedral of St Peter and St Paul, the burial place of most of the pre-Revolutionary Monarchs. Visit St. Isaac's Cathedral, an imperial cathedral commissioned by Alexander I in 1818. Its gilded dome is covered with more than 200 pounds of pure gold and soars up over 300 feet, dominating the city skyline.
Spend the afternoon at the amazing Winter Palace, better known as The State Hermitage Museum. Famous as the residence of the czars and the backdrop for the Russian Revolutions, the Hermitage is the world’s largest art museum – with nearly three million works on exhibit. Explore this magnificent palace and its stunning interior gilded with lapis lazuli, jasper, malachite and marble. (B)
This morning, drive to visit Peterhof, or "Peter's Court." Dating back to 1715, it is a former summer residence of the Russian Tsars, and famous for its stunning golden fountains, the palace grounds, and the Grand Palace, or "the Russian Versailles." Explore this vast museum of lavish rooms and galleries, and the Grand Cascade with its more than 140 fountains.
This afternoon, you visit Yusupov Palace, the most beautifully preserved palace in the city. Built in the 1740s, it was owned by the House of Yusupov. Prince Felix Yusupov was one of those who participated in the murder of Rasputin inside the palace. (B)
Depart the city this morning for a drive to Pushkin, also known as the Tsars Village, former summer residences of the Russian tsars. The highlight of this unique complex is Catherine Palace, given by Peter the Great to his wife Catherine. The palace is a huge, elegant building with white and gold Baroque moldings, and set in a beautiful park with elaborate gardens, canals and pavilions. Wander through the diverse collections of Russian, European and Oriental fine and decorative art from the 18th to early 20th century, and see the beautifully restored Amber Room.
Return to St. Petersburg in the early afternoon, with free time to explore this fascinating city. (B)
Depart St. Petersburg
Today you are at leisure until time for your transfer to the St. Petersburg airport for your flight home or onto your next destination. (B)
Intercontinental Moscow - Tverskaya
This luxurious modern hotel is located on Tverskaya, the main street of Moscow, leading straight into the Kremlin. Ideally situated, this Moscow hotel is within walking distance of Red Square, shopping areas and business districts. Well-appointed luxury suites include private terraces overlooking the vibrant cityscape. For dinner, enjoy contemporary design and international cuisine at Chekhonte Restaurant, which serves fine dishes from its unique show kitchen.
Pushkarskaya Sloboda Hotel, Suzdal
The Pushkarskaya Sloboda Hotel is a mini village with its private paved streets, is located in a peaceful beautiful place at a bend in the Kamenka River. Hotel facilities include a sauna, business center and gift shop. The accommodations are in unique Russian izbas (houses) which are the exact replicas of the typical Russian homes of the turn of the century. The izbas have every modern convenience including air-conditioning, satellite TV, minibar, in-room safe and a hairdryer.
Grand Hotel Europe, St. Petersburg
The Grand Hotel Europe, Russia's oldest operating grand hotel, is a world of luxury and comfort with more than a century of tradition. The historic hotel is located in the center of enchanting St.Petersburg. Hotel facilities and services include a health club, with steam room and massage service, a business center, a beauty salon, gift shops, dry cleaning and laundry service. The five restaurants in the Grand Hotel Europe offer a full range of elegant dining experiences, from casual to formal. LEurope is a French and European restaurant with live music. There is also a Caviar Bar featuring red and black caviar, fish specialties and a selection of the finest Russian vodkas. Your room has an entrance way and bedroom with seating area, writing desk and comfortable armchairs for relaxing. All rooms are equipped with satellite TV, mini-bar, an in-room safe, wireless internet access, bathrobes, slippers and a hairdryer. A 2014 Travel+Leisure World's Best Hotel