This short and sweet 6 day tour of Russia takes in the must-see sights of St Petersburg and Moscow in one short blast. From the masterpieces of the Hermitage and colourful Church on Spilled Blood in the City of the Tsars, to the whimsical turrets of St Basil’s Cathedral and the mighty Kremlin in the capital – this is the best of Russia in under a week.
Tuesday. Welcome to Russia and the start of your holiday! Arrival transfer from St Petersburg Pulkovo Airport to your hotel and check in. Later tonight you'll be treated to dinner with the rest of your group at the hotel, followed by an informative welcome meeting. Remainder of the evening at leisure - your tour guide can recommend some local bars for you to try out.
Overnight: St Petersburg | Dinner
St Petersburg is known as the 'City of Tsars' and today we head out of the city to explore one of the tsars' lavish palaces. We visit Peterhof Palace and its beautiful gardens on the Gulf of Finland in the summer (May to mid October) and in the winter we visit Catherine Palace at Tsarskoe Selo (or Pavlosk Palace if Catherine Palace is closed). Often referred to as the 'Russian Versailles’, Peterhof is famous for its beautiful gardens which are a wonderland of greenery and flowers, sweeping vistas and ornate architectural decorations, with spectacular gold fountains. At Catherine's Palace it's the exterior and lavishly decorated interior that is the highlight and the famous Amber room is simply spectacular, bedecked in gold and amber.
This evening you have the opportunity to join in on some optional excursions including a night at the ballet or a Cossack show. All optional excursions are subject to availability, and are booked and payable locally.
Overnight: St Petersburg | Breakfast
St Petersburg – Moscow. Today we take in the highlights of the beautiful city of St Petersburg. Travelling by bus we make our way along the famed Nevsky Prospekt, past the museum and university districts and a few stops will be made along the way to see the magnificent St Isaac's Cathedral and The Bronze Horseman. We then visit the Peter and Paul Fortress and the ornate Peter and Paul Cathedral which houses the tombs of the Romanov monarchs. We also pay a visit to the spectacular Church on Spilled Blood. After a hearty lunch we enjoy a guided tour of the Hermitage Museum in the beautiful Winter Palace - which houses one of the biggest and best art collections on earth.
This evening we board an overnight sleeper train bound for Moscow.
Overnight: Sleeper Train | Breakfast, Lunch
This morning we arrive into Russia’s capital. Taking the metro, we will make our way to the legendary Red Square for the start of our walking tour. Here we will take in sights such as the epitome of Russian power – the Kremlin, Lenin’s Mausoleum and the ritzy GUM department store. At the south end of the square, feast your eyes on the iconic St Basil’s Cathedral. We also tour the mighty Kremlin, with a guided walk through the grounds to see numerous government buildings, gold-domed cathedrals and the Tsar Bell - the largest bell that never rang! If open, you can pay your respects to the grandfather of Communism at Lenin’s mausoleum. Remainder of the day is at leisure.
During our stay in Moscow there will be the chance to join some of our optional evening excursions, such as a traditional Cossack Show or a Moscow by Night coach tour.
Overnight: Moscow | Breakfast, Lunch
This morning those who have booked our optional Inside a Soviet Bunker add-on will head 65 metres underground and explore the fascinating Underground Cold War Museum - a Stalinist-era Soviet Bunker that up until recently was a top secret symbol of Soviet Power. The rest of the day is free to explore the capital. There are plenty of great galleries, museums, cafes, shops and bars all within walking distance in the city centre.
Overnight: Moscow | Breakfast
Sunday. Our tour comes to an end after breakfast and hotel check out.
Night at the Museums
Night at the Museums (aka Long Night of Museums) began in Berlin in 1997, in an aim to attract a larger and also younger audience to its museums and cultural institutions. Over 120 cities in Europe, including St Petersburg and Moscow, have now jumped onboard, showcasing their unique museums, galleries and heritage sites.
To celebrate this special event, we are running a 6 day White Nights And Museums tour departing Friday 17th May 2019. Coinciding with the wonderful Russian 'White Nights' when the sun barely sets and St Petersburg comes to life. Join us for this wonderful event accompanied by our expert guide, explore a selection of the city’s best late night galleries and museums on day 2 of your tour.
Prices & Dates
Departure dates noted with a 'G' are guaranteed to operate. All other departure dates are guaranteed with a minimum of 2 persons. Prices shown are per person travelling. 'Twin/Double' prices per person apply when there are 2 people travelling, sharing a room. The 'Single supplement' applies for single travellers who require their own room and needs to be added to the 'Twin/Double' price. If you are happy to be paired up with another single traveller of the same sex on your tour, this can be arranged, thus avoiding the single person supplement.
The hotels listed below are ones which we frequently use on this tour. We reserve the right to substitute these hotels to ones of a similar standard when necessary.
Harbor Club Hotel, St Petersburg
Well-located in St Petersburg, the Harbor Club Hotel can be found on a quiet street, yet only a short walk from the bustling city centre. Its guestrooms feature modern décor, with spacious ensuite bathrooms and modern amenities including air conditioning. You’ll also find a shared lounge and bar, as well as an on-site restaurant serving tasty European cuisine. Here, guests can enjoy a continental or buffet breakfast or, if you’d prefer, there is also the option of dining in the comfort of your hotel room.
Izmailovo Gamma Delta , Moscow
Formerly part of the Olympic Village at the 1980 Moscow Olympics, Divided into two wings, Gamma and Delta - the Izmailovo Gamma Delta is part of one of the biggest hotels in the world. The rooms are comfortable and with modern amenities and there is also a number of excellent restaurants plus a gym and swimming pool. On arrival to the hotel guests are often welcomed with chocolate and still bottled mineral water. Well located with good access to transport links.
Dasha was an amazing tour guide who was so nice and knowledgable about the local history and culture. As this was my first ever guided tour experience, she made it so enjoyable that I would definitely do it again. The tour itself was very well organised despite a couple of setbacks. Dasha was also very helpful whenever we had any questions and always ensured that everyone on the tour was getting the most out of their experience in Russia.”
Tatiana was an outstanding guide and really made the tour. And I don't say that flippantly. She was vastly knowledgeable (particularly in St Petersburg), had a great command of English and a wicked sense of humor. In addition, she artfully handled a particularly difficult guest.
St. Petersburg was fascinating. We had enough freedom to explore as we wanted and enough guidance to keep us safe. The location of the hotel was great.
The hotel in Moscow was good quality and very close to a fun area (market). Tatiana had a wonderful way of teaching us to navigate the metro and even the above mentioned guest managed to get herself around without incident.
All in all, 10/10. Thoroughly recommended and, in fact, already recommended to anyone who will listen.”
Excellent tour that covered the must-see highlights in a comfortable and efficient pace with a nice balance of tour time and free time. Our tour guide, Tatiana, was very personable and engaging, and her enthusiasm, passion and knowledge of Russian culture and history was clearly evident. Tatiana was a great guide and certainly added value to our experience in Russia. ”
I have just got back from my fantastic tour of Russia (Vodka Shot) and absolutely loved every minute!
Our tour guide Tatiana was absolutely fantastic. She was not only incredibly knowledgeable having lived in St Petersburg her whole life, but she made it so much fun telling us unusual facts and telling us interesting stories about her family and drawing on personal experiences. She gave us so much more than a standard tour guide.
She made sure that every single person was looked after even if we were all going off and doing different excursions. She made sure even in our free time, we were well taken care of and knew exactly where we were going.
My mother and I have done lots of tours previously and found Tatiana was truly the best we have ever had and we were so sad to say goodbye. She was truly wonderful and made us feel so comfortable and made the whole Russian experience perfect! We loved every minute and we want to go back to Russia and visit her again.
Thank you! ”
Tour guide was excellent. Very personable and knowledgable. Was a great trip in general with many highlights. Slightly disappointed with the local guide and the Kremlin. Did not get much of a feel for this place.”
Our guide, Dasha, was extremely professional, efficient, friendly and courteous.
Overall the tour was good. Some observations: I hadn't known how much walking was required. It was rather challenging for someone, like me, with hip and knee issues. You ought to warn potential travellers beforehand what to expect. The pace was also fast, so sometimes difficult to keep up with the guide and take photographs. There was so much to see in Moscow particularly. I feel three days, not two, are necessary to enjoy it more and allow more free time for shopping and/or relaxing.
The hotel accommodation in St Petersburg was not of good standard. In Moscow, the room and breakfast were top quality.”
Excellent tour guide. Tatiana was most helpful, informative and accommodating. Wonderful experience.”
Excellent tour with a most informative, helpful, accommodating and friendly guide have only been on one tour group previously in a larger group and found the smaller group travel far more rewarding.
The only criticism I would have is that because the days are fairly full on, the overnight train journey makes the first Moscow day particularly exhausting. ”
Tatiana was amazing and knowledgeable about everything. She had an answer for every question, be it where to eat, places to see, or about the history of anything on the tour. She was happy to go out of her way to make the tour everything we wanted it to be. She is a great asset to On The Go Tours. ”
Great time! Tatiana is an excellent tour leader and made this time amazing!!! ”
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Wow what an amazing experience we had on the Vodka Shot tour. Olga, our guide was fantastic. From the moment we arrived she was there waiting for us and throughout our entire trip she was a pleasure to be with. So full of history about Russia, so full of enthusiasm for her country, so organised and always happy! She made the entire experience so wonderful. We were certainly 'On the Go' from morning til night but loved every minute!”