15 DAYS ●
A complex, bizarre and spectacular country, Russia has so much to discover. Its roots lie in the banks of the Volga River - embark on a six-night Volga River cruise from Moscow to St Petersburg, discovering serene countryside, historical towns and age-old traditions as you go
Wander through the Red Square and the Kremlin, the heart of Russia
Visit the estate of Tolstoy, one of the worlds greatest authors
Immerse yourself in Russia’s scenic beauty on this 7 day cruise
Explore the grand palaces of Russia's second largest city
Our Russian Dreams itinerary has been intricately designed for those who wish to see iconic sites and magnificent treasures. You'll travel with the assurance that all your arrangements are taken care of, with international flights, accommodation and all the touring listed below. You will be accompanied by our industry-leading National Escorts whose unparalleled knowledge and talent will turn your tour into an unforgettable experience.
Fly to Moscow. Transfer into the city stopping en route at the Sparrow Hills viewing deck for a glass of champagne and panoramic views over the city. Take some time to relax before joining the group for a welcome dinner.
This morning you will visit some of Russia’s most iconic sights. Moscow is considered to be the heart of Russia’s history and the influence of the Soviet-era still remains prominent, a fascinating insight into a different world. Stroll through Red Square to reach the Kremlin, both of which were stages during significant historical events. Within the Kremlin you will visit the Armoury, home to plenty of intriguing Russian treasures, weapons and armour, including the chainmail of former Russian Regent Boris Godunov. Dinner that night is 21 floors above the city: the views will be mesmerising.
Start the day with a visit to Stalin’s bunker, an intriguing view into the life of the notorious Soviet leader. Next, cruise along the Moskva River and enjoy lunch on board as you admire the cityscapes before taking an afternoon excursion to the GUM department store, a magnificent 19th-century built structure which now houses Russia’s most distinguished shopping mall.
Travel from Moscow to Tula by train. This afternoon, visit one of Russia’s most iconic estates, Yasnaya Polyana, the former home of highly influential writer Leo Tolstoy. The estate has now been converted into a writer’s museum and features beautiful gardens through which you can wander.
Visit Tula’s charming 16th century Kremlin fortress before touring a Samovar Factory where you can learn about the craftsmanship behind these elaborate Russian tea containers. Return to Moscow by train. That evening enjoy a fabulous dinner in Pushkin, one of Moscow's best restaurants.
Spend your last morning in Moscow at the Tretyakov Museum which houses some 170,000 of Russia’s most celebrated art, spanning a period of a thousand years. After lunch take a ride on the Moscow Metro like a true Muscovite, admiring the historic beauty of the underground architecture. Board the Volga Dream cruise ship this evening and enjoy the Captain’s welcome reception and a delicious dinner on board. Cast off on your six-night cruise along the Volga River.
Cruise along the Volga River to Uglich appreciating the passing lush woodland and peaceful nature. Uglich is one of the ancient towns of Russia’s Golden Ring and has retained its traditions and character over hundreds of years. Explore the Church of St Dmitri-on-the-Blood, said to be constructed on the exact spot where Dmitri, son of the first Russian Tsar Ivan the Terrible was murdered. This evening, attend a charming concert of Russian choral music at St. John’s Church.
Cruise on to the Golden Ring town of Yaroslavl, one of Russia’s oldest port towns, founded in the year 1010. Its old centre has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visit the 11th-century Spassky Monastery where you can view the 16th-century frescoes, the Monastery of the Transfiguration of the Saviour and the Church of Elijah the Prophet, all perfect examples of Russia’s historical architecture. Later this morning take part in a costumed reception at the governor’s house before
re-boarding the ship for lunch.
Disembark at the charming riverside town of Goritsy. Famous for its monasteries, you will visit Kirillo-Belozersky, a vast complex founded in 1397 and home to a large selection of Russian icons. After exploring the monastery climb back aboard your boat and sail northwards to Lake Onega.
Cruise across the beautiful Lake Onega, wend amongst its 1,369 islands, stopping for a wander on the timeless Kizhi. Stroll through the traditional Russian wooden houses and windmills to the famous Church of the Transfiguration. This church was constructed in 1714, has 22 domes and, more intriguingly, was built without a single nail. On board the ship this evening watch a piano concert featuring pieces from Russian greats Rachmaninov and Tchaikovsky.
Join the Svir River, one of the 58 rivers feeding out of Lake Onega. Considered one of the most scenic river routes in Russia the surrounding region has been an inspiration for many authors, poets and composers throughout Russian history. Cruise past the many quaint river hamlets and villages stopping at Mandrogi, a popular holiday village with exquisitely carved wooden houses, a recreation of 19th century architecture. Reach Lake Ladoga later in the afternoon, the largest lake in Europe. Dinner this evening will be a deck-top barbecue.
Arrive in St Petersburg and disembark the Volga Dream. Take a city tour this morning visiting the Peter and Paul Fortress, the first structure to be built in St Petersburg and the birthplace of the city. Within the fortress is the Peter and Paul Cathedral and the former prison of the Trubetskoy Bastion, where you’ll find many fascinating historical exhibitions. The afternoon is at leisure until a truly authentic Russian dinner at a vodka house including a special vodka tasting experience.
This morning travel out of St Petersburg to the majestic Peterhof, a former Tsar’s Palace often compared to the Palace of Versailles. After lunch return to St Petersburg, stopping en route at the Petrodverets Watch Factory, Russia’s oldest watch factory and now a manufacturer of Raketa watches, traditionally produced for the Red Army and the Soviet Navy.
Explore the Yusupov Palace on the Moika River, a perfect example of exquisite 19th-century Russian interior. More notoriously, the palace basement is renowned as the place where Rasputin, Tsar Nicholas II’s advisor was assassinated. This afternoon, visit St Isaac’s Cathedral, the largest cathedral in Russia and a dominant feature of the St Petersburg skyline. The interior is incredibly lavish and the walls are adorned with numerous intricate mosaics, statues, paintings and sculptures. Enjoy a special farewell dinner at a traditional restaurant.
Take in the last of St Petersburg’s extensive culture at the Hermitage Museum, one of the world’s largest and oldest museums. Within the complex is a vast collection of art, antiquities and jewellery and many interesting exhibitions. Included in the tour is a ticket to the heavily guarded Diamond Room in the Treasure Galleries, home to the most valuable collection of artefacts in the world. This afternoon, transfer to the airport for your return flight to the UK, arriving the same day.
All of our tour departures include international flights and taxes in the price. If the dates we have available for this tour don't suit your needs, or you are not sure travelling as part of a group is for you, maybe a Private Tour would be more ideal.
At Wendy Wu Tours we are all avid adventurers, constantly seeking out the best ways for you to experience Asia. That's why we are Asia experts and the UK's leading Asia tour operator - our customer reviews and numerous awards say it all. This website is all about showcasing both Asia's top sights and its magnificent hidden gems; about the plethora of different types of authentic and exciting experiences that we can offer you; and about giving you the very best holiday, whether it's your first visit or your 10th. Wendy Wu and the team look forward to welcoming you to Asia soon!
Sign up to our e-newsletter to get the latest news & exclusive travel offers
©2017 Wendy Wu Tours, All Rights Reserved. ABTA: W7994, ATOL: 6639 and IATA.