Arrive in Moscow, meet and greet at the airport and private transfer to your cruise ship. Tonight, join with fellow passengers for a dinner welcoming you on board.
Your day will start with a city tour of Moscow, including an excursion to the Moscow Metro (subway) known for the palace-like decor of the major stations, exquisite artwork, sculptures and marble tiling.
Continue sightseeing in Moscow with a visit to the Kremlin (residence of Tsars and Patriarchs) and the Armory Museum (collection of gold, silver and jewelry, beautifully decorated royal carriages and unique religious artifacts); take a stroll in Red Square and Alexandrovsky Garden. Evening free with an optional visit to the Bolshoi Theater.
This morning’s tour will take you to the Tretyakov Gallery, which features a marvelous collection of Russian art. Spend the afternoon exploring the city on your own or take an optional tour to Kolomenskoye Estate (summer residence of Tsars since Ivan the Terrible), to Kuskovo Estate Museum (known for its beautiful park ensemble), or to the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts. Our ship sails from Moscow during dinner.
Relax and enjoy the scenery while cruising in the morning. You will make a stop at the small, quaint town of Uglich for a tour of the local Kremlin, where the seventh wife of Ivan the Terrible lived in voluntary exile. Visit the Grand Princes’ Chambers, the Church of Tsarevich Dmitry-on-the-blood, and the Museum of Applied Arts. Depart Uglich in the evening and enjoy dinner on board.
The ship arrives at Kostroma early afternoon, where you go ashore to explore the loveliest city in the Golden Ring of Russia that retained its original 18th century design. Included in the city tour are Ipatiev Monastery (founded in the 14th century, the burial place of the Godunov family), the Trading Arcades and the Museum of the Romanov family. There is time to enjoy activities on board the ship, including a cultural lecture and a Russian language lesson.
Morning arrival in Yaroslavl, a major port on the Volga River stretching for 18 miles on both its banks. Visit the 13th century Monastery of Our Savior, the beautiful Church of Elijah the Prophet in the city’s central square, and the Regional Museum of Applied Art. A splendid folklore show ends the tour and the ship sails from Yaroslavl.
This will be a day of pure fun in the open air. You will make a stop at Goritsy on the bank of the Volga River and enjoy recreational activities, such as fishing, or pay visit to a local resident’s home. Return to your ship for a late afternoon departure.
Arrive in the early evening at the wonder of the Russian North, the Kizhi Island, which is situated at the northern end of Lake Onega. This tiny island houses a fascinating collection of old buildings brought from different regions of the country. Among them is the 22-domed Transfiguration Church, pictures of which you have probably seen in many travel guides and on postcards. You will take a walking tour of the island and visit the Museum of Architecture and Art, the Transfiguration Church, windmills and a restored peasant’s house. The ship sails in the evening.
Today you will have another recreational stop at the area of Mandroga. Enjoy a Russian-style shish kebob picnic ashore before you continue on your way to St. Petersburg.
Arrive in St. Petersburg early in the morning and explore the “Venice of the North” with a city tour including the major sites, such as the Bronze Horseman, the Spirit of Basil Island, and St. Isaac’s Cathedral. Complete the day with a visit to the world-renowned Hermitage Museum, where masterpieces by hundreds of artists including Renoir, Da Vinci, Rembrandt and Picasso are displayed. The rest of the day is free with an optional excursion to Yussoupov Palace or a classical music show offered. Return to your ship in the evening.
Continue sightseeing in St. Petersburg at the bastions of the Peter and Paul Fortress. Travel to the town of Pushkin for an excursion to Catherine’s Palace. The evening is free to spend as you wish or you can book an optional folklore show in one of the city’s historic palaces.
Spend this day on a tour of the most popular of St. Petersburg’s palaces - Peterhoff (Peter’s Palace). Summer residence of Peter the Great, this palace is mostly famous for its parks, and especially for its fountains. In the evening, an optional visit to the Mariinsky Theater for a ballet performance or a boat ride on the city’s countless canals can be arranged.
Take a morning excursion to the Necropolis at Alexander Nevsky Lavra, burial place of Tchaikovsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, Dostoevsky and other famous people of the past. You will have a chance to explore the city center on your own or do some souvenir shopping this afternoon.
Disembark your ship after breakfast and say good-bye to St. Petersburg as you are transferred for your flight home.
Cruise Ship Information
The vessel on this cruise was constructed in Germany and is furnished with modern navigational equipment, with single and double outside cabins. It has 4 decks. All cabins are comfortably furnished and feature private bathroom facilities with showers as well as individual climate control. This lovely vessel has spacious public rooms and the ship’s crew will charm you as they have been specially trained to cater to the needs of Western travelers. There is a restaurant, comfortable lounge, music saloon, hair salon, first aid services and a sun deck. You will enjoy hearty meals with quality food and attentive friendly service. All cabins are outside with berths at floor level and have large picture windows providing majestic views of the passing countryside.
No Re-Packing During Your Vacation!
Once on board, you will especially appreciate the fact that you will not be burdened with packing and unpacking for the length of your vacation. Our ships serve as “floating hotels” from which all sightseeing is done, even when docked for several nights each in Moscow and St. Petersburg. On-board guest lecturers will share with you their knowledge of history, culture and art of the cities and villages visited en route.