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Russian History Cruise from Moscow to St. Petersburg - 2020

Moscow • 7-night river cruise with Uglich, Goritsy, Lake Onega/Kizhi Island, Mandrogi • St. Petersburg
  • $392
  • 13
  • 32
14 DAYS FROM $5,698
Moderate Deluxe
Extend Your journey (1 available)
Helsinki, Finland

4 DAYS FROM $1,399


Save up to $1,999 per couple with 2-for-1 international airfare on all departures. 

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St. Petersburg to Moscow

Pre-Trip Extension

Helsinki, Finland

FROM: $1399 PER PERSON | 4 DAYS | $350 PER DAY
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DAY 1:

Depart U.S.A.

Travel to Russia on an overnight flight bound for St. Petersburg tonight. If you took our pre-trip extension, you’ll arrive by train.

DAY 2:

Arrive in the Imperial Capital

If you booked your airfare through Vantage, a Vantage representative will greet you and arrange your transfer to your hotel. Tonight, gather with your fellow travelers for a Welcome Briefing and Dinner at the hotel.

Included Meals:


DAY 3:

St. Petersburg’s “rainbows”

Today you'll begin your discoveries of St. Petersburg, Peter the Great’s “Window on the West,” a dazzling baroque city of white, gold, and pastels — and one of the best reasons to travel to Russia. Enjoy a panoramic tour of the city that's been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You’ll admire Church on Spilled Blood, where Emperor Alexander II was assassinated in March 1881, and Nevsky Prospect, the city’s main thoroughfare that is the focal point of shopping, dining, and nightlife. Its myriad bridges make it a lovely walking path to admire the glistening canals — the reason why this metropolis is often called the “Venice of the North.”

This afternoon, after lunch on your own, tour St. Petersburg’s canals, which are part of the historic group of monuments known collectively as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. And, besides a storied history, what connects these banks? Beautiful bridges, of course. Adornments include statues, horses, griffins, and sphinxes, and the spans all come in a plethora of hues. See them and Yusupov Palace, legendary site of Rasputin’s slaying.

Vantage Exclusive:

  • Tour the rivers and canals of St. Petersburg, including Yusupov Palace
Included Feature:
  • City tour of St. Petersburg

Included Meals:


DAY 4:

Follow in the steps of the tsars

This morning you'll visit Catherine I's palace, yet another magnificent landmark of the tsarist era and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Built for the wife of Peter the Great, the palace is surrounded by serene gardens and once served as the summer residence of the Russian tsars.

St. Petersburg is also lovely for strolling — perhaps you’ll choose to spend the afternoon walking through any number of public parks, taking an independent hop-on, hop-off canal cruise, or visiting the Fabergé museum and marvel at the works of master jeweler Carl Fabergé, who created his famous artisanal eggs and more for the last two Russian tsars.

The rest of the day is yours to explore, or join us for another optional tour at a lively show of Russian folk music and dance this evening.

Included Features:

  • Excursion to Catherine's Palace

Included Meals:

Optional Tour: Palace Folklore Show

Palace Folklore Show

  • Approximate Cost: $110 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 3 hours
  • Location: St. Petersburg, Russia
  • When: Evening show
There’s no better way to get acquainted with the soul of a people than through the arts, and you can learn about the rhythms of life here at a folklore show at Nikolaevsky Palace. Tap your toes to traditional songs, watch as skirts twirl wildly with centuries-old folk dances, and be wowed by ballet dancers, too. You’ll also feast like a tsar with canapés including caviar, vodka, champagne, and more.

DAY 5:

Marvel at Peterhof, the “Russian Versailles”

Travel a short distance outside of St. Petersburg this morning to visit Peterhof, a UNESCO site often called the "Russian Versailles." Peter the Great built the splendid palace and elaborate gardens on the shore of the Gulf of Finland. You’ll admire the spray of fountains set to music and a marvelous art collection, including a stunning room filled to the brim with historic portraits.

Enjoy lunch on your own before transferring to embark the m/s Crucelake. This afternoon, learn about the art of breaking bread served with salt, a traditional Slavic greeting.

Included Feature:

  • Excursion to UNESCO-listed Peterhof Palace
Cultural Connection:
  • Enjoy a “bread and salt” welcome upon embarkation

Included Meals:

Breakfast & Dinner

DAY 6:

Arts abound

Today you'll visit Peter and Paul Fortress back in the city, the original citadel of St. Petersburg founded by Peter the Great in 1703. This small island is where prisoners were once housed, but today it is far more majestic, with a glorious gilded spire and a beachfront that is a hot spot in the summertime.

Today, enjoy regional culinary specialties during lunch at a local restaurant.

This afternoon, you’ll visit the Hermitage Museum, which features over 3 million works of art collected by Empress Catherine the Great, spread out over a complex of five massive buildings. Perhaps you’ll come back and visit in your spare time to see even more than what you’ll admire at this UNESCO site this afternoon.

In the evening after dinner, enjoy entertainment on board, with a daily schedule that varies but includes folk and classical music.

Included Features:

  • Excursion to the Peter and Paul Fortress
  • Hermitage Museum visit
Cultural Connection:
  • Lunch in a local restaurant
  • Evening musical entertainment in the ship's lounge

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

DAY 7:

Marvelous Mandrogi

This afternoon takes you on an excursion to the village of Mandrogi, where you’ll visit a wooden home and a local handicrafts market, followed by a shashlik (Russian barbecue) lunch. Back on board, learn the art of painting matryoshka (nesting dolls), and about Russian life at an onboard lecture that also includes local handicrafts — available in the onboard gift shop — and enjoy a lively "Russian language for travelers" lesson.

Included Feature:

  • Walking tour of Mandrogi
Cultural Connections:
  • Enjoy a shashlik Russian BBQ lunch
  • Learn the art of painting matryoshka (nesting dolls)
  • Learn about Russian life at an onboard lecture that includes local handicrafts
  • Enjoy a lively Russian language for travelers lesson & presentation on Russian culture

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

DAY 8:

Lake Onega & Kizhi Island

After a leisurely breakfast on board and a port talk on the imperial capital of St. Petersburg, you’ll learn more about Russian history during an onboard lecture. Visit the Captain’s Bridge to marvel at views of Lake Onega before arriving at Kizhi Island, whose church and the adjacent clock tower are a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

This open-air museum of wooden architecture is a true site to behold, and you’ll admire fascinating examples of traditional wooden buildings collected from around Russia. Among the notable structures is the Church of the Transfiguration, an ornate structure with 22 domes, built entirely without nails.

This afternoon enjoy a lecture on the history and production of Russian vodka.

Vantage Exclusive:

  • Kizhi Island excursion, with visit to the Open-Air Museum of Wooden Architecture
Cultural Connection:
  • Lecture on the history and production of Russian vodka
  • Enjoy live music in the lounge tonight

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

DAY 9:

Toast Goritsky discoveries

This morning you’ll learn more about Russian history during and onboard lecture before arriving in Goritsky for a walking tour. Be enchanted by the tranquil village’s fascinating history as a former home to several monasteries. Visit a local school to learn about day-to-day life, as well as a local home. Resurrection Monastery awaits you next, and its storied history (founded by one of Ivan the Terrible’s daughters-in-law) is as fascinating as the architecture.

This afternoon back on board, try your hand at Russian specialties during a cooking lesson, followed by vodka and tea with a blini tasting. These traditional pancakes are usually made with buckwheat flour and garnished with sour cream, butter, or caviar.

Included Features:

  • Walking tour of Goritsy
  • Visit Resurrection Monastery
Cultural Connections:
  • Learn more about Russian history during an onboard lecture
  • Visit a local school to learn about day-to-day life, as well as a local home
  • Try your hand at Russian specialties during a cooking lesson, followed by vodka and tea with pies and a blini tasting

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

DAY 10:

Life on the Volga

Away from the cities, Russia is a land of villages, fields, forests, and lakes, all threaded by rivers such as the mighty Volga, Europe's longest. Discover Uglich this morning, one of the motherland’s oldest cities that is part of the storied Golden Ring along the picturesque Volga. A favorite city of Ivan the Terrible, you’ll learn more about its fascinating history on a walking tour. Immerse yourself in tradition here when you visit a local home, where home-hosted tea and tasty pies await.

After lunch onboard, learn about Russian Fairytales during an engaging lecture. Later this evening, indulge in a Captain’s Farewell Dinner, with a talent show and onboard entertainment.

Included Feature:

  • Walking tour of Uglich
Cultural Connections:
  • Visit a local home, and get acquainted with Russian family life
  • Learn about Russian fairy tales during an onboard presentation

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

DAY 11:

Marvelous Moscow

Enjoy a sumptuous breakfast on board your ship before a port talk on Russia’s capital. This afternoon you’ll visit Russia's symbol of might and majesty, the Kremlin, on a guided tour that includes the State Armory Chambers, the repository of the bejeweled Fabergé eggs.

Tonight’s dinner is in a local restaurant, where you’ll feast on regional specialties and get a real flavor for traditional culture.

Included Features:

  • Visit the Kremlin and enjoy a guided tour that includes the Kremlin Grounds and Assumption Cathedral
  • Visit to the Armory Chambers
Cultural Connection:
  • Enjoy dinner in a local restaurant

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

DAY 12:

Capital delights beckon

This morning, disembark for us to transport your luggage to your city-center hotel while you enjoy a convenient city tour including the KGB building, Kremlin Towers, and the Arbat, a massive pedestrian thoroughfare filled with many shops that put any Cold War-era memories of bare shelves, well, on the shelf! Plus, you'll have free time to explore iconic Red Square, a UNESCO World Heritage Site where colorful St. Basil's Cathedral and Lenin's Mausoleum beckons.

On today’s tour, you’ll also visit Moscow’s Metro, which serves as a sort of art gallery, a public-works remnant from the 1950s. Some stations even have massive chandeliers!

This afternoon, enjoy leisure time for further explorations and dinner on your own, or join us for an optional tour to the World War II Museum and Poklonnaya Hill, where you can enjoy a lovely panorama of the city.

This evening, you’ll admire even more views during an included Moscow by Night tour. You’ll witness New Maidens' Convent, Victory Hill, and have several photo stops, including Red Square with its twinkling lights.

Vantage Exclusive:

  • Moscow by Night tour
Included Features:
  • City tour of Moscow
  • Visit the Arbat pedestrian thoroughfare
Cultural Connection:
  • Visit Moscow’s Metro

Included Meals:

Optional Tour: World War II Museum & Poklonnaya Hill

World War II Museum & Poklonnaya Hill

  • Approximate Cost: $69 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 3 hours
  • Location: Moscow, Russia
  • When: Afternoon tour
Known to most Westerners as World War II, Russians call this the Great Patriotic War, and you’ll learn more about it from another vantage point at this fascinating museum featuring hundreds of exhibits like weapons, clothes, and wartime photographs. Victory Park on Poklonnaya Hill includes a large ensemble of monuments commemorating Russian war triumphs, especially that over Napoleon. During the French invasion of Russia in 1812, it was where the French general expected — in vain — that the keys to the Kremlin would be presented to him. Today the site includes a Holocaust memorial mosque, a church, tanks and machinery, and the country’s tallest obelisk.

DAY 13:

Immerse yourself in the arts

This morning, visit the Tretyakov Gallery — a fascinating introduction to Russian art and culture — with more than 100,000 works charting the development of Russian painting from the 10th to 20th centuries.

This afternoon you’ll have an afternoon at leisure or enhance your tour with an optional tour to Izmailovo. Your Farewell Dinner will be in the hotel this evening.

Included Features:

  • Tretyakov Gallery visit

Included Meals:

Breakfast & Dinner
Optional Tour: Izmailovo Vodka Museum & Vernissage

Izmailovo Vodka Museum & Vernissage

  • Approximate Cost: $60 USD per person
  • Approximate Time: 4 hours
  • Location: Moscow, Russia
  • When: Afternoon tour
Almost everyone is familiar with the “Kremlin,” but most don’t know that “Kremlin” is a rather ubiquitous term for fortified complex. The Vernissage and Vodka Museum, however, was built in 2007 as a cultural complex imitating Russian architecture from the 18th century. You’ll learn about it and the tradition of raising a glass of these traditional spirits with more than 500 varieties. Afterwards, visit Izmailovsky Kremlin, a flea market, to pick up some souvenirs; and Izmailovsky Vernisazh, an exhibition/fair filled with traditional folk handicrafts for admiring and purchase.

DAY 14:

Depart for home

This morning, check out of your hotel and depart for the Moscow airport for your flight home.

Included Meals:


Important Notice: The above day-by-day itineraries are preliminary and are therefore subject to change. If changes occur while on tour, you will be notified by your Vantage Cruise Director or regional expert.

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Russian History Cruise from Moscow to St. Petersburg - 2020

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