St. Petersburg's domes are the golden start to your sightseeing journeyan incredible eastern Europe trip including Moscow's Red Square, the Baltic capitals and Finland's cool capital. You'll also love meeting a Belarussian family for vodka tasting and accordion songs.
Sightseeing Highlights - VISIT the St. Peter and Paul Fortress and Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, the Kremlin in Moscow, the Peter and Paul Church in Vilnius, the Hill of Crosses in Siauliai and the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral in Tallinn
Sightseeing Highlights - VIEW Red Square in Moscow, Nevsky Prospekt and St. Isaac's Cathedral in St. Petersburg and the Finlandia Hall in Helsinki
Welcome to Helsinki, the cool capital of Finland, whose sophisticated streets and laidback atmosphere are yours to enjoy, before meeting your Travel Director and fellow travel companions for an orientation drive to see the city's iconic sights followed by a Welcome Reception.
Day 2 Helsinki – St. Petersburg (3 Nights)
Location: St Petersburg
Accommodation: Solo Sokos Vasilievsky
Follow the beautiful shoreline along the Gulf of Finland, crossing the border into Russia. We journey through the lush forests of Karelia to the imperial city of St. Petersburg - our home for the next three nights. You will have the option of admiring the 'Venice of the North', taking to its waters and navigating the city's canals by boat, or perhaps indulge in the delicious flavours of a traditional pie at the Stolle bakery, while you wander through the city's narrow lanes and grand boulevards this evening. This evening, we dine at our hotel.
Day 3 St. Petersburg Sightseeing and Hermitage Museum Visit
Location: St Petersburg
Join a 'Local Specialist' this morning to explore the city's iconic sights including the Tsar's Winter Palace, Nevsky Prospekt, St. Isaac's Cathedral and the Statue of Peter the Great, whose inspired vision for this city saw it evolve into an elegant metropolis to rival even the most sophisticated of European capitals. Then visit the Peter and Paul Fortress, built to protect the city against invading forces in the 18th century, and the spectacular Hermitage Museum to see one of the world's largest and most valuable art collections. Admire the exquisite works of da Vinci, Rembrandt and Vermeer which hang proudly on its magnificent Baroque and Rococo walls.
Day 4 St. Petersburg Free Day
Spend the day exploring St. Petersburg, admiring the ornate golden domes and colourful mosaics of cathedrals and churches. Consider joining an Optional Experience to a high-energy Russian folklore show.
Day 5 St. Petersburg – High-Speed Train – Moscow (3 Nights)
Location: St Petersburg, Moscow
Accommodation: Azimut Olympic
Board a high-speed Sapsan train that will take you across the vast Russian landscape to the capital city. Delve into the tumultuous and captivating history of Moscow, an ancient city that oozes grandeur. This evening, we dine at our hotel.
Day 6 Moscow Sightseeing
Join a 'Local Specialist' for a sightseeing tour of the imposing Red Square - the site of grand celebrations, fierce fighting and beautiful architecture. See the domes of St. Basil's Cathedral, before venturing beyond the red walls of the Kremlin for a memorable visit to the seat of Russian power.
Day 7 Moscow Free Day
Immerse yourself in the kofe culture of Moscow, before taking to its streets to learn about the city's triumphs and defeats. You have a full day at leisure to explore the sights. Stroll along the flower-lined boulevards of Gorky Park, admire the exquisite underground art and history showcase that is the Moscow Metro, or consider an Optional Experience to the Tsar's Treasury Chamber or St. Sergius Monastery and its handicraft market.
Day 8 Moscow – Minsk (2 Nights)
Location: Smolensk, Minsk
Accommodation: Crowne Plaza
Follow in the footsteps of Napoleon's retreating army of 1812, passing near the 'bloody battlefields' of Borodino, before stopping for a lunch in the Smolensk region. We cross the border and journey to Minsk, the cosmopolitan capital of Belarus and our home for the next two nights. This evening we dine on traditional cuisine at our hotel. Later, consider visiting the Old Town and indulging in the honey flavours of the local medovukha drink.
Day 9 Minsk Sightseeing and Free Time
This morning, we join our 'Local Specialist' to see the iconic sights of Minsk, including the Hero City Memorial, built to commemorate the city's status as one of the Hero Cities of the former Soviet Union. Consider a visit to the Saint Elizabeth Convent during your free afternoon to see its beautiful stained glass and religious icon workshop. This evening, 'Connect With Locals' and join Anatolij and his family in their Belarus farmstead for a traditional 'Be My Guest' dinner. Enjoy rousing accordion choruses and, of course, a few shots.
Day 10 Minsk – Vilnius Sightseeing and Free Time
Accommodation: Courtyard by Marriott City Center
We journey west and cross the border into Lithuania, arriving later in the capital Vilnius, renowned for its beautiful Baroque façades. Join a 'Local Specialist' on a leisurely tour past the city's iconic sights. See the Bishop's Palace and the University, the oldest university in the Baltics, founded in 1579. Explore the 17th-century Baroque Church of St. Peter and St. Paul, built on the site of a temple to the pagan goddess of love. Walk to the Gates of Dawn, the Carmelite Church of St. Theresa and former Jewish Ghetto, passing the Cathedral on the way.
Day 11 Vilnius – Siauliai – Riga (2 Nights)
Accommodation: Mercure Centre
Enjoy a leisurely morning in Vilnius, departing the city after lunch. Our first stop is the extraordinary Hill of Crosses at Siauliai. This site features thousands of crosses, each mysteriously claiming its place since the mid-19th century. We arrive in the ancient city of Riga later, where we will spend the next two nights. This evening, after dinner, maybe take to the streets to explore the Latvian capital's inspiring Gothic spires.
Day 12 Riga Sightseeing and Free Time
Stroll through the winding medieval streets of Riga's UNESCO-listed Old Town - with one of the world's finest collections of Art Nouveau buildings and a Hanseatic trade history we will have an opportunity to explore during a sightseeing and walking tour with a 'Local Specialist'. Spend the rest of the day discovering the sights on your terms. Admire the skyline from the comfort of a canal boat, view the 14th-century House of the Blackheads or indulge in the herbal flavours of the city's favourite Black Balsam at a traditional city tavern - the choice is yours.
Day 13 Riga – Tallinn Sightseeing and Free Time
Location: Tallinn (Estonia)
Accommodation: Nordic Forum
We follow the Gulf of Riga north into Estonia, and travel via Parnu, a popular beach resort for Tallinn residents. Explore the beautifully preserved streets of Tallinn's old Hanseatic Quarter with a 'Local Specialist'. See its 15th-century Luhike Jalg Gate and visit the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, a symbol of Russian power, with its magnificent gold-plated dome.
Day 14 Tallinn – Helsinki Sightseeing and Free Time
Location: Helsinki, Tallinn (Estonia)
We board a ferry this morning, crossing the Baltic Sea to Helsinki where we'll meet a 'Local Specialist' for a sightseeing tour past the modern marble façades of Finlandia Hall, the Senate and Market Squares, and the café-lined Esplanadi. This evening, we toast to an unforgettable northern adventure, joining our fellow travellers for a special Farewell Dinner.
Day 15 Depart Helsinki
Our time together has come to an end. We say a fond farewell to newfound friends at the end of a memorable trip. Airport transfers are available. Conditions apply.
0 breakfasts, 0 lunches, 0 dinners
14 breakfasts,1 lunch,7 dinners (including Be My Guest)
First class travel Highlights
Audio Headsets for flexible sightseeing,Daily breakfast and up to half your evening meals,Luxury air-conditioned coach with Wi-Fi in most countries or alternative transportation (such as rail journeys),Ferry across the Gulf of Finland.,Cherry-picked hotels, all tried and trusted,Optional Experiences and free time,All porterage and restaurant gratuities,Must-see sightseeing and surprise extras,An expert Travel Director and professional Driver,All hotel tips, charges and local taxes,High-speed train between St. Petersburg and Moscow.,Rail service is reserved in standard class.,Handcrafted Highlights,VIP entry to many sights
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