Photo credit: Sergejf
Explore the cultural and architectural riches of Russia in St. Petersburg and Moscow and explore its Soviet past. Gain a full understanding of the Mennonite experience in Ukraine through a consideration of the land of Lenin, Stalin, and the Tsars. You’ll see many famous sights including the Winter Palace—once home to the tsars of Russia, Peterhof Palace and Gardens, the Kremlin, Red Square, wartime cemeteries, and stunning cathedrals. Tour storyteller Len Friesen is Professor of History at Wilfrid Laurier University. He teaches Russian history and speaks Russian fluently. Mary and Len lived in Russia during Gorbachev’s time and have many stories to share. For an enhanced travel experience, consider combining this tour with the Mennonite Story & Highlights of Ukraine Tour, June 1-10, 2019.
Treasures of Russia: Moscow and St. Petersburg, June 10-17, 2019
escorted by Leonard and Mary Friesen
Fare per person for 8-day tour:
CAD: Double occupancy $4,211; single supplement $1,128
USD: Double occupancy $3,240; single supplement $868
Tour Fare includes:
- Hotel accommodations
- Group airport transfer
- All transportation within the tour
- All breakfasts and dinners
- Expert tour leader & guides
- All entrance fees included in itinerary
- Gratuities for drivers, guides, and group meals
Tour Fare excludes:
- International airfare
- Airport transfers if you arrive/depart separately from main group
- Optional evening activities
- Tourist visa
- Travel medical (out-of-country emergency) and cancellation/interruption insurance
Travel medical (out-of-country emergency) insurance and cancellation/interruption insurance are not mandatory but are highly recommended.
All rates shown are in effect at time of printing (April 2018). Although every effort is made to maintain the prices as established, TourMagination does reserve the right to adjust prices on this tour should it become necessary. The published price is guaranteed when paid in full. We accept check/cheque payments, and credit card payments. Please note that payments made using credit cards will be charged a 3% fee
Day 1: Monday, June 10, Moscow
Arrive in Moscow from home cities or following the Ukraine Mennonite Heritage Tour. Settle into your hotel and enjoy a meal together with fellow tour members. Optional evening walkabout in the city to get your bearings.
Day 2: Tuesday, June 11, Moscow
Take a guided tour of the Kremlin Armoury—which stored weapons and royal treasures beginning in 1508 and became a museum in 1813. Today, the Armoury is home to many unique collections of Russian, Western, and Eastern European art and cultural objects, including the Imperial Crown of Russia and the ivory throne of Ivan the Terrible. This afternoon, have lunch at the famous GUM department store and explore the ancient centre of Moscow in a walking tour, including historic Red Square and Lenin’s tomb. Following dinner at the hotel, relax on your own or join Len and Mary on an evening tour travelling on the Moscow Metro where no station is alike.
Day 3: Wednesday, June 12, Moscow
Discover the beauty of the Tretyakov Gallery, which houses the greatest collection of fine Soviet-era art in the world. Stop at the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour to view their stunning worship space in this, the tallest Orthodox church in the world. At the Novodevichy Cemetery see beautifully sculpted tombstones and visit the graves of famous Russians including Anton Chekov, Raisa Gorbachev, Boris Yeltsin, Stalin’s wife Svetlana, and Nikita Khrushchev. This evening, you could attend the circus, go to a musical performance, or take a stroll with Len and Mary.
Day 4: Thursday, June 13, St. Petersburg
After a restful morning, spend the afternoon on a train to St. Petersburg. This evening, get oriented to St. Petersburg on a guided walk with Len and Mary, who have lived in and travelled to this city many times.
Day 5: Friday, June 14, St. Petersburg
Begin your day with a tour of the famed Winter Palace and Hermitage Museum, which boasts an impossibly large collection of paintings and artifacts housed in six striking buildings constructed in the 18th and 19th centuries. En route to the museum, see significant landmarks such as the statues of Nicholas I and Peter the Great. Spend the afternoon on a tour of the Peter and Paul Fortress—the original citadel of St. Petersburg and burial place of the Tsars from the time of Peter the Great. On the way to the Fortress, walk along the eastern tip of Vasilyevsky Island. Pass over the Trotsky Bridge and along the Summer Gardens on your return to the hotel. This evening, unwind at the hotel, or opt for an excursion to the ballet at the Imperial Winter Palace Theatre or other venue
Day 6: Saturday, June 15, St. Petersburg
An exciting day awaits with a trip to Peterhof, for a guided tour of the gold-trimmed Grand Palace with its 30 plus rooms, fountains, and gardens. This afternoon, drive to the Piskaryovskoye Cemetery—an enormous memorial cemetery dedicated to those who died during the Siege of Leningrad. We will learn about its little-known connection to Russian’s President Putin. There will be some optional excursions this evening.
Day 7: Sunday, June 16, St. Petersburg
The last full day in Russia is yours to see the city however you choose. Go back to places of interest, see something new, shop, or whatever your heart desires. Your knowledgeable tour leaders will give you plenty of recommendations.
Day 8: Monday, June 17
Return to your home countries with stories and insights into Russian and Soviet culture and history.
Terms, conditions and restrictions apply; pricing, availability, and other details subject to change and/ or apply to US or Canadian residents. Please confirm details and booking information with your travel advisor.