Itinerary

Extraordinary city of St. Petersburg, founded by Peter the Great in 1703, is the highlight of your Russian River adventure. Enjoy the extravagant baroque architecture of the city center, Nevsky Prospect, Palace Square and Smolny Convent.
1
St. Petersburg, Russia
 
Arrival and embarkation.
2
St. Petersburg, Russia
 
This morning there will be city tour: enjoy the extravagant baroque architecture of the city center, Nevsky Prospect, Palace Square and Smolny Convent. We will see the wonders of the elegant Winter Palace, which today houses the Hermitage Museum, one of the largest art and cultural museums in the world. Ship sails in the afternoon.
Small river village Mandrogi with its gingerbread houses is a living fairy tale. Completely destroyed during WWII, Mandrogi was restored to its former glory at the end of 20th century. Nowadays this cozy little village really is a pearl: all the buildings in the village are made in Russian traditional village style, including the complex of museums, each displaying a different side of Russian folk life.
3Small river village Mandrogi with its gingerbread houses is a living fairy tale. Completely destroyed during WWII, Mandrogi was restored to its former glory at the end of 20th century. Nowadays this cozy little village really is a pearl: all the buildings in the village are made in Russian traditional village style, including the complex of museums, each displaying a different side of Russian folk life.
The island of Kizhi is an architectural gem within Lake Onega. The island is famous for its wonderful collection of 18th-century wooden buildings, restored to their original state. The highlight of Kizhi is the amazing Church of the Transfiguration, with its 22 onion domes; this magnificent structure was built entirely without a single nail. Kizhi is one of real Russian wonders and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
4
Kizhi, Russia
 
The island of Kizhi is an architectural gem within Lake Onega. The island is famous for its wonderful collection of 18th-century wooden buildings, restored to their original state. The highlight of Kizhi is the amazing Church of the Transfiguration, with its 22 onion domes; this magnificent structure was built entirely without a single nail.
Goritsy is a tiny settlement near the White Lake. The spirit of this picturesque town has powerful impact upon the visitors: for time-being travelers seem to forget reality under the influence of the medieval atmosphere of the site. Goritsy is the place of deep spiritual life of monks and numerous ancient monasteries.
5
Goritsy, Russia
 
One of the highlights of the day might be a visit to one of the oldest and the most famous Russian monasteries – the Monastery of St. Cyril of the White Lake. Dating back to the 14th century, it is a home to the most exquisite icon collection in the world.
Stretching for 18 miles on both banks of the Volga River, Yaroslavl is an important Volga port with a population of 600,000. It was founded in the 11th century by Prince Yaroslav the Wise and today retains many noteworthy monuments of its colorful past.
6
Yaroslavl, Russia
 
Of special interest is the magnificent 13th-century Spassky Monastery ensemble, a group of majestic 17th century cathedrals, an elegant rotunda and remnants of an ancient trading center. Loveliest of all is the Church of Elijah the Prophet, situated in the town’s central square. The frescoes on the walls and vaulting inside the church make it really a museum of old Russian painting.
It seems that time has no power over this small chamber town, because the layout of the place did not have major changes since 18th century. The place is cozy and quiet, and people here lead calm and steady life of Russian province – just like a century ago. The town is located on higher hills and therefore has a very unusual topography, but this allows enjoying great views and peace while walking its streets and surroundings.
7You have the time on your own. Take a walk along the cobbled streets of this hospitable place; go up the Cathedral Hill, breathe the fresh air and take a look around… You will understand why famous artists have been coming here in search of inspiration that further led to masterpieces. Today it is also possible to take optional tour to Suzdal – beautiful and ancient city with reach history.
Founded in 1221, this city was a famous meeting place where people from the Orient, Siberia and Turkestan came to barter and trade. Formerly named Gorky, it was later home of political exiles and therefore closed to outsiders for many years. Nizhny Novgorod has only recently opened its doors for visitors, where many well preserved memorials from the 13th and 14th centuries are found. Of special interest is the ancient Kremlin cathedrals, convents and the palace of the early ruling family. Some call Nizhny Novgorod a ‘third capital of Russia’; but Kazan claims this title as well. Nizhny is less cosmopolitan than Moscow and St.Petersburg, and it is obviously smaller. The city has great location in the picturesque place, and lies at the confluence of Volga and Oka rivers.
8Today there will be a tour to the Kremlin of Nizhny Novgorod. Time has been passing by, and this impregnable fortress has turned into historical monument, but one of the surrounding streets still strongly resembles fortification moat.
“This city, no doubt, is the first in Russia after Moscow, - wrote Catherine the Great in 1763, - clearly, Kazan is the capital of a big kingdom”. Kazan is the capital of Tatarstan Republic, it is very diverse, modern and ancient at the same time. It is among the seven largest cities of Russia. Kazan lies at the confluence of the Volga and Kazanka Rivers in European Russia. In 2009 it was chosen as the "sports capital of Russia".
9During the city panoramic tour along the historical parts and places of interest in Kazan the main sights are visited: Kazan Kremlin that is the heart of the city, and mosque Kul-Sharif.
Ask any Russian what Ulyanovsk’s claim to fame is, and the most likely reply will be: “Lenin was born there.” The city was a Soviet shrine for almost 70 years. The Lenin Memorial Complex includes the house in which he was born and other buildings associated with his life. The city of Ulyanovsk is also home to SUV maker UAZ and aircraft producer Aviastar.
10The city-tour is going to be quite extraordinary. In fact, Ulyanovsk is one of a handful of cities that has managed to preserve the atmosphere of an old Russian province. That is why the city’s wooden architecture is the first thing that catches a visitor’s eye. Visiting the Lenin Museum is on the list.
Founded in the 16th century Samara is today an important industrial and cultural center of the region. Formerly known as Kuibyshev, the city played a big role in the Peasant Uprising of 1670 under Styepan Razin and again in 1773 under Yemelin Pugachev. Recently Stalin’s bunker was discovered here and opened to the public. The city is large and very important port with deep historical background. Samara is located at the confluence of two rivers: here the Samara River flows into the Volga River. Well-developed cities of the past were often build where rivers merge, because it was easier to protect them and to trade successfully.
11Samara is a fusion of old trade town with well-preserved buildings, the features of Soviet period and the ones of present time. Historical center of Samara has remarkable architecture: Samara's Gorky Drama Theater is a unique teremok-building in Russian style; the House of merchant Kurlina is an example of Samara’s art nouveau; Lutheran Church of St. George and Roman Catholic Church are of gothic style. The city-tour will offer to you more great sights.
The city was initially founded in the 16th century as a fortress to protect the southern districts of the Russian Empire. Saratov is the place where Yuri Gagarin the first man in space, has started his career, and has done his first air-flight.
12In Saratov there will be a city tour. There is a museum dedicated to Gagarin and his life. Saratov has a rich cultural life. Among its most famous sites are: the Conservatoire designed in a Neo-Gothic style; the Drama Theatre that is one of the oldest theatres in Russia; the Radischev Art Museum with more than 20,000 exhibits.
Volgograd, formerly named Stalingrad, is the site of one of the most important battles of the WWII. Certainly, the two main monuments of the city are related to the war: the giant “Motherland” sculpture and the panoramic museum dedicated to the famous Battle of Stalingrad. There are other monuments in the city as well, including the Kazan Cathedral, the “Old Sarepta” – the museum of former religious colony.
13We are having city-tour today. A lot of time will be spent on enormous memorial complex Mamaev Kurgan. The word ‘kurgan’ means ‘hill’. During the Battle of Stalingrad Mamaev Kurgan saw saw particularly fierce fighting, because the control over this hill became vitally important.

Day 14: Cruising Volga-Don Canal

14Today we are passing though the tremendous artificial waterways named the Volga–Don–Canal. It is a part of the United Deep-Water System of Waterways. This canal connects the Volga and the Don rivers.
The southernmost part of Russia’s Steppes was an 18th century Cossack outpost and trading center. Today this “Gateway to the Caucasus” leads to the Ukraine and is an industrial and agricultural center. Its magnificent parks and beaches, theaters and museums, and unusual botanical gardens with vast collections of rare and beautiful plants make Rostov a most attractive city on the Don River. Rostov-on-Don is one of the largest cities of Russian Federation with population over one million people. Area of the city is 354 sq. km., the distance from Moscow — 1226 km. It is the most heavily industrialized city of South Russia, cultural center with large number of universities, colleges and architectural monuments, and is an important river port in both passenger-oriented and industrial shipping.
15The place has a very nice city center. It will be visited during the city-tour today during first half of the day. Places of interest in Rostov-on-Don include Bolshaya Sadovaya street the focal point of administrative, business and cultural life of the city; the beautiful park named after Maksim Gorky; very old city where the center of the St. Dimitry Rostovsky fortress was situated in the 2nd half of the 18th century. Also one of the sights is the city’s picturesque quay of the River Don.
16Time to bid farewell to your new friends and the city of Rostov-on-Don. Disembarkation.

Rates

DescriptionUSD *
Suite Boat Deck6,550
Dedicated SGL Boat Deck5,550
Twin Standard Boat Deck4,700
Dedicated SGL Upper Deck5,250
Twin Standard Upper Deck4,400
Junior Suite Main Deck5,600
Twin Standard Main Deck4,100
Port Taxes200
Twin/double cabin for SGL use+50%
* Rates are per person, based on double occupancy

Schedule

2017

October1