Russian Golden RingTour 2022

Regular extension tour

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Places to Visit

Accomodation


Suzdal
Pushkarskaya Sloboda Hotel
1 night

Kostroma
Old Street Hotel
1 night

Daily information

Day 1

Suzdal

08:00 Meeting with a tour guide at a centrally located hotel in Moscow and departure by a comfortable minibus for 3 days tour of ancient Russian towns located around the capital city. We are heading to the first stop in the tour – the town Sergiev Posad, the home of Trinity St. Sergius Monastery, a significant spiritual centre of the Russian Orthodox Church, listed in the UNESCO World Heritage list.

10:00 Tour of the Trinity St. Sergius Monastery (Lavra).

11:30 Departure to Vladimir: make yourself comfortable, admire landscapes and scenery and listen to our guide’s story about the settlements that will be passed by.

Lunch in a local restaurant “Kolhozny Club”. Afterwards continue driving to Vladimir.

Approx. at 17:00 Panoramic city tour in Vladimir.

19:00 Transfer to Suzdal to check in at the hotel.

Dinner on your own account. Overnight in the hotel “Pushkarskaya Sloboda

Unique architectural ensemble of the Monastery includes churches and cathedrals dating back to XV – XVII centuries.  On the tour we will visit:

  1. the majestic five-domed Assumption Cathedral (1559-1585),  founded at the behest of Tsar Ivan IV the Terrible. In ancient Russian cities and towns it was a tradition to erect the main cathedrals in honour of the assumption of the blessed virgin. This one resembles the Assumption Cathedral of the Moscow Kremlin. The monastery cathedral repeats the general composition of the five-domed temple, exceeding the size of the one in Moscow Kremlin. The interior space of the Monastery Cathedral amazes with its majestic size and richness of light.
  2. the Church of the Spirit (1476-1477) – the Church in honour of the Descent of the Holy Spirit on the Apostles. The Church of the Spirit was built in those years when the best Russian and European architects worked in Moscow at the grand ducal court. That is why all new techniques and details were used in the construction and decoration of the temple.
  3. the Church of St. Sergius with the Refectory Chamber (1686-1692). The Refectory Church, one of the largest and most beautiful in the Monastery’s architectural ensemble, appears as a beautiful palace because of abundance of outdoor attire. The interior decoration is also colourful and solemn.

”Bogdarnya” means “the gift of God”. The area of the complex is an intriguing and unique mix of stunning countryside with ancient forests, open meadows, expansive lakes and clean flowing rivers. Breath fresh air, enjoy the scenery, taste local food – the visit to Bogdarnya will please your body and soul.

In Bodgarnya complex we will visit an authentic peasants’ old hut and acquaint with the life of a peasant family of the late 19th – early 20th centuries. Optionally one can try on traditional Russian outfits and take pictures in them depicting scenes of Russian village people.

Once the capital city of North-Eastern Russia, modern Vladimir still preserves the spirit of antiquity. The town’s historical white stone architecture is on the list of the UNESCO heritage objects.

At the end of the city tour take a walk along the historical Georgievskaya Street.

Nowadays in Vladimir, pedestrian and cycling infrastructure is actively developing. The restored pedestrian zone on Georgievskaya Street, which is full of tourist facilities, is a favourite walking place for citizens and tourists. It stretches along the main transport highway of the regional centre. Some newly installed bronze sculptures are absolute favourites and participants of endless selfies…

Day 2

Kostroma

09:00 After breakfast we will start our day with the сity tour in Suzdal and continue by visiting the Kremlin and the open-air Museum of Wooden Architecture.

12:00 Departure to Kostroma: make yourself comfortable, admire landscapes and scenery and listen to our guide’s story about the settlements that will be passed by.

13:30 Free time for lunch in Ivanovo (1 hour)

15:00 Guided tour to Ivanovo Textile Factory Museum.

17:00 We continue driving to Kostroma.

19:00 Check in at hotel. Dinner on your own account. Overnight at hotel “Old Street“.

During a sightseeing tour of Suzdal you will get acquainted with the rich history of this ancient town, its amazing architectural ensemble. In the kremlin, you will see the ramparts of the ancient city, the white-stone Cathedral of the Nativity of the Virgin of the 13th century, the Bishops’ Chambers of the 15th-18th centuries, in the building of which the expositions of the museum-reserve are housed. In the Museum of Wooden Architecture you will learn about the traditional way of life, rituals and holidays of the peasants in Vladimir province.

The tour will be finished at the Gostiny Dvor in the city centre, where you can buy some traditional Russian specialties (free time for shopping). 

Gostiny Dvor (meaning:  Trade House) in Suzdal was built at the beginning of the 19th century in the likeness of the one in St. Petersburg. This is the busiest shopping arcade in the Gold Ring towns and the best place to buy “Suzdalskaya Medovukha”, an ancient Russian drink made of honey, water and yeast which appeared well ahead of vodka. And do not forget to look into the “Baker’s Nest”, a place of real Suzdal bread with wild yeast leaven, rye and white bread, pot-bellied loaves and crispy baguettes, crumbly croissants and twisted pretzels.

Because of huge number of textile enterprises, Ivanovo was called “Russian Manchester” and “the city of calico kings”.

Ivanovo can be a paradise for lovers of architectural style “constructivism”. More than 30 monuments of early Soviet architecture have been preserved in the city.

The Museum of Industry and Art, founded by the manufacturer and philanthropist Dmitry Burylin, contains unique collections of books, weapons, numismatics and porcelain. The Burylin Museum was one of the finest private museums in pre-revolutionary Russia, and is still often called the Ivanovo Hermitage.

The Ivanovo Textile Factory Museum has got on display the best examples and fascinating works spanning 200 years. It is the museum of the local chintz (printed multicoloured cotton fabric with a glazed finish) containing over 300 iconic samples of Ivanovo cotton and silk canvas.

Day 3

Yaroslavl

09:00 After breakfast meet with your tour guide for a morning tour to discover highlights of Kostroma.

11:00 Check out from the hotel. Departure to Yaroslavl.

12:30 Overview city tour in Yaroslavl.  On the tour you will visit the Church of Elijah the Prophet, take a walk along the Volga River embankment and have a look at the Russian Golden Ring in miniature:

14:00 Before to depart from Yaroslavl you are offered to taste some local tincture drinks and enjoy traditional food for lunch in a local restaurant “SOBRANIE“.

16:00 Departure to Moscow: make yourself comfortable, admire landscapes and scenery and listen to our guide’s story about the settlements that will be passed by. On the way a quick technical stop can be done in Rostov-the-Great.

Approx. at 21:00 we will finish our day and the trip in full back in Moscow.

To begin with you will be pointed out the Susanin Square – the central square of Kostroma built according to the general plan of the city of 1781-1784. Here you can see a well preserved architectural ensemble of the late 18th-19th centuries. The main dominant of the square is the Fire Tower (1825), which has become one of the symbols of Kostroma. Have a look at the Church of the Resurrection on Debrya (1645-1651) – a beautiful monument of traditional Russian architecture. One of the first stone buildings of Kostroma, it was built at the expense of the townspeople.

And finally we will visit the main place of interest in Kostroma, its soul and heart – the Holy Trinity Ipatiev Monastery. It is the cradle of the Romanov dynasty, an object of the cultural heritage towering on the bank of the Kostroma River in the western part of the city. On the territory of the Ipatiev Monastery there are more than ten historical buildings. The magnificent Trinity Cathedral (1650-1652) is its main attraction.

Yaroslavl is a magnificent town situated on a high bank of the Volga River, it is rich with cultural and architectural monuments of the ancient Russian history. Its historical centre is included into the UNESCO Heritage List.

On the tour you will visit the Church of Elijah the Prophet, take a walk along the Volga River embankment and have a look at the Russian Golden Ring in miniature:

The Church of Elijah the Prophet, built between 1647 and 1650 in the architectural style typical for Yaroslav, comprises a white-stone four-pillared main building topped with five green domes connected by a closed gallery to a bell tower and a dome tower on either side. Inside it boasts a magnificent iconostasis and some of the best 17th century frescos in Russia which cover every inch of its walls.

A walk along the upper level of the Volga River embankment. The upper level of the embankment is a kind of a large observation deck. There are many monuments, museums and other historical sites to be viewed from here.

When visiting the Show – Museum “Golden Ring of Russia in miniature” you will systemize all places you have already seen on your 3 days trip and can make some new plans for travelling deeper into Russian provinces. Here, on the area of ​​almost 330 square meters, there is a miniature model of official 9 towns of the Gold Ring and even more.

Rostov is one of the earliest historically attested towns in Russia, first mentioned under 862 in the ancient chronicle “Tale of Bygone Years.” The town’s main architectural ensemble is the majestic kremlin or, more properly, the Court of the Metropolitan.  Although most of the ensemble was not built until the 17th century, this citadel conveys an unforgettable sense of Rostov’s importance for medieval Russia. In modern time it has been a set for historical films many times.

Information

Russia

Winston Churchill once famously described Russia as “a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma”. This monumental nation remains as elusive today as it ever was. With its vast landscapes as varied and mysterious as its history, visitors will be treated to towering volcanic peaks, frozen Siberian wastelands and some extraordinarily extravagant cities. While the majority of travellers beeline for the west to marvel at the cultural delights of Moscow and St Petersburg, there is plenty to be seen beyond these two central hubs. The Golden Ring is dotted with enchanting historical towns brimming with ancient architecture; the glorious River Volga will transport you south towards the beautiful Caspian Sea where you will witness Russia at its most traditional and authentic; and the famed Trans-Siberian Railway will take you through a land of sublime natural beauty. Whether you are seeking historic cities, idyllic countryside, artistic riches, or vodka-fuelled debauchery, Russia won’t leave you disappointed.

Currency

Rouble (RUB; symbol руб). Notes are in denominations of 5,000, 1,000, 500, 100 and 50. Coins are in denominations of 10, 5, 2 and 1.

Banking

Major European and international credit and debit cards, including Visa and MasterCard, are widely accepted. American Express cards are rarely accepted.

ATMs are widely available throughout Russia, although if you’re venturing into rural areas, they may be less widespread so carry a reserve amount of cash. Most ATMs will offer English as well as Cryllic translations.

Foreign currency should only be exchanged at official bureaux and authorised banks. You will usually need your passport to change money. It is wise to retain all exchange receipts. Bureaux de change are numerous and easy to locate. Large shops and hotels offer their own exchange facilities. All major currencies can be converted in big cities.

Distances in Russia should not be underestimated, as Russia is a vast country and travel by road takes considerably more time than by train or airplane.

Public transport in the cities is comprehensive and cheap. Many services are electric transport (metro, tramway, trolleybus). Stations on the Moscow and St Petersburg metros are always elegant and often palatial.

Taxis are available in most larger cities; they can be hailed in the street, hired at a rank or booked by telephone. It is safer but far more expensive to use officially marked taxis; they are yellow with chequered signs on the doors.

Russia’s reputation for poor food is now, like so much else in the country, a thing of the past. In the cities it is possible to feast on anything that can be found in Western Europe, restaurants and cafes catering for all tastes and all pockets. With a vast array of international produce and dining experience, from fast food to high end, the visitor is left with an overwhelming selection. Move into the countryside and choice and quality are less guaranteed, but there’s certainly no need to go hungry. It is worth noting that away from the big cities it is harder to find menus in English – so a splattering of Russian vocabulary is useful.

Hotels in Moscow and other large cities include a 10 to 15% service charge. Otherwise 10% is customary.

As you’d expect Russia’s climate is hugely dependent on where in the country you find yourself. With temperatures known to hit a tarmac-melting 37°C (99°F) in the cities and fall to -30°C (-22°F) and lower during the Siberian winter, there’s no point generalising about Russia’s weather except to say, be prepared.

While the notion of visiting a snow-blanketed Moscow or St Petersburg has a definite romance, most tourists prefer to come calling in the warm summer months of June, July and August. This means the shoulder seasons of April, May, September and October are good options for visitors keen to avoid the peak crowds – prices are generally lower from September to May, and tourist sites almost invariably less crowded.

Spring is often characterised by slushy roads. And if your heart’s set on that winter wonderland, December’s the best bet. Seasonal climates apply elsewhere in Russia – Siberia can have devastatingly cold winters, while its summers are generally fairly pleasant, if a little rainy. The region of Russia near the Black Sea has mild winters, but again attracts a fair amount of rain.

Those visiting over summer should pack a mixture of lightweight and mediumweight clothing – natural fibres such as cotton and linen are best. For the winter visitor, meanwhile – layers, layers, layers. Wools and cashmeres are great material for keeping in the warmth. Sturdy shoes are always a good idea, no matter what time of year.

Wi-Fi is available within most establishments in larger cities (although they may charge) and at internet cafes. Although Russia does not ostensibly censor the internet, there is an internet blacklist of sites which you will not be able to visit from inside Russia, which includes some independent news sites.

Electrical sockets in Russia are one of the two European standard electrical socket types: The “Type C” Europlug and the “Type E” and “Type F” Schuko. If your appliance’s plug doesn’t match the shape of these sockets, you will need a travel plug adapter in order to plug in.

Electrical sockets in Russia usually supply electricity at between 220 and 240 volts AC. If you’re plugging in an appliance that was built for 220-240 volt electrical input, or an appliance that is compatible with multiple voltages, then an adapter is all you need.  If your appliances are not compatible with 220-240 volt electrical output, a voltage converter will be necessary

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