Day 1: Arrival in St. Petersburg
Upon arrival in St. Petersburg you'll be met and transferred to the hotel of your choice.
Days 2 – 4: St. Petersburg
Breakfasts at the hotel followed by a free time to explore the city. We can offer sightseeing tours with private guides, please see list below. All tours are private with English speaking guides and start from the hotel. We can also help with tickets to the theatre or ballet at well-known venues such as the Mariinsky Theatre.
Day 5: Departure from St. Petersburg
After breakfast at your hotel, check out by 12:00 and your departure transfer will be provided to the airport about 3 hours and 30 minutes before your flight.
Sightseeing tours in St. Petersburg:
St. Petersburg City Tour
Duration: 3 hours
Tour Price: £ 101 total for 2 people
Comments: Usual pick up time 10am. The city tour includes guide and transportation but does not include any entrance fees to the attractions stated below. Please note that the guide may change the route of the City Tour depending on traffic conditions.
Tour includes the following highlights:
The Winter Palace, which houses the amazing art collection of the Hermitage Museum
St Isaac’s Cathedral
The Mariinsky Palace
The Bronze Horseman – statue of Peter the Great
The Peter and Paul Fortress
The famous cruiser, the Aurora, whose shot started the revolution
The Fields of Mars
The Summer Garden
St Michael’s Palace
The Church on the spilled blood
City Tour Incl. Peter & Paul Fortress
Duration: 4 hours
Price: £ 144 total for 2 people
Comments: Open 11:00- 17:00 (16:00 on Tuesdays). Closed on Wednesdays & last Tuesday of the month.
The Peter and Paul Fortress was built to guard the city of St Petersburg and is located on Hare Island, facing the Hermitage and dominating the River Neva. The Cathedral is the oldest building in St Petersburg and now houses the remains of the last Romanov Tsars. The construction of the Fortress began in 1703 and was built as a fortification during the Russian-Swedish war, but it was never used as a fortress and its bastions were turned into political prison cells. Son of Peter the Great, Prince Alexei, a famous pretender to the throne, Princess Tarakanova, writer Radischev, the Decembrists, the narodniks and various revolutionaries were all held prisoner within the Fortress walls.
Full Day St Petersburg Tour including Peter & Paul Fortress and Hermitage
Duration: 8 hours
Price: £ 282 total for 2 people
Comments: Not available Mondays, Wednesdays and last Tuesday of the Month
Winter Palace – Hermitage
Duration: 3 hours
Price: £ 138 total for 2 people, walking tour £107 total for 2 people (available from certain hotels)
Comments: Open 10:30 - 17:00 (16:00 on Sundays). Closed on Mondays
A magnificent collection of art is housed in the winter palace of Catherine the Great. One of the biggest museums in the world and founded in 1764, its collection includes over 2.7 million items, including masterpieces of Leonardo Da Vinci, Raphael, Roden, Rembrandt, Rubens and the French impressionists.
Yusupov Palace (including Rasputin Exposition)
Duration: 3 hours
Price: £ 163 total for 2 people, walking tour £138 total for 2 people (available from certain hotels)
Comments: Open Daily 10:30 - 16:00
Home of Yusupov Family and setting for the murder of Rasputin. Waxwork effigies of the plotters in the basement. Superb palace in the heart of the city. The residence of an old and noble Russian family - the Yusupovs. It was also the site where Rasputin was murdered. Gala and residential rooms of the palace are open to visitors. Concerts of classical and folk music are held there.
Duration (16 Oct - Apr): 3 - 4 hours
Duration (May - 15 Oct): 5 - 6 hours
Price (16 Oct - Apr): £ 161 total for 2 people
Price (May - 15 Oct): £ 247 total for 2 people
In summertime it is possible to take a picturesque trip to Petrodvorets on hydrofoil, which will add extra cost.
Comments: Open 10:30 - 17:00 (20:00 May-Sept). Closed on Mondays & the last Tuesday of the month. Fountains closed October-April.
Situated 29km (18 miles) from St.Petersburg on the shores of the Baltic Sea, Petrodvorets (or Peterhof as it was formerly known), is an imperial treasure replete with lush parks, monumental cascades and gilded fountains. Following the 1917 Revolution, this former Summer residence of the Tsars was nationalised and turned into a public museum.
Catherine Palace / Pushkin (Tsarskoe Celo)
Duration (Oct - Apr): 3 - 4 hours
Duration (May - Sep): 4 - 5 hours
Price (Oct - Apr): £ 159 total for 2 people
Price (May - Sep): £ 221 total for 2 people
Comments: Open 10:30 - 17:00. Closed Tuesday and the last Monday in the month.
Located 29km south of St. Petersburg, the construction of Catherine's Palace for Empress Catherine started in 1717. The world famous Amber Room has been completely restored to it’s former glory in the palace. A park in the French style was laid out around it. In the middle of the 18th century ‘Tsarskoe Selo’ became the official Royal residence. Not far from Catherine's Palace there is the Lyceum where the great poet Alexander Pushkin studied. The Lyceum is open for visitors.
Pushkin (Tsarskoe Celo) & Petrodvorets (Peterhof)
Duration (16 Oct - Apr only): 5 - 6 hours
Price: £ 269 total for 2 people
Comments: Open 10:30 - 17:00. Closed on Mondays & Tuesdays. Fountains closed October-April (depending on weather).
Please note a supplement of 50 % of excursion price applies during the following Public Holidays:
- 01 - 08 Jan
- 23 Feb
- 08 Mar
- 01 - 03 May
- 09 - 10 May
- 12 Jun
- 04 Nov
- 31 Dec
For your holidays to Norway, Iceland, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia or Ukraine, you will not need a visa if you have a valid passport from any EU country, Australia, Canada, USA, Japan (there are more, so check with us to make sure). Please note that your passport should be valid for at least six months after the date of your return.
However, if you plan to travel to Russia, you will need a visa, which we can help organise for you.
Travel insurance is required and also advisable. If you do not have a valid policy, please check our Insurance link on the bottom of our homepage. Our recommended partner is Essential Travel, who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact us.
You will be able to communicate quite well with the locals, as most people in the service industry are quite adept at speaking English. If English doesn't work, then try Russian (if you can), or German. The further you go from the major cities, the less English you will hear. However, do not let the language barrier keep you from exploring the beauty of the country side. We can always arrange English speaking guides to accompany you wherever you wish to go.
The Estonian language is similar to Finnish and is unrelated to Latvian, Lithuanian or Russian. Latvian and Lithuanian are two of the oldest languages, with roots traceable to Sanskrit. This makes them quite challenging to learn, but attempting a few words will put a smile on the local faces. Russians use the Cyrillic alphabet, so reading street signs and tube maps will be a challenge in St Petersburg .
You can get local currency from ATMs at the airport where you land or in the major cities. Be aware that your bank will charge you a service fee and exchange rate fee for the transaction, but this is likely to be less than exchanging money in the UK before you depart. Please note that in Russia exchange bureau's and banks will not except Scottish bank notes.
We suggest choosing the right credit card for spending abroad. Most credit cards will have an additional cost (about 3%) to the bank exchange rates. You can avoid it by obtaining a specialist overseas card that does not add this % and will give you good exchange rates that are better than money exchange bureau rates.
Credit cards charge you interest rates, but some debit cards (bank account cards) could have fees that could add up to £ 1.50 every time you spend.
We recommend checking with your bank what fees/interest rates will be applied to your card when using it abroad in order to make an educated decision on what card to use.
Most restaurants and shops will take credit/debit cards like Visa and Mastercard, however, many places will not accept AMEX.
Traveller's cheques are difficult to cash, so we recommend not to use them.
Airport or ferry terminals in most cases will have the worst money exchange rates, so if you must get it from the airport, pre-order money for pick-up to get a better rate.
The local currencies are (alphabetic order):
Denmark - Danish Kroner
Estonia - Euro
Finland - Euro
Greenland - Danish Kroner
Iceland - Icelandic Kroner
Latvia - Euro
Lithuania - Euro
Norway - Norwegian Kroner
Poland - Polish Zloty
Russia - Russian Ruble
Sweden - Swedish Kroner
Ukraine - Hryvnia
Dining opportunities are plenty, from ethnic to exotic. We would suggest you to try some national dishes and get a real taste of the region. Note that most traditional dishes contain meat and are fairly heavy, but very tasty.
Reservations in advance are recommended for up-market restaurants, especially for Friday and Saturday evenings.
Tipping - many of the up-market establishments will let you know how good their service is by including it on the bill. Rounding up the bill is usually sufficient, unless you feel your server deserves an extra bit of recognition.
There are several mobile operators in each Baltic country, the Nordics ( Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Finland incl. Iceland and Greenland as well as Poland, Ukraine and Russia. If you have an international connection, there shouldn't be any problems with your incoming and outgoing calls.
In case your phone doesn't work, please check in the local mobilephone shops and you can buy Calling cards etc. or ask in your hotel, they should be able to advise you too.
Internet access is available at Internet Cafés, which mostly are located in the central part of the city. Most hotels have internet access.
Stamps are available in the post offices and in most newspaper kiosks. Approximate price for a stamp to European Union countries will vary but between appx. £ 0.30 to £ 0.70. You'll see post boxes on the streets or you can ask hotel representative to send your post card, they'll gladly help you.
Emergency telephone number for the police, ambulance services or fire department in Norway, Iceland, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Russia, Ukraine and Poland - 112.
Greenland uses 911 and for mobile phones only 112.
Money in Russia
When you go to Russia we recommend having some Russian Rubles in cash with you (enough for initial expenses) and for the rest – use your credit/debit card. A lot of shops, restaurants, night clubs and larger bars accept major credit/debit cards in the big cities, however if you plan to go to smaller towns or shop at the local markets or small souvenir shops you are expected to pay cash in Rubles. Only few specialist souvenir shops will accept cash in Euros, US Dollars and British Pounds. You will find many ATMs (in Russian – “bankomat”) in Moscow, St Petersburg and other major Russian cities. They can be found next to banks, in metro stations and in the lobbies of most hotels. US dollars or Euros can be exchanged everywhere in Russia, but if you have any other currency it might be hard to find an exchange bureau and the rate will most likely not be favorable. There are many bureaux de change and some are open 24 hours a day. It is worth shopping around to find the best rates especially if you plan to change large sums from US Dollars or Euro, other currencies are normally only changeable at central exchange offices or big banks. We recommend exchanging British Pounds in local banks. Banks in Russia are normally open from 09:00 until 17:00 except weekends and bank holidays. We suggest notifying your bank of your travel to Russia or they might block your card automatically after your first use of the card in Russia.