To Russia With Love: 6 Weeks

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From£2,159£1,943
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Trip Details

Route: London Brussels Amsterdam Hamburg Copenhagen Berlin Krakow Warsaw Vilnius Riga Tallinn Helsinki St Petersburg Yaroslavl Moscow

Duration: 42 nights

Transport: This route is a 43 day trip taking you all the way from London through Moscow. You’ll spend 41 nights in your accommodation and 1 on a night train. All other travel will take place during the day by train, bus or ferry.

Sustainability:This trip only creates 367 kg of carbon emissions! To fly the same route would cost 1423.7

Reviews:    All independent reviews

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Trip Style

If you’ve covered most of Western Europe already and are looking for a little bit of a challenge, why not venture East? Head to some of Europe’s lesser-visited areas, including the Baltics and Russia, to catch a glimpse of what not many people get the chance to see. On this trip, you’ll leave from London to check out 3 of Russia’s most beautiful cities, as well as big cities and rugged landscapes in between!

Want an even bigger adventure? Check out the epic 8 week version of this route which loops back to London.

Trip Description
Experience the wonders of travelling to Russia by train!

Start your Northern Europe holiday by hopping on the train in your local town or city and heading straight for London for your Eurostar to the Belgian capital of BrusselsCheck out Europe’s most impressive square, taste silky Belgian chocolate and let’s not forget about that beer…

Then you’ll continue onwards to Amsterdam. The capital of the Netherlands is home to a liberal atmosphere, friendly people, world class cultural heritage and incredible architecture. Hire a bike to cruise around amazing canals and choose from a variety of museums (our favourites are the Rijksmuseum and the Van Gogh Museum), before hitting up its trendy bars, famous coffee-shops and the (in)famous Red Light District. Amsterdam is unique and endlessly fascinating – all the more reason to come back time and time again.

Next up, you’ll head to Hamburg, where you’ll have to decide whether to first explore the arty dock quarter or settle down on the main square for a historical local beer. Soon after, Copenhagen awaits; a stylish and modern city with a liberal and relaxed attitude. Join the students relaxing in the parks with a chilled beer, hire bikes and make the most of the city’s excellent cycle paths or visit the fascinating world that is Freetown Christiania.

Then, hit the ground running in bohemian Berlin, one of Europe’s most historically rich cities. With more incredible museums than you can shake a stick at, you’ll have plenty of the city’s history to explore! Wander around its streets and pass what was the border between Eastern and Western Europe before the Berlin Wall fell. Counter-balance the culture and history lessons with bar-hopping and partying at the city’s many clubs – from the edgy to the downright bizarre. If you’re lucky enough, you might even get into Berghain…

On to Poland! First, you’ll spend some time in historic Krakow. Packed with imposing and impressive architecture, homely eateries and luscious green parks – there’s plenty to fill your days with. With the city’s natural beauty, it’s hard to believe that it’s also bursting at the seams with amazing and vibrant nightlife. Whilst there, be sure take an unforgettable day trip to Auschwitz and Birkenau. We guarantee that it’ll be one of the most moving experiences you’ll ever have on your travels.

Next, you’ll stop off in Warsaw, the Polish capital. Often overlooked, this is the place to go for traditional Polish food and crafts at cheap prices. It’s also a treasure trove of fascinating WW2 history with the city being almost totally destroyed and rebuilt.

Vilnius will surprise you with it’s grand and ornate buildings – reflecting more of the old Russian influence that has played such a big part in this region’s history. Orthodox churches with colourful frescoes, beautiful market squares and pavement cafes make this small city the perfect place to unwind before venturing further into the Baltics.

Head to Riga next; its distinctive Soviet influences feel much more Eastern European, with plenty of architectural and cultural contrasts between the old and the new. Be sure not to miss Riga TV Tower which is the tallest tower in the whole of the EU and the third tallest in Europe. Be sure to take a trip up to the machine room near the top (over 300m high) and admire the incredible views of the city and beyond.

Tallinn is next on the agenda to round off the Baltic part of your trip, although the city’s Old Town has plenty of Scandinavian influence, as well as Slavic style – think a cross between Stockholm and St Petersburg. It’s also full of trendy cafes and bars, with a blossoming foodie scene to check out, rivalling that of any other European capital.

You’ll continue by ferry across the Gulf of Finland to explore Helsinki’s galleries and parks. Take a day trip out to sea and explore some of the surrounding islands, or visit the Finnish folk museum with live actors… Next, hop aboard the train and start the Russian portion of your adventure!

Explore the spires and palaces of St Petersburg, and lose yourself in the fairytale landscapes of the City of the Tsars. Discover the beautiful National Ballet, Winter Palace and Catherine Park – we couldn’t think of a better way to escape reality for a while! Walk along the harbour in the midnight sun – during May and June the legendary “White Nights” play host to a huge variety of concerts and shows throughout the city.

Next you’ll board the night train and wake up fresh to explore Yaroslavl – a world heritage city that sits at the heart of the “Golden Ring” of Ancient Russian cities which have all played an important historical role in the region. This winter wonderland is a haven for snow lovers – the Volga river freezes solid every winter as temperatures drop well below freezing. In summer explore the beautful spires and traditional architecture of the city’s old town.

A quick train journey and you’ll arrive at your final stop – Moscow. The iconic power house of Russia is home to some of the country’s most famous landmarks. Red Square, with its neighbouring St Basil’s Cathedral as well as The Kremlin is a must. Don’t miss out on the more underground aspects of the city as well – from stylish coffee houses to amazingly exuberant nightlife. Moscow’s hipster culture is alive and thriving, so you shouldn’t struggle to find a stylish brunch joint to sooth any resulting hangovers after one too many vodkas!

Visas
This route requires a Russian tourist visa, not included in the price.

You can apply for this up to 6 months before your trip. Once you have the visa, you MUST enter Russia within 6 months otherwise it will expire. 

Euroventure is not able to provide visas, however we can supply supporting documents for your application for a fee of £3 per hostel/hotel.  

For information on how to apply, please go to your nearest Russian Embassy website and look up the entry requirements for your nationality. Make sure you allow plenty of time to process this (at least 2 months).

Our partners at Real Russia are the experts in Russian tourist visas, and can process your visa for a set fee. Learn more about their visa service.

 

What's Included?

  • All overland transport tickets from the first to the last city, as shown in the key.
  • Any Interrail or Eurail passes if required, based on the best value for you.
  • Compulsory seat reservations on high-speed rail, night trains or ferries.
  • Accommodation in top-rated, centrally located hostels or hotels, tested by us
  • Walking directions between the stations and your booked accommodation.
  • Optional walking tours, pub crawls and other activities at our partner hostels.
  • A personalised travel booklet with maps, language guides, top tips, and more.
  • Exclusive discounts on attractions across Europe.
  • Peace of mind with alternative travel included if there is a strike or similar disruption.
  • Access to our 24hr emergency phone number while you’re away.
Photos
Itinerary

London

London is home to the UK’s biggest and best known museums, sights and attractions – why not customise this route to add a few nights here if you want to make the most of what the city has to offer?

Highlights

Check out the country’s top museums, all of which are free!

Explore the alternative markets at Portobello road and Camden

Try all the international foodie delights in Brixton Village or Brick Lane

    Train to Brussels  – 4 hours

Brussels (2 nights)

Belgium’s biggest city accommodates an eclectic mix of old and new, from Europe’s most beautiful square, lined with guild houses and continental cafes to its bureaucratic alter ego as capital of the European Union itself. Come for the delicious beer, stay for the waffles and moules frites.

Highlights

Visit Mini Europe in the capital of the EU

See Europe’s most beautiful square – Grand Place

Try to find the cheeky fountain statue – Manneken Pis

    Train to Amsterdam – 4 hours

Amsterdam (3 nights)

Despite being credited with certain recreational pastimes, there is actually a lot more to the city than the stereotypical picture, with its abundance of engaging museums, beautiful townhouses and canals. Find out what makes Amsterdam the beating heart of the Netherlands.

Highlights

Visit the Van Gogh Museum

Discover Europe’s biggest historic centre by pedal

Take a tour of the red light district

    Trains to Hamburg – 5.5 hours

Hamburg (2 nights)

Hamburg is the second largest city in Germany, but you can still expect a green environment mixed with a maritime spirit. Check out the cool music scene which hosted the Beatles in their early days, as well as the bustling Reeperbahn district, the historical St Michaelis Church, and the famous fish market. Hamburg has an eclectic feel that’s hard not to love.

Highlights

Visit the Tierpark Hagenbeck

Go to the Fischmarkt – either very late or very early

Explore the 800-year-old harbour

    Train to Copenhagen – 5 hours

Copenhagen (4 nights)

Copenhagen is a place where equal rights and liberal attitudes take precedence, a land where the atmosphere is incredibly safe and remarkably relaxed. Make sure you visit the hippie commune of Christiania where squatters’ rights still hold sway.

Highlights

Visit the little mermaid

Go to one of the world’s oldest theme parks

Sample the fruity beers at plenty of microbreweries

    Bus to Berlin – 9 hours

Berlin (4 nights)

Berlin is the alternative, cool kid of Europe and a pro at being edgy. It’s how people dress, their liberal attitudes, the graffiti, the skaters and BMXers, the art, the clubs and the food. Berlin is also crammed full of fascinating WWII history around every corner so there’s something for everyone.

Highlights

See a section of the old Berlin Wall

Climb the dome of the renovated Reichstag

Discover the nightlife of Schoneberg and Kreuzberg

    Train to Krakow – 7 hours

Krakow (3 nights)

Krakow escaped being reduced to rubble in WWII, preserving the postcard-perfect Old Town and the cellars housing its famous bars and clubs. That’s not to say it doesn’t share a chapter of history in the nearby Auschwitz concentration camp, which demands a humble visit.

Highlights

See Europe’s largest medieval market square

Take photos of Poland’s best preserved city

Find one of many gothic cellar bars open until late

    Train to Warsaw – 3 hours

Warsaw (3 nights)

Known as the ‘Phoenix City’ after having risen from the ashes of so many ruinous wars, Warsaw is home to an abundance of Polish art, vibrant nightlife and wholesome cuisine. A plate of delicious dumplings and soup will keep you nourished while you venture around the stunning rebuilt Old Town.

Highlights

See the imposing Soviet Palace of Culture

Visit the entirely reconstructed Royal Palace

Have a drink at the fashionable old town bars

    Bus to Vilnius – 9.5 hours

Vilnius (2 nights)

Vilnius is home to one of Europe’s largest Baroque old towns. The spires and coloured facades have a distinctly continental feel – not surprising since you’re only a few hours away from the North of Poland. Enjoy exploring the hub of Lithuania’s culture and arts scene – and don’t forget the hearty local cuisine once the sun sets.

Highlights

Enjoy amazing panoramic views from the Hill of Three Crosses

Stroll around the largest Old Town in Eastern Europe, declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO 

Visit the fascinating Museum of Illusions

    Bus to Riga – 4 hours

Riga (2 nights)

Riga may be austere and gracious on the surface but dig deeper and you’ll discover awesome nightlife and a wealth of Baltic culture. Wind your way around the cobbled streets by day, come evening go underground to seek out some of the Baltic region’s best music venues.

Highlights

Learn about the varied and fascinating history of Latvia in a walking tour of the old town

Dance the night away, Latvian style, at Folksklub Ala Pagrabs

Marvel at the Art Nouveau style buildings – like famous building at 2a, Alberta Iela

    Bus to Tallinn – 5 hours

Tallinn (2 nights)

At once a modern, stylish city and a medieval maze of passageways and cobbled streets, Tallinn is a great combination of old and new. Recently the city has become a centre for contemporary art and design, with loads of independent boutiques and ateliers springing up – perfect for whiling away slow summer days.

Highlights

Visit the museum of (both) occupations

See the sumptuous Aleksander Nevsky cathedral

Drink at numerous pubs with local Estonians

    Ferry to Helsinki – 3 hours

Helsinki (3 nights)

For an important harbour town it only seems right that you should take a ferry to Helsinki. In summer Finnish people enjoy their open parks, relaxed atmosphere and quirky cafes before they all disappear indoors for winter as temperatures plummet.

Highlights

Visit the Finnish folk museum with live actors

Stroll through the magnificent Sibelius Park

Take a boozy sightseeing tour on the red pub-tram

    Train to St Petersburg – 5 hours

St Petersburg (4 nights)

St Petersburg is the city of the Tsars. From glorious opera houses to underground music scenes, classical masterpieces to street art – immerse yourself in Russian colour and culture. When you’re done, make the most of the city’s famous White Nights to party into the early hours – you can sleep when you’re dead right!?

Highlights

Marvel at the incredibly ornate “Church of the Saviour on the Spilled Blood”, Pushkin and Catherine Palaces

Join local residents for all night parties in June during summer’s “White Nights” where the skies only reach twilight but not complete darkness

Discover authentic bargains at Udelka flea market on the weekend

   Night Train to Yaroslavl – 12 hours

Yaroslavl (2 nights)

Check out traditional Russian hospitality in Yaroslavl – one of the “Golden Ring” cities famed for their beauty and historical importance. Explore the gorgeous cathedrals and churches, with golden domes and elaborate frescoes.  Make sure you get a pic of the grand Cathedral of Assumption too!

Highlights

Join Yaroslavl’s locals and kiss for good luck by the Volga River

See the UNESCO heritage area of the city which is teeming with museums and churches

Head to Pivoteka Pinta and drink the best beer in town

    Train to Moscow – 4.5 hours

Moscow (5 nights)

Home to the grand treasures of the Tzars, Russia’s modern political hub (The Kremlin) and more cultural heritage than you can shake a stick at; it’s clear that any trip to Russia has to include Moscow.

Highlights

Check out Red Square and St Basil’s Cathedrals – arguably Russia’s most famous sight

Eat your way through delightfully stodgy cuisine – potatoes, Borscht, any kind of meat you can imagine and plenty of local beers (and maybe vodka) to wash it down

Sweat out all the toxins you’ve acquired in a classic Russian Banya, or bath house

How to get there

Your transport from the UK all the way to Moscow is already included! You can use your Interrail pass to travel for free from your nearest train station to London on the same day as departure.

The quickest way to get back from Moscow will be to book a flight from Sheremetyevo or Domodedovo Airport.

Alternatively, if you want to travel from the UK to Russia and back by train, why not have a look at our 8 week option.