We meet in Moscow on the first day and immediately begin our tour of the Russian Golden ring by setting off by road to Vladimir. On the way we will pass through villages that seem to reflect a style of life reminiscent of a hundred years ago. Vladimir predates Moscow as a center of Russian power. The afternoon will include a general tour of Vladimir. This will include the two cathedrals, Uspensky and Dmitrievsky. You will also visit one of the oldest (1165) and most photographed churches in Russia, Bogolyubova on the Nerl, the "Golden Gates" and the museum of Crystals and Lacquer Miniatures.
Today is spent in the beautiful old town of Suzdal. We tour the Kremlin and the Museum of Wooden Architecture. This outdoors exhibition covers several acres and contains many fine examples of traditional Russian wooden building styles of both houses and churches. This "log cabin" style of construction typically uses no nails. Suzdal is also a famous center for the making of Russian church bells. You will be able to attend a "bell concert" in the Saviour-Efimiev monastery.
The next day we set out to visit the towns of Kostroma and Yaroslavl.
Blue skies over silver waters, a small
boat with sails fluttering in the wind denotes the emblem of Kostroma. In olden
times Kostroma was known as "the flax capital of the north": it supplied Western
Europe with the world's finest sail-cloth. Situated at the meeting of two rivers,
the Kostroma and the Volga, Kostroma is a jewel. The oldest building
in the town is the cathedral of the Monastery of Epiphany and was built in 1565.
The pride of Kostroma is the museum at the former Ipatyevsky Monastery which played
a part in almost every important event of the town's history. The monastery itself
was founded in the fourteenth century by the Zernov family of feudal lords who
were the forebears of the Gudonovs. The stone walls and the fortress were erected
during the reign of Ivan the Terrible. Today Kostroma is the only city in Russia
which has retained the layout formed in its central part during the eighteenth
Yaroslavl is located high on the bank of the Volga river. At the confluence of this broad majestic river and the small Kotorosl river was born the long history of Yaroslavl. About a thousand years ago in 1010 Rostov Prince Yaroslav (later Yaroslav the Wise) founded a fortress here in order to strengthen his territory around the greatest center of the north-east Rus - Rostov Veliky, and to secure safety of the water ways. He named his fortress after himself. In the 10th century before the foundation of the fortress a settlement of pagans was located in this place called Medvezhy Ugol (Bears Corner). According to the legend, Prince Yaroslav killed their sacred animal, a Bear, and subjugated the pagans. The legend about this event is found represented in the symbol of the city: on a silver shield a Bear stands holding a gold pole-axe in the left paw. In Yaroslavl the sightseeing tour will include Spaso-Transfiguration monastery and the Museum “Music and Times”.
After breakfast we travel to Uglich and Rostov Veliky. Uglich or "corner" is situated on a sharp bend in the Volga River. Here we will visit the working monasteries, Alexeevsky and Vasilevsky, and the architectural ensemble of the Kremlin and a cathedral, Dmitry on the Blood, so named because here was murdered Ivan the Terrible's youngest son, Dmitry.
In Rostov Veliky we will visit the Kremlin and museum “Rostov’s enamel”.
The first reference to Rostov is made in the ancient Russian chronicle "The notes of the Past Years". The reference is connected with the year 862. However, the area near the lake Nero was populated in the prehistoric times. Rostov became one of the largest towns in the North-east Ancient Russian state in the 10th century.
Today we visit Pereslavl Zalessky and Sergiev Posad. Peter the Great chose Pereslavl Zalessky to build the first Russian fleet. Alexander Nevsky, the savior of Novgorod, was born here. Here can be found a 12thC cathedral, one of only nine pre-Tartar cathedrals still standing in central Russia. Also to be found are many monasteries from the 16thC, 17th and 18thC. In Sergiev Posad we will visit the Trinity Cathedral in the monastery of referred to as the "Russian Vatican".
Accommodation on the tour is arranged according to season and availability. We guarantee clean, secure and functional facilities - Improved Tourist Class hotels. If you have a special interest, please let us know so that we can make advance arrangements. The host for your tour will be flexible with the schedule to get the most out of weather fluctuations and special interests. Museum tickets are included. The tour includes 4 breakfasts + 4 dinners.
RUSSIA TRAVEL PACKAGES
A selection of Russian tours to take as they are or adjust to your needs.
THE GOLDEN RING
Visit the heart of ancient Russia. What is the Golden Ring?
What you can see in Moscow.
MOSCOW DAY TRIPS
Get out of Moscow and take a relaxing trip to some of these places
Some of the sights to see in Petersburg
LAKE BAIKAL TOURS
Hiking and trekking around the world's deepest lake in the heart of Siberia
Come and work in the field on a Russian Archaeological dig. Full training given on site.
TRAVEL TIPS & SERVICES
Getting around in Russia