Your exciting holiday begins with a transatlantic flight
to Moscow, the grand
capital of Russia.
Upon arrival check into your floating hotel. The balance
of the day is at leisure to relax, get acquainted with the
ship, the cruise staff and meet your fellow passengers.
Enjoy a morning city tour and see the famous landmarks and
major sights of Russia’s most dynamic city. See the
venerable Bolshoi Theater
and the impressive Moscow
University. Drive to Lenin
Hills for a splendid view of the river Moskva
and the city below. Explore Red
Square - the name alone evokes so many
political and historical associations - and marvel at the
sinister Kremlin walls
and the flamboyantly-colored onion domes of St.
Basil’s Cathedral. The afternoon is free.
Take an optional tour of the famous Moscow
Metro, where each station is a living museum of
marble statuary, mosaics and crystal chandeliers. Walk on
Arbat Street, a pedestrian-only street lined with souvenir
shops. In the evening, a performance of the Moscow
State Circus provides an exhilarating
complement to an exciting day.
This morning visit the Kremlin
and its incomparable Armory
Palace Museum. A walk within the Kremlin
provides a fascinating view of the lavish government
(formerly Czar’s) palaces and splendid cathedrals. See
three of the most important cathedrals in all of Russia -
the Assumption Cathedral,
the traditional investiture place of the Czars; the Annunciation,
with its nine golden domes; and St.
Michael’s the Archangel, the internment place
of the Russian rulers until the time of Peter
the Great. Inside the Armory, see the priceless
collection of imperial treasures, including an
extraordinary assemblage of imperial travelling carriages
and the renowned Fabergé eggs.
The afternoon is free to explore Moscow on your own or you
may choose an optional visit to the Pushkin
Museum of Fine Arts. The museum contains a
wealth of works ranging from ancient Egyptian to the
Impressionists, including works by Cézanne, van Gogh,
Gaugin and Matisse. This evening enjoy a rousing
performance of a famous Russian folklore ensemble.
Free day to explore on your own. You can visit Tretyakov
Art Gallery, recently reopened after a
nine-year remodeling project. Or you can take an optional
excursion to Sergiev Posad,
the seat of the Patriarch of the
Russian Orthodox Church. This delightful
excursion, about one and a half-hours each way, takes you
to this enchanting medieval town, formerly known as Zagorsk,
buried in the greenery of many parks and gardens. Its Trinity
Monastery, founded 600 years ago, is absolutely
breathtaking and possibly the grandest of all Russian
monasteries. Your cruise leaves Moscow at 5:30 pm. View
the lushly wooded landscape as you sail through the
spectacular Moscow Canal,
which connects the Moskva River
and the city of Moscow with the Volga
River. Enjoy a welcome cocktail and a gala
Day 6: Uglich
A relaxing day aboard as you cruise along the Volga,
Europe's longest river. Enjoy shipboard activities,
including lectures on Russian history and Russian language
lessons. After lunch arrive in the historic town of Uglich.
As you approach this picturesque Golden
Ring city, be prepared for a lovely view of its
Cathedral and St. John’s church looming on the horizon.
Founded in 1148, Uglich is one of the oldest and most
beloved towns in Russia. Infamous for being the site of the
mysterious death of Ivan the Terrible’s son, Dimitry, the
town now hosts a commemorative church - Church of St.
Dimitry on the Blood - on the site where the body of the
young Prince was found. A walk through this enchanting town
is a delight. Among the magnificent architectural monuments
you’ll see are the Kremlin,
the Palace of Czarevich Dimitry
and the Cathedral of the
Transfiguration of the Savior. Continue cruising
in the evening. Dance the night away in the Main Lounge or
watch a performance in the concert hall.
At 9:00 am arrive in Yaroslavl,
another Golden Ring city,
founded in 1010 by Grand Prince Yaroslav the Wise of Kiev.
Yaroslavl has always been considered one of Russia’s most
beautiful cities with its wide tree-lined streets and
attractive parks. Several buildings here rank among the
world’s greatest architecture. On your sightseeing tour,
see the exquisite Church of Elijah
the Prophet, a masterpiece of local architecture,
richly adorned with precious frescoes, and the 12th century Transfiguration
Monastery with murals depicting St. John’s
apocalyptic visions. Here, "The
Lay of Igor’s Host", one of Russia’s
greatest literary treasures was discovered. In the afternoon
continue your journey northward, cruising through the vast Rybinsk
Enjoy breathtaking scenery as you sail north through the White
Lake, once known as the “Czar's fishing
grounds”, and through the Volga-Baltic
Canal. At 11:00 am arrive in Goritsy,
a peaceful farming community where your cruise pauses for a
few hours for a tour ashore and a visit to the
well-preserved, fortress-like Kirill
Belosersk Monastery. In the afternoon continue
northward. In the summer the days are long here and the sun
is up well after 10:00 pm.
Onega and Kizhi Island
Cruise through Lake Onega,
the second largest lake in Europe and one of the world’s
purest. In the afternoon (at 5:00 pm) arrive on Kizhi
Island, an enchanting place and one of the
highlights of your waterway journey. Here the magnificent Church
of the Transfiguration is more than a match for
the colorful splendor of Moscow’s St. Basil’s. Its 22
shimmering domes in three tiers are the ultimate in Russian
fairy-tale architecture. A walking tour will encompass some
splendid examples of 18th century Russian architecture
including typical wooden churches, houses and a windmill.
Visit the spectacular Transfiguration
Church before sailing in the evening.
River and Svir Stroy
Cruise through the 139-mile Svir
River which connects Lake
Onega with Lake Ladoga.
Pause for a few hours (1:00 pm to 4:00 pm) in Svir
Stroy, a quaint riverside village, dotted with
stone cottages, a perfect "green stop" to wander
ashore for a close look at a typical rural settlement.
Continue cruising along the southern shores of Europe’s
largest lake - Ladoga -
before entering the Neva River.
Enjoy the captain’s gala farewell dinner tonight.
Early morning (8:00 am) arrival in one of the loveliest of
European cities, St. Petersburg.
After breakfast, disembark for a city tour of this fabled
city of canals and Northern Lights. Drive along the Nevsky
Prospect, the city’s main boulevard lined with
smart shops and restaurants. Explore the Palace
Square, the historic heart of St. Petersburg. See
the spectacular St. Isaac’s
Cathedral, the Bronze
Horseman, the Admiralty
Tower and the sinister Peter
and Paul Fortress, the Bastille of Czarist
Russia, built on a small island in the Neva
River. In the afternoon, enjoy an excursion to
nearby Pushkin, formerly
known as Czar’s Village, to see the magnificent Catherine’s
Palace. The evening is free for an optional
Spend the morning exploring the extraordinary Hermitage
Museum, located in the former Czar’s Winter
Palace, without doubt one of the greatest
treasure houses of the world. You’ll be dazzled by its
fabulous art collection. The afternoon is free to explore
Peter the Great’s magnificent city on your own. Revisit
the Palace Square and
marvel at the Royal Palace,
or wander inside the Peter and Paul
Fortress to see its extravagant Baroque interior
containing the tombs of the majority of the Romanov dynasty.
The remains of the last Czar and his family were recently
buried there. Crown the day with an evening performance.
Passengers aboard the m.s.
Tolstoy are treated to an exclusive ballet
performance at the Imperial
Hermitage Theater. Passengers aboard the m.s.
Litvinov will enjoy a ballet or folklore
performance in another theater.
A wonderful day, free for individual pursuits. Revisit the
art inside the Hermitage Museum,
with more time to view paintings by Raphael, Rembrandt,
Picasso, or your favorite impressionists. Take an optional
excursion to the splendid Peterhof
Palace, built by Peter
the Great to rival Versailles. The Palace stands
on a natural terrace with its formal gardens sloping down to
the shores of the Gulf of Finland. Marvel at its spectacular
Grand Cascade fountain before returning to St. Petersburg
for your last evening aboard.
Petersburg - USA
Today your fascinating "Waterways
of the Czars" Grand Cruise through Russia
comes to an end. It is time to say goodbye to your newly
made friends and fly home.
- City tour including the Bolshoi Theater, Red Square
and St. Basil’s Cathedral
- Evening performance of the Moscow State Circus
- Tour of the Kremlin and Armory Palace Museum, with its
priceless Fabergé eggs
- Evening performance of a Russian folklore ensemble
- Walking tour
- City tour
- City tour
- Walking tour
- City tour, including Nevsky Prospect, Palace Square,
St. Isaac’s Cathedral, and the Peter and Paul Fortress
- Excursion to Pushkin and Catherine’s Palace
- Tour of the Hermitage Museum
- Evening performance of ballet at the Imperial
Hermitage Theater (ms Tolstoy guests), or ballet
or folklore performance in another theater (ms
flight to Russia
(12-night) cruise on board the ms
Litvinov or ms
Tolstoy in an outside cabin
meals aboard: Full buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner
daily. Coffee or tea with each meal. Early riser's
coffee each morning
Welcome and Farewell cocktail and dinner
and activities onboard
* In Moscow: City
tour. Tour of the Kremlin and Armory Museum.
* In St. Petersburg:
City tour. Tour of the Hermitage Museum. Excursion to
shore excursions: Guided sightseeing in every
* In Moscow: Moscow
circus and concert by a famous Russian folklore ensemble
* In Yaroslavl:
concert by a local folklore ensemble
* In St. Petersburg:
cruises – ballet or folklore concert.
cruises – ballet at the Hermitage Theater
Director plus onboard English-speaking guides
and departure transfers, for passengers on group flights
Price Per Person (based on double occupancy):
BEST TRAVEL VALUE!