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From Sea to Sea - Grand Adventure Tour

19 days
18 nights

Rates

Dates

Rates:

$5,550.00 (double occupancy 2nd class)
$7,950.00 (double occupancy 1st class)

*single traveler - upon request

Dates:

ALL YEAR ROUND

Hotels:

St. Petersburg: Crown Plaza Ligovsky* or similar
Moscow: Courtyard Marriott 4* or similar
Irkutsk: Courtyard Marriott 4* or similar
Ulan Bator: Kempinski Khan Palace 5* or similar
Beijing: Beijing Marriott 5* or similar

Included:

3 nights in St. Petersburg
1 night in Moscow
1 night in a traditional Siberian wooden chalet
1 night in Irkutsk
1 night in a traditional yurt at Ger Camp
1 night in Ulan Bator
3 nights in Beijing
7 nights onboard the train

Daily breakfast
4 dinners: in Irkutsk, Lake Baikal, Ger Camp and Ulan Bator
4 lunches: in Irkutsk, Lake Baikal, Ger Camp and Ulan Bator

 

1 night in a traditional yurt at Ger Camp, incl. full board
All transfers
Guided visits to sights and landmarks mentioned in the program with a local English-speaking guide including all entrance fees 
Invitations and support letters for Russian, Mongolian and Chinese visas

Itinerary:

Day 1  : St Petersburg

Upon arrival you will be met at the airport and transferred to the hotel. Hotel check-in & free time.  In the evening, take the Boat Tour of canals of St. Petersburg, traveling through the urban landscape of the 18th and 19th centuries, seeing many of the city's most famous landmarks (including the Shuvalov, Sheremetyev, and Yusupov Palaces), numerous beautiful and unusual bridges, and several of the city's most famous "postcard" panoramas, including the Strelka ("spit") of Vasilevskiy Island. Overnight in St. Petersburg

Day 2  : St Petersburg

After breakfast, begin a City Tour of St. Petersburg, one of the most fascinating cities in Europe. You will drive by the elegant buildings on the Nevsky Prospect, stately palaces on the Palace Embankment along the Neva River, Palace Square with Winter Palace and Alexander Column, Bronze Horseman - the famous monument to Peter the Great, Admiralty, Schmidt Bridge, Strelka with Stock Exchange and Rosstral Columns, St. Isaac's Cathedral, Peter and Paul Fortress, Alexander Nevsky Lavra, Canal Griboyedova, Fontanka, Kazan Cathedral, Church on Spilled Blood and other finest architectural, historical and cultural landmarks. During the tour you will visit Peter and Paul Fortress and St. Isaac’s Cathedral.

Peter-and-Paul Fortress was built in 1704 to defend the city from naval attacks; however it never served it purpose. Instead its history is rather gruesome: thousands of laborers died while building the fortress, many political prisoners, including Peter's own son Alexi were kept and tortured in its cells, and the tombs of the Romanov family are in its Cathedral.

St. Isaac's Cathedral is one of the world’s largest Cathedrals and can accommodate about 10,000 audiences. It was designed by then unknown Auguste de Montferrand and opened in 1858. The Cathedral is beautifully decorated inside with marble of 13 colors, malachite, lapis-lazuli, paintings, mosaics and stained glass made by the most famous Russian artists. Overnight in St. Petersburg

Day 3  : St Petersburg

After breakfast, tour to the imperial estate of Peterhof located on the southern shores of the Finnish Gulf 14 miles (29 kilometers) away from St. Petersburg. Peterhof is a complex of several palaces surrounded by a magnificent park with over 150 fountains and cascades. The history of Peterhof goes back to the beginning of the 18th century when Peter I ordered to build a house where he could stay while overseeing the building of the nearby Kronstadt fortress. He later decided to rebuild and expand his modest residence into a palace similar to the Versailles in Paris. Ten years alter the grand opening of Peterhof was held and nowadays it is considered one of the most beautiful royal estates in the world and is included in UNESCO World Heritage List. The focal point of Peterhof is the Grand Palace and the Grand Cascade Fountain.

Our next visit is to Pushkin where palaces and parks were created under Empresses Elizabeth and Catherine the Great between 1744 and 1796. The main landmark is the Catherine Palacedesigned by Rastrelli and named after Elizabeth’s mother, Peter the Great's second wife. Pushkin's original name is Tsarskoye Selo (Tsar's Village). It was renamed in 1937 after Russia’s famous poet who used to study here. You will also visit the famous Amber Room in the Catherine Palace. Overnight in St. Petersburg

Day 4  : St Petersburg

Today you will visit one of the nation's main glories - the State Hermitage Art Museum. The museum occupies six magnificent buildings along the embankment of the Neva River in the heart of St Petersburg. The focal point of this unique architectural ensemble is the Winter Palace, former residence of the Russian tsars that was built according to the design of Francesco Bartolomeo Rastrelli in 1754-62. This ensemble is extended by the General Staff building, the Menshikov Palace and the Repository. The Hermitage collection was put together throughout two and a half centuries; it consists of over 3,000,000 works of art and showcases the development of the world culture and art from the Stone Age to the 20th century. In the afternoon you are free to continue exploring the Hermitage on your own or enjoy the beautiful St. Petersburg. In the evening board the luxurious overnight Grand Express train to Moscow

Day 5  : Moscow

Arrive in Moscow and meet your guide at the train station followed by general overview Moscow City Tour. You will explore the main areas on the Russian capital within the boundaries of the Garden Ring and the Boulevard Ring, the famous Red Square and Kremlin, adjacent to which are the old historical parts of Moscow such as Kitay Gorod, Tverskaya, Arbat and Zamoskvorechje. Your tour will include all-important sites such as St. Basil's Church, Cathedral of Christ the Savior, Novodevichiy Convent, Luzhniki, the White House, Moskva River and others. For the best panoramic view of the city and the famous Moscow University “"wedding cake"" building you will drive to the Sparrow Hills, located 6 km south-west of Kremlin. Hotel check-in and the tour. 

In the afternoon we will continue our Moscow tour in the Red Square and Kremlin area. This is where the famous St. Basil's Cathedral, Mausoleum, Historical Museum and GUM department store are located. The main landmarks inside Moscow Kremlin are the three famous Cathedrals - Assumption, Annunciation and Archangel - dating back to the 15-16th centuries, Ivan the Great Bell Tower, Tsar Bell, Tsar Cannon, Hall of Facets and Terem Place.  

Your tour will include a visit to the Armory with its stunning collection of wealth and treasures of the Russian state and church. The collection is mostly famous for its jewel decorated Faberge Easter Eggs. Among other items on the display are royal regalia, the 800-diamond throne of Tsar Alexey, the jewel-studded and sable-trimmed Cap of Monomakh worn for coronations for over two centuries, the coronation dress of Catherine the Great, the sleigh in which Elizabeth rode from St. Petersburg to Moscow for her coronation pulled by 23 horses at a time. Between the Armory and the Annunciation Cathedral is the Great Kremlin Palace the official residence of Russian president. Overnight in Moscow.

Day 6  : Moscow – Trans-Siberian Departure

After breakfast visit Tretyakov Gallery in one of the oldest parts of Moscow Zamoskvorechje. Pavel Tretyakov, a Russian merchant and patron of the arts, founded the museum in 1892 when he donated his collection to the city of Moscow. It has since become a world-famous museum with more than 170,000 works by Russian artists from early religious paintings to modern art. In the afternoon our Russian tour continues with an exciting ride on Moscow subway. Moscow Metro is one of a kind subway system in the world carrying more passengers daily than New York and London systems combined. The prominent Russian architects and artists participated in the construction and design of the stations the primary goal of their work was not just to create a transportation system but to showcase and glorify socialism and its achievements. As a result it turned out to be one of the most extravagant projects of the Soviet Union where each station looks like a palace decorated with statues, marble columns, frescos and mosaics. 

Transfer to the railway station and late evening departure to Irkutsk. Overnight on the train 

Day 7  : On Board the Train

Full day reaching the Europe Asia Border & Yekaterinburg, from this point on you are officially in Siberia! 

Day 8  : On Board the Train

Full day in Siberia & the Vastness of Central Russia

Day 9  : On Board the Train

Beautiful Siberian Landscapes after Krasnoyarsk

Day 10  : Arrival Irkutsk & Lake Baikal

Having crossed the forests, beside lakes and rushing rivers, swamps and remote villages of painted wooden houses, you will arrive in Irkutsk early in the morning and transfer directly toListvyanka, a small village on the shore of Lake Baikal. You can enjoy a bath in the ‘Old Man’, as local people call the lake, if you’re brave enough to dive into the cold water. Its water is amazingly transparent: rocks and fish can be seen at a depth of about 50 m. The water is so clear because there are millions of microorganisms living in the lake whose main purpose is to clean the water of all pollutants. A visit to the Limnologic Institute will reveal many of the lakes mysteries. On a stroll around the village, visit the church of St. Nicolas and a traditional fisher-market, walk to Chersky viewing point where you can enjoy a fabulous view on the lake and the Angara River if the weather is clear.  Overnight and dinner at a typical Siberian wooden chalet close to the lake where local food will be prepared by your host

Day 11  : Listvyanka - Irkutsk

In the morning, free time to hike the trails or to explore the lake during a 1-hour boat trip (optional). Sail along the shores and enjoy the beautiful landscape around. You will leave Listvyanka around midday and visit the Wooden Architecture Museum of Tsaltsy on the way back to Irkutsk, where typically old churches, shaman houses and a fortress have been rebuilt in original style. During a city tour in Irkutsk, your guide will tell you about the history of tthe city and introduce you to the most interesting sights. You will see elaborate Russian Orthodox churches, a Polish Cathedral (the only Siberian Gothic-style building), many wooden houses decorated with “wooden laces” (hand-made carvings) as well as modern buildings of the 20th century.  You will also visit the Decembrist House, a fascinating museum displaying the life of the Trubetskoy and Volkonsky families. Overnight in Irkutsk.

Day 12  : Departure from Irkutsk

Early morning departure to Ulaanbaatar, the capital of Mongolia; the landscape gradually changes from wide forests and rivers to a uniform steppe, where the great Khans have been riding their horses. Overnight on the train to Mongolia.

Day 13  : Ulaanbaatar - Terejl National Park

Arrive in Ulan Bator in the morning. Transfer to Ger Camp Terelij. Spend one day and night at the Ger Camp in a traditional Mongolian family communal tent. Gers have been used for generations by nomadic herdsman not only in Mongolia but across other parts of Central Asia as well. Terejl Ger camp is known for rocky landscape, panoramic views, and great trails for horse riding and hiking. Ger camps employ a manager, cook, waitress and horsemen. Travelers stay at their own Gers, just like a hotel room. Cooks at the Ger camps are all professionals, so travelers can have opportunity to taste Asian and European as well as Mongolian dishes, while staying there. Depending on the distance from the main market, the menu will vary depending on the Ger camp. Relax and enjoy the nature and optional activities. Overnight at the Ger camp.

Day 14  : Terejl Ger Camp - Ulan Bator

Transfer and city tour of Ulan Bator. Visit the Bogdo Khan Winter Palace Museum. Enjoy a stunning Mongolian cultural performance including the famous throat-singing in the evening.Overnight in Ulan Bator.

Day 15  : Ulan Bator - Train to Beijing

Afterr early breakfast transfer to train station. Departure to Beijing. Overnight on the train to China.

Day 16  : Beijing

Arrival in Beijing around midday. You have reached your final destination of your railway journey across two continents, from the Baltic to the Yellow Sea. Transfer to hotel. Hotel check-in & free time. Overnight in Beijing

Day 17  : Beijing

After breakfast, your guide will take you to one of the most powerful symbols of ancient Chinese civilization – the Great Wall of China, stretching 6,350 km. It took more than one million people and ten years to build the Great Wall designed as a defensive structure. In 1987 it was added to the UNESCO List of World Heritage Sites. You will have the opportunity to walk along the wall, through the watch towers and enjoy superb views as it snakes across the hills and mountains. You can return by cable car, walk down or walk along the wall for about an hour to descend by chairlift. We will then continue to the Temple of Heaven. Built in 1420 during the Ming Dynasty, the Temple of Heaven is a complex of Taoist buildings where emperors of Ming and Qing dynasties visited for annual ceremonies of pray for good harvests.Overnight in Beijing.

Day 18  : Beijing

After breakfast a private full-day city tour of Beijing with your local guide, you will visit the Forbidden City, the Tiananmen Square and the Hutongs. The Forbidden City was home to 24 emperors between 1368 and 1911. This “city within a city” is a World Heritage Site. The largest and best preserved ancient imperial architectural complex in the world, featuring the great square, halls and gates contrast with intricate halls, gardens, courtyards and quarters. The exhibitions, both permanent and temporary, are all important treasures of ancient China. Tiananmen Square is the largest city square in the center of Beijing, named after the Tiananmen (literally, Gate of Heavenly Peace) which sits to its north, separating it from the Forbidden City. It has great cultural significance as it was the site of several key events in Chinese history. As the world’s largest city square and enduring symbol of China’s national pride, it is surrounded by many imposing buildings including the Heavenly Gate (entry to the Forbidden City), Museums, government buildings and Chairman Mao’s Mausoleum. A Hutong is a maze of historic alleyways with old single story traditional courtyard houses, which are now fast disappearing.

Day 19  : Beijing

Breakfast and check-out. Transfer to the airport.