August 07, 2019
Review about Splendors of Russia - Deluxe Tour by Debbie Joy & Jerry Abrahamson
We recently went on the Splendors of Russia tour and had a wonderful time. We knew it would be a small group, but didn't know it would only be 3 people - so it was more like a private tour! The hotels provided were wonderful, 5 star all the way. And our guides, Alexander in Moscow and Maria in St. Petersburg, we VERY knowledgeable about their cities, the history and culture of Russia and also spoke excellent English. The transportation everywhere went without a hitch and the guides were very accommodating to my husband's handicaps in making sure he was able to participate as much as possible on the tours. We found it expecially interesting in the personal experiences both our guides had as citizens during both the USSR era and the current Russia Federation era. This helped bring a lot of the history and culture into perspective. And the sites that were included in the tour were fabulous - having a VERY small group made it easy to get in and see everything without being rushed and being able to avoid long lines at each location. One recommendation is to make the Hermitage all-day tour have a half-day option - spending all day there was exhausting (and I'm in good shape!). Maybe having an option to go back to the hotel or perhaps go on a river cruise/tour for the second half of the day (sans guide) would be good. Also, the included dinners in Moscow were not good (the ones in St. Petersburg were excellent). We would have preferred one of the meals to be on the river cruise in Moscow instead of at a separate restaurant. Perhaps you should let the local guide decide where to take people within a certain spending guideline. We also would have preferred to have a choice on the menu at each place - again, within a pre-set spending limit. My husband is allergic to fish and one of the meals had fish as the main course. Fortunately the restaurant was able to accommodate him and swap out chicken, but we didn't know the menus would be pre-defined, so didn't think to inform you of his allergy. Otherwise, everything was great and we won't hesitate to recommend this tour to our friends.