Russia Northern Lights | Small Group Russia Tour from Australia
Russia Northern Lights
Moscow, Russia
Saint Petersburg, Russia

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Overview

Discover the majestic Russian winter as you explore the brilliant Moscow and Saint Petersburg, and enjoy traditional Russian winter activities like Troyka ride in the winter park of the former Russian tsar's residence. Then make your way to the inspiring Karelia region to see the Kizhi and majestic Marble Canyon, and continue to Russia's distant north for an unforgettable opportunity to witness the dazzling Northern Lights. Experience a cooking class of traditional borsch, afternoon tea with pancakes, vodka tasting, snowmobile riding, husky dog sledding, and meet the Saami people.
Tour type:
Private tour
Tour rating:
4.87 / 5, Based on
  • BEST HOTELS
  • 4-star centrally located hotels: 9 nights
    4-star lakeside hotel: 1 night
    Onboard the train: 1 night
  • BEST CONNECTIONS
  • Private airport/railway station transfers
    3 train rides between cities
    Private transfers between cities
    Private drivers for day trips
    1 hovercraft journey
    Husky safari and snowmobiling ride
  • BEST SIGHTSEEING
  • 1 guided walking city tour
    4 guided city tours with private transportation
    4 guided day-tours outside cities
    10 guided visits to sights and museums
    Activities: cooking class
  • MEALS
  • 10 breakfasts
    7 lunches
    1 dinner
    1 afternoon tea

Day-by-Day

Day 1
Arrival in Moscow

Welcome to the legendary capital of Russia - Moscow! Your driver meets you at the airport and transfers you to your centrally located hotel for check-in.

The rest of the day is free to relax in your cozy room, dine in one of the nearby restaurants or start exploring the amazing city center on your own.

No meals included.

Day 2
Moscow City Tour & Visit to the Kremlin

Following breakfast, you meet your private guide in the hotel lobby and go on a wonderful 8-hour city tour around the most outstanding Moscow landmarks.

During the tour you explore the fairy tale Red Square that is especially charming in winter with all this sparkling snow covering the bright domes of the St. Basil's Cathedral, which you get to enter and explore from inside too, see the brightly illuminated exteriors of the GUM and enjoy one of the best city views at Sparrow Hills.

After lunch in a city restaurant, you explore an incredible Moscow must-see icon - the Kremlin. You go inside the Kremlin walls to visit it's famous Armoury Chamber that houses a unique collection of crown jewels, stunning coronation finery, hand-forged armor and weapons, royal carriages and sleighs, and world-famous Fabergé eggs.

After the tour, you return to your hotel and have the rest of the day free.

Breakfast and lunch included.

Day 3
Russian Cooking Class & Train to St. Petersburg

In the morning after breakfast, you check out from your hotel and go on an exclusive cooking class to get the real taste of Russia.

Together with a professional English-speaking chef you first go to a local market to buy fresh local produce. Then during the cooking class, you learn the secrets of making a perfect Russian borscht, learn to make traditional pelmeni dumplings and thin blini pancakes.

After the tour, you are transferred to the train station where you board a modern high-speed Sapsan train that takes you to St. Petersburg in comfort and safety in just 4 hours.

Upon arrival, your driver meets you at the train station and takes you to your centrally located hotel for overnight.

Breakfast is included.

Day 4
St. Petersburg City Tour

After breakfast, you meet your guide in the hotel lobby and go on an amazing panoramic city tour around the most outstanding attractions of St. Petersburg.

During the tour you visit the gorgeous St. Isaac's Cathedral, the Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood which stands on the site where Russia's great emperor Alexander II was mortally wounded, and the Peter and Paul Fortress - a burial place of almost all the Russian emperors and empresses from Peter the Great to Nicholas II and his family.

You are then invited to an afternoon tea in Astoria where you have a wide choice of Russian sweets, crapes with sauces, traditional Russian meat pirozhki, sandwiches and cookies, as well as coffee and tea.

After the tour, you return to your hotel and have the rest of the day free.

  • Optional tour: Evening banya
    Today we invite you to one of the oldest banyas in the historical center of Saint-Petersburg. Enjoy a Russian sauna on firewood and learn about the customs of a bathhouse, use “veniki” (birch branches), and try “kvas”.

Breakfast is included.

Day 5
Trip to Pushkin, Troyka Ride & Russian Vodka Museum

After breakfast, you meet your guide and driver who take you to the outskirts of St. Petersburg to Pushkin (Tsarskoe Selo) to explore the brilliant Catherine's Palace that is a striking example of baroque architecture gifted by Peter the Great to his wife Catherine I.

During the tour, you take a walk through the lavish parks and gardens of this outstanding palace and enjoy its gorgeous interiors, including the replica of the world-renowned Amber Room.

Later today you enjoy a traditional Russian amusement - a famous Russian troyka ride.

Afterwards, you are invited to the famous Russian Vodka Museum - the first museum in Russia and in the world dedicated exclusively to Vodka. Here you get to learn interesting facts about vodka history, culture and drinking traditions and taste different types of the spirit drink.

After the tour, you return to St. Petersburg and have the rest of the day free.

Breakfast and lunch included.

Day 6
Tour of the Hermitage Museum & Transfer to Sortavala

In the morning after breakfast, you check out from the hotel. You meet your guide in the hotel lobby and go to the legendary Hermitage Museum, that houses its unique collection of world art, including the masterpieces of Leonardo da Vinci, Rembrandt, El Greco, Francisco Goya and Thomas Gainsborough, in the halls of the Winter Palace.

They say that if you were to spend three minutes by each of the exhibits in the Hermitage, it would have taken you three years to see the entire exhibition. But don't worry - you have an experienced guide, who will show you the best rooms and halls of the exhibit within several hours.

After lunch in a local restaurant, you are taken to the railway station where you board a train that takes you to Sortavala, a town in the strikingly beautiful region of Russia, the Republic of Karelia. The duration of your trip is about 5 and a half hours.

Upon arrival, your driver meets you at the train station and takes you to a wooden style hotel located far away from the city life in beautiful natural surroundings. You are invited to have dinner in the hotel.

Breakfast, lunch and dinner included.

Day 7
Ruskeala Mountain Park & Marble Canyon

In the morning after breakfast, you check out from the hotel. This day is dedicated to exploring the stunning Ruskeala Mountain Park together with your guide.

Ruskeala Mountain Park is one of the brightest and most amazing places of the North Lagoda, visited by thousands each year. During your tour, you see the park, famous for its over 200-year history of marble excavations. As a tour highlight, you get to see the pearl of the Mountain Park - the Marble Canyon.

After lunch in a local restaurant, you are transferred to Petrozavodsk. Upon arrival, you check in your hotel and have the rest of the day free.

Breakfast and lunch included.

Day 8
Kizhi Island Tour

Today after breakfast you check out from the hotel. Together with your guide, you walk to the pier along the embankment to board a hovercraft that takes you to the breathtaking miracle of wooden architecture - Kizhi Island. The duration of your transfer is about 1.5 hour.

Upon arrival, you have a tour of the Open Air Museum Kizhi. During your walking tour, you explore its famous settlement - Pogost including the dazzling 22-domed Transfiguration Church built without a single nail, beautiful windmills and ancient Russian wooden houses. After a tea tasting, you visit a local carpentry restoration center.

In the afternoon after the tour, you depart back to Petrozavodsk on a hovercraft. Upon arrival, you are taken to the railway station where you board an overnight Arctica train to Murmansk.

Breakfast and lunch included.

Day 9
Murmansk & Northern Lights Tour

Upon arrival to Murmansk, you have a private transfer to the hotel. In about 2 hours meet your local guide to have a 4-hour city tour of Murmansk.

Today you visit the memorial complex Alesha in honor of the defenders of the Soviet polar region during the Great Patriotic War. You get to rise to the observation platform, opening incredible views of the Murmansk city center. Then you continue to the monument "Zhduschey" connected with the life in the Russian extreme north. Also, you visit the memorial complex dedicated to the tragic events that took place on the Kursk Submarine, see the Spas on Water church and the lighthouse. A definite highlight is a 1-hour guided visit to the famous Lenin Nuclear Icebreaker.*

After the tour you return to the hotel for check-in.

Later in the evening, you are in for an overwhelming and unforgettable activity as you are going Northern Lights seeking**. Tonight you see fantastic winter landscapes accompanied with magnificent views of the Northern Lights - this is a trip you will remember for years to come! You return to the hotel at about 2 a.m.

*Note: a visit to the Lenin Nuclear Icebreaker is unavailable on Mondays and Tuesdays.
**Depending on the weather conditions, the Northern Lights seeking tour can be rescheduled for the next day with a higher possibility of witnessing the Aurora Borealis.

No meals included.

Day 10
Snow Village & Snowmobile Tour

Following breakfast meet your guide and start a tour to the Snow Village. Located at the foot of the Khibiny Mountains, the unique Snow Derevnya Complex boasts a large territory that encompasses a snow labyrinth, beautiful snow and ice sculptures, as well as a visitor's center and a gift shop. You have about two hours to explore the village on your own.

As a highlight of the day you are invited to go on a snowmobile tour. In about 1.5 hours you travel about 25 km along the glacier valley of Kukisvum to the Kukisvumchorr Path that connects the South and North parts of Khibiny. The tour ends at the Serdtsevidnoye Lake, from where one can get a good view onto the Kuniyok River valley. On your way back you do a speed circle on the thick ice of Maly Vudyavr lake.

After lunch in a local restaurant, you are transferred back to Murmansk by car and have the rest of the day at leisure.

Breakfast and lunch are included.

Day 11
Husky Park & Saami Village Tour

In the morning after breakfast, you meet your guide in the hotel lobby and are transferred to the exciting Husky Park. Here you get to meet the beautiful blue-eyed dogs and learn more about the breed. Then enjoy the beauty of winter nature behind a bunch of wagging tails during an exciting Husky dog ride. Your dog sledging distance is of about 5 km, so sit back and take in the beauty of the winter forest.

In the afternoon you are taken to the territory of the Saami settlement to meet the locals. During the tour, you get to learn about the daily life and history of the Saami people and visit the enchanted alleys idols of four elements - fire, earth, water, air and five magical icons of love, happiness, luck, fate and health. Have a traditional meal in a national cafe and try local dishes such as Lim salmon soup or try local Pacula herbal tea. Get familiarized with the Saami reindeer, husky, foxes and rabbits and even get a chance to feed deer. You also go reindeer sledging, play traditional Saami games and take pictures in the national clothing of the Saami people.

After the tour, you are transferred back to the hotel.

Breakfast and lunch included.

Day 12
Departure

This is the final day of your amazing Russia Northern Lights tour. After breakfast, you check out from your hotel and your private driver takes you to the airport for your flight back home. We hope you've enjoyed your trip to Russia and return home with lifelong memories and unforgettable impressions. We wish you a safe flight and hope to work on your future trips!

Breakfast is included.


Included

9 nights in 4-star centrally located hotels, 1 night in a lakeside hotel

  • Hand picked hotels
  • Best value rooms
  • Restaurant

Always included:

  • Best location for sightseeing
  • Breakfasts
  • All taxes and fees

What's included
  • Accommodation at remarkable 4-star hotels in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Sortavala, Petrozavodsk and Murmansk;
  • Breakfasts at the hotels;
  • Other meals as per itinerary;
  • Airport transfers and all transportation according to the itinerary;
  • Rich sightseeing tours with professional English-speaking guides;
  • Economy class high-speed Sapsan train tickets from Moscow to St. Petersburg;
  • Regular class train tickets St. Petersburg - Sortavala;
  • Roundtrip hovercraft tickets Petrozavodsk - Kizhi Island - Petrozavodsk;
  • 1st class tickets for the Arctica train Petrozavodsk - Murmansk;
  • Full Russian visa processing service for US, Canadian, Australian and New Zealand citizens and visa support service (invitation) for customers from all other countries;
  • Emergency line support during the trip.

Not included: international flights, other meals not mentioned in the program, optional tours and services, all personal expenses.

Tour highlights
  • A fully tailor-made program according to your interest;
  • Your professional local guides and drivers;
  • Touch history in the red-walled Kremlin of Moscow and cobblestone Red Square with your experienced guide in the capital of Russia;
  • Take part in a cooking class of the authentic Russian borsch, traditional pelmeni (dumplings) and thin blini pancakes;
  • Feel as a true Russian on a troyka ride around the scenic winter park, followed by a vodka tasting in the Vodka museum;
  • Witness the untouched beauty of the Karelia at the Ruskeala Mountain Park and the Marble Canyon;
  • Experience the unforgettable trip on the hovercraft over the frozen lake on your way to Kizhi Island;
  • High likelihood of seeing the Aurora borealis dancing over your head in the Nothern lights seeking tour.
What to Know
  • Usual tip size in restaurants is 10% of the check. Recommended tips for guides and drivers is $8-12 per day for a great level of service
  • Bringing a water-resistant jacket, umbrella, and warm clothes are a must
  • Russian climates are unpredictable and weather can be quite harsh even during summers

Dates & Rates

Package type Price
Friends trip: 4+ travelers
$3,738
Deposit $748
Two travelers: double occupancy
$4,478
Deposit $896
Package type Price
Friends trip: 4+ travelers
$3,738
Deposit $748
Two travelers: double occupancy
$4,478
Deposit $896

Map


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