St.Petersburg and Karelia
|SAINT PETERSBURG AND KARELIA|
8 Days / 7 Nights
This tour combines two very different environments of the North-Western Russia: St. Petersburg, as one of the biggest and the most beautiful cities of Europe; and Karelia, vast sparsely populated country with endless evergreen pine forests (taiga), romantic lakes, clean rivers abundant with fish, and rich cultural and religious heritage.
In fact Karelia is one the last areas of untamed nature of such size in the whole Europe, some of its forests had never been cut down for the industrial exploration. The remoteness of Karelia has made it a favorite place for monks and hermits, as well as for freemen escaping troubles and political oppression of Central Russia. Later during the Romanovs and Stalin it became a place of exile, sort of European Siberia.
Nowadays Karelia is one of the favorite tourist destinations for the Russian city dwellers who want to change for a short while the stress and commotion of a metropolis for the tranquility and peace of the fabulous Karelian nature, as well as it is the magnet for the foreign visitors who want to explore the excellent cultural monuments of the past such as Kizhi, Valaam and Solovki. Karela makes a perfect break from visiting St. Petersbug, the former imperial capital of Russia and the primal attraction of most of the tourists, travelling in Russia. The number of attractions in the Capital of the North is huge, and the pace of life is fast, so most of the travellers will welcome the Karelian city break as the chance to recharge the batteries.
The program of the tour:
The price of the tour is quoted at the request.
Arrival to St.Petersburg. Transfer to the hotel accompanied by a Comintour representative. Check-in. Dinner at the hotel.
|Day 2||Breakfast. City tour, introducing exteriors of the most of the famous monuments such as St. Isaak Cathedral, Church on the Spilled Blood, the Winter Palace, the Mariinsky (Kirov) Theatre. The tour also includes a visit to the Peter & Paul Fortress. From this fortress the city itself had started, there most of the emperors of the Romanov dynasty are buried. Lunch in a city restaurant. In the afternoon tour of the Hermitage museum..|
|Day 3||Breakfast. Trip to Pushkin, for the tour of the Catherine’s Palace. Home to the famous Amber Room, the palace and surrounding park are among the best masterpieces of the Russian landscape design and architecture. Lunch. Proceed to Pavlovsk for the tour of the Emperor Paul’s Palace. Return to the hotel. Dinner in a city restaurant. Transfer to the train station. Departure to Petrozavodsk, the capital of the Republic of Karelia, by the overnight train.|
|Day 4||Arrival to Petrozavodsk. Transfer to the hotel, accompanied by the local guide. Check-in. Breakfast. Sightseeing tour of the city. Visit to the Dolls’ House art gallery. Proceed to the Russia’s oldest resort of Martial Waters. Visit to the Church of the Apostle Peter built in 1721 for the guests of the resort. Trip to Kivatch waterfall, the Europe’s second highest flatland waterfall. Picnic on the site including shashlyk (shish kebab) as the main course. Return to Petrozavodsk. Dinner at the hotel.|
|Day 5||Breakfast. Visit to the exhibition of the petroglyphs (rock carvings) from the Onega Lake and the White Sea. Made by the ancient hunters and fishermen about 6 thousand years ago the carvings are considered among the most outstanding monuments of the primitive art in Northern Europe. Trip to the Kizhi Island by hydrofoil across the Onega Lake. Tour of the open air museum of the wooden architecture. Among the highlights of the island is the UNESCO listed Church of Transfiguration of the Savior crowned with 22 cupolas and built without a single nail. Visit to the Church of the Protecting Veil of the Mother of God. Return to Petrozavodsk. Dinner at the hotel.|
|Day 6||Breakfast. Departure by bus to Sortavala (260 km away from). On the way we stop for 2-hour rafting on the Shuya river followed by lunch on the picturesque river bank. (The travellers that don't want to raft can optionally get to the lunch place by bus). Arrival to Sortavala. Check-in. Dinner at the hotel.|
|Day 7||Breakfast. Check-out. Transfer to the river-boat station. Trip to Valaam Island, home of one of the most renown of the Russian monasteries. We get by boat across the Ladoga Lake, the largest in Europe. Walking tour of the Valaam Island. Visit to the Transfiguration Monastery. Visiting a skeet (Russian for a small secluded monastery built for one or several monks, sometimes not far from the main building of the monastery). Lunch in the refectory. Concert of sacred music. Departure by bus to Petrozavodsk (via Sortavala). Dinner on the way in the village of Kinerma featuring the authentic specialities of the Karelian cuisine. Arrival in Petrozavodsk. Transfer to the train station. Departure to St.Petersburg by the overnight train.|
|Day 8||Early arrival. Breakfast, check-out, transfer to the airport, departure.|
Last update: 31.08.2012