Moscow, St Petersburg and the Golden Ring / 12D

12 Days 11 Nights Classic tour 4 cities of GR All year

► Tours  ► St Petersburg and Moscow tours ► Moscow, St Petersburg and the Golden Ring

  A classic and popular trip in Russian is to visit the two capitals and several cities of the Golden Ring. On this route, you will see not just the most interesting sights of Moscow and St Petersburg but also the most beautiful cities of the Golden Ring – Vladimir, Suzdal, Rostov Veliky and Yaroslavl - the unofficial capital of the ring. On free days we can organise a programme of optional excursions and tours. The trip is possible in either direction or it can start and finish in the same city.
  For this tour, we offer a wide range of optional excursion so that you can see what is most interesting for you.  You will not be accompanied with a guide when travelling on the route, but local guides will take you on excursions in the cities themselves. At your request and for an additional fee, we can add a guide to accompany you on the whole route. The tour begins in Moscow and ends in St Petersburg.




 Arrival in Moscow. Transfer to the hotel.

Free time in the city, although if you arrive in the morning we can organise an excursion on this day.



 Breakfast in the hotel.

 Walking tour around central Moscow. The main sights on the tour are:
  • Red Square – one of the most famous squares in the world, famous for St Basil’s Cathedral which is one of the most recognisable symbols of Russia.
  • Lenin’s Mausoleum – where the body of Vladimir Lenin, the leader of the World Proletariat, still lies, embalmed in a glass box.
  • GUM – a famous shopping centre located on Red Square.
  • Aleksandrovsky Gardens – gardens which run along the northern wall of the Kremlin.
  • Lubyanka KGB Building – an impressive building once home to the KGB; it is now the headquarters of the Federal Security Bureau.
  • Zaryadye Park - a unique park built where the massive Soviet-Style Hotel Rossia once stood. It contains representations of various natural landscapes found in Russia.
  • Christ the Saviour Cathedral – the largest place of worship in Russia, it was rebuilt in the 1990s after the original was destroyed on the orders of Stalin.
  • Ulitsa Arbat – a popular pedestrian street which has souvenir shops and many bars and restaurants.

You will also have the following excursions around:

  • Moscow Kremlin - you will go inside the famous fortress which is now home to the Russian president and will see the Tsar Canon, Tsar Bell and go inside the Kremlin’s cathedrals.
  • Moscow Metro – you will go to the most beautiful stations of the metro system which is often said to be the most beautiful in the world.

 Duration: 8 hours | Transportation: by metro


zamoskvorechie district

  Breakfast in the hotel.

  Guided Tour of the Tretyakov Gallery – home to one of the world's largest collections of Russian art. Since its foundation in 1856, the gallery has collected has more than 170,000 exhibits including some of the most famous Russian artworks and ancient icons.

  Guided tour around the Zamoskvorechye District – situated south of the River Moskva opposite the Kremlin, this district is considered one of the most atmospheric in Moscow, where over six centuries of history have been preserved. There are many picturesque lanes, small squares with fountains and old mansion houses and churches built in various styles.

 Visit Museon Sculpture park - a unique museum of sculpture in the open air. The collection includes more than 1000 sculptures: Monuments of the Soviet era and the period of social realism, works of russian avant-garde artists and contemporary artists, as well as public art. Among the monuments are the works of Eugene Vuchetich, Vladimir Lemport, Sergei Merkurov, Vera Mukhina and other famous sculptors.

  On the Boat trip along the Moskva river, you will see the main sights of Moscow from the water.

 Duration: 6-7 hours | Transportation: by metro


  Breakfast in the hotel.

 Free day in Moscow. You can spend this day either exploring Moscow by yourself or by ordering an additional excursion, including an excursion outside of Moscow.


 Morning transfer from your hotel to Moscow’s Kursky Railway Station. 

 Lastochka express train to Vladimir.

 Duration: 2 hours

Arrival in Vladimir and transfer to the starting point of the excursion. 

 City tour of Vladimir – Vladimir was once the mediaeval capital of the Russian state and so is an important city in terms of Russian history. The highlights of this tour include:

  • Dormition Cathedral - the main cathedral of the city. For over 200 years this cathedral held the revered Our Lady of Vladimir Icon, which Prince Andrey Bogolyubsky brought from Vyshgorod in Ukraine to Vladimir. The icon was later transferred to Moscow and can now be seen in the Tretyakov Gallery. According to legend, the icon was created by Luke the Evangelist.
  • Golden Gates - a rare monument of Russian 12th century defensive architecture and all that remains of the walls which once surrounded Vladimir.
  • St Demetrius’ Cathedral - one of the most remarkable monuments of mediaeval Rus. It was built in the 1190s as a palace temple of Grand Prince Vsevolod the Big Nest of Vladimir and is decorated on the outside with engravings of plants and animals, while the interior still retains fragments of frescos by Andrey Rublev.

 Duration: 2 hours |  Transportation: by car

 Transfer from Vladimir to your hotel in Suzdal.

 Distance: 40km

 Night in Suzdal.


  Breakfast in the hotel.

  City tour of Suzdal - Suzdal is perhaps the highlight of the Golden Ring, as the whole city is an open-air museum thanks to it being practically unspoiled by modernisation and industrialisation. On this excursion you will visit:

  • Suzdal Kremlin - this is the oldest part and historical core of the city. Although the kremlin's walls no longer stand, parts of the earthen mound fortifications do remain. The buildings inside the kremlin are now used as museums.
  • Nativity Cathedral (1222) – the kremlin’s cathedral is the Nativity Cathedral and the current version stands on the place of an 11th century version which was built on the orders of Vladimir Monomakh. The interior features stunning frescos as well as a necropolis where the sons of Yury Dolgoruky have been interred along with several members of various noble families from Suzdal.
  • Spaso-Yefimiev Monastery (1352) – this is the largest monastery in Suzdal and with its large fortified walls it is often mistaken for being the Suzdal Kremlin. Today it is a museum with various exhibitions including its main cathedral with its amazing frescos.
  • Museum of the Wooden Architecture and Peasant life – this collection of wooden buildings, including churches and windmills, from various parts of European Russia is one of the best of architectural museums in Russia. It now resembles a village in itself made up of beautiful examples of 17th - 19th century wooden buildings which have been brought here to protect them from fire or from being dismantled.
  • Trading Rows (1812) – Suzdal’s set of trading rows are still used for their original purpose and a souvenir market is held outside where you can buy a whole range of souvenirs, including bottles of the mead for which Suzdal is famed.

 Duration: 3½ hours |  Transportation: by a private car

 Transfer from Suzdal to Rostov Veliky. 

During the transfer you will pass through the territory known as Opolye where the landscape is not at all typical for the north-eastern part of European Russia and characterised by its open fields and wide open spaces.

 Distance: 154km

 ~19:00 | Arrival in Rostov Veliky and check-in at the hotel.


Rostov Veliky

  Breakfast in the hotel.

  City tour of Rostov Veliky - On this excursion you will visit:

  • Rostov Kremlin – the former residence of the metropolitan of the Rostov Eparchy which is called a kremlin due to its large, fortified walls which were built more to look impressive rather than to provide a defensive function. The white stone kremlin is a monument of pre-Petrine Russian architecture.
  • Dormition Cathedral – the main cathedral in the kremlin which dates from the 16th century and was modelled of the Dormition Cathedral of the Moscow Kremlin. It is 60 metres in height. Next to the cathedral is a belfry containing 15 unique bells, whose sound is widely celebrated across Russia.
  • Museum of Rostov Finift – Rostov finift enamel painting has been a famous local handicraft since the 18th century. This museum has over 3000 examples on display.
  • Spaso-Yakovlevsky Monastery – Rostov’s Spaso-Yakovlevsky Monastery was founded in approximately 1390 by Bishop Jacob (Yakov) of Rostov, after whom it is now named. After the Kremlin it is the most beautiful sight in the city with its eclectic Conception of Anna Church and St Jacob of Rostov's Church.

 Duration: 3 hours.  Transportation: by car

  Transfer from Rostov Veliky to Yaroslavl.

 Distance: 58km 

 Arrival in Yaroslavl and check-in at the hotel. Night in Yaroslavl.



 Breakfast in the hotel.

 Walking tour around Yaroslavl. The highlights of the tour are:

  • Spaso-Preobrazhensky Monastery – one of the largest, richest and best fortified monasteries of the 16th century. It is closely associated with the volunteer army of Minin and Pozharsky which was based here while it prepared to liberate Moscow from the Poles in the early 17th century. Inside the monastery is the Transfiguration Cathedral which is the oldest surviving building in Yaroslavl and was built on the site of an even older church between 1506 and 1516. It interior is decorated with spectacular frescos. To protect these unique frescos it can only be visited between May and October.
  • Volga Embankment - this embankment running along the River Volga is one of the prettiest places in Yaroslavl and several historical churches and other buildings are located here. From here you can enjoy great views of the largest river in Europe. 
  • St Elijah the Prophet’s Church (17th Century) - this church is a masterpiece of ancient Russian architecture which is stunningly beautiful on the outside and on the inside thanks to its detailed frescos and amazing iconostasis. To protect these unique frescos it can only be visited between May and October.

 Duration: 2 hours |  Transportation: walking

 Evening transfer from your hotel to the railway station in Yaroslavl. 

 Premium train to St Petersburg. Night in the train.


st petersburg

 Morning arrival in St Petersburg and transfer to your hotel

  Free time in St Petersburg.


St Petersburg

 Breakfast in the hotel.

 A city tour around St Petersburg. The highlights of the tour are:

  • Our Lady of Kazan Cathedral - one of the city's most famous landmarks with its instantly recognisable semi-circular colonnade with 96 columns.
  • Peter the Great Monument (The Bronze Horseman) - the most famous monument in St Petersburg and one of its most recognisable symbols. It was a gift from Catherine the Great to the city.
  • Field of Mars - a memorial field where many revolutionaries were buried and also where the first eternal flame in Russia was ignited.
  • Rostral columns - symbols of the city which were used as lighthouses up until 1885.

 The city tour also includes:

  • Guided Tour of the Peter and Paul Fortress – the original point of foundation of St Petersburg which later served as a prison for political prisoners. Its cathedral is the resting place for almost all Russian monarchs after Peter the Great. 
  • Guided Tour of the State Hermitage - one of the most famous art galleries in the world which receives over 3.5 million visitors a year. It is located inside the Winter Palace which was once the official residence of the Russian emperors and empresses. Many of the palace's 365 rooms are filled with sculptures and paintings of world-renowned artists of all ages, although quite often the interiors of the palace outshine even these masterpieces. It is said that if you stand next to each of the exhibits or pictures for a minute, it will take eight years of your life to see everything. Our guide though knows shortcuts and will take you to the must-see exhibitions and rooms so you won’t need to stay there that long!

 Duration: about 7-8 hours |  Transportation: by a car and by metro


St Petersburg

 Breakfast in the hotel.

  • The collection of mosaics of this cathedral is one of the largest in Europe. The mosaics cover the whole interior of the cathedral, and the production of these masterpieces delayed the completion of the cathedral by ten years! Famous Russian masters - Vasnetsov, Nesterov, Belyaev, Kharlamov, Zhuravlev, Ryabushkin - took part in the work. Even the iconostasis features mosaics.
  Excursion to Pushkin with a guided tour of the Catherine Palace and the Amber room.
  • Pushkin (formerly known as Tsarskoe Selo) is located in 25km from St Petersburg. The Catherine Palace here is among the top five most beautiful palaces in Russia and its Amber Room is often called as the most beautiful palace hall in the world. About 100kg of gold was used to decorate the palace.

 Duration: about 7-8 hours |  Transportation: by a private car 


St Petersburg

 Breakfast in the hotel.

 Transfer from the hotel to the airport.

Rostov veliky

  • The tour is available the whole year round starting on any day, but please take into account that the museum’s working hours and days-off vary so we reserve the right to change the itinerary while trying to save the excursion programme.
  • Optional excursions should be booked before the start of the tour to schedule the itinerary.
  • Transportation in Moscow, where travel by metro is designated, can be changed to a car upon request, but please note that the transport situation in Moscow is not very good, so you could get stuck in a traffic jam.
  • Tickets to museums cannot be sold without an excursion with a guide.
  • During state holidays and celebrations, Red Square may be closed (either partially blocked off or completely closed).
  • The price of the tour may be increased during the period of the White Nights (11JUN-10JUL) and when the International Economic Forum (end of May or beginning of June) is being held in St Petersburg. Please check the price when booking.
  • In cities of the Golden Ring where there are no 4 or 5-star hotels, the cost includes hotels of 3 or 4 stars.
  • All excursions/guided tours included in the itinerary are private which means private guides and private transport along with the programme - unless otherwise stated.
  • Best time to travel on this route: from the end of April to mid-October and from December to mid-March.






Date of the tour


Number of travellers

Children (6-16):


Cost of the tour in
  • Individual excursions according to the programme.
  • Entrance tickets to the museums
  • Transfers in a private car according to the programme.
  • Second class tickets for the high-speed train from Moscow to Vladimir
  • Second class tickets for the Premium train from Yaroslavl to St Petersburg
  • Accommodation in a hotel of a category of your choice, central location, standard DBL rooms with breakfast.
  • 24h emergency support during the tour
  • Visa support documents
Not included
  • Meals (except for breakfast where stated).
  • Tips for the guides and drivers.
  • Optional excursions.
Country of residence
Phone (optional)
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