Taste mystery and intrigue on an exploration of the land that lay hidden behind the Iron Curtain for decades. Experience the grandeur of Moscow, the beauty of Russia's ancient capitals and the grace of St Petersburg. Discover the cathedrals, monuments, age-old treasures and romantic landscapes of this great nation and find the heart of enigmatic Russia.
Days 1-2 Moscow
A place where old-world orthodoxy meets audacious free enterprise, the city of Moscow is one of the greatest capitals in the world. Explore the Kremlin and discover its huge collection of imperial treasures including exquisite Faberge eggs and ceremonial regalia. Walk among the cathedrals and museums within the Kremlin walls and get a glimpse of Lenin in his eternal resting state. Be sure to visit Moscow's metro stations - these lavishly decorated 'Palaces of the People' are unlike any other in the world.
Days 3-4 Suzdal
Depart Moscow and travel to Suzdal. Marvel at this glittering town and former Russian capital, which forms part of the Golden Ring. Suzdal is home to a remarkable number of churches and a memorable skyline. Make time to wander past lovingly decorated wooden cottages and visit the crumbling churches that line the narrow streets and alleys of this magical spot. Perfect local specialities in a cooking class then wind down with a glass of medovukha - a light alcoholic drink made from honey - while enjoying lovely views across attractive meadows.
Day 5 Novgorod
Novgorod, Russia's oldest city, is an absolute gem. Take in the many well-preserved architectural treasures that hint at the city's former glory. Travel back in time with a visit to the Millennium of Russia monument and the Cathedral of St Sophia, both concealed within the Kremlin walls. Join Novgorod locals for a refreshing steam at the public banya (bath house) - no trip to Russia would be complete without experiencing this quirky custom!
Days 6-8 St Petersburg
Take a guided tour to learn about the colourful characters associated with the historical attractions in St Petersburg. Later, be a special guest of a local family for a tea party, Russian-style.