Enjoy this incredible Russia Tour vacation package that will provide you with a well-rounded grasp of the Russian culture. We've combined a Moscow Tour, a St. Petersburg Tour, and a Russian Farm Tour into one professionally planned and executed vacation package ensuring that you truly see what Russia has to offer! Enjoy the special care of our international escorted tours to provide you with a worry-free vacation that will entertain and even educate. See the astonishing Kremlin, with our included Kremlin Tour. Experience the hermitage Museum and many of its wonderful exhibits. Great guided tours of Moscow, Russia, St. Petersburg, Russia, and The black earth region make this Russia Tour one not to miss! Other important sights include the Russian Versailles, the Peterhof, St. Isaac's Cathedral, Peter and Paul Fortress, Winter Palace, St. Basil's Cathedral, the Assumption Cathedral, the Great Bell Tower, and the Kremlin's Amory and Museum. The Kremlin tour, Russia Farm Tour, and St. Basil's Cathedral Tour are definitely highlights of this amazing Russia Tour. Our escorted Moscow tour, St. Petersburg tour, and Voronezh tour are enjoyed by people of all ages and all walks of life. Rupiper's Russia Tour delivers the best sights, including both metropolitan areas as well as countryside visits. See Russia with Rupiper Tours' escorted vacation package and leave the details to the experts. This may be your only trip to Russia, make it a trip of a lifetime.
Russia Country and Farm Tour
July 24 - August 3, 2012
Day 1: Depart the USA
Depart from the east coast to St. Petersburg, Russia. (In-flight meal service)
Day 2: Arrival in St. Petersburg, Russia
Welcome to Saint Petersburg! Meet your Russian guide at the airport and transfer to the hotel. Relax or start exploring the city on your own prior to your welcome dinner at the hotel. (D)
Day 3: St. Petersburg
This morning board a hydrofoil and skim along the Neva River to the Peterhof, sometimes referred to as the "Russian Versailles". The Peterhof was built by Czar Peter the Great and consists of a series of palaces and gardens including 144 fountains. Visit the Grand Palace, stroll the beautiful grounds, and enjoy lunch in the Gallery Restaurant of the Summer Palace.
Return to the city for your afternoon sightseeing tour which takes you through the Industrial Park, past the Triumphal Gate, the University, the Arts Square, and the Admiralty. Travel along Nevsky Prospect, the city's key shopping district, and see the famous warship, Aurora. Visit the beautiful St. Isaac's Cathedral, the third largest domed building in the world and one of the finest architectural monuments of the 19th Century. More than 800 pounds of gold and over 1,000 pounds of lapis lazuli were used to adorn the church. Placed next to the cathedral on St. Isaac's Square, is the equestrian monument of the iron-willed, despotic Russian ruler, Nicholas I.
To round out the afternoon, attend a show featuring Russian singers and dancers, at the Nicholas Palace. Tonight's dinner is at the Literaturnoye Cafe. The 200-year old restaurant's name is a tribute to the 19th-century literary giants who dined and philosophized here. (B, L, D)
Day 4: St. Petersburg / Moscow
This morning, visit the Peter and Paul Fortress, considered to be the birthplace of the city, and enjoy a guided tour of the renowned Hermitage Museum, located at the Winter Palace. The Hermitage is one of the most prominent art museums in the world and the main attraction of St. Petersburg. The museum's collection includes works by Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Rembrandt, Rubens, Renoir, and Monet.
Later this afternoon, board a train for Russia's capital, Moscow. Sit back and enjoy this daylight journey through Russia's beautiful countryside. A late night dinner awaits you at your hotel in Moscow. (B, D)
Day 5: Moscow
Enjoy a full day of sightseeing, beginning with a comprehensive visit of the Kremlin, a fortified enclosure with distinctive crenelated red brick walls consisting of tall towers, and cathedrals capped with golden cupolas. The most prominent buildings within the Kremlin are the Grand Kremlin Palace, commissioned by Czar Nicholas I in 1838, the Assumption Cathedral, the Archangel Cathedral, and the Great Bell Tower. See the Kremlin's Armory and museum, containing an enormous collection of Soviet national treasures and a priceless collection of pre-Revolutionary War riches.
Proceed to explore Red Square which is surrounded by Moscow's most famous landmarks, the colorful onion-domed St. Basil's Cathedral, the Kremlin, Lenin's Tomb, the KGB building, and the Cathedral of Christ the Savior, Russia's largest church. Pass through Moscow's bustling shopping area on Tverskaya (formerly Gorky) Street and Pushkin Square, with a statue of Russia's classic poet, Pushkin, in the center of the square. Other points of interest are Dzerzhinsky Square, the TASS newspaper building, the Lenin Stadium, built for the 1980 Olympic opening and closing ceremonies, and Sparrow Hills (formerly Lenin Hills), the highest point in the city. Conclude your sightseeing tour of Moscow from a different angle during a short boat excursion along the Moscow River.
Tonight's excursion begins with a ride on Moscow's Metro. You will not believe how ornately the subway stations are decorated - this is a must see! Explore famous Arbat Street in the historical city center, which was regarded as the most prestigious living area by the Russian nobility in the 18th century. Today it is a pedestrian area surrounded by historical buildings, lined with shops, galleries, cafes and eateries. (B)
Day 6: Moscow / Yasnaya Poljana / Voronezh
Depart Moscow via motor coach enjoying the diverse scenery as we travel through Russia's countryside. Stop for lunch and a visit of the museum and home of Lev Nikolayevich Tolstoi (Leo Tolstoy) in Yasnaya Poljana. Tolstoy is widely regarded as one of the greatest novelists. He is particularly noted for his masterpieces, War and Peace and Anna Karenina. These two novels realistically depict Russian life in those days. Later in life he developed a non-traditional Christian philosophy, described in his work, The Kingdom of God Is Within You. Continue your journey via the town of Yelets to today's final destination, Voronezh. (B, L, D)
Day 7: Voronezh / Farm Visits
Voronezh was founded in 1585 as a fortress to protect the southern boundaries of Moscow from the Tatar hordes' raids. The city, which lies in southwest Russia, near the Ukrainian border, is the economical, industrial, cultural, and scientific center of the Central Black Earth Region. The Black Earth Region is one of the best farming regions in the world.
This afternoon, visit the Rikli & Hagenbuch Potato Farm, co-owned by Hanspeter Rikli, who moved from Switzerland to Russia to pursue his dream of large scale farming. We also meet with the director of the Swiss Foundation, an organization which supports Russian farmers with business credit in Voronezh. For a contrast, you will also visit a private family farm, owned by a Russian couple, Olga and Alex Moschenko. A local administration representative will be on hand during the field visits to answer any questions you may have. Return to Voronezh for dinner in a local restaurant. (B, L, D)
Day 8: Voronezh / Farm Visits
Begin the day with a visit to Robin Sdobin, a large scale food production company. Products include McDonald's-type food, TV dinners, canned soups, baked goods, and more. Enjoy an included lunch at Robin Sdobin before continuing on to the farm of Tobias Schenk, another young immigrant from Switzerland. He and his Swiss business partner are quite successful growing potatoes and small grains on their 1,000 acre farm. See their potato warehouse, grain storage facility, and engage in discussions and field inspections.
For the ladies who wish, we offer an optional program... visit a shopping mall in the afternoon and in the early evening, transfer by bus to the farm of Tobias Schenk, where he serves shashlik, a Russian type of shish kabobs for dinner. Enjoy drinks, Russian folk songs, and dancing into the night. Return to Voronezh. (B, L, D)
Day 9: Voronezh / Liski / Voronezh
Transfer by motor coach to Liski for a visit to EkoNiva, a dealership for John Deere, Vaderstad, Kverneland, Grimme, and others. They also own and operate a 75,000 acre farm on which they grow winter wheat, summer barley, summer wheat, sunflower seeds, sugar beets, and forage for their 4,000 head cattle operation.
This afternoon we board a small cruise vessel for a relaxing cruise and lunch on the Don River. Along the Don River lies Divnogorie, or the Land of Wondrous Hills, which attracts numerous pilgrims and tourists. This territory was once submerged and when the water subsided, it left chalk sediments that formed intricate stone sculptures and caves. Caveat churches, carved into the chalkstone by Greek monks in the 12th century, can still be seen today.
Late in the afternoon you visit a businessman in Liski, followed by dinner at in a local restaurant. Return to Voronezh for another night. (B, L, D)
Day 10: Voronezh / Efremov / Tula
Depart Voronezh by motor coach via Efremov, home of a new Cargill plant opened in July 2009. Cargill invested $12.5 million in an animal feed mill which has the capacity to produce 250,000 metric tons of feed per year. According to Cargill officials, this facility will be a valuable addition to Cargill's network of Eastern European animal feed plants and will bring significant benefits to their customers in the dairy farming communities throughout Western Russia. The Efremov feed mill employs 40 locally hired staff.
Cargill will invest another $8.5 million in the construction of a premix facility as an extension to the feed mill. The new line is expected to be complete by summer 2010 with a capacity to produce 50,000 tons of premix and young animal feeds. The premix business will operate under the LNB brand in Russia. LNB, Cargill's global premix business, has been active in Russia since 2004. At this time, an inside visit of the Cargill plant is not confirmed. After lunch we continue our journey toward Moscow. We overnight near Tula. (B, L, D)
Day 11: Tula / Moscow / USA
Depart early morning for Moscow. Your intercontinental flight departs in the afternoon - you arrive back in the US on the same day. (B, In-flight meal service)
International round-trip airfare from the east coast
Surface transportation by motorcoach and train
Meals as indicated: B (Breakfast) L (Lunch) D (Dinner)
Admissions for tours listed
Don River cruise
English speaking tour director guides
Price does not include
International airline taxes
Fuel surcharge, if imposed by the airlines
Round-trip airfare from your home gateway to the east coast gateway
Tips to the driver and tour guides
A Passport and Visa is required for travel to Russia and your passport must be valid six months beyond intended stay.
Rupiper Travel reserves the right to substitute hotels of equal or greater value and to make minor adjustments to the itinerary if deemed necessary.
Travel Insurance is available and recommended
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