Scandinavian and Russian Treasures
(19 days/18 nights)
Day 1 (Thursday): Arrival Copenhagen
Arrival in Copenhagen, transfer from Copenhagen Airport to Hotel Tivoli**** or similar, check-in
Day 2 (Friday): Copenhagen-Oslo
Copenhagen is Scandinavia’s largest and most lively city and one of Europe’s most romantic capitals with its old castles and churches and charming squares and harbours. The morning sightseeing tour will acquaint us with all the city’s treasures: the Little Mermaid guarding the port, the Royal Castle, Nyhavn with its restaurants and small boats and the City Hall Square. In the afternoon we embark on the DFDS Seaways overnight ferry bound for Oslo. The ferry offers a wide choice of restaurants, bars, shops and much more. Dinner on-board.
Day 3 (Saturday): Oslo-Eidfjord
Upon arrival to Oslo our tour heads directly to Hoenefoss, Nesbyen surrounded by a landscape, which alternates between forests of pines and lakes to arrive in the beautiful Hallingdal Valley. We visit Gol and arrive in Geilo, a small town surrounded by mountains. Our tour continues to Hardangervidda where we visit Voringfossen waterfall before we arrive to Eidfjord, where our hotel is located. Check in at Hotel Quality Voringfoss****, or similar. Dinner at hotel.
Day 4 (Sunday): Eidfjord-Bergen
This morning takes us further into the breath-taking Norwegian nature. We cross the splendid Hardanger fjord, by travelling across Hardanger Bridge which has one of the longest suspension bridge spans in the world. On the other side of the bridge we pass Nordheimsund and crossing birch forests we arrive to Bergen – known as the capital of the fjords. Situated on a peninsula surrounded by 7 mountains the history of Bergen is closely connected with the sea and this is very noticeable in the city, especially at the city’s picturesque waterfront. The afternoon sightseeing tour introduces us to this remarkable Hanseatic city with the Bryggen area of old wooden houses, the traditional Fish Market and the city centre with the St. Mary’s Church and Haakon’s Hall. We check-in at Hotel Scandic Ornen**** or similar.
Day 5 (Monday): Bergen-Stalheim
The morning is at leisure to explore more of the stunning Norwegian fjord capital. In the early afternoon we travel to the historical town of Voss, which has a scenic background of snow clad mountains. After a break here we continue towards the Naeroy Valley and Stalheim, offering a stunning view down the Stalheim Gorge, Check-in at Hotel Stalheim**** or similar. Dinner at hotel.
Day 6 (Tuesday): Stalheim-Fagernes
Today we continue through the fjord region with its formidable water-drowned glacial valleys, flanked by impossible rugged terrain to Gudvangen where we cross the Naroyfjord and reach the village of Flam. Here is offered an optional tour – Flam Railway: one of the most famous and most breath-taking railway journeys in the world. In the afternoon the journey continues along the Aurlandfjord. We do a photo stop at the famous Borgund Stave Church before we continue to Fagernes. Check-in at Hotel Thon Scandic Valdres**** or similar. Dinner at hotel.
Day 7 (Wednesday): Fagernes-Oslo
After breakfast we leave the majestic Norwegian fjords behind us and travel back towards Oslo which we reach early in the afternoon. Check in at Hotel Thon Opera**** or similar. Founded in 1048 Oslo is Scandinavia’s oldest capital and today it is a very pleasant and casual city with an interesting jumble of historical and modern architecture. Upon arrival in Oslo we start the morning sightseeing tour. We enjoy a walk around the Frogner Park decorated with the unique sculptures of Gustav Vigeland. We pass by the City Hall and the main street, Karl Johan, leading to the Royal Palace.
Day 8 (Thursday): Oslo-Stockholm
Today we head for Stockholm, passing through Norwegian forests. We cross the border and enter the county of Varmland in Sweden. Throughout the balance of the day we drive through typical Swedish landscapes with fertile farmland, blue lakes and thick forests, which evoke an atmosphere of intriguing fairy-tales. In the afternoon we arrive at Stockholm. Check-in at Hotel Scandic Grand Central**** or similar.
Day 9 (Friday): Stockholm
Stockholm – the beauty on the water – is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful capitals in the world, built on 14 islands and protected from the sea by Skargarden, the Stockholm archipelago. The morning sightseeing tour takes us to the Old Town with the Royal Palace, Stockholm Cathedral and the city centre with its famous City Hall. The afternoon is free for individual visits.
Day 10 (Saturday): Stockholm-Helsinki
The morning is free to explore more of Stockholm individually. Mid-afternoon we leave for the pier to embark on the Tallink Silja Line overnight ferry bound for Helsinki. We travel slowly down the archipelago past numerous islands and islets. And afterwards there is a wide choice of entertainment with bars, shops, casino and much more.
Day 11 (Sunday): Helsinki
Helsinki is truly located at the crossroads of Western and Eastern culture and this is reflected everywhere in the green and lively Finnish capital. Directly after disembarkation we start a sightseeing tour, which takes us around the harbours and the Senate Square with the Lutheran Cathedral, up central Mannerheim Street and by the Parliament Building, the Finlandia Hall, and the Sibelius Monument and the famous Church-in-the-Rock. At the end of the tour we check-in at Hotel Glo Art**** or similar.
Day 12 (Monday): Helsinki
The morning is reserved for exploring more of the Finish capital individually. The afternoon offers an optional excursion to Suomenlinna Fortress, a cultural treasure which construction was started in the 18th century as a sea fortress. Located on an island, fortress is a unique attraction for visitors.
Day 13 (Tuesday): Helsinki-St. Petersburg
Today we continue eastbound to St. Petersburg. Shortly after crossing the border into Russia we arrive in Vyborg, where we take time for a short sightseeing tour and a photo-stop at Vyborg Castle. In the late afternoon we arrive in St. Petersburg and check-in at Hotel Sokos Vasilievsky**** or similar.
Day 14 (Wednesday): St. Petersburg
St. Petersburg is an amazing city. Its imperial palaces and museums enjoy worldwide fame, while the Neva River and the many canals have deservedly given the city the title of Venice of the North”. During the morning sightseeing tour we get acquainted with all the splendours of the city: the Peter-Paul Fortress, the Winter Palace, St. Isaac’s Cathedral, the Church of the Bleeding Savior, the Nevsky Convent and much more. The afternoon offers an optional excursion to Zarskoye Selo with the impressive Catherine’s Palace and the Amber Room, which vanished during World War II and was restored for St. Petersburg’s tri-centennial celebrations. In the evening enjoy an optional visit to the Nikolaevsky Palace with an exciting Russian folklore show and Russian „champagne” and snacks.
Day 15 (Thursday): St. Petersburg
The morning is reserved for an optional visit to Peterhof, an uncontested masterpiece of the time of Peter the Great, with the impressive Grand Palace, Grand Cascade and Water Avenue and its wonderful parks. In the afternoon, an optional visit to the world-famous Hermitage Art Museum is offered. In the evening enjoy an optional Russian dinner at Restaurant Pryanosti & Radosti.
Day 16 (Friday): St. Petersburg-Moscow
The early morning is reserved for an optional St. Petersburg channel cruise. Around noon we go to the Moscow Railway Station and board the Sapsan high-speed train bound for Moscow. The train ride takes us through endless Russian landscapes along the River Volga. In the late afternoon we arrive to Moscow and check in at Hotel Park Inn Sadu**** or similar.
Day 17 (Saturday): Moscow
Moscow, The Mother of Russia, is a genuine Russian city with the Kremlin and its onion domed cathedrals. The dramatic changes over the last decade have made the city to one of the most dynamic metropolis in the world. The morning sightseeing tour includes all the highlights of the vast city: the Red Square with Kremlin, the Theatre Square with Bolshoi Theatre, and Sparrow Hills with Moscow University and Kremlin grounds with a visit to one of the cathedrals. In the afternoon is offered an optional visit to the Moscow Metro including the historical stations on the Ring-Line and a guided stroll along the famous pedestrian Arbat Street. The evening offers an optional Moscow-by-night tour including an unforgettable river cruise with the White Flotilla.
Day 18 (Sunday): Moscow
The day offers an optional full day excursion to the quaint town of Sergiev Posad, where we visit the Trinity Lavra of St. Sergius, the most important Russian monastery and the spiritual heart of the Russian Orthodox Church. The whole Lavra has been beautifully restored for the 700-years celebrations of the birth of St. Sergius of Radonezh. The evening offers an optional visit to the Old Russian Circus.
Day 19 (Monday): Moscow Departure
Optional transfer to the airport.