Russia is an exquisite country, and the best way to see it is by river cruise. The rivers are crystal clear, with lush green forests on both sides of them.
You can enjoy the scenery while you sip your morning coffee on the best Russian river cruises.
The ships have all modern amenities like Wi-Fi internet access, satellite TV, and DVD players.
Besides, you get the best view from any deck. The deck offers panoramic views of the landscape. There’s also an onboard spa for relaxation after long days at sea.
A Russian river cruise is about experiencing and seeing Russian culture. Besides, a Russia River Cruise includes visits to the most famous Russian cities.
River cruises that go to Russia include Viking, Uniworld, and Crystal. Note that, you don’t need a Visa to travel on a Russian river cruise.
What is a Russia River Cruise?
A Russia river cruise is a perfect way to experience all of Russia’s most beautiful and historic cities.
You enjoy some of the best views in the world. Besides, you get pampered by your private tour guide who knows every detail about each city you visit.
The itinerary for this trip includes Moscow, St Petersburg, and Irkutsk. Also, you view Lake Baikal among other destinations.
A complete river cruise includes:
- Private English-speaking guides
- All meals included
- Accommodation onboard ship with ensuite facilities
- Transfers from airport or train station to hotel/ship
- Return transfers between hotels at end of the day
- Complimentary Wi-Fi throughout the vessel
- Shore excursions as per program
- 24-hour assistance desk onboard
- Laundry service available onboard
- Onboard entertainment including movies and games
A Russian river cruise happens on the rivers like Volga, Neva, Oka, and Lena among many more. Itineraries are flexible so they can tailor it according to what you want to see and do.
You don’t need to worry about getting lost or missing out on anything. This is because the cruise crew knows everything regarding the travel.
What’s included on A Russia River Cruise?
A Russian river cruise includes all meals, entertainment, and activities. In addition, you can choose to dine in the dining room or at one of the several restaurants.
These restaurants are along the ship’s promenade deck.
The onboard staff will be happy to help you make your selections. All the selections come from an extensive menu that features dishes prepared with fresh ingredients.
Entertainment is provided by professional musicians who perform for guests throughout the day.
Activities include swimming, hiking, and kayaking. Additionally, there is fishing, sightseeing tours, and shopping excursions
Different itineraries offer different levels of activity. Some cruises are designed as relaxing getaways while others focus on adventure travel.
You choose the number of days and nights spent cruising down the Volga River. Most ships have two types of cabins. The cabins are standard or deluxe.
Standard rooms are smaller than those found aboard larger vessels. But, they provide better value because the rates don’t increase based on size.
Deluxe staterooms come equipped with extra amenities. The amenities you access are private balconies, whirlpool tubs, and other luxurious touches.
Better yet, you can choose what to wear while cruising.
An Overview of the Best Russian River Cruises
1. Jewels of Russia Cruise
One of the best cruises in Russia is the Jewels of Russia. It is a 15-day cruise from Moscow to St Petersburg and back again.
The cruise lets you visit some of the most beautiful cities on earth including Krasnoyarsk, Irkutsk, and Lake Baikal.
The cruise uses the Scenic Tsar ship which has been refurbished for this trip.
Scenic Tsar offers all modern amenities such as air conditioning, hot showers, and internet access. There are also many activities available during your stay onboard.
The ship has an amazing cabin layout with two double beds. The beds can be converted into twin beds if needed.
Each room comes equipped with its own bathroom complete with a shower/tub combination.
All rooms have private balconies or terraces. As such, you enjoy spectacular views of the surrounding landscape.
There are several restaurants aboard the ship offering different cuisines from around the world.
You may choose between buffet-style dining at one restaurant or dine à la carte at another.
Thankfully, the ship carries 112 passengers with 71 crew members. Thus, services are top-notch and guests enjoy excellent services throughout their entire journey.
This is truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience!
2. Treasures of Russia & Helsinki
You can now visit Helsinki and get to love the beauty of Russian culture.
Helsinki city is a perfect blend of old-world charm with modern amenities. This makes it one of Europe’s most beautiful cities.
What’s more? You enjoy its rich history and experience some of the best shopping in Finland.
This tour includes visits to:
a) St Petersburg:
Visit the Hermitage Museum where you’ll see masterpieces by Leonardo da Vinci. Here, you also get to see the famous Amber Room which was stolen from the Kremlin during World War II.
Also, take time to explore Peterhof Palace and the Winter Palace before heading back to your hotel for an overnight stay.
Enjoy two nights in this fascinating capital that combines ancient architecture with cutting-edge technology.
Take a trip on the metro system and marvel at the size of the stations. Get up close to Red Square and the Kremlin. Spend the evening enjoying live music or dancing until late.
c) Lake Ladoga Cruise:
Experience the stunning scenery along the shores of Lake Ladoga. Relax on board while taking in views of forests, lakes, and islands.
Stop off at Karelian Isthmus, which is home to many historic sites like churches, monasteries, and fortresses. Your cruise ends when you arrive in Saint Petersburg.
This is a 14-day cruise that offers everything you want while cruising.
3. Discover the Treasures of the Volga & Danube Rivers
The Volga and Danube rivers are two great waterways that run through Russia. They have been used for centuries to transport goods.
Currently, their beauty is being discovered by tourists who want to see them in all their glory.
The Volga River runs along most of Russia’s western border before emptying into the Caspian Sea. The two rivers offer a great cruise experience with many stops.
As such, you see beautiful cities like Kazan, Samara, and Sakh among others.
This is a 19-day cruise from Moscow to Munich which means you move through five different countries. These countries are Russia, Kazakhstan, Ukraine, Poland, and Germany.
The Emerald cruises company organizes the cruise. The company has an excellent reputation. It also offers some superb value for money as well.
The cruise ship has a 180-passenger capacity with 51 crews; thus, making services very comfortable.
Besides, there are plenty of activities on board including swimming pools, saunas, and Jacuzzis. You can even go horse riding!
There are three dining options available depending on what suits you best. The options include buffet-style meals or more formal sit-down dinners.
All food is fresh using local ingredients wherever possible.
Booking early guarantees you the best prices and this tour is no exception.
4. Imperial Russia River Cruise
Are you ready for an unforgettable cruising experience? The Imperial Russia River Cruise takes passengers on the Volga, Dnieper, and Don Rives.
This riverboat cruise offers guests a chance to see some of Europe’s most beautiful cities. Guests can enjoy all-inclusive food and beverage service. Besides, you explore St Petersburg, Moscow, and Kiev.
The 15-day cruise starts from Volgograd to Moscow via the Volga River and continues through Ukraine. Later, the ship arrives in Crimea where it stops at Sevastopol.
From there, guests continue their journey along the Black Sea coast stopping in Odessa and Yalta. Finally, it arrives back in Volgograd.
The ship for this cruise is the Scenic Tsar which guarantees luxury accommodations. Additionally, you get spacious staterooms and suites with modern amenities such as Wi-Fi.
There are also two restaurants onboard including the main dining room and the buffet restaurant. In addition, the ship has a spa, fitness center, Jacuzzi, and swimming pool.
The cruise fare includes all these amenities and activities.
Which River Cruise Lines Go To Russia?
The river cruise lines that go to Russia include Viking, Crystal, and Regent.
The best time of year for a trip is from May through October when the weather in Moscow is warm enough. This lets you enjoy outdoor activities.
Viking offers cruises on the Volga River between St Petersburg and Kazan and trips along the Black Sea coast. There are two types of the itinerary for one-week cruises and seven-day cruises.
Crystal Cruises’ ships offer three different options for visiting Russia. One includes visits to both Europe and Asia while another covers only Europe.
Lastly, the Regent line operates many vessels chartered by groups of up to 200 passengers. They sail through Russian rivers like the Irtysh, Ob, and Yenisei.
Other river cruise lines that go to Russia are Amadeus, Azamara Club Cruises, Celebrity Cruises Line, and Holland America Line.
Cruise Line Comfort
All the cruises are comfortable and feature excellent service. However, some have more luxurious accommodations than others.
For example, Viking cruises feature suites with balconies and Jacuzzis. On the other hand, the Norwegian Cruise Line’ new Breakaway Plus class vessel has standard cabins without windows.
Do you want a cheaper deal? Book early when prices are still low. Mostly, you may find it cheaper to buy your tickets at least six months before the departure date.
This way, you will get better discounts. You should check out all available deals online so you don’t miss any special promotions.
Do You Need A Visa For A Russian River Cruise?
You don’t need a Visa to travel on a Russian river cruise. But, you need a permit for your trip if it is longer than 3 days.
The permit can take up to 2 weeks depending on how long it takes at immigration counters. You may also have to pay additional fees when entering other countries like Ukraine.
Fortunately, you can enter Russia visa-free if you are spending 72 hours and sleeping on your cruise ship. However, if you stay over 72 hours, you must get a tourist visa from the embassy.
Thank God, you don’t need a visa when you have an authorized tour guide.
Nevertheless, the guides must get permission from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to accompany foreign tourists.
It is important to check early the requirements for a Visa before visiting Russia.
Which Russian Rivers Are Used On Cruises Between Moscow And St Petersburg?
The cruises between Moscow and St Petersburg use rivers like Volga, Oka, Vyatka, and Kama. Note that the most popular river is the Volga. This is because it has a lot of waterfalls and beautiful scenery along its banks.
Besides, the river connects to many other cities in Russia such as Kazan, Tula, and Saransk. Luckily, many cruise companies offer trips from Moscow to St Petersburg using this route.
How Much Does A Russia River Cruise Cost?
The river cruise cost depends on many factors including the length of the cruise, the number of guests, and services. The average price for an all-inclusive 7 night/8 day trip is $3,000 per person based on double occupancy.
This includes airfare from New York City to Moscow, city transfers, meals, and entertainment. Prices can vary depending upon seasonality, availability, and demand.
Can You Sail to Moscow?
Sailing to Moscow is very easy even though there are no direct channels. You can use the Baltic Sea or the North Atlantic Ocean as a shortcut. The best way to get from Helsinki to Moscow is by using the Northern route through Stockholm, Tallinn, and St Petersburg. The cruise takes about 3 weeks depending on your speed.
The best Russian river cruises are those that combine a great deal of history with modern amenities and comfort.
They must give you a comfortable cruising experience. Additionally, they need to provide an opportunity to see some truly spectacular scenery.
The most important thing is for your cruise line to provide all these things reliably. If they can do this, then it will make your trip one which you won’t forget!
Choose your Russian cruise and explore magnificent Russia!