What to See in Russia for First Time Travelers?
Russia, a fascinating country with iconic cities, rich history, and UNESCO World Heritage Sites, is definitely a special destination to visit. Travelers with one week duration can enjoy the top highlights of Moscow & St. Petersburg, from the Red Square and Kremlin to Peterhof and Catherine's Palace, and experience the most beautiful metro station in the world. As an extension of 2 or 3 days, the medieval Golden Ring cities, like Vladimir, Suzdal, Sergiev Posad, are good choices. For travelers with plenty of leisure time, a legendary journey on the longest railway - Trans-Siberian Railroad (9288 km) from Moscow to Vladivostok is one of the greatest travel adventures, taking 7 whole days for one way.
Kremlin Palace, Moscow
Bronze Horseman, St Petersburg
When is the Best Time to Have Rassia Vacation?
Due to special geographical location with cold weather, it is not easy to decide when to visit Russia for most travelers. While, take it easy, we will offer professional suggestion. From May to October, it is the best time to travel and admire its masterpieces like fountains of Peterhof, parks of Pushkin and quaint countryside of the Golden Ring cities. During the peak season, especially summer, it is really crowded at each spot and even difficult to access, so you may consider the late spring and early fall. To save the airfares, you may also choose November, March and late August.
How to Travel & Get Around Russia?
There were reportedly 228 civilian airports in Russia, while the main international airports are located on the outskirts of Moscow and St. Petersburg. The national Aeroflot is the most comfortable and easy-to-book airline in Russia. There are variety of transportation options to get around in Russia, like train, ship, metro, bus or taxi.
The high-speed Sapsan train is the most convenient and economic way between St. Petersburg and Moscow, at the speed of up to 250 miles per hour. For those who seek for panoramic Russia, just take the Trans Siberian railway to Vladivostok or the Trans Mongolian to Beijing, passing by the Lake Baikal and encountering spectacularly unique cultures. Taking a boat or river cruise to the Golden Ring cities will enable you to discover more beauty of Russia. The metro is the most convenient way to explore one city. Moscow metro has been recognized as the most elegant and attracting architectural masterpieces in the world, and St. Petersburg metro is also popular; there are metros in Kazan, Nizhny Novgorod, Novosibirsk, Samara and Yekaterinburg.
Visa for Russia Tours
Visas are required to enter Russia for most foreign nationals. Travelers can obtain visas at local Russian Embassy or Consulate. A visa support letter offered by Russian travel agencies is necessary for visa application. If your tour includes a neighboring country like Finland, Estonia or Ukraina, and come back to Russia, a double entry visa is required. We recommend you contact the Russian consulate of your country to double confirm before application.
Payment & Currency in Russia
Russia uses the Russian ruble as its currency. You may exchange currency at airports, hotels, banks, and currency exchange kiosks, however, the exchange rate is usually bad at airports. Withdrawing rubles from ATMs, widely available in major cities, is the easiest and best way to get local currency. For foreign tourists, credit cards are accepted in most places. Visa and Master cards are more widely used, while American Express may be turned down sometimes. Always carry some cash with you because many small shops do not accept credit card.
Is It Necessary to Book a Russia Tour?
The answer is yes. As Russian is the only federally official language in Russia and English is not widely spoken, communication should be the problem. It is better to have a tour guide to show you around and help you learn this country's history and culture more deeply. Also the travel company can help you reserve the train/ flight tickets, hotel rooms, or theater tickets in advance.
Do I Need to Tip in Russia?
Tipping is increasingly expected at restaurants and cafés with 10% to 15% of your total amount. When you are ready to settle the bill, the waiter will bring the check in a box, and pick up the money and then come back with the change. Just leave the tip on the box or on the table.