Russian Lapland and Karelia: Nature and Culture

Scenic roads of the Kola Peninsula and Karelia

  • Nature: taiga, tundra, Aurora Borealis
  • Culture: Russians, Saami, Karelians and Finns
  • Architecture: XVIII - XXI сenturies
  • History: Tzarist Russia, WWII
Itinerary
Day 1. Arrive in Murmansk
  • Included meals: No
Arrive in Murmansk at any time.
Transfer to hotel for three nights (“Meridian” or similar).
Overnight in Murmansk.
Day 2. Explore Murmansk and chase the Northern Lights
  • Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Breakfast.
City tour of Murmansk.
Explore the city center. You will get to know about the foundation of Murmansk in 1916, WWI and the Allied Intervention in the Russian Civil War.*
Continue to “Alyosha” Memorial (Memorial to the Defenders of the Soviet Arctic). The guide will tell about the WWII and the Arctic Convoys. These convoys, organized by the UK, the USA and Canada, delivered to the USSR essential supplies: military equipment, fuel, medicine and food.
Savior on Waters Church. Stop by the memorial devoted to Kursk submarine accident of 2000.
Murmansk port, “Lenin” icebreaker-museum.
Dinner. Murmansk is a popular Russian foodie destination, known for its fish, seafood and reindeer.
Evening tour out of the city in search of the Northern Lights.**
Overnight in Murmansk.
(B, D)

*We can include a visit to Murmansk New British cemetery for those who are interested.

**If the conditions of seeing Aurora this night are not favorable, we will shift this trip for another day.

Day 3. Teriberka Village*
  • Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Day 3. Teriberka Village*
Breakfast.
A scenic drive to Teriberka village. Along the way, you will see the interface between the taiga boreal forest, the subarctic forest-tundra and the Arctic tundra, three major biomes in the Northern hemisphere.
Explore Teriberka. This old fishing village with numerous abandoned houses has become a popular tourist destination after the Russian Oscar-nominated “Leviathan” movie was partly filmed there.
Lunch.
Weather permitting - hike to the waterfalls, located at the Barents Sea coast not far from the village.
Return to Murmansk.
Overnight in Murmansk.

*Between November and April the road to Teriberka is often closed due to snow drifts. Instead of Teriberka we will arrange a husky kennel visit and sledding tour.

Day 4. Saami, indigenous people of the Kola Peninsula
  • Included meals: Breakfast, Tea break, Dinner
Breakfast.
Tour to the reconstructed Saami (Lapp) village. It is run by Saami people and we can get an insight into their culture. The local guide will tell about Saami traditions, show a typical “kuvaksa” lodge and corral with reindeers, serve herbal tea and pastries.
Transfer to the train station in the evening, board a comfortable overnight train and depart for Karelia Province.
Dinner and overnight at train.
Day 5. Kizhi Island - Petrozavodsk
  • Included meals: Lunch, Dinner
~11:50 – Get off the train in Karelian town of Medgora, take a van and travel to Oyatevshina, a small village located opposite Kizhi Island (150 km).
Cross the narrow strait by boat or hovercraft (10 min) and reach Kizhi Island.
Walking tour of the world-famous Kizhi Museum of Wooden Architecture.
Continue to Petrozavodsk (300 km).
Dinner at hotel in Petrozavodsk.
Overnight in Petrozavodsk (“Fregat” or similar).
Day 6. Petrozavodsk, Karelian people, Sortavala
  • Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Breakfast.
City tour of Petrozavodsk, the capital of Karelia Province.
Transfer to the historical Karelian village of Kinerma (110 km).
Tour of the village. Meet the Karelians, indigenous people of northwestern Russia and Finland. Visit the wooden chapel of the 18th Century.
Dinner with traditional local dishes.
Continue to the town of Sortavala (150 km).
Overnight in Sortavala (“Piipun-Piha” or similar).
Day 7. Sortavala, Ruskeala by a steam train, St. Petersburg
  • Included meals: Breakfast
Breakfast.
Explore the historical centre of Sortavala with a few interesting Northern Art Nouveau and Neoclassical buildings.
Scenic train ride from Sortavala to Ruskeala Mountain Park on board of a vintage steam train decorated in a style of the Russian Empire.
12:00 - Walking tour of the marble quarries of Ruskeala.
Independent lunch.
15:00 - Continue to St. Petersburg.
Arrive in St. Petersburg at about 22:00-23:00 and transfer to hotel for one night.
Overnight in St. Petersburg.
Day 8. St. Petersburg
  • Included meals: Breakfast
Day 8. St. Petersburg
Breakfast.
Transfer to the airport or train station.*

*You may wish to depart a few days later. We can book a hotel for you or just find your own accommodation.

Dates and prices

Dates:

02.04 – 09.04.21 – English

11.09 – 18.09.21 – English

09.10 – 16.10.21 – English

05.03 – 12.03.22 – English

02.04 – 09.04.22 – English

Price:

Adult – 1390 Euro per person.

Child 4-16 – 1290 Euro per person.

Child 0-3 – Free of charge.

Supplement for single accommodation in hotels – 230 Euro.

Supplement for private accommodation at the train from Murmansk to Medgora:

- when two persons travel in a private cabin, extra payment is 60 Euro per person.

- when one person travels in a private cabin, extra payment is 180 Euro.

Included

1. Six nights accommodation at hotels in: Murmansk (3), Petrozavodsk (1), Sortavala (1) and St. Petersburg (1).
2. One night at train (2nd class 4-berth cabin).
3. 13 meals - 6 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 1 tea break, 4 dinners.
4. All transport as per the itinerary.
5. Visits and experiences as per the itinerary.
6. English-speaking guide’s services.