Russia/Baltics Vacation: Full Itinerary

The text in italics is from the Trafalgar travel brochure. As we complete each day, we'll update the itinerary description to match what actually happens.

Tue, May 25 (Day 1): From Salt Lake City thru Houston Toward London
1:00pm Depart Salt Lake City, Continental #390
4:59pm Arrive Houston
6:25pm Depart Houston, Continental #4

Wed, May 26 (Day 2): Arriving in London
9:35am Arrive London
Hotel: Hyatt Regency London – The Churchill

Thr, May 27 (Day 3): A Day in London

Fri, May 28 (Day 4): From London to Helsinki
3:15pm Depart London, Blue1 #556
8:10pm Arrive Helsinki
Hotel: Radisson Blu Seaside

Sat, May 29 (Day 5): A Day in Helsinki
Welcome to Helsinki, capital of Finland. This afternoon after check-in there’s time to relax and unwind. This evening, we will enjoy a Welcome Drink with our Tour Director and fellow traveling companions.

Sun, May 30 (Day 6): From Helsinki to St. Petersburg
This morning it’s an early departure for our journey into Russia, passing the timber center of Kotka. Then the forests of Karelia lead to the former city of the Tsars, St. Petersburg. This evening we will enjoy complimentary champagne with dinner. Later, maybe visit a theater for a Russian folklore show? (Scandinavian breakfast / Dinner)
Hotel: Park Inn Pribaltiyskaya

Mon, May 31 (Day 7): A Day in St. Petersburg
Featured on our sightseeing tour are the Tsar’s Winter Palace, Nevsky Prospekt, St. Isaac’s Cathedral, the statue of Peter the Great and a visit of the Peter and Paul Fortress. During our time in St. Petersburg we will also enjoy an included visit to the Hermitage Museum to see one of the world’s largest and most valuable art collections. (Buffet breakfast / Buffet breakfast)

Tue, Jun 1 (Day 8): Another Day in St. Petersburg

Wed, Jun 2 (Day 9): From St. Petersburg to Novgorod
This afternoon our drive takes us across the vast Russian plains to ancient Novgorod. On our arrival an orientation tour shows us the Kremlin Fort and grounds, Millennium Monument and the St. Sophia Cathedral. Dinner is at our hotel tonight. (Buffet breakfast / Dinner)
Hotel: Beresta Palace

Thr, Jun 3 (Day 10): From Novgorod to Moscow
After breakfast, we will delight in a full day’s scenic drive through picturesque villages to the Tver region. On our arrival we’ll enjoy an included lunch. Then our journey takes us on to Klin, once home of Tchaikovsky, before arriving in Moscow. (Buffet breakfast / Lunch / Dinner)
Hotel: Hilton Moscow Leningradskaya

Fri, Jun 4 (Day 11): A Day in Moscow
On our first day our sightseeing tour features such highlights as St. Basil’s domed cathedral, Red Square and a visit to the Kremlin. Then during your time at leisure in Moscow perhaps take an optional excursion to visit the Tsar’s Treasury Chamber or maybe the St. Sergius Monastery and handicraft market? During your stay in Moscow, your Tour Director will also share with you a Hidden Treasure of this fascinating city. Tonight maybe enjoy an evening at the exciting Moscow State Circus! (Buffet breakfast / Buffet breakfast)

Sat, Jun 5 (Day 12): Another Day in Moscow

Sun, Jun 6 (Day 13): From Moscow to Minsk
Today we follow in the steps of Napoleon’s retreating army in 1812, passing near Borodino and making a stop in the Smolensk region for an included lunch. Then we’re off to the border between Russia and the independent state of Belarus en route to Minsk. Here an orientation shows us the Hero’s Hill Memorial as well as other highlights of this city. Tonight, we enjoy a dinner of traditional cuisine at our hotel. (Buffet breakfast / Lunch / Dinner)
Hotel: Hotel Europe

Mon, Jun 7 (Day 14): From Minsk to Vilnius
This morning via Osm’any we head toward the border with Lithuania, then on to the capital, Vilnius. Our guided walking tour takes in views of the Bishop’s Palace, now the Presidential Palace, and the university. We also visit the Baroque Church of St. Peter and St. Paul which has exceptional sculptural decoration. Then we walk to the Gates of Dawn, the Carmelite Church of St. Theresa, the former Jewish Ghetto, the cathedral and new Royal Palace excavations. We will also see the Church of St. Anna and the site of the synagogue destroyed by Hitler in the last war. (Buffet breakfast / Dinner)
Hotel: Reval Lietuva

Tue, Jun 8 (Day 15): From Vilnius to Riga
After an early lunch we depart from Vilnius with our first stop being a visit to Siauliai and the Hill of Crosses – symbol of resistance against Soviet occupation. Later, we arrive at the Latvian border and ancient Riga, Latvia’s capital, made famous by the stories of Baron von Münchhausen. Dinner is at our hotel tonight.  (Buffet breakfast / Dinner)
Hotel: Reval Latvija

Wed, Jun 9 (Day 16): A Day in Riga
We tour this city in the shadow of the 14th century castle of the Livonian knights with a local guide. We visit St. John’s Church and the Dom Cathedral dating back to the 13th century, and see the State Art Museum. Riga has long been one of the most thriving cities on the Baltic – within the extensive old town are narrow medieval streets, Gothic and Baroque churches, 19th century municipal buildings and Hanseatic warehouses, which we will see on the walking section of our sightseeing tour, as well as the Tris Braili where we may admire the medieval architecture. Later, there’s free time to explore before we enjoy a Highlight Dinner of local specialties in a restaurant tonight. (Buffet breakfast / Highlight dinner)

Thr, Jun 10 (Day 17): From Riga to Tallinn
Today’s drive takes us along the Gulf of Riga and into Estonia. Then we travel via Parnu, a popular vacation resort of sandy beaches, as we head to the Estonian capital, Tallinn, for the night. Tonight, maybe take a stroll through this charming town. (Buffet breakfast / Dinner)
Hotel: Reval Olympia

Fri, Jun 11 (Day 18): From Tallinn to Helsinki
Our morning sightseeing tour in this pretty town explores the beautifully preserved streets of the old Hanseatic Quarter with its ancient battlements and the 15th century Luhike Jalq Gate. We also visit the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral and the old town hall before we board our ship for the sea-crossing to Helsinki in Finland. On our arrival this evening, sightseeing reveals Finlandia Hall, the Senate and Market Squares, broad boulevards and the domed Russian church. Tonight we get together with our Tour Director and fellow travelers for a Farewell Dinner. (Buffet breakfast / Farewell dinner)
Hotel: Radisson Blu Seaside

Sat, Jun 12 (Day 19): From Helsinki to Chicago
This morning it is time to bid farewell to our Tour Director and touring friends as our vacation comes to an end. Airport transfers are available, conditions apply. (Scandinavian Breakfast)
7:05am Depart Helsinki, Lufthansa #3109
8:35am Arrive Frankfurt
10:40am Depart Frankfurt, Lufthansa #430
12:40pm Arrive Chicago
Hotel: Hyatt Regency O'Hare

Sun, Jun 13 (Day 20): From Chicago to Salt Lake City
9:45am Depart Chicago, United #7703
12:17pm Arrive Salt Lake City