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Russian River Cruises

Brooklyn, New York
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Russian River Cruises

Hi Folks,

Am considering AmaWaterways, Viking River Cruises , Scenic Tours and GCT for taking a 13 day Moscow to St. Petersburg river cruise in Russia. Does anyone have any experience with this sort of trip and which tour operator would you recommend? Also, is it better to sleep onboard the boat the whole 13 day trip or check into Moscow and St. Petersburg hotels to avoid traffic congestions to and from the boat when touring these big cities? Thanks!

Edited: 9:43 am, January 29, 2013
new york
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1. Re: Russian River Cruises

Read the forum on GCT web site in re Russian cruise will give you insights on cruise vs hotel>

Brooklyn, New York
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2. Re: Russian River Cruises

Thanks for your response!

blueroller

St.Petersburg...
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3. Re: Russian River Cruises

River ports both in St.Petersburg and Moscow are miles and miles away from main attractions - so, it is better to sleep in town, in a central area.

Brooklyn, New York
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4. Re: Russian River Cruises

Can we get around that by taking the subways in both cities? Thanks for your comments.

New York
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for Moscow
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5. Re: Russian River Cruises

In Moscow yes - the subway station is abt a 10 mins rather pleasant walk and then it drops you in Red Square practically.

In SPB there is no subway station anywhere near the dock and the subway stations are not convenient to tourist sites

Perth, Australia
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6. Re: Russian River Cruises

Not sure when you were considering doing your cruise or if you have already booked but came across this post when I was looking for something else. We did Moscow to St Petersburg with Amakatarina in September 2012 and loved the fact that we had our cabin to go back to after the daily tours. We often were transported by hydrofoil which saved time in traffic but even the bus transportation was interesting as the guides used the time to explain general living conditions in Russia often as a Q&I session. The whole advantage of a river cruise is not having to pack and unpack and so we really loved staying on the ship. The tours were excellent. We used the underground to get into the city from the docks both in Moscow and St Petersburg and had no trouble as we had been given good instructions. Not sure if all the ships dock in the same place, though. We added time to the Moscow end by arriving two days before and staying in a hotel.(Mecure Arbat - really excellent value - see reviews on here.) This worked out very well as it gave us a chance to spend more time looking around knowing what our included tours would be. We wished we had done the same in StPB as we could have had more time for the Hermitage. The Amakatarina was very comfortable, food very acceptable and guides both on the ship and the local guides fantastic with very good English. It was a wonderful cruise - different from the other river cruises we have done, not as luxurious, but very interesting and a great way to see Russia. Once you book you may find registering at CruiseCritic.com useful as there is a Russia River Cruise forum there with many people who have done the Moscow /St Petersburg cruises.

Princeton, NJ USA
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7. Re: Russian River Cruises

Thanks so much for your informative, helpful message! I'm debating between Uniworld and Viking for a trip in May, 2014. New to the cruise scene and don't know whether middle or upper deck is that important or whether a veranda or full balcony is the way to go when it will be mid-May and probably chilly.

Perth, Australia
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8. Re: Russian River Cruises

We always pay the extra to have a higher cabin as it is quieter away from the engines and having a balcony or veranda is wonderful to sit and watch little villages, sunsets docking etc. We also hung our light washing on the chairs at night which meant they dried quicker than in the very small bathroom. The weather in May would be similar to what we had in September. I am not familiar with Viking or Uniworld's Russia ships but have sailed with Uniworld in France and found them good. All the ships doing the Moscow-St Petersburg cruises are Russian ships which are refurbished but none is as luxurious or spacious as those used on the Europe River cruises. You don't spend a lot of time in the cabin but we kept saying how happy we were that we had the extra space of the balcony - the Amakatarina had a clever door that could be wide open or tilted so it let fresh air in from the top - it did seem stuffy sometimes. If you want any other info - happy to oblige.

New Zealand
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9. Re: Russian River Cruises

We have done the Prague to Paris river cruise with Scenic - couldn't fault it. Now contemplating the St Petersburg -Moscow river cruise. Regarding the distance from boat to attractions - do they bus you to the attractions? During the European cruise if you decided to "do your own thing" you could just walk into the towns from the boat at your leisure. Is it possible to do this during the Russian cruise?

Moscow, Russia
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10. Re: Russian River Cruises

> you could just walk into the towns from the boat at your leisure. Is it possible to do this during the Russian cruise?

Maybe in smaller towns, but definitely not in Moscow and St.Petersburg - the docks are quite far from the attractions. If you want to do justice to Moscow and St.Pete your best bet is taking a cruise that does not spend any time at all in Moscow and St.Pete and appending at least a couple of days in a central hotel in each city.