St Petersburg to Moscow

With the debut of the new high speed train between St Petersburg and Moscow, has Tauck considered taking the train instead of air between the two cities ? Train now takes under 5 hours.

Comments

  • Excellent idea on using the train rather than air
  • I would much prefer the train. We are taking this tour starting 8/15/12.
  • We are on this trip as well but in early August. Can someone who has taken this trip recently tell me if there is internet in the hotels? How about Wifi? Is there a charge for it? Is it worth bringing an iPad on this tour? Also, are there hairdryers in each hotel or do I have to bring one from home? Any other helpful hints would be great. Does anyone have any good ideas of what to do in Vilnius before the tour begins? We will be arriving 2 days early.
  • edited May 2012
    Hello Lovesgolf1,

    All of the hotels you will be staying at have blowdryers and internet access.

    Internet Access per hotel:

    Radisson SAS Astorija – Complimentary in-room access with personal computer
    Grand Palace – Complimentary in-room acess through TV or personal computer and complimentary access near reception (2 computers for guest access)
    Swissotel Tallinn – Complimentary in-room access with personal computer
    Hotel Kamp – High-speed access in rooms with personal computer or in reception - surcharge
    Grand Hotel Europe – Wireless internet on Access (request) or in business center for a fee.
    Hotel Kempinski – High-speed access in rooms with personal computer or in business center for a fee (First 15 minutes free in business center)

    Also, here is link to our travel forums regarding things to do in Vilnius that may help:
    http://www.tauck.com/yaf/default.aspx?g=posts&t=632

    Hope this helps,
    Emily
  • My husband and I just got back on June 21st, 2012. We had a fabulous time! While understanding that Tauck cannot please all the people, all the time - I think this may be one of the best Tauck tours we have taken. The Baltics were interesting medieval towns and we enjoyed walking the cobblestone streets. {Take really good walking shoes because everyone found walking on cobblestones a bit taxing.} Our hotels all sseemed to give us free WiFi . My "International" Kindle did not work except in Helsinki and St. Petersburg - so download your books ahead of time. Our Apple iPod and iPad International data plan was not covered in Russia, which no one at Apple told us about. Apparently Apple does not have an agreement that covers Russia. We found very few places except museum shops and hotels were willing to take American Express. We found plenty of ATMs to take money out from and we took more cash than we susually do and changed it at change places hear our hotels. The last hotel, The Baltshug Kempinski had an ATM in their lobby which worked just fine and at a decent rate. The only complaint I had was that we took a lot of time on the bus getting from Riga to Tallinn and spent less time in Tallinn than on the bus and then went right to Helsinki where we also had less time than on the bus or hovercraft to get to ST. Petersburg. Many others felt the same: do two nights in Tallinn or two nights in Helsinki and let us get to know the city. This was a bit too fast. The included dinner at Gloria's in Tallinn was the best of the trip. All hotels were wonderful and had great breakfasts. Moscow got quite warm in the afternoons on our trip, so be prepared for some hot touring in the museums. The Russians have tours down pat in the big museums, where you will be asked to don hospital-like booties and there are little ladies in each room moving things along so there are not a lot of crowds pushing and shoving. We ate at a cute place called Lokys down from our first hotel in Vilnius. Try the grandma's pancakes for dessert. We had a lot of fun at one lunch stop that had entertainment and lots of vodka. We were overwhelmed by the grandeur in St. Pewtersburg and Moscow - both old and new. I saw more Bentleys and Rolls Royces in Moscow in a few days that I have at any time anywhere else. Last night there we took a canal dinner-boat ride through the Raddison hotel - which was not narrated. I thought it was a waste of time and money. Boat was hot, food was awful, and we really did not get a good understanding of what we were seeing. My husband downloaded an app for his iPhone wbut it was a bit hard to follow. People who went to the Pushkin Museum said most of it was not in English but they enjoyed seeing French Impressionists. I say, go to France or any good museum in England and the U.S. There were other very interesting ways to see Russian things ion the last free afternoon. Some just went to the pool and spa at the hotel and they raved about it. All hotels had pools and spas. All in all, this was a really great trip. You will have a lot of fun.
  • SusiQ34683, since you just returned from this tour, I have a few questions for you. Did men need jackets for any of the evenings? I know that the hotels in the Baltics have FREE WiFi but was it FREE in Russia as well (to check email)? Did you find that you needed cash in ALL of the countries? I know that since we are getting to Vilnius early we will need some money there and I assume in Russia we will as well but did you find time to spend money in Riga, Tallinn and Helsinki? The boat ride you referred to on the last night, was that part of Tauck? Since we are arriving early in Vilnius, are there any suggestions of must see places to visit? Did they have an outdoor pool at that hotel or was the pool indoors? I made a note of the restaurant you suggested in Vilnius. Any other hints you can add for Vilnius or any of the cities? Any suggestions for must bring, must buy or leave at home items?
  • lovesgolf1 - My husband and I are going 8/8/12. Is that when you are going? We are from SC and couldn't get a flight to arrive early but will be staying an extra dayin Moscow.
  • edited July 2012
    Aunnie, yes my husband and I are on the August 8th trip. We are arriving in Vilnius 2 days early. However, we are flying home from Moscow the day the tour ends. I wish people who have already taken this trip would post more information about it. I would love to know if the men need to bring sports jackets. I also had several other questions but there is not too much information posted on this trip.
  • We just finished the tour. We flew with Aeroflot - brand new A-320 - very comfortable - a no brainer. I was invited into the cockpit by the pilot when we landed in Moscow - very sharp crew, perfect English. The Aeroflot fleet consists primarily of new Airbus and Boeing Equipment. The flight is early, but it gets you into Moscow to enjoy the day.
  • Hi Everyone,

    Tauck guests Debbie and Mike have been blogging about their Baltics and Russia trip . There are lots of pictures and information you may find useful.


    http://russia.meshbiz.com/


    Hope this helps,
    Emily
  • Thanks, Emily, for including a link to our blog. We just got back home on July 11 and had a wonderful time on the tour! We're still adding photos to our blog so come back and look again!

    Some specific answers to questions:

    - internet: free access was available in our room in every hotel, some wired, some wifi. I had my Mac with me so we could blog/upload photos, as well as iPads, a Blackberry and iPhone. Wifi was fast and reliable.

    - i brought a sports jacket and wore it once. Honestly, though, I really didn't need it...it would have been fine to wear a button down shirt and slacks.

    - you will walk A LOT on hard, uneven surfaces. Bring walking shoes!

    - on our tour, we were fortunate to have great weather. In Moscow, it was in the high 80s and it was hot. I wore shorts, a tshirt and sandals a few times. There will be times where you have to dress more modestly so you can go into some of the churches.

    - there are robes, slippers and a hair dryer in every hotel. Some of the hotels have an in-room pants press or an iron & ironing board. Some also offer complimentary shoe shine service.

    - In st petes, have lunch at the cafe in the Singer building. The dumplings are incredible.

    - Which vodka? We tried a bunch and we all agreed that Russian Standard Platinum is the best tasting and most reasonable.

    - you'll be on your own for dinner a bunch of times on the tour. in vilnius, we liked bistro 18. in riga, we liked desiderata.

    - when we were on our own and not touring, we walked around and felt safe. in russia, the sun sets late and it was cool take a walk after dinner at 1030 and it was still light out!

    if you're going on the Baltics & Russia tour, you will love it. Our tour director Kori is the best!

    and once again, http://russia.meshbiz.com

    enjoy!
  • In the literature they suggested a cocktail dress. From the comments it seems things aren't that dressy. Would a pants suit work better? Aunnie
  • Aunnie wrote:
    In the literature they suggested a cocktail dress. From the comments it seems things aren't that dressy. Would a pants suit work better? Aunnie

    Hi Aunnie,

    A pant suit will be fine. Many women choose to wear black slacks with dressy tops rather than formal wear.

    Hope this helps,
    Emily
  • Hello Debbie and Mike,

    Thank you so much for sharing your blog with us. There is so much useful information in your blog and your pictures are amazing.

    Best,
    Emily


    Loewenberg wrote:
    Thanks, Emily, for including a link to our blog. We just got back home on July 11 and had a wonderful time on the tour! We're still adding photos to our blog so come back and look again!

    Some specific answers to questions:

    - internet: free access was available in our room in every hotel, some wired, some wifi. I had my Mac with me so we could blog/upload photos, as well as iPads, a Blackberry and iPhone. Wifi was fast and reliable.

    - i brought a sports jacket and wore it once. Honestly, though, I really didn't need it...it would have been fine to wear a button down shirt and slacks.

    - you will walk A LOT on hard, uneven surfaces. Bring walking shoes!

    - on our tour, we were fortunate to have great weather. In Moscow, it was in the high 80s and it was hot. I wore shorts, a tshirt and sandals a few times. There will be times where you have to dress more modestly so you can go into some of the churches.

    - there are robes, slippers and a hair dryer in every hotel. Some of the hotels have an in-room pants press or an iron & ironing board. Some also offer complimentary shoe shine service.

    - In st petes, have lunch at the cafe in the Singer building. The dumplings are incredible.

    - Which vodka? We tried a bunch and we all agreed that Russian Standard Platinum is the best tasting and most reasonable.

    - you'll be on your own for dinner a bunch of times on the tour. in vilnius, we liked bistro 18. in riga, we liked desiderata.

    - when we were on our own and not touring, we walked around and felt safe. in russia, the sun sets late and it was cool take a walk after dinner at 1030 and it was still light out!

    if you're going on the Baltics & Russia tour, you will love it. Our tour director Kori is the best!

    and once again, http://russia.meshbiz.com

    enjoy!
  • Hi. more photos have been added to our blog. Take a look here! http://russia.meshbiz.com
  • Thank you, Debbie and Mike. Your blog is fantastic and provides us with wonderful information for our upcoming Baltics trip Sept 12th.
  • HankH wrote:
    Thank you, Debbie and Mike. Your blog is fantastic and provides us with wonderful information for our upcoming Baltics trip Sept 12th.

    thanks for your kind words!
This discussion has been closed.