Veliky Novgorod & Karelia

(4 days)

Veliky Novgorod is recognized as the oldest Russian city of that was the medieval centre of trade and craft and served as a link between medieval Europe and Rus’. Like the capital of Russia it has its own Kremlin and it is home to some of the most important and oldest cathedrals and monasteries in Russia.

The Republic of Karelia is the land of lakes and forest. Ancient inhabitants of this region – Saami used dogsleds as a main way of transportation. Nowadays we use snowmobiles to get to the winter snow covered forest. During outdoor activities of this tour, you will get more energy and exciting emotions and in the evening, you will be warmed by the atmosphere of the cozy restaurant and traditional Russian sauna. We wish you enjoyable journey!

Day 1

13:30  Arrival to Veliky Novgorod by bus and meeting with guide

Lunch

Check-in at the hotel Park Inn Veliky Novgorod

Excursion to the museum of wooden architecture Vitoslavlitsy located on the banks of the Volkhov River and Lake Myachino. Visit to Russian izbas to get to know how Russian people lived many years ago.

Visit of Peryn Chapel or the Church of the Nativity of the Theotokos on Peryn (6 kilometres from Veliky Novgorod), a former monastery built in the 1220s.

Dinner

Accommodation at hotel

Day 2

Breakfast

City tour in Veliky Novgorod

Visit of the Kremlin (also known as Detinets) and of its buildings and monuments like the Cathedral of Holy Wisdom, the Monument to the Thousand Years of Russia, the Novgorod Museum and the Novgorod Regional Library. Visit to St. Sophia Cathedral and Yaroslav's Courtyard

Excursion to Yuriev Monastery with the entrance to St. George's Cathedral

Lunch

Visit to the The Church of the Transfiguration of the Savior on Ilyin and watching of frescoes of Theophanes the Greek

17:45  Departure to Petrozavodsk by train Lastochka

Box dinner

Day 3

00:20 Arrival to Petrozavodsk, transfer to hotel Karelia, accommodation

Breakfast

10:15 Departure for Kizhi Island by hydrofoil (1 hour 30 minutes).

11:45 Excursion in the Kizhi Open-Air Museum of Wooden Architecture. Kizhi is one of the first open-air museums and one of the most popular tourist attractions in Russia. The pearl of the museum is its world-known wooden church ensemble which is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1990. After the excursion the bus will take you to the other side of Kizhi Island, where you will get acquainted with the restoration centre of the main church of the Kizhi Ensemble. You will see where and how the church is being restored and learn some secrets of traditional Russian wooden architecture. On the way back we will make a stop near the highest point of Kizhi to enjoy the panorama view.

Lunch-boxes

15:45 Hydrofoil back

17:15 Arrival to Petrozavodsk

City tour of Petrozavodsk. You will get acquainted with the history of the capital of Karelia and visit its major places of interest. Photo stop near the monument of Peter the Great.

Dinner and night at hotel Karelia

Day 4

09:30 Meeting with the jeep instructors. Each jeep will take 2-3 persons. Transfer to Kondopoga to visit the ancient Church of Assumption. Built in the 18th century the church is the real gem of Russian wooden architecture. It is the highest wooden church in Karelia. Situated on the shore of the Onego lake, it resembles a candle from afar. After the excursion we head to the Kivach Nature Reserve.

12:30 Excursion in the Kivach Nature Reserve. You will get acquainted with the second highest plain waterfall in Europe and typical and rare Karelian plants. The eco system of the Kivach Nature Reserve is unique. Apart from the picturesque landscapes you will enjoy its crystal clear air.

14:00 Picnic on the way and then transfer to Girvas. After a short briefing you will try yourself in the off-road ride. In the past there was an ancient volcano in this area. Till today you can see traces of lava on the rocks. Girvas is a popular area in Karelia for off-road jeep competition.

17:00 Our next stop is in the first Russian spa, founded by Peter the Great in the 18th century. Till today its waters rich with iron heal from various diseases. You will taste this water from each spring. On our way back to Petrozavodsk we will make a final stop near Sampo Mountain. This is a hill from which you get a splendid panorama of Karelian taiga.

19:00 Arrival in Petrozavodsk.

Dinner and transfer to the railway station (possible to adjust for train Lastochka)

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