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Your Words - We tell it like it is! Holiday Reviews by previous Exodus travellers  

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49 Reviews

  • Reviewed September 2019
    Alison Bone

    Experience Russia

    Just returned from this trip. It was fast paced, covering Moscow, Novrogod, Pushkin and St Petersburg, all in a week. Our tour guide Artem met us at the airport and was always on hand, from making sure we knew when and when we needed to met for each activity to giving advice on what to do during our free time (its limited on this trip), he also took us to some great restaurants which catered for those who wanted to taste the local cuisine and those wanting a more European choice. He was always on hand to help translate, which was needed. All the hotels we stayed in were clean and comfortable and well located close to attractions. Some didn't have tea & coffee making facilities so take a travel kettle if necessary. The trip covered most of the must see sights so days were full on, so comfy shoes are a must! The highlight for was Red Square at night and Catherine Palace but nowhere disappointed. All in all a good trip, giving us a real taste of Russia. I'd recommend adding a day before and after the trip as there's loads to see if both Moscow and St Petersburg which isn't covered.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Rec Square at night

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Great. Artem was very helpful, keeping our group of 16 on track. He took us to some great restaurants and was always on hand to give advice on optional activities. A credit to Exodus.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take a travel kettle and comfy shoes.
  • Reviewed September 2019
    christine midgley

    Russia by trans Siberia railway

    Excellent holiday with really good guides. A great group and as always with exodus holidays, all good company.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    In Yacatherinburg at the church of the spilled blood

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Very good

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Great holiday, Russia is far more advanced than we in the West tend to think

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    No
  • Reviewed August 2019

    Fascinating trip!

    I absolutely loved this trip and found it incredibly rich in culture and history. It was a lot to take in and rather fast paced at times, but by the end of it the whole group was up to speed on the different leaders and monarchs or Russia through the ages and had a good insight as to how the country/cities have developed to what they are today. Our leader, Artem, was full of passion and love for his country and shared his views and hopes for the future which made the trip even more insightful and interesting. Get ready for a lot of gold, chandeliers and palaces!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The trip was so full of history and our local guides were brilliant story tellers and sharers of information that it inspired me to continue reading about Russia and it's history... and to come back one day! The incredible craftsmanship that went in to the opulent palaces and works of art were mind-blowing as well!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Bring comfortable shoes to walk in! We found most places took card for payments so you don't need to take much cash with you and the food was great and diverse!
  • Reviewed July 2019
    Janet Wilson

    From Russia with Love

    This is a fast-paced tour covering 4 cities in 7 days with almost as many modes of transport. The whirlwind of Moscow and St Petersburg is tempered by the quietness and quaintness of Novgorod and Pushkin. I had no idea what to expect of Russia and you can almost be put off by the visa application process alone, but what I found was a friendlier, cleaner and much greener country than I expected. This trip gives you an ideal mechanism of seeing the key tourist sites plus a little of the country and leaves you wanting to go back to sample more.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The first time I saw Red Square had the sun just starting to set, with clear blue skies. The image of St Basil's and the GUM department store being lit up will never leave me. And who knew that a trip around the Moscow underground could be so impressive?

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our group leader Artem was patient, entertaining, informative and constantly ensured that we got the most out of our trip and our free-time. There were 16 of us on our trip and I'm sure he often thought he was herding cats. Our group got on really well and Artem definitely ensured we had fun as well as culture during our trip.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    This may be classed as a leisurely/moderate trip but trying to see everything you can means pounding the pavements and museums for an easy 12 miles per day. Although the trip notes advise purchasing opera/ballet tickets several months in advance, our experience was that (in June) any site you may wish to do in your spare time, E.g. Peterhof Palace in St Petersburg, also needs to be booked a long time in advance. And if anyone offers you horseradish vodka - run!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I'm veggie and had no problems getting food during the trip - we tried Russian, Georgian and Armenian throughout, with some nods to Asian and pizza in between. There is so much to do in St Petersburg that I'd recommend having an extra 1 or 2 nights to give you time to see more and just do some people watching - but beware that in June there are gazillions of cruise ship passengers.
  • Reviewed July 2019
    Isabel Draper

    Nothing like it

    Such a privilege, travelling on a nuclear-powered Russian icebreaker which spends most of the year keeping the northern Russian seaways clear for cargo ships: a brilliant job was due to convert it temporarily for tourists. The dour Heroes of the Motherland were retained to crew the vessel which made it all the more atmospheric, but they couldn’t compete for character with the polar bears, especially the one who was so co-operative for photos despite us having distracted him from his kill. The only downside was that we weren’t warned how hot the boat is: future travellers need to take some light clothing for indoors.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The crunching and shuddering as the boat tackled the ice.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Brilliant, and obviously well-regarded by the rest of the team.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    See above re light clothing.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Neither the Russians nor the Finns can make tea.
  • Reviewed June 2019
    Peter Craig

    Don't know what I am meant to review!

    I would recommend this Tour to anyone with a remote interest in Russia and its history. The Journey (from St Petersburg in our case) to Ekaterinburg unfolded the story of Russia old and new. We were staggered by the churches, some built less than ten years ago. The trains were excellent except the Kazan to Ekaterinburg 14 hour journey, where the train had no buffet or trolley service for food. You have to stock up at the occasional 20-30 minute stop at stations. Fine, it added to the fun. We were recommended not to eat anything unwrapped from the stations but I couldn't exist on biscuits and crisps so had a Russian version of a cheese and potato pasty. No problems. Hotels very good. A really well put together tour which I would strongly recommend. Russians much nicer and much more helpful than their normal image in the west. The cities were very impressive in a classical 19th century way. Come on Exodus, why not a trip starting in Ekaterinburg and going eastwards...

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The Moscow Kremlin. But too many highlights to list really.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Artem was excellent, fluent and helpful. 100% except he didn't really get over to us in time that the 14 hour Kazan to Ekaterinburg train had no food on board. It wouldn't have mattered except he discouraged us (on hygiene grounds) from buying at the station kiosks. Personally I would judge the station food safe.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    No, relax and enjoy it. It doesn't live down to its Cold War image

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Just that small point re the 14 hour journey; decide if station kiosk food is okay or not. I think its okay. But if Exodus want to be cautious tell everyone to stock up with wrapped sandwiches the night before.
  • Reviewed June 2019
    Katherine Morgan

    A great trip full of variety.

    A very busy trip with so much to see, it was my first time in Russia and this trip is an excellent introduction into its history.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I enjoyed Suzdal and Vladimir, a pleasant change from the big cities, a great opportunity to see some of the old Russia. The churches were all amazing.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Artem was excellent, very well organised, thorough and extremely patient ensuring all our needs were met. Local guides were also good.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Travel light! The hotels never offer assistance with bags etc. Would also suggest an extra day in Moscow which we did, the group day was a bit rushed as there was so much to see.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    If you do the St Petersburg extension, which I highly recommend, make sure you take a direct flight there. We didn't and our luggage didn't come with us so we spent the first three days in our travel clothes.
  • Reviewed June 2019
    Christine Mcdougall

    Amazing trip

    This trip is an excellent introduction to Russia. It is fast paced but this ensures you are able to see as much as possible. It was interesting to visit smaller towns of novgorod and Pushkin as well as Moscow and st. Petersburg.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The whole trip was interesting but highlights were the hermitage, the faberge museum and the Moscow metro. All surpassed expectations.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Artem was very good at organising us and in taking us to good places to eat. Very friendly guide with excellent English ( all our local guides were very good and knowledgable about the places we were visiting). I was surprised we did not have a tipping kitty on this trip as it makes everything so much easier.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take comfortable shoes for walking and don’t pack too much.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This is a very good first trip to Russia. Hotels and restaurants were better than expected. If you have time to add a few days do so. It is easy to get around st petersburg and hotel staff are very helpful. Unfortunately I couldn’t do this as there was so much more to see.
  • Reviewed June 2019
    Christine Mcdougall

    Fabulous tripa very

    A very good trip to a fascinating country. Trip covers Moscow, novrogod, Pushkin and st petersburg and is very busy. Great to see so many places in one trip. It was all fascinating

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    It was all fascinating but the Hermitage and faberge surpassed my expectations. Trip on Moscow metro also fascinating.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Artem was very good. Trip was well organised and he selected a variety of good restaurants for us to try. The food was better than I expected. Very pleasant guide with excellent English. We didn’t have a kitty for tips (which I have had on past trips). I think this would have been a good ideal I really

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take comfortable shoes as lots of walking. You don’t need lots of clothes and avoid a heavy suitcase as you are on the move between towns.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I really enjoyed this trip. I have wanted to visit Russia for a long time. It is a good introduction to the country. If you can add a few days in st petersburg do so. I couldn’t do this on my trip but several members of our group did. Most restaurants and hotel staff speak English and you can get around on your own
  • Reviewed June 2019
    Jane Howard

    25/05/2019

    This trip packs a lot into a short period of time. Be prepared to walk a lot and see a lot of art - all amazing. The overnight train trip is an experience, I didn't get a lot of sleep but I didn't expect to!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The faberge museum was fantastic, as was the Hermitage.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our guide, Artem, was knowledgeable and keen to ensure we had the best experience in Russia.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be warned that on some days the lunch stop is late - 2-2.30pm - so packing a few muslei bars to keep you going might be an idea. Travel light - with all the moving around lugging lots of luggage is hard work.
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