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Duration
8 days
Activities
  • guided cycle
Accommodation
  • hotels
Meals
  • 1 Dinner
  • 6 Lunches
  • 7 Breakfasts

Price

$2399USD

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Overview

Trip Code: URU

Trip highlights


  • Cycling through history along the Volga river and between 'Golden Ring' cities
  • Exploring Sergiev Posad with its important monastery and Vladimir with its traditional centre
  • Discovering the art of making Pelmeni and painting a Matryoshka
  • Wandering through the heart of Moscow on an evening walking tour
  • Staying in an eclectic mix of accommodation from city hotels to an old manor house and a holiday park on the Volga River

There are few cycling trips which capture so much of a country's historical, natural and cultural legacies within the space of a week, as this trip does between some of Russia's most colourful cities. The list of highlights are vast, from sightseeing in Moscow, to following mostly car free routes along the mighty Volga River and between such cities as Dmitrov, Vladimir and Tver. In Sergiev Posad, home to one of the most revered monasteries in Russia, the Trinity Lavra of St Sergius, we gain an insight into the history of the Russian Orthodox Church, whilst in Vladimir, the medieval capital of Russia, we view 12th century buildings which survived the city's rich history. Enroute we stay in handpicked accommodation from a restored manor house to a holiday park Russian style, to a city hotel in the heart of Moscow's historic centre. Whilst cycling is an important component of the trip we also include a master class on making Russian Pelmeni (dumplings usually eaten on New Years Eve) and a chance to explore your creative side during a art class where you will paint your very own Matryoshka, the traditional Russian wooden doll.

Trip Grading

More info about grading system

Traveller Rating

 

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After checking in to the joining hotel, enjoy some free time before meeting with the group and your guide in the early evening for a walking tour through the historical centre. During the tour we walk along the Moscow River, past the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour to reach the Kremlin and Red Square. Standing in this grand and richly proportioned square is one of the great thrills of Moscow. We return to the hotel on the Moscow Metro, starting with a couple of the most beautiful Metro stations – 'Revolution Sqaure' and 'Arbatskaya' - which are architectural works of art.

Meals:  Nil

Mid morning we will drive around 180km to the old Russian city of Tver. Following lunch, a walking tour will take us through the historical centre and along the embankment. We'll pass by the monument of Pushkin and Athanasii Nikitin, who were great admirers of the city. After our walk we'll return to our hotel, which is housed in a former manor house and has been lovingly restored by its current owners. A treat this evening is a master class in making Russian pelmeni (dumplings usually eaten on New Years Eve). Our chef will uncover the secrets of this popular Russian dish which you will then sample. After dinner you will have the opportunity to take a walk along one of the central street 'Trehsvyatskaya' – this is similar to Moscow's Arbat street, with souvenir shops, rows of bright matryoshkas, artists' easels and many small cafes and restaurants. It's a colourful atmosphere of provincial Russia. Transfer: 180km

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning after breakfast we will cycle through the historical part of Tver and along its embankment, built in the 1760-1770s. On our way we will cross the bridge which was built at the very end of the 19th century and is similar in style to bridges in Bavaria and Budapest. Leaving Tver we continue along gravel and sandy roads through pine woods, along the banks of the great Volga River to reach the walls of an Orsha convent, which was patronized by Tsar Ivan the Terrible. We will have a picnic break by the river. Here the Volga becomes even wider and more powerful. After lunch we continue cycling on tarmac surfaces among the age-old pine forest to Savvatievo. Here we meet our bus and transfer (15km) to the village of Yuryevskoye and our holiday park style hotel on the bank of the Volga River. Transfer: 15km

Meals:  B,L

Today’s cycle takes us through age-old pine forest and old rural settlements, mostly on gravel and dirt roads. In the village of Edimonovo the river Volga becomes wider, with islands, beaches and pine forests. Shortly after, it makes a sharp turn to the north-east and spills into the Ivankovsky reservoir. After a break, with an opportunity to swim in the clear river waters or relax on the bank, we transfer to the reservoir, where we take a ferry across the wide Volga waters to reach the city of Konakovo. Later we transfer to the 'city of Science', Dubna. In the evening, if the weather is good, we will have another opportunity to swim in the Volga River and enjoy this atmospheric city of academics and cyclists. Transfer total: 40km

Meals:  B,L

After breakfast at the hotel, we will have a short guided tour of the city and learn about the city’s history including the construction of the Moscow Canal. This large-scale construction in the 1930's was built over five years by the forced labour of hundreds of thousands of political prisoners of the Gulag, many of whom died during construction. Walk along the spit to get a sense of the history of this place, and it’s an opportunity to take photos of the lighthouse, the famous Lenin monument (25m tall!) and the serene waters of the bay. After our tour we will ride along the canal then through woods, fields, authentic settlements and villages to reach the ancient industrial village of Verbilki. Here you can visit the museum of the renowned porcelain factory that was founded by English merchant, Francis Gardner in 1775. Later this afternoon we reach the ancient city of Dmitrov. Later we’ll take a walk in the historical part of the city, visiting the local Kremlin, and along the Kropotkinskaya street among the beautiful monuments. Transfer: 40km

Meals:  B,L

After breakfast, there will be time to visit the Museum-Reserve 'Dmitrov Kremlin' at your leisure.It has interesting exhibits dedicated to the Second World War and the historical and cultural life of the region. Later, from the former Golitsyn estate, we cycle to the highest part of the Klin-Dmitrovsky ridge, where it is crossed by the fast and winding river Velya. For those who are game, there may be an opportunity to swim in the river. The cycle begins on tarmac then gravel and sometimes even rocky roads to reach the settlement 'Svyatogorovo', a place popular with pilgrims, photographers and artists. Here we can view the wooden houses and dine with hospitable hosts who will treat us with local dishes made from products from the local farm. Later we transfer through the 'Moscow Taiga', sometimes referred to as the 'Russian Switzerland' due to its high green hills, to the city of Sergiev Posad. Among the cities that make up the 'Golden Ring of Russia', Sergiev Posad is considered to be its pearl and one of the main sights. In 1993 this architectural ensemble became a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In the evening we will have another master class, this time to learn the art of painting the Matryoshka in the city's 'Workshop of Art'. Each person will be given a wooden doll to paint. Transfer: 40km

Meals:  B,L

The final cycle stage is the longest, leading to the junction of the Moscow, Yaroslavl and Vladimir regions. We'll transfer from Sergiev Prosad to the small provincial town of Kirzhach. From here we ride on dirt and sandy roads along the picturesque riverbed Kirzhat, with fields, meadow flowers and pine forest our roadside companions. At lunchtime we'll stop near the beautiful Telvjakovsky Lake. After lunch we will continue to the the memorial and chapel marking the spot where Yuri Gagarin, the first Soviet cosmonaut, died along with the test pilot Vladimir Seryogin after their MiG-15 training flight went down. Later we transfer to the city of Vladimir – the crown of the 'Golden Ring' - with its monuments of Russian medieval white-stone architecture which are UNESCO World Heritage listed. Total transfers: 160km

Meals:  B,L

After breakfast we will have a city tour of Vladimir. Founded by Prince Vladimir in the late 10th century and for more than 250 years until 1432, Vladimir was the capital of the Old Russian state. For the second part of the day you can either return to Moscow or continue cycling to Suzdal (see Suzdal extension itinerary). If you are returning to Moscow the journey will be on a high speed train (ticket not included). The journey will take around 2 hours and we expect to arrive at the Kursk station by 5:30pm. The trip concludes on arrival in Moscow. We can book extra nights for you in Moscow after the trip, or if you'd like to stay in Vladimir after the city tour to further explore, we can book an extra night at the hotel and your train ticket to return to Moscow the next day - please ask for our rates.

Meals:  B

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After breakfast we will have a city tour of Vladimir. Founded by Prince Vladimir in the late 10th century and for more than 250 years until 1432, Vladimir was the capital of the Old Russian state. After transferring those who are returning to Moscow to the station, we have a very short transfer to the ancient village of Bogolyubovo. From here we will ride through the meadow to one of the oldest churches in Russia 'Cover on the Nerl' whose white stone temple was built by Prince Andrei Bogolyubsky in the 12th Century. Continuing our cycle we pass near the white-stone walls of the ancient monastery, to reach our final cycle track. The cycle takes us through vast fields, hills, lakes and ancient manicured and sometimes reconstructed villages and temples.Later in the afternoon we reach the old Russian city Suzdal, another bright representative of the Golden Ring. The boundaries of the city with a thousand-year history remain unchanged since the 18th century. In Suzdal we will immerse ourselves in the fabulous atmosphere of the Russian backwoods, perfectly inscribed in the classic Russian landscape with vast fields, river bends and hills.

Meals:  B

After breakfast in the hotel, we take a tour of ancient Suzdal. There are many attractions that are included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. View the ancient chime clock, located on the bell tower of the Bishop's Chambers of the 17th century before heading to the local Kremlin which is an old fortress where you can see a golden-domed Mother of God-Nativity Cathedral with frescoes of the 13th century. At the end of the historical tour, we will have lunch in one of the many small Russian refectories, and then take our bus to the railway station in Vladimir. The second part of the day has us returning to Moscow by high speed train (ticket not included). The journey will take around 2 hours and we expect to arrive at the Kursk station at 17:30. The guide will then assist in organising taxi's to your hotel or the airport (taxi cost is extra, payable locally). The trip concludes on arrival in Moscow. We can book extra nights for you in Moscow after the trip.

Meals:  B


Inclusions

  • 7 breakfasts, 6 picnic lunches, 1 dinner - breakfasts will be continental style in the hotel dining room. Picnic or box lunches with fresh fruit and water will be provided on the cycle days. Dinner will be provided in Tver - where you will sample your Pelmeni. Note: some hotels may charge extra for drinks during breakfast
  • 6 nights in 3-4 star hotels and 1 night holiday park on the Volga River in a cabin or room all on a twin share basis with ensuite facilities. Most accommodation will have a spa (entry cost not included)
  • Detailed route description with info about the sights
  • Support vehicle except on days 3 and 4 where you cycle along forest trails. The option to use the support vehicle is available throughout the cycling stages
  • Support team which includes English speaking cycle guide / leader and minivan driver
  • Luggage transfer daily (max 20kgs pp)
  • Emergency hotline
  • Internal transfers as specified including ferry across Volga and Moscow Canal
  • City tours in Moscow, Tver, Dubna, Dmitrov, Sergiev Posad and Vladimir
  • Cooking class (day 2) and painting class (day 6)
  • 21 or 24 speed mountain bike equipped with a pannier, safety vest, bottle holder, helmet (only on request)
  • Visa invitation letter
  • Information pack with maps and tour route description (one set per room)

  • Arrival and departure in Moscow
  • Lunches on days 1 & 8 and all dinners except on day 2, all beverages
  • Visa
  • Items of a personal nature such as phone calls, laundry etc.
  • Transfers not specified in the itinerary
  • Sightseeing and entrance fees not specified in the itinerary
  • Travel insurance
  • In Sergiev Posad and Vladimir the city tax is payable locally (~ 250 – 500 RUB p/p ) - subject to change
  • Transfer between Moscow airport and the hotel. We can assist with these if required, please ask for our rates.
  • City tax may be charged by some hotels (approx 250-500RUB pp)
  • High speed train from Vladimir to Moscow on day 8 (afternoon)

Bike information


Grading

  

The trip is graded introductory to moderate. The daily distances cycled are between 35 and 45km/22 and 28mi. The route is largely flat following a cycle path next to the Volga River. The tracks can be muddy, dusty and uneven at times. Other sections are on asphalt. You may be required to ford a small river in one section. As with all of our trips it is important that you are well prepared. We suggest that you undertake regular exercise – swimming, cycling, and jogging, two to three times a week for three months prior to your departure.


Departure dates


Notes

DN1
Train ticket Vladimir to Moscow payable locally.
DN2
Group sizes of more than 12 will have a second cycle guide accompanying
DN3
Option to extend cycle by one day to include the Golden Ring ancient town of Suzdal

Want to organise a private group?

Fundraising events, sporting groups, family treats; learn how you can organise a Private Group from just 6 travellers.

Total Priceper person from

$2399USD

Options & Supplements*
  • Suzdal extension - TwinshareUSD$210
  • supplement for 6 dinnersUSD$240
  • supplement for 7 dinners (Suzdal Ext)USD$280
  • Suzdal extension - single roomUSD$310
  • single supplementUSD$500
*Prices listed are per person

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We offer different levels of accommodation and comfort so that even the most budget conscious can treat themselves to active holidays on Europe's most celebrated tracks and trails. Our trips are great value for money because you only pay for what you want.  

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Our wide range of self-guided itineraries embody the UTracks philosophy of exploring Europe your way. We handle the logistics so all that's left for you to do is enjoy exploring Europe at your own pace. Most depart daily with a minimum of two people, meaning maximum flexibility.

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