Day 1: Moscow – Pereslavl-Zalessky – Moscow
07:45 Meet your driver and tour leader at the hotel.
08:00 Transfer to Pereslavl-Zalessky (140 km, 2 hours). As you enter the town, look out for the ancient earthen rampart that was built to protect it.
10:00 Explore the architectural complex of Red Square, which is like an open-air museum. This complex includes the pearl of Pereslavl, the Spaso-Preobrazhensky (Transfiguration) Cathedral. The Cathedral is the earliest preserved example of Russian white-stone architecture and has great historical significance – it is where decrees were announced, the Pereslavl princes were crowned, and troops were assembled. Walk past the Church of Alexander Nevsky, St. Volodymyr’s Cathedral, and the Church of Peter the Metropolitan (the only stone cathedral in Russia with a tented roof).
11:00 Transfer to the Ryapushka (Herring) Kingdom Museum (5 km, 10 min), where you’ll learn about Lake Pleshcheyevo and the famous “Royal herring”. At this small, yet fascinating, museum, see the displays about how and why herring from this lake became an important item on the Tsar’s menu, as well as how the herring were caught, prepared, and preserved. View the installations that recreate the lives of a herring fisherman and a tsar who enjoyed the fish. At the end of the excursion, taste the famous ryapushka along with bread from a Russian oven.
12:00 Transfer to the Museum-Estate “The Little Boat of Peter the Great” (2 km, 5 min), where, for his amusement, Peter the Great built vessels that are considered the forefathers of the Russian Navy. After the first provincial museum opened on the estate in 1803, the only surviving boat of the Tsar’s flotilla, the “Fortuna”, was placed in a specially built boathouse. The boathouse also boasts a cast-iron bust of Peter the Great that was created by the sculptor Bartolomeo Carlo Rastrelli in 1719. Rastrelli’s use of a wax mask of the Tsar’s face resulted in an accurate, almost photographic, image of the first Russian emperor. View the exhibition at the White Palace, which showcases the history of the museum-estate from the end of the 17th century to the 1913 visit of Nicholas II, the last Russian emperor.
13:00 Transfer to a restaurant for lunch. After lunch, drive to the Russian Park historical and cultural centre (7 km, 12 min).
15:00 Take an interactive tour of the Tea Tasting Museum. Learn about what kinds of tea were drunk in different parts of Russia before Chinese and Indian teas appeared, and which desserts people enjoyed. Taste three types of Ivan tea and a traditional Russian dessert, Guryev porridge, which is cooked for six hours in a Russian oven according to a special old recipe.
16:00 Free time to explore other sights of the Russian Park complex (such as the museums of Russian folk theatre art and fairy tales, Russian inventions, or folk musical instruments) independently.
17:00 Return to Moscow (140 km, 2h30min).
19:30 Arrive at the hotel. End of the tour.
Duration of sightseeing tour: 11.5-12 hours
RECOMMENDATIONS: Bring comfortable footwear and clothing suitable for the weather. Please note: when visiting Orthodox churches, men must take off their hats while women must cover their heads. We therefore recommend that ladies wishing to visit churches bring along a headscarf.
- All transfers (1-2 pax by sedan type car, 3-7 pax by minivan, 8-13 pax by 30 seat bus, 14+ pax by 40-50 seat bus);
- Tour leader (guide) to accompany the travellers for the whole tour;
- Sightseeing tour programme with a local guide and translation into English;
- Entrance tickets to sights as per itinerary;
- Payment for additional services during the tour
- Cost of souvenirs
- Tips/gratuities for guides and drivers (although these would be appreciated).