Russia

  • modern languages school trip to Russia
    Learn more about the language and culture of Russia with a school trip to Moscow and St Petersburg.
  • Moscow school trip
    The stunning Moscow skyline at night time.
  • St Petersburg school trip
    Church of the Saviour on Spilled Blood, a St Petersburg school trip pre-requisite.
  • St Petersburg school trip
    One of our groups at the State Hermitage Museum, a must for students of art on a St Petersburg school trip.
  • St Petersburg school trip
    The cascading fountains of Peterhof Palace, another popular addition to a St Petersburg school trip itinerary.

Our students had a brilliant time (thank you) and learned a lot. A great experience to learn about history and another culture.SJ, Rushcliffe School

Rich in cultural heritage and overflowing with awe-inspiring architecture, it’s little wonder that Moscow and St Petersburg are regarded as two of Europe’s greatest cities.

Moscow is very much a city in transition, with Western commercial influences gradually taking hold alongside the opulent medieval cathedrals, grandiose tented spires and neo-Gothic skyscrapers in a city where even the metro stations are aesthetic masterpieces. Watch the red stars on the Kremlin’s towers twinkle as you embark on an overnight train ride to discover St Petersburg, Russia’s intellectual and cultural capital.

Peter the Great’s ‘Window to the West’, St Petersburg is one of Europe’s most beautiful cities and capital of the Russian Empire until 1917. Spilling over 44 islands on the River Neva, the city was home to figures such as Gogol, Tchaikovsky and Dostoyevsky. It has witnessed the end of the monarchy, the Bolshevik uprising and 1917 Revolution. There are so many architectural gems, including the Winter Palace, the Kazan Cathedral and the Peter and Paul Fortress. Lovely waterside walkways make exploring the canals, cathedrals, museums and historic monuments of St Petersburg a real pleasure.

Typical Accommodation

We work with a number of different hotels in both Moscow and St Petersburg. Please let us know your requirements and we will be happy to recommend suitable accommodation to suit your Russia school trip itinerary and budget.

Russia School Trip – Subject Suitability

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All tours will be tailor made to suit each individual group, but here is a popular itinerary for a Russia school trip:

Sample Itinerary – 6 Days by Air

Day 1 – Take a direct flight from London to Moscow. Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel in time for dinner.

Day 2 – A full-day guided tour of Moscow covers the history of the city and features visits to the Kremlin complex in Red Square, St Basil’s Cathedral and Lenin’s Mausoleum and the dazzling array of treasures in the Armoury Collection, including the Russian Crown Jewels.

Day 3 – An opportunity today to meet English-speaking Russian students from Moscow University and, on a guided tour, witness the fantastic city views from the 35th floor observation tower.

The afternoon is free for shopping and further sightseeing, perhaps to take in the array of art at the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts or the Tretyakov Gallery, before boarding the overnight sleeper train service to St Petersburg.

Day 4 – On arrival in St Petersburg early this morning, you’ll have breakfast followed by a guided sightseeing tour of the city. You’ll see all the main sights including the Palaces along Nevsky Prospekt, as well as the city’s many elaborate churches and cathedrals, including Church of the Saviour on Spilled Blood and St Isaac’s Cathedral. This afternoon, enjoy a visit to the State Hermitage Museum, one of the world’s great museums, and a must for art students.

Day 5 – A morning excursion to the oldest building in the city, the St Peter and St Paul Fortress. This is the final resting place of most of the Romanov rulers, including the last tsar. The afternoon is free for independent explorations, followed by a folklore evening.

Day 6 – An opportunity for some last-minute sightseeing and souvenir shopping (or perhaps to visit the Piskarovskoye War Memorial) before transferring to the airport for the flight home.

Travel Options

  • By air from London Heathrow direct to Moscow & from London & selected regional airports direct to St Petersburg.

 Popular Visits & Excursions

Moscow

Red Square – A natural starting point on any Moscow itinerary, it’s here that you’ll find situated St Basil’s Cathedral, the Kremlin, the Cathedrals of the Assumption and the Annunciation, Lenin’s Mausoleum, the GUM department store and the State Historical Museum.
St Basil’s Cathedral – Commissioned by Ivan the Terrible in 1552 and officially titled the Church of the Intercession, this elaborate contortion of colours, patterns and shapes makes St Basil’s one of the most spectacular and recognisable landmarks that Moscow has to offer.
Kremlin – Russia’s nerve centre of political power and at one time controller of the Russian Orthodox Church. Situated within its walls you’ll find cathedrals, the Patriarch’s Palace, Ivan the Great Bell Tower, the State Diamond Fund and Armoury.
Armoury – Purpose built in the 19th century to house Russia’s extensive collection of gold, silver, arms and imperial clothes and carriages, highlights include the giant Orlov diamond and the infamous and rarely-seen Fabergé eggs.
Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts – Moscow’s equivalent of St Petersburg’s Hermitage, this museum plays host to a wealth of foreign artworks including Renaissance masterpieces by Rembrandt, Botticelli, Tiepolo and Veronese, 20th-century paintings by Gauguin, Cézanne and Picasso, and artefacts dating back to Egyptian, Roman and Greek times.
Tretyakov Gallery – If the Pushkin is devoted to international works of art, then the Tretyakov lays claim to the world’s greatest collection of Russian art spanning the 11th to the 20th centuries.
State Museum of Oriental Art – Spanning the whole of the Asian continent, exhibits include metal works and ceramics from ancient Persia, India, and South-East Asia, costumes and art from Tibet, Mongolia, China, Korea and Japan, and Eskimo walrus tusk carvings from Siberia.
Novodevichy Convent and Cemetery – a wonderfully distinctive 16th-century convent and burial place of many of the country’s most famous writers and politicians including Chekhov, Khrushchev and Yeltsin.
Cathedral of Christ the Saviour – Originally constructed in the late-19th century to commemorate victory over Napoleon, Stalin demolished it in 1930 to make way for a skyscraper, later turned into a huge outdoor swimming pool! The expansive, opulent cathedral was once again restored to its rightful status as a beacon for the Russian Orthodox Church in 1997.
Danilov Monastery – Built in the late 13th century, this beautiful monastery sits aside the Moskva River and today serves as the headquarters of the Russian Orthodox Church and the official residence of the Patriarch of Russia.
Lenin’s Mausoleum – The final resting place of Russia’s notorious leader, Lenin’s body has lain in state here since 1924, although it was moved to the Ural Mountains during World War II.
Tomb of the Unknown Soldier – Situated within the Alexander Garden, this tomb contains the body of an unidentified Soviet soldier who helped to stop the German advance into Moscow.
Bolshoi Theatre – Moscow’s largest and oldest theatre and home to two of the world’s most renowned resident opera and ballet troupes.
State Historical Museum – Situated right on Red Square, this museum offers an extensive look at Russian history from the ice age right up to the 19th century.
State Central Museum of Contemporary History of Russia – Dedicated to Russia’s more recent history, including the Russian Revolution, the Space Race and Perestroika.
Great Patriotic War Museum (1941 – 1945) – Opened on the 50th anniversary of the allied victory in World War II, this museum is dedicated to the Great Patriotic War, or World War II as we know it.
USSR Museum – Very child friendly, this museum is dedicated to life and popular culture during the Soviet years, featuring arcade game machines, domestic electronics, household items, toys, games and movie posters. There’s also cars and motorbikes.
Cold War Museum – Also known as Bunker 42, this top-secret bunker, situated 18 floors underneath Moscow itself, is now a museum dedicated to the Cold War. With kilometres of tunnels, KGB rooms, raid sirens and guides dressed as KGB officers, this hands-on museum offers an experience to remember.
Central Museum of the Armed Forces – Packed full of military memorabilia, this museum pays particular attention to the Soviet Union’s role in World War II.
Moscow Planetarium – Learn about space, space exploration, telescopes, satellites, gravity and other miracles of science with the hands-on exhibits.
Experimentarium – A hands-on science centre.
Cosmonautics Museum – Learn about the history of Russian space exploration. Exhibits include models of satellites, original space suits, part of the Mir space station, photos and documents from famous cosmonauts such as Yuri Gagarin and even the first dogs in space, Belka and Strelka.
Old Arbat Street – One of the oldest roads in the city, today this pedestrian thoroughfare is packed full of cafes and restaurants, street artists and portrait painters and is a popular place to spend time.
Moscow Metro – Worth a visit to witness the stunningly ornate designs within the one of the busiest transport systems in the world.

Elsewhere

Sergiev Posad – Dominated by the 12th-century Trinity Monastery of St Sergius, this town is regarded as the spiritual centre of Russian Orthodoxy.
Suzdal –  The ‘jewel’ of Russia’s famous Golden Ring of ancient villages. At its peak, Suzdal’s Kremlin and monasteries held untold riches and its leaders fought with the princes of Moscow to make Suzdal the most important principality in Ancient Russia.

St Petersburg

State Hermitage Museum – Housed in the glorious Winter Palace on the banks of the River Neva, this museum commands a reputation as one of the finest institutions worldwide, containing an unrivalled collection of over three million artworks covering all the main European movements. There’s also an impressive selection of Oriental and Middle Eastern art, as well as treasures from ancient Greece, Rome, Egypt and Persia.
Russian Museum – Traditionally centred at the Mikhailovsky Palace, this museum plays host to the country’s largest – and indeed the world’s finest – collection of Russian art. You’ll find modern art housed at the Marble Palace.
Nevsky Prospekt – St. Petersburg’s main shopping avenue and one of the best-known streets in Russia. Cutting through the historical center of the city from Admiralty to the Alexander Nevsky Monastery, it is lined with some of the city’s most striking buildings including the Kazan Cathedral, the Russian National Library and the Palaces of Stroganaov, Anichkov and Beloselskiy-Belozerskiy.
Peter and Paul Fortress – Built as a fortress in 1703 by Peter the Great, this building was used instead as a political prison under the Tsars (Dostoevsky, Gorky and Trotsky were inmates), and today houses the City History Museum, the Mint, and the Cathedral of Saint Apostles Peter and Paul.
Church of the Saviour on Spilled Blood – Named after the attempted assassination of Tsar Alexander II in 1881, the Church of the Resurrection of Christ, to give it its official title, is St Petersburg’s most elaborate church, with five distinctive domes outside and 7,000 square metres of mosaics contained within.
St Isaac’s Cathedral – One of the largest and most ornately-decorated domed cathedral in the world. It’s Russia’s largest and Europe’s fourth largest cathedral.
Kazan Cathedral – Modelled on St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome, this is one of the city’s most majestic cathedrals with a dome rising 80 metres high.
St Nicholas Cathedral – Constructed in the 18th century in the sailors’ quarter of St Petersburg, this attractive blue and white cathedral was named after the patron saint of sailors and is regarded as one of the city’s most beautiful. It’s also known locally as the Sailors’ Church.
Alexander Nevsky Monastery – Founded by Peter the Great in 1710, this orthodox monastery is the most important in St. Petersburg. The St Trinity cemetery houses the graves of Russia’s greatest composers and writers including Tchaikovsky and Dostoevsky.
Yusupov Palace – Originally bought by the Yusupov family to house their extensive art collection, this palace is most famous as the scene of Rasputin’s murder. A tour of the cellar recounts how a plot was hatched to kill the lover of the Russian queen.
Mariinsky Theatre – St Petersburg’s version of the Bolshoi, it is the place to see opera and ballet in the city.
Fabergé Museum – Only opened in 2013, this museum pays homage to the House of Fabergé and its intertwined connections with St Peterburg’s imperial history. There are over 4,000 works of decorative art on display, including a number of bejewelled eggs.
Central Naval Museum – One of the world’s largest naval museums, Russia’s Central Naval Museum chronicles the history of the Russian Navy and the development of Russian naval traditions with a huge collection of 800,000 naval artefacts, equipment, models and paintings.
Aurora – Launched as a battleship in the Russo-Japanese war of 1904-1905, this is the cruiser from which the shot was fired that signalled the storming of the Winter Palace and the beginning of the October Revolution.  Now a museum, you can see the crew’s quarters as well as the very gun that fired the historic shot.
State Memorial Museum of Leningrad Defense and Siege – Discover artefacts relating to one of the darkest periods of Russian history – the siege of Leningrad.
State Museum of the Political History of Russia – Founded in 1919, this museum explores the political, economic, and social life of Russian society in the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. The building itself played an important role in the October Revolution.
Museum of the History of Religion – As well as a large section dedicated to the Russian Orthodox Church, there are also exhibitions dedicated to the beliefs, gods and objects from Northern Siberian pagan tribes, the Ancient Greeks, Egypt and Israel as well as Buddhism.
A.S. Popov Central Museum of Communications – Named after the Russian scientist and inventor Aleksander Stepanovich Popov, this museum, one of the oldest museums of science and technology in the world, documents the history of innovations and inventions in the field of technology and telecommunications.
Museum of Cosmonautics and Rocket Technology – Housed in the Peter & Paul Fortress, this museum traces the history of the development of rocket technology in the Soviet Union and Russia.
Neva River Cruise – See St Petersburg’s long list of grand palaces, cathedrals and buildings from the water as you cruise the River Neva. Pick out the Among them are the Peter and Paul Fortress, Aurora Cruiser, Winter Palace and the Alexander Nevsky Monastery.

Elsewhere

Peterhof Palace – Often described as the Russian Versailles, Peterhof – or Petrodvorets as it is also known – was built in the early 18th century as a summer residence for the Russian monarchs and is one of the city’s most popular attractions, particularly for its stunning fountains – 147 in all.
Pushkin – 15 miles south of St Petersburg and site of Catherine Palace, one of the finest examples of Russian Baroque architecture and often referred to as the eighth wonder of the world for its beauty.
Pavlovsk Palace – Five miles from Pushkin, this was the summer residence of Paul I. Johann Strauss once performed in the grounds.