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  • Amy snow biking Our Team

    Steppes Travel is made by the people who work here. Incredible holidays are made possible because of their vast travel experience and the great enthusiasm they bring to their work.

  • Chris Packham Our Tour Experts

    We carefully select our experts based on their knowledge, companionship and influence, ensuring that you can travel with the most knowledgeable leaders in the field.

The Catherine Palace, Tsarskoye Selo, Pushkin, Saint-Petersburg, Russia

Russia

A vast country such as Russia deserves more than one visit. Discover icons such as the masterpieces of the Hermitage and the colourful Church on Spilled Blood to the whimsical turrets of St. Basil’s Cathedral and the mighty Kremlin.

There is still a grittiness and unpredictability to Russia that makes every visit a new adventure. The sheer size and variety of locations ensure that one visit is not enough.

While Moscow and St Petersburg have become showcases of western opulence, move even a short distance outside of the cities and you enter a world which has, through force of circumstance, retained its traditional ways.

Experiences

Russia is waiting. Here are some of our favourite experiences to help you explore.

An Aerial View of Kamchatka – the Land of Ice and Fire

Spending a day in a Russian helicopter flying over volcanoes, calderas and into the Valley of the Geysers – a magical experience.

Trinity Monastery of St Sergius

Visit the Trinity Monastery of St Sergius in Serigev Posad, 70km from Moscow.

Big Zayatsky

Wander through the stone labyrinths of Big Zayatsky, considered rare and valuable archaeological monuments.

Pokrov Convent Hotel

Stay at the Pokrov Convent Hotel in Suzdal, found in the grounds of the beautiful Pokrov Convent.

Suzdal

If you only have time to visit just one of the towns in the Golden Ring, visit the charming riverside town of Suzdal.

Rostov Veliky

See some fine examples of 17th-century architecture in Rostov Veliky.

Kostroma

Explore Kostroma, considered the cradle of the Romanov Dynasty.

The Golden Ring

Explore ancient Russian towns, where time stands still.

Search for Polar Bears

With one of the highest numbers of polar bears anywhere in the world, go in search of bears on Wrangel and Herald Islands.

Indigenous, Arctic Communities

Visit indigenous groups in their remote villages to experience their culture first hand including Chukchi, Inuit, Yupik and Sami.

Grazing Horses, Ukok Plateau, Russia
Russia
Hermitage, St Petersburg, Russia
St Petersburg, Russia
St Basils Cathedral, Moscow, Russia
Moscow, Russia

A country of great diversity

When it comes to things to see and do in Russia, you are truly spoilt for choice. Moscow is a beautiful contrast between old and new influences, St Petersburg is alive with dazzling colour, and then there is the idyllic countryside of the area.

Explore Russia

  • Russian Arctic
  • The Golden Ring
  • Moscow
  • Solovki
  • St Petersburg

Meet our experts

A passion for travel runs right through every one of our experts - meaning they're always ready with first-hand insight about their specialist countries.

Katie Benden

The excitement of travelling the world has always hugely appealed. Largely cemented from my first solo trip to Egypt and the Middle East. The crazy hustle and bustle of Cairo was a huge assault on the senses, scrambling through the claustrophobic tunnels of the Great pyramid took me out of my comfort zone and I was left humbled by the warm hospitality of the Nubian people in Aswan as we shared dinner together.
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Tom Frost

Having travelled to different parts of the world over the years it never ceases to amaze me how you constantly learn and evolve from the adventures you experience. I adore working in an environment where I can share my passion for the world and discuss fascinating stories both from my experiences and that of our clients. In the past year I’ve delved into the wintery beauty of St Petersburg, trekked through the colourful desert in Jordan and sailed down the iconic Nile in Egypt.
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Kate Hitchen

My travels were first inspired by my love of the UK, which I take as much pleasure in exploring as countries far and wide. For me, travel is all about the adventure, the people I meet and the food I sample along the way. In fact, I am never happier than when I’m cycling, trekking or simply eating my way through a country! My heart and head regularly pull me east, notably to India but I may also be found wandering through the galleries and piazzas of Italy or daydreaming about fresh ceviche in the far west.
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Really helpful over the visa hurdles. Couldn't have negotiated the Russian questions without the excellent guide sheet.

Russia

Frequently asked questions about Russia

I hear the visa process is difficult

There is no denying that the Russian visa process is laborious. A long form plus a visit to have your fingerprints done. That said we have done this form many times, we keep up to date with changes and have an extensive crib sheet to make the process as simple as possible.

Is Russia safe?

Travelling around Russia is as safe now as it has always been. Like with any
destination, we always advise keeping an eye on your belongings, especially when
out in busy, crowded areas and it is sensible to leave any valuables at home.

Is there a dress code I should follow?

Russian women particularly take huge
pride in their appearance and visitors should pack something clean and tidy if
visiting the theatre, ballet or high end restaurants. When visiting churches,
women must remember to cover their heads, so pack a scarf. Men should never put
their hands in their pockets in church.

Will my mobile phone work?

Russia
has an excellent mobile network, but be warned, it is very expensive to
use a foreign mobile phone for calls and data. You will, however, find free Wi-Fi available all over
the place.

Are taxis safe and okay to use in Russia?

Perfectly so but they tend not to bother with a meter and charge extortionate amounts. Better to get one of the smartphone apps such as “Get Taxi” or Uber. Uber is one of the most efficient ways to get around the city and very cheap. Perfect for a visit to the theatre. The average ride costs £2. The cars vary and they can take 6-8 minutes to arrive, but it works well.

Are there any Russian customs that I should know?

Russia has a rich heritage of
traditions, so it can be hard to remember everything.

  • Russians
    love flowers, so if you are going to dinner in a private apartment flowers are
    a perfect present – always take an odd number as even numbers are for funerals!
  • Never
    give a gift of soap; it implies the person smells. Next best to flowers are
    chocolates.
  • Never
    show your back to someone, for example when entering a row of theatre seats, it
    is appropriate to enter facing the people already seated.
  • Always
    take your shoes off when you enter someone’s apartment or house, there are
    usually slippers to wear.
  • Don’t
    jay walk, as the police will fine you.

Are there any sensitive areas I should be aware of when taking photographs in Russia?

In any country you visit, we always advise obtaining permission before photographing the locals out of courtesy. Photography of the Metro, train stations, airports, government and Military buildings and instillations is prohibited so be aware.

Can I hire a car in Russia?

Yes,
but driving in Russia is not easy, particularly if you cannot read Cyrillic.
Additionally Russian drivers do not always adhere to rules and driving is thus quite
problematic. It is easier to hire a car and driver.

Can I pay using Euros?

Generally
no. Market traders will probably accept foreign currency, but restaurants,
shops etc. will only accept Roubles.

Can I use credit cards?

In
the main cities most shops, restaurants and hotels accept credit cards.
Additionally there are ATM machines everywhere. Move out of the cities or main
tourist centres and life is very different and you should ensure you have
sufficient roubles.

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Why Choose Steppes?

Our knowledge and expertise sets us apart. So too our curiosity. A curiosity of the world and of you, and your passions. It is this that drives us to create a journey that is really bespoke to you.

Are you ready to discover extraordinary?


Why Steppes