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5 days in Russia, need recommendations on how to split time

5 days in Russia, need recommendations on how to split time

Old Jul 17, 19, 4:58 pm
  #1  
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5 days in Russia, need recommendations on how to split time

So I have 5 days in Russia this September (flying into St Petersburg and flying home from Moscow) and was hoping I could get some tips for an ideal itinerary. My thinking was 3 days in St Petersburg, staying in the state Hermitage hotel and 2 in Moscow, but I'm open to anything. Any thoughts on which city is better? Should I even bother with Moscow? And for getting between the cities do folks recommend the red arrow sleeper train or the bullet train? Budget isn't a big deal, it's more about the experience and maximizing our time there.
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Old Jul 19, 19, 8:26 am
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3+2 is fine, I wouldn't recommend skipping Moscow, especially if you're visiting in winter. Neither the sleeper nor the "bullet" train is something to write home about, so choose any according to your preferences and schedule.
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Old Jul 21, 19, 9:29 am
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Originally Posted by kmzandrew View Post
So I have 5 days in Russia this September (flying into St Petersburg and flying home from Moscow) and was hoping I could get some tips for an ideal itinerary. My thinking was 3 days in St Petersburg, staying in the state Hermitage hotel and 2 in Moscow, but I'm open to anything. Any thoughts on which city is better? Should I even bother with Moscow? And for getting between the cities do folks recommend the red arrow sleeper train or the bullet train? Budget isn't a big deal, it's more about the experience and maximizing our time there.
If budget is not an issue, Id spend more time in St Pietersburg, then take the Red Arrow in first class to Moscow (an experience in itself), spend one night at a hotel in Moscow and then leave. I say this with the caveat - I like history and St Petersburg has much more to see than Moscow (in-spite being a much younger city). If you want to club, shop and like things that come with the world luxury attached to them, spend more time in Moscow

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Old Jul 22, 19, 3:49 am
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The most "Russian" way to travel is by sleeper train, so I'd definitely recommend that, and I'd definitely include Moscow. The Red Square is a must for a visit to Russia.
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Old Sep 9, 19, 11:43 am
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Originally Posted by RedChili View Post
The most "Russian" way to travel is by sleeper train, so I'd definitely recommend that, and I'd definitely include Moscow. The Red Square is a must for a visit to Russia.
I just returned and I have to say I'd recommend Moscow over Petersburg to anybody. Petersburg is just whatever- not really more impressive than other eastern European cities that are "the Paris of the east", which is something I've heard from Russian Americans about Petersburg, Romanians about Bucharest and Serbs about Belgrade. It's really quite run down and outside of the Winter Palace/Hermitage has little in impressive buildings/architecture. Even Peterhof and Catherine Palace outside the city are fairly unimpressive. To top it off the food was really quite terrible.
Thankfully, Moscow was a breath of fresh air. The center was really beautiful- and best of all pedestrian-only. Even the food was much better. Overall, I really liked Moscow and would recommend that most people skip Petersburg and just spend more time in Moscow.
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Old Sep 15, 19, 1:42 pm
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Originally Posted by kmzandrew View Post
I just returned and I have to say I'd recommend Moscow over Petersburg to anybody. Petersburg is just whatever- not really more impressive than other eastern European cities that are "the Paris of the east", which is something I've heard from Russian Americans about Petersburg, Romanians about Bucharest and Serbs about Belgrade. It's really quite run down and outside of the Winter Palace/Hermitage has little in impressive buildings/architecture. Even Peterhof and Catherine Palace outside the city are fairly unimpressive. To top it off the food was really quite terrible.
Thankfully, Moscow was a breath of fresh air. The center was really beautiful- and best of all pedestrian-only. Even the food was much better. Overall, I really liked Moscow and would recommend that most people skip Petersburg and just spend more time in Moscow.
Moscow is gloomy (( didn't like this city at all. SP is another pair of shoes. People are more cultured. More sights to see.
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Old Oct 10, 19, 2:32 pm
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People are divided into two types: the one who loves St. Petersburg and doesnt love Moscow, and those who love Moscow and are absolutely indifferent to St. Petersburg I would recommend all the time that you have to devote to the wonderful city of St. Petersburg. 5 days will not be enough to fully enjoy this city. Immerse yourself in its culture, see museums, streets in the city center, walk along the promenade, see architecture (St. Isaac's and Kazan Cathedral, Peter and Paul Fortress, Nevsky Prospect). If you read Russian literature, take a walk in the same places as the great writers. I am sure this long and cloudy city will remain a warm memory in your heart. I also highly recommend visiting the city of Pushkin and Pavlovsk near St. Petersburg. Small and neat towns with lots of greenery and incredible beauty palaces in the center. Such a journey will surely inspire you to new achievements.
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Old Oct 10, 19, 2:34 pm
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I'd pick one. It's too much to try to see both of these cities (and travel between them) in only five days.
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Old Oct 11, 19, 4:28 pm
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Five days between the two probably isn't enough. We did a two and a half in each split and didn't see as much as we'd have hoped. Still a regret we didn't just pick one city.

Peterhof Palace is highly recommended.
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Old Nov 21, 19, 9:44 pm
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Hello there.

You know I used to take the same trip flying from New York to St. Petersburg. I've been to St. Petersburg for 1 day only and planned to spend more time in Moscow as it's the capital and so on. But I went a bit wrong with the priorities and I'd recommend you to share these 5 days the next way: I'd spend 3 days in St. Petersburg as there are fantastic places for visiting, especially:
  • Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood.
  • Hermitage Museum
  • Peterhof Palace
  • Saint Isaac's Cathedral
  • Peter and Paul Fortress
  • Mariinsky Theater etc.
​​​​​​​For sure You won't be able to visit all the places but I actually did the most of these.
So, after 3 days spending in St. Petersburg I'd recommend to take a Russian bullet train from St. Petersburg to Moscow as it's quite quick and affordable in comparison with flights.
Speaking about some places to visit in Moscow I'd certainly recommend to visit the next places:
  • Red Square
  • St Basil's Cathedral
  • Lenin's Mausoleum
  • Moscow Kremlin
  • State Historical Museum.
  • GUM. Store (there are lots of brands and local souvenirs.
There were some tips that came to my mind if I remember some new suggestions I'll pin to this comment.
Have a nice trip!
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Old Jan 19, 20, 10:24 pm
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Originally Posted by kmzandrew View Post
I just returned and I have to say I'd recommend Moscow over Petersburg to anybody. Petersburg is just whatever- not really more impressive than other eastern European cities that are "the Paris of the east", which is something I've heard from Russian Americans about Petersburg, Romanians about Bucharest and Serbs about Belgrade. It's really quite run down and outside of the Winter Palace/Hermitage has little in impressive buildings/architecture. Even Peterhof and Catherine Palace outside the city are fairly unimpressive. To top it off the food was really quite terrible.
Thankfully, Moscow was a breath of fresh air. The center was really beautiful- and best of all pedestrian-only. Even the food was much better. Overall, I really liked Moscow and would recommend that most people skip Petersburg and just spend more time in Moscow.
That's good that you liked Moscow! (though I like St. PEtersburg more.) There is something unfriendly about Moscow. I feel more comfortable in St. Petersburg.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 11:02 am
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Originally Posted by kmzandrew View Post
So I have 5 days in Russia this September (flying into St Petersburg and flying home from Moscow) and was hoping I could get some tips for an ideal itinerary. My thinking was 3 days in St Petersburg, staying in the state Hermitage hotel and 2 in Moscow, but I'm open to anything. Any thoughts on which city is better? Should I even bother with Moscow? And for getting between the cities do folks recommend the red arrow sleeper train or the bullet train? Budget isn't a big deal, it's more about the experience and maximizing our time there.
I faced a similar dilemma for my summer trip to Russia, albeit with six days/nights to play with. I decided to focus on the city that's harder/much less pleasant to visit outside of summer (St. Petersburg), and throw in a couple days in Kazan (90 minute flight) versus burning much of two days riding the metro in Moscow.
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