RUSSIA & THE BALTICS
From medieval to modern, from Gothic to Bohemian and from cities to nature, this is Russia and the Baltics.
Russia is as fascinating as ever. A storybook landscape of castles, palaces and cathedrals, and romantic places and shiny gold domes.
Discover Russia’s beauty, history and culture, including a wealth of fine art, UNESCO World Heritage Sites, ancient villages, beautiful countryside, bustling markets, and architectural masterpieces ranging from medieval to modern.
The Baltics offer lakes, deep green forests, cobalt blue lakes, beaches, and gorgeous renaissance, baroque and bohemian towns.
It is also a land of resilient and lively people. Discover their culture, embrace snow activities and saunas, learn about poignant history of Soviet occupation. See the displays of statues of Socialist-era leaders such as Lenin and Stalin in Moscow.
See a ballet performance at the Mariinsky Theater, a St. Petersburg landmark for over 200 years, or the historic Bolshoi Theater in Moscow, home of the legendary Bolshoi Ballet.
For foodies: try dishes such as khachapuri, a type of flat or shaped bread topped with cheese and egg, and nigvziani badrijani, a dish of fried eggplant with walnut paste. Try unusual drinks such as kvass, a low-alcohol fermented drink made with bread and fruit and of course vodka.
Take the Trans-Siberian Railroad: This winding link between Europe and Asia offers a sense of Russia’s scale. The journey provides plenty of time for reflection and making acquaintances. Lake Baikal and the Altai Mountains are stunning interruptions in the masses of pine and birch forests.
Take a private boat ride: On the Neva River in St. Petersburg gives a unique perspective on this city of waterways.
Vilnius is now extraordinarily pretty, almost every building in the centre has had the Cinderella treatment. There is a sense of novelty about the swish cafés and the good-looking bars.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the 1,500 buildings here present an attractive picture of medieval Europe.
Must-sees include the Dome cathedral and its surrounding square, the bustling Central Market and the Art Nouveau district – an assembly of jewel-like architectural masterpieces dating from the early years of the last century.
Walk its faded, cobbled streets. The salmon-pink palace is pure St Petersburg in miniature.
The beautiful eclecticism of Tallinn’s old centre, shimmers in the dazzlingly clear Northern light. It has a unique atmosphere.
Enjoy the authenticity of Tallinn before it really takes off.
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