Great Novgorod - Hanseatic city.

Russian West. Lakes, forts, a real Russian village. spa resorts. Russia, such as it is.

Dear travelers! Get in Veliky Novgorod is very easy. from Moscow and St. Petersburg. Our guide can buy tickets for уou in a comfortable train or bus. In Novgorod You will meet by our staff.

Day1. Great Novgorod-Hanseatic city. City tour. Novgorod Kremlin.

5-hour tour of the legendary Russian city with a lunch break in the Russian cuisine restaurant.

The oldest city in Russia, the cradle of Russian democracy, the medieval centre of trade and crafts, the leading partner of the Hanseatic League of 12th – 17th cc., the link between medieval Europe and Russia and the borderline between two civilizations. All these are descriptions of Veliky Novgorod. Over here people used to wear leather boots instead of bast shoes, the streets were cobbled from ancient times, the commoners were in correspondence with each other, and all the rulers were welcomed and banished whenever the Novgorodians wanted. Over here the first Russian books were written, the first birch-bark letters were found and one of the leading Hanseatic depots of Europe was founded.

Due to Novgorod there was a thriving trade between old-Russia and Hansa. Thus, the leading medieval Russian exports included furs and wax, being highly valued all around Europe. There were a lot of western European monarchs and persons of distinctions wearing expensive fur coats, and hats made of rich Novgorod furs of ermine, sable, marten; Russian wax candles were lit on the grand altars of gothic cathedrals. Sometimes hunting birds – falcons – also appear to have been exported, as well as leather and some leather items. By the way, Novgorod footwear was also highly valued.

Hansa partners helped Novgorod out of difficulties more than once. Thus, according to one chronicler, in 1231 it was seed from Hansa that saved Novgorod from the serious consequences of spreading famine.

 

Day2. Departure to Valdai.

Valdai - the city with a wonderful unique atmosphere. Beautiful nature and silence. Valdai is nestled on the shores of the lake. It does not feel the passage of time. Our acquaintance with surprising edge of lakes, endless expanses and piercing blue sky begins to "grandparent" of the city of Valdai - Iversky Svyatoozersky Mother of God Monastery. Attractions Valdai - this famous natural sites: the National Park and the purest Valdai lake, stretching nearly 40 kilometers. Then an amazing tour of the unique Museum of Bells. Departure to spa-kurort Staray Russa. Accommodation in the recreation center and the sanatorium in the pine forest.

Day3. Dostoevsky Museum. Snetogorsky monastery, Pushkin Hills

Excursion to Dostoevsky House Museum in Staraya Russa. This is where Dostoevsky wrote The Brothers Karamazov.

Departure to Pskov region.

Snetogorsky monastery is located 3,5 km from the center of Pskov and stands on a high bank of the Velikaya river. Originally Snetogorsky monastery of Virgin Mary’s Nativity was intended for men. The monastery stands on a rocky hill, at the bend of the Velikaya river. It was founded in the 13th century. The name of the hill is Snjatnaya and comes from the word “snet”. Snetok is a small fish, that Pskov was so famous for. The Snjatnaya hill is very picturesque. There was no better place for the monastery’s location. 

Next point- Pushkin Hills— the memorable places which are inseparably linked with life and creativity of great Russian poet A.S. Pushkin. There, on the ancient Pskov earth, his poetic genius blossomed. There, at the altar wall of the Uspensky cathedral of the Svyatogorsky monastery, his ashes are buried. People visit these places with a special sincere awe.

In 7 km. of Pushkin Hills there is Mikhaylovskoe village. This place is necessary to visit if you have come to the Pskov earth. Now Mikhaylovskoe looks almost the same as at the lifetime of the great poet: the house, farmstead wings, lodge of the nurse of the poet of Arina Rodionovna, windmill, orchard, humpbacked bridges on which the poet so liked to walk so much. The ancient avenue «Alley of Anna Kern » has been preserved up to our days. Poet visited Mikhaylovskoe for the first time. And from 1824 to 1826 here passed years of his deportation. In Mikhaylovskoe chapters of such novels as «Eugene Onegin», the drama «Boris Godunov», the poem «Graf Nulin» and more than two hundred lyrics were written.

Visit to the Russian village. The cultural program. Hotel accommodation.

 

Day4.The Iron city- Izborsk. legendary Pskov-Pechory Holy Dormition Monastery.

Pskov-Pechory Holy Dormition Monastery is located 50 kilometers west of Pskov, on the border with Estonia, in the southeastern outskirts of Pechory. This is one of the oldest monasteries in Russia, which has a cave necropolis. Initially it was based in the caves (in the Old Russian the word cave sounds ‘pechyora’, hence the name of the town). The first dwellers of the caves in the ditch along the Kamenets creek were hermits. Only one of their names remains – Reverend Mark the Hermit. In 1473 priest John of Derpt, escaping persecution of the German Catholics from Livonia, sanctified the Dormition Cave Church thus founding the monastery.

Visit to Izborsk is one of the most ancient Russian cities which is located in 30 km. to the West from Pskov. It is based by Slavic Krivichi in the IX century. The annalistic mention in 862 about arrival of three brothers VikingsRurik, Sineus and Truvor is connected with it. They were urged to become kings of Russian lands and base a grand-ducal dynasty which ruled up to the XVI century. Truvor, according to the legend, began to reign in Izborsk. This city located on the western border of the Russian state was the first who met enemy and constantly was exposed to the attacks and sieges. Therefore Izborsk acquired one of the first Russian stone fortress. The place for fortress was chosen so successfully, and its walls were so unapproachable that in the European chronicles Izborsk called «the iron city». Today the unique ensemble of Izborsk fortress has well-kept fragments of the walls, the towers, special defensive devices, and also Nikolsky temple of the XIV century. An observation deck is created on the «Lukovka» tower. From this tower you can see the tremendous of the Gorodishchensky lake with swans, small villages and boundless hilly open spaces opens. Accommodation at the hotel on the shore of Lake Pskov.

 

Day5. Pskov. City  founded by wife of Viking Prince Rurik, Norman princess Olga (Helga).

City tour- "Beautiful town of St. Princess Olga ...»

This route takes you to the most beautiful and important monuments of the city. It opens with the Pskov Kremlin — Orthodox heart of Pskov region. Crom is religious, historical, architectural and town-planning center of Pskov. It’s located on a high promontory at the confluence of the Velikaya and Pskova rivers. Pagan settlement here was noted by archaeologists from the middle of the 1st millennium BC (cultural layer is up to 9.5 m). In the 10-12 centuries it was protected by earthen and stone fortifications.

Dovmontov`s town was the center of church-state management in Pskov region. This ensemble has no direct analogues in Russia. From the XIV century it’s the unique in ancient Rus, the center of the church and the administrative authorities of Pskov and Pskov region. This unique ensemble, including civic buildings, the towers and walls — had appeared afore the Holy Trinity, and was a brilliant attempt of architect Cyril to create the earthly home for the Holy Trinity in Pskov. Now Dovmontov`s town is open-air museum. «Domantov`s wall» — the name of the wall, which appeared after the prince death is the second ring of stone walls of Pskov fortress and adjacent to the south to the Kremlin and had protected in the XIII century the part of the former city tenements.

From Pskov, you can continue your journey in any direction. Our guide will buy the tickets for you on the date you specify.

Price per adult: 291 euro for 5 days and 4 nights. Price including: 5 days and 4 nights hotel accommodation, 4 breakfast, excursion program, tour guide service, English and German speaking guide, permits in the national parks, 2 people in the room, plus two children. Children under 16 years accommodationfree with no extra cost. Single room supplement € 20 per day. For children under 12 years, free guided tours, as well as accommodation. Children pay only for children's tickets and meals, approximately 76 euro.  Accommodation at the Hotels 3* on twin/double share with breakfast. All hotels clean, comfortable, safe, convenient.

Price not include: Visa – Entry tickets per itinerary- 65 euro, - Half board (35 euro for 5 evening meals- a culinary tour and introduction to Russian traditional cuisine. Transfers according to the excursion program- 15 euro per day. Extra nights per person -20 euro (if it need on arrival or departure/Children under 16 years- free. No additional fees, except those mentioned above.