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1 / 22

St. Petersburg & the Baltics

12 days
From medieval Baltic beauty to Russia’s imperial capital, you’ll experience it all on this tour. Start your journey in Vilnius, Lithuania, a multicultural city with a timeless historic center. Head north to Riga, Latvia, where you’ll find ancient castles alongside Art Nouveau architectural gems, then continue to the well-preserved landmarks of Tallinn, Estonia. End your adventure in St. Petersburg, Russia’s “window on the west.”

Let us handle the details

Expert Tour Director

      Local       cuisine

Handpicked hotels

Sightseeing with local guides

Private transportation

Personalized flight options

Maximum tour group size: 35 travelers

Let us handle the details

Expert Tour Director

      Local       cuisine

Handpicked hotels

Sightseeing with local guides

Private transportation

Personalized flight options

Your tour includes

  • 10 nights in handpicked hotels

  • Breakfast daily, 4 three-course dinners with beer or wine

  • Multilingual Tour Director

  • Private deluxe motor coach

  • Guided sightseeing and select entrance fees

Overnight Flight 1 night

Day 1: Travel day

Board your overnight flight to Lithuania today.

Vilnius 2 nights Hotel info

Day 2: Arrival in Vilnius

Included meals: Dinner

Welcome to Lithuania! Meet your fellow travelers at tonight’s welcome dinner.

Day 3: Sightseeing tour of Vilnius

Included meals: Breakfast

Embark on a guided tour of the Lithuanian capital, home to Europe’s largest Baroque Old Town.

• Enter St. Peter and St. Paul’s Church

• Discover the UNESCO World Heritage-protected Old Town, Gediminas Castle, Vilnius Cathedral and St. Anne’s Church, as well as Vilnius University

• View the 16th-century Gate of Dawn

Enjoy a free afternoon in Vilnius or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Trakai Island Castle $55*pp Details

Discover Trakai Island Castle, located in the middle of Lake Galve, on this excursion. The red-brick castle has defended the western approaches to Vilnius since 1409. The castle fell into disrepair in the 17th century but has been lovingly restored, and today, it serves as both a cultural landmark and a scenic weekend escape for residents of Vilnius. Please note: This excursion runs from May through September.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $65)

Riga 3 nights Hotel info

Day 4: Riga via the Hill of Crosses & Rundale Palace

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Travel to Riga, stopping en route to visit the Hill of Crosses, a Lithuanian pilgrimage site. You’ll also stop for a guided tour of Rundale Palace, the largest Baroque castle in the Baltics and former summer residence of the Duke of Courland.

Day 5: Sightseeing tour of Riga

Included meals: Breakfast

Get an insider’s perspective of Riga, the center of Latvian politics and culture, with a local guide leading the way.

• Walk through Vecriga, Riga’s Old Town

• Take in medieval sights like St. Peter’s Church and Riga Castle

• Head to the New Town for a look at the Freedom Monument

• Explore the city’s striking, UNESCO-recognized Art Nouveau district

Enjoy a free afternoon in Riga or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Cultural Traditions of the Latvian Countryside $65*pp Details

From Riga, travel to the open-air Ethnographical Museum, located on scenic Lake Jugla. A tour guide leads you through the 100-acre museum, whose displays showcase the details of 18th-century rural life through more than 100 reassembled traditional Latvian buildings. From farmsteads and churches to windmills and fishing villages, the museum’s exhibits bring Lativian history’s everyday scenes to life with stunning accuracy. After spending some time exploring, make your way back to Riga.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $75)

Day 6: Free day in Riga

Included meals: Breakfast

Spend the day exploring Riga on your own or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Old-World Latvia: Castles Valleys & Villages $95*pp Details

Experience the rural beauty of the Latvian countryside on a journey to the town of Sigulda, called the “Switzerland of Latvia” for its rolling green scenery and famous caves. Upon arrival in Sigulda, embark upon a sightseeing tour, including a visit to the 13th-century ruins of Sigulda Castle, destroyed during the Great Northern War. Continue toward the picturesque Gauja Valley, home to the Gutman Cave, the largest cave in Latvia, extending more than 62 feet into the rock. Lastly, travel up to Turaida for a visit to the majestic Turaida Castle, built in 1214 by Albert of Riga. Take this time to explore the grounds and exhibitions at your leisure, and grab some lunch before returning to Riga.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $105)

Tallinn 2 nights Hotel info

Day 7: Tallinn via Pärnu

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Motor through the countryside, stopping in the seaside resort town of Pärnu to discover its medieval Old Town on your way to Tallinn.

Day 8: Sightseeing tour of Tallinn

Included meals: Breakfast

Uncover the charms of Tallinn, Estonia’s largest and capital city, on a guided sightseeing tour. 

• Travel through the ancient stone gates of the Old Town

• View Toomkirik Cathedral, a Lutheran church founded in the 13th century

• See Town Hall Square and Toompea Castle,  home of the Estonian parliament

• Visit Alexander Nevsky Cathedral

St. Petersburg 3 nights Hotel info

Day 9: Travel to St. Petersburg

Included meals: Breakfast

Cross into Russia as you make your way to St. Petersburg, Peter the Great’s stunning “Window on the West.”

Day 10: Sightseeing tour of St. Petersburg

Included meals: Breakfast

Meet your local guide for an extensive tour of St. Petersburg, Russia’s grand imperial city. 

• See Palace Square, one of Europe’s great meeting places

• Walk through the St. Peter and Paul Fortress and Cathedral Church

• Drive down Nevsky Prospekt, a tree-lined boulevard 

• Visit the Alexander Nevsky Convent

• Discover over three million pieces of art in the Hermitage Museum

Day 11: Free day in St. Petersburg

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Spend the day exploring St. Petersburg on your own or add an excursion.

Say goodbye to your group at a farewell dinner this evening.

Optional Excursion - Peterhof $105*pp Details

Journey to the southern shore of the Gulf of Finland to visit Peterhof, Peter the Great’s summer residence. On a guided tour, you'll explore the opulent palaces and gardens of Peterhof and learn how this former retreat of the czars has changed throughout Russian history.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $115)

Day 12: Departure

Included meals: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home or continue on to explore Moscow.

Add Moscow $849 pp

Please note: Extension is not available on all departure dates.

Moscow offers a glimpse into the complexities of modern Russia. In every corner of the city, ancient monasteries stand next to towering skyscrapers and Russia's new millionaires walk down the street alongside pensioners. It's a city where Western influences rub elbows with the religions of old, and where beautiful cathedrals once abandoned under the Soviets are undergoing meticulous and loving restorations. To understand Russia, one must experience Moscow.

Moscow 3 nights Hotel info

Day 12: Travel to Moscow

Included meals: Breakfast

Travel by train across the Russian countryside to the capital city of Moscow.

Day 13: Sightseeing tour of Moscow

Included meals: Breakfast

Embark on a guided tour of Moscow, exploring its complex history and unmistakable artistry with a local guide.

• Discover Red Square, St. Basil’s Cathedral and Moscow University

• Enter the Kremlin, the fortified complex in which modern Russia found its heart

Day 14: Free day in Moscow

Included meals: Breakfast

Spend the day exploring Moscow on your own or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Moscow by Night $45*pp Details

Discover Moscow's landmarks on an evening tour of the city. Drive down Tverskaya Street and Novy Arbat Avenue, pass by Red Square and visit the Metro stations on the Ring Line, which house outstanding examples of Stalinist art and architecture. Be sure to bring your camera—the Metro at night offers up outstanding opportunities for photographers.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $55)

Day 15: Departure

Included meals: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home.

How's the weather?

  • Vilnius, Lithuania
  • Riga, Latvia
  • Tallinn, Estonia
  • St. Petersburg, Russia
  • Moscow, Russia
Temperature Precipitation
  • JAN
  • FEB
  • MAR
  • APR
  • MAY
  • JUN
  • JUL
  • AUG
  • SEP
  • OCT
  • NOV
  • DEC

Passport & Visa

In order to enter Lithuania, Russia, Estonia and Latvia, U.S. and Canadian citizens need a valid passport with an expiration date extending at least six months beyond the date of reentry. Additionally, U.S. and Canadian passport holders must obtain a visa in advance in order to enter Russia. You may choose to obtain your individual visa by applying directly to the Russian consulate or by using a visa provider, such as our partner  company,  VisaCentral. If you opt to apply though the Russian consulate and require additional assistance and/or documentation from Go Ahead, a special arrangements fee of $95 per person may be charged. If you are not a U.S. or Canadian citizen, you must contact each country’s consulate for your specific entry requirements.  

Health

There are no major health risks at your destinations. It is always advisable to check with your doctor or health-care provider for the latest updates and overseas travel requirements.

Transportation / Walking on tour

Round-trip flights arrive in Vilnius and depart from St. Petersburg (or Moscow for the extension). Included transportation on St. Petersburg & the Baltics is by private motor coach. In your free time, you may wish to explore the cities by public transportation and on foot.

St. Petersburg’s metro system is the easiest way to get around the larger city. It’s ultra-fast. There’s rarely longer than a three-minute wait. Buses, trolleybuses (electric trams) and trams are also available and efficient. Tickets can be purchased from major kiosks and, sometimes, from the drivers.

Clothing & Packing Tips

Light, loose-fitting clothing that provides comfort when exploring the sights is essential for your tour. A sun hat, sunglasses and a sturdy pair of walking shoes are recommended for sightseeing. It’s always a good idea to be prepared for any eventuality—a lightweight sports jacket and emergency rainwear are advised. If you plan to visit an especially elegant restaurant or attend the opera or theater, you will probably feel more comfortable in something more formal. Also, remember that it is preferable not to visit churches or other religious sites with bare legs and shoulders (entrance may be denied on this basis).

Currency

The Russian ruble, the Lithuanian lita, the Latvian lat and the euro (in Estonia) are the currencies you’ll be using on this trip. Better rates of exchange are usually available in your destination countries, although it is worth ordering some currency from your local bank to use when you first arrive. We strongly suggest bringing a combination of cash, ATM/debit cards and credit cards with you to make purchases. We suggest informing your bank and credit card company of your travel plans, so they don’t confuse your international purchases for fraudulent charges. At this time, it is extremely difficult to exchange U.S. traveler’s checks in Russia. We suggest that you bring U.S. currency in small denominations to spend during your stay there. U.S. currency is most likely to be accepted for exchange if it is brand-new and clean. Credit cards are not widely accepted in Russia.

Tipping

At the conclusion of your tour, it is customary to offer your Tour Director and driver a gratuity. We recommend tipping in your tour country’s currency, the equivalency of $3USD/CAD per person per day for your driver and $6USD/CAD to $9USD/CAD per person per day for your Tour Director. If applicable, we also recommend the equivalency of $2USD/CAD per local guide. Tips can only be paid in cash. Please keep current local currency exchange rates in mind when tipping.

Special Info

One of the best-preserved Old European Towns on the continent, the Estonian capital of Tallinn holds treasures such as Toompea Castle and 19th-century Alexander Nevsky Cathedral. Drama unfolds here, too. This was the center of Estonia’s 1988 Singing Revolution, when thousands gathered to sing previously banned national anthems.

Traveler Tips

Get a taste for medieval Latvian life at Riga’s Open-Air Ethnographic Museum, a small restored village featuring craftwork, windmills, traditional Latvian cuisine and plenty of pints at the old tavern.

See what our travelers say about this tour—all reviews are authentic and unedited.

Have you been on tour with us? Visit My Account to submit a review.

4 / 5

4 / 5

Traveled On: 9/22/2014

Number of Past Tours: 3

From: PA

Tour Director: 4 / 5

Tour Value: 4 / 5

Whisperers

My husband and I enjoyed our trip to the Baltics and St Petersburg. The group was small so we were able to hear what our guides were saying. The guides were knowlealbe and friendly but were traveling at a pace that was sometimes hard to keep up. The listening devices the guides called whisperers were a big help. It helped me take photos and still was able to hear what they were explaining. The dinners in each town were tasty and gave us an idea of local cuisine. What we liked best about the hotels where we stayed were the breakfasts.

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5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 7/14/2014

Number of Past Tours: 2

From: NJ

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Trust me, you will LOVE the Baltics!

Before this tour, I can't tell you how many times I was asked, "Lithuania? Why would you want to go there?!" The Baltics are an incredible and under-appreciated part of Europe. I personally loved to see the mix of medieval history and Soviet influence in these countries. Vilnius, Riga and Tallinn are absolutely beautiful and safe cities. St Petersburg is probably the most majestic city in the world! This tour itinerary truly gives you a great overview of the region. The hotels were all in great locations where you could easily walk to the city center (except for St. Petersburg, which was extremely close to the Metro station). I traveled solo and many times walked back to the hotels by myself. I never once felt unsafe in any of these locations. I particularly loved “The Hill of Crosses.” It was an overwhelming feeling to know that each cross represented a prayer/dream of someone…very moving. Throughout this tour, my fellow tour companions and I kept saying, “Wow!” The Baltics completely exceeded all of our expectations! I absolutely loved the Baltics!

4 / 5

4 / 5

Traveled On: 7/14/2014

Number of Past Tours: 14

From: UT

Tour Director: 1 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

A Tale of Two Tour Directors

First of all, I absolutely loved visiting some relatively unknown cities in Europe. Vilnius, Riga, and Tallinn are beautiful and charming. The local guides for each city were exceptional, especially Edgar in Riga. However, I feel that our tour director, Marija, did not take very good care of us. She always seemed annoyed when people asked questions or needed help. I am a vegetarian and another member of our group had some dietary restrictions but Marija did absolutely nothing to accommodate our needs. Most of the time the two of us went without included meals (which we paid for). At one point, when I refused a main dish made of meat, she ridiculed me for being a vegetarian in front of our whole group (and the entire restaurant). I did not appreciate this. Every other tour guide I have ever had with Go Ahead had bent over backwards to accommodate my needs regarding food. Marija was very disorganized in regards to optional excursions. Some people had prepaid for excursions before the trip but she let anyone go whether they had paid or not. This was nice for people who wanted to go but slightly unfair for those who had to pay. Marija had us fill out the tour evaluations and collected them from us individually. She then proceeded to read them and then made comments to some about what they had written. This is highly irregular. Finally, one member of our group had a problem with her visa at the Russian border and Marija left her there! She kept saying that the situation was not her fault and had a flight to catch. It may not have been her fault but I feel it was her responsibility to help this group member. Once we got to Russia, we had one of the best tour guides I have ever had with Go Ahead. Timofey was calm, efficient, patient, knowledgeable, and extremely accommodating! He went out of his way to take us to a souvenir shop we mentioned and literally had the driver turn around when I mentioned a monument I wanted to see. He was able to get me a ticket to the ballet and even arranged my transportation. I loved having conversations with him about Russian history and literature! My time in St. Petersburg was wonderful because of Timofey! I would recommend this tour for the content but I would hope that Go Ahead would use a different guide for the Baltics.

 

Dear Phaedra, Thank you for taking the time to talk with me today about your recent tour of St. Petersburg & the Baltics. I am glad you enjoyed the charm and beauty of the Baltics! We are so very sorry to hear of the experience you had with your tour director. As you know, this is certainly not in line with Go Ahead’s standards of having the most professional and dynamic tour guides in the industry. Your feedback has been taken very seriously, and I have been in touch with my operations department regarding this matter and this tour director will no longer lead travelers on Go Ahead tours. We again appreciate your feedback, and we look forward to welcoming you next year on your next Go Ahead tour!

Posted by Daniela, Director of Quality Control | August 13, 2014

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 6/20/2013

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: MD

Tour Director: 4 / 5

Tour Value: 4 / 5

Only the best for MCPS!

This was my first trip with the group put together by Matt. It was so worth every minute! The sights were unbelievable. The accommodations were top notch. It was so much fun. I'm going on the next trip in summer 2015.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 9/15/2013

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: PA

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

A different area of the world

no

3 / 5

3 / 5

Traveled On: 7/1/2013

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: WA

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 4 / 5

Great Itinerary, Not the Best Month

5 = The itinerary was great and all the guides were informative. The leader, Maria, was amazing and the guides in Riga and Moscow were especially engaging. The hotel rooms were fine, although the hotels are tour-bus hotels. 3 = July is the wrong month to visit. The key sites (medieval Riga and Tallinn, the Hermitage, Peterhof, the churches in the Kremlin, etc.) were choked with cruise ship and other tourists. The excessive crowding spoiled the Hermitage tour. 1 = GoAhead needs to improve it's processes. I got my visa at a local Russian consulate. GoAhead gave me wrong information for my application; the Invitation from Russia also had my birthday mixed up. My friend and I landed two days early in Vilnius which was approved and arranged by GoAhead. Unfortunately, our written confirmation listed the wrong hotel. The desk clerk called the US without any luck as the staff did not know the correct hotel either. And so on........

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 7/1/2013

Number of Past Tours: 2

From: IL

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

The Best of the Baltics

I enjoyed the tour immensely. My main objective was to see St. Petersburg and I wasn't disappointed. My only regret is that we didn't spend more time in and about St. Petersburg. I also enjoyed Estonia and would have liked to have started the tour there or St. Petersburg and finish in Estonia.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 6/24/2013

Number of Past Tours: 2

From: VA

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

"Best Tour Director"

Thomas was fabulous! Because he grew up "behind the Iron Curtain" he was able to give tremendous insight to this tour. And the fact that he was an history major was even more special because he could answer any of our questions about the geo-political climate in Eastern Europe and Russia.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 6/24/2013

Number of Past Tours: 5

From: IL

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Thomas

This tour was a fantastic experence. the tour director was very knowlegable, and very accomodating to all the travelers. Thomas was an awesome tour director and very accomodationg to all the travelers. He went the extra mile to make everyone confortable and able to participate in all the extras.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Traveled On: 6/20/2013

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: MD

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Amazing!

Our Tour Director Lala went above and beyond what was expected. She was able to help us organize additional excursions, helped us with the language barriers and tried teaching us the Russian alphabet so we could be more independent. I would certainly recommend this tour to anyone who has been hoping to see this part of the world and wasn't sure where to begin.

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