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Need a 2-3 day stopover between Moscow and St Petersburg

Draminal
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Need a 2-3 day stopover between Moscow and St Petersburg

My husband and I are traveling to Russia in June 2009 for 10 days.

We plan to spend 3-4 nights in St Petersburg at the start of our trip and then 3 nights in Moscow at the end of our trip.

We need to find a town or 2 en route from St Petersburg to Moscow where we can visit. We would be happy to spend 2 nights at one town or a night at two different towns.

Any advice?

We would prefer to travel independently rather than be part of a tour and will not be renting a car.

Thanks!!

Alla Tours
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Moscow, Russia
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1. Re: Need a 2-3 day stopover between Moscow and St Petersburg

Hi! Novgorod seems to be your logical choice - nice, between Moscow and St. Petersburg, lots to see, served by trains from both ends (buses also possible from St. Pete), and very Russian-different from big crazy cities. Enjoy!

St. Petersburg...
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2. Re: Need a 2-3 day stopover between Moscow and St Petersburg

I agree with Vasiliy. Novgorod is very good place for visit for couple of days.

Here you can find useful information.

http://www.novgorod.ru/english/

Speaking about hotels, 'Volkhov' has best location for tourist and not most expensive. 'Beresta Palace' is most expensive and probably provide best service, but it places not in down-town. 'Intourist' also good hotel. But I would recommend you 'Volkhov'.

Sometimes tourists stop also in Valday. It is small town near the big lake. There is monastery on one of islands on this lake. Its web-site is only in Russian, you can look the pictures

http://www.iveron.ru/

http://www.iveron.ru/2/

But of course, Novgorod is much more interesting.

Obligatory have dinner in the restaurant 'Detinets' in one of towers of Novgorod Kremlin. 'Holmguard' is also good restaurant, tasty.

Very interesting museum of wooden architecture 'Vitoslavlitsy'. My favorite. It is like a park with wooden old churches and houses. In June it should be wonderful there.

I think it is good idea to make a stop between Moscow and StP. You will rest a little in small and calm old Russian town between two metropolises. Book hotel ahead. Novgorod is very popular among tourists.

Have a nice trip!

Pasadena, California
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3. Re: Need a 2-3 day stopover between Moscow and St Petersburg

Hi,

We visited Novgorod for two days in summer of 2005 and it was one of the highlights of our trip to Russia. It is much like one of the "Golden Ring" cities: a center of Russian culture (in fact, a capital) during the Middle Ages, with a gorgeous ancient Kremlin (walled fortress) set on the banks of the river, good museums, a fun and scenic boat trip down the river (@ 1 1/2 hour, from the dock near the Kremlin, and more ancient onion-domed churches than you could possibly visit in two days. Plus the museum of wooden architecture and the old monestary nearby.

In addition, Novgorod is very tourist friendly and has more tourism infrastructure than anyplace else we visited-- at that time, more, apparently, than S.Petersburg, and far more than MOscow. There is a great tourism website, and a municipal tourism office/visitor's center right in the parking lot of the Kremlin.

The link for that website is:

http://eng.visitnovgorod.ru/index.php?

I believe this website has links for hotels and train information, as well as great pictures and tons of information about the city's attractions.

Novgorod is easy to visit on your own. You will not need a full time guide, but can get one if you want from the above tourism office. The town is quite walkable, esp. if you stay at the Volkov as recommended above. We stayed at the Beresta, which is in a more out-of-the-way location, and required using taxis (fine, plentiful, safe, cheap) to get around. It is very interesting to see a smaller place than the major cities-- the different pace, the iconic ancient architecture, and the difference in economics from the boom-towns of Moscow and SP.

The location, between SP and Moscow is a plus too. We went the other direction (starting in MOscow), and the overnight train was a fun experience.

Pasadena, California
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4. Re: Need a 2-3 day stopover between Moscow and St Petersburg

Oh-- I agree that the Detinets restaurant, right in the Kremlin, is a great experience-- good traditional food, not too expensive.

When we were there, there were not very many Western tourists, and very few Americans. Lots of Russian tourists. So we had a great sense of having made a discovery! For some reason, Novgorod is not really on the "radar screen" of tourism magazines and books in the West, which tend to feature the Golden Ring cities for a side trip. But we went to Novgorod as well as two Golden Ring cities, and liked Novgorod at least as much.

5. Re: Need a 2-3 day stopover between Moscow and St Petersburg

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