I will be taking a cruise to St. Petersburg in June 2009 and understand that taking tours offered by the cruise ship do not require having a Visa but one must stay with the tour at all times. I found a tour company not connected with the ship that states that it has Russian government authorization to offer tours without a Visa. Does anyone know if that is true? A more independent tour suited to my needs seems like what I would like, and I prefer not to go through the Visa process. Thanks for any help anyone can offer.