So many cities, so much to see! Astrakhan starts you off, followed by a barrage of amazing Russian towns: Volgograd, Saratov, Samara, Kazan, Cheboksary, Nizhniy Novgorod, Kostroma, Yaroslavl, Uglich, and ultimately Moscow.
A mirror-image of the previous cruise. Moscow starts you off this time, followed by the same barrage of amazing Russian towns: Uglich, Yaroslavl, Kostroma, Nizhniy Novgorod, Cheboksary, Kazan, Samara, Saratov, Volgograd, and ultimately Astrakhan.
In European Russia, only one river really dominates the landscape - the Volga. Although only the 17th longest river in the world, it nonetheless dominates the other rivers of Europe as the continent’s longest. It also dominates Europe as being the likely source of the Indo-European culture from which most European languages descend.
Golden Ring Cruises teamed up with the most reliable cruise operators on the Volga River to showcase this important waterway. Regarded today as the “soul of Russia,” the entire river, between the Rybinsk Reservoir and Astrakhan, is covered by different tours. The itinerary between St. Petersburg and Moscow follows the Volga-Baltic Waterway to Rybinsk, and then follows the Volga to the Oka River (the largest right-hand tributary), where routes connect with Moscow, the national capital. The itinerary between Moscow and Astrakhan follows the Moscow and Oka rivers along the same route as the itinerary to St. Petersburg, but turns south at Nizhny Novgorod (the city built at the Oka-Volga confluence), and then follows the great waterway all the way to its destination. A third itinerary, St. Petersburg to Rostov-na-Donu, incorporates much of the same route as the other two (minus only the side trip up the Oka toward Moscow), but also incorporates the Volga-Don canal, and the lower stretch of the Don River to Rostov, a river port located not far from the Black Sea.
A fleet of eight ships are employed on behalf of Golden Ring Cruises for its Russian river itineraries: MS Volga Dream, MS Lev Tolstoy, MS Aleksandr Pushkin, MS Nikolay Chernyshevsky, MS Rus, MS AmaKatarina, MS Zosima Shashkov, and MS Maksim Litvinov. Each were selected for their anticipated ability to provide unforgettable and inspirational travel experiences. All ships operate using modern equipment. Some of the ships, such as the Volga Dream and the AmaKatarina, have undergone renovations that should improve upon what they offered in the past. (For Volga Dream, such renovation is an annual routine.) In short, Golden Ring feels confident that guests will find what they are looking for in any of our Volga River cruises.
Of course, the real advantage of booking your cruise of this most Russian river with Golden Ring is the ability to seamlessly transition your river voyage into land-based tour extensions, particularly in Moscow and St. Petersburg. After all, is there anything more intrinsically Russian than a journey on the Volga, followed by a train adventure on the Trans-Siberian Railroad? You will truly have plenty of stories to tell your friends and family after you return home.
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