This tour covers well-known towns as well as hidden gems of the Golden Ring. It gives a great opportunity to see the roots of Russian history and architecture. It is a perfect way to escape from hustle and bustle of boisterous Moscow or St. Petersburg and to see a different facet of Russian life.
The prominent towns that lay in a circle to the northeast of Moscow became known as the Golden Ring From 11th to 15th century the towns of Vladimir and Suzdal became capitals of the northern principalities, and Sergiev Posad served as the center of Russian Orthodoxy. Few people though heard of 12 century town Yuryev-Polskoy which can be proud of a unique church of St. George all covered with stone carvings.
At 8 am our Moscow tour guide picks you up from the hotel to leave for Sergiev Posad. It will take you approximately 2 hours to get there where you visit the famous pilgrimage sight, the Holy-Trinity St. Sergius Monastery, quite often referred as Russian Vatican. The Trinity Monastery of St. Sergius was founded in the early 14th century by one of the most venerated saints of Russia St. Sergius. For centuries, Russian czars and common people set out on pilgrimage to the monastery which up to now remains one of the most sacred places in Russia.
Driving to Yuryev-Polskoy, the town founded in the 12 century by Yuri Dolgoruky (founder of Moscow). The chief landmark of the town is St. George Church, brilliant example of pre-Mongolian architecture. During the tour you will also visit the grounds of the walled Archangel Michael Monastery, as well as enjoy picturesque views from the bell tower.
Transfer to Suzdal to check in the hotel.
Free time to enjoy quite life of the town where there are no train stations or industries. Gazing at its blue river, wooden houses, picturesque meadows you may feel that time has stopped here.
Dinner at any restaurant of your choice (not included, but can be arranged upon your request).
10 am Sightseeing tour of Suzdal which was once the capital of Rostov-Suzdal principality. This town is like a museum under the open sky, its medieval monuments can tell you its old story. During the tour, you will visit the Museum of Wooden Architecture, St Euthymius monastery (or Intercession Convent), Suzdal Kremlin.
Lunch at the local restaurant.
Driving to Vladimir to see the Assumption cathedral (interior if it is open), exteriors of St Demetrius cathedral, Golden gates and learn the old history of Vladimir, once the capital of Russia.
At about 5 pm we set back to Moscow which takes about 4 hours.