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Dear Traveller,
Are you eligible for visa free travel to Russia?
Russiaís long been one of those countries whose visa reputation has been, not to put too fine a point on it, daunting. You might have been put off by the expense, or the amount of bureaucracy involved. Of course, many tour companies and travel agencies will take care of the application for you, but with so many visa-free choices when it comes to destinations, we can understand why for some people, Russiaís visa requirement has been a sticking point.
But thatís all changed Ė at least for some passport holders. Last summerís World Cup brought a change of heart and helped break down some of the barriers and misconceptions that had previously existed. Further to this softening of attitudes, on 1st October 2019, the Russian authorities introduced an e-visa for St Petersburg for nationals of 53 countries, including most of the EU and others including Japan, Turkey and India. The full list can be found on our website.
Right now, it doesnít cover the UK, but if youíre the bearer of a British passport, donít go away Ė thereís a workaround that might just be enough which weíll get to in just a minute. So, this e-visa makes life a whole lot simpler for those eligible. The process has been designed to reduce traveller stress. Thereís an online form to fill in, so no need for a time consuming trip to the embassy, and no fee to pay. As well as being free, itís also easy. E-visas are approved within four days Ė and that includes weekends and holidays. There are a few stipulations, of course. At the moment this visa isnít available to those arriving by rail, but all air, naval, automobile and pedestrian checkpoints located in St Petersburg and the Leningrad region are covered. Itís very good news for citizens of those 53 countries.
Brits, if youíre still reading this, donít be too disheartened. That workaround we mentioned? Visa-free travel is possible if you arrive via a cruise ship or ferry and take up an organised tour with a licensed operator, such as Go Russia. You can stay for up to 72 hours before the requirement to hold a visa kicks in, more than enough to see how magnificent the place is. The cities where this policy applies are: St Petersburg, Kaliningrad, Vladivostok, Sochi, Vyborg, Korsakov (Sakhalin Island) and Novorossiysk. In practice, St Petersburg is the most convenient of those for British visitors.
Go Russia currently offer two visa-free packages, one focusing on St Petersburg and the other a combi tour which adds Moscow to the mix. Both tours begin and end in the Finnish capital Helsinki and include ferry crossings to St Petersburg. Youíll enjoy seeing world-class sights such as the Peter & Paulís Fortress and Hermitage in St Petersburg; in the Russian capital you could be standing in Red Square gazing up at the colourful domes of St Basilís Cathedral or stepping inside the Kremlin. On the twin centre trip, the use of an overnight train journey to and from Moscow means that you donít waste a moment of your sightseeing time. Meanwhile the single centre option gives you more time to enjoy the delights of elegant St Petersburg, including the chance to take a boat trip on its famous canals. The dates and prices for these confirmed departures are displayed on our website Ė all you need to do is choose the one thatís right for you. What could be simpler than that?
Celebrate New Year 2020 in Russia!
It is not too late to book our citybreak tour to St. Petersburg and Moscow departing 26 December 2019.
This eight-day holiday is a very special trip offering you the chance to join the Russians for their unrivalled New Year celebrations. Combining elegant, romantic St Petersburg with modern, vibrant Moscow, youíll enjoy the festive spirit in two of the cities. This unforgettable tour, taken against a charming backdrop of snowy winter cityscapes, includes a full sightseeing programme and some specially selected seasonal activities such as a magical trip to the ballet and a troika ride. £1.545 per person incl. flights & visa. And there is still plenty of time to arrange your Russian visa. Read more

The latest from our blog
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In case you haven't visited for a while, why not take a fresh look at our travel blog, which features articles and news about Russia: destinations, events, festivals, lifestyle, travel tips, and restaurant and theatre suggestions. Our amazing team of travel writers will keep you up to date with what's important, and don't forget, we'd love to hear from you too so we'll be posting reviews and stories from our customers who have visited Russia recently. Please see the latest stories below:
Why not visit the Tolstoy Estate Museum?
Leo Tolstoy was one of Russiaís great writers, the creator of epic works such as War and Peace and Anna Karenina. Snubbed by the Nobel committee despite multiple nominations for the Literature Prize, history has judged him more favourably. Count Lev Nikolaye...
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Itís been almost three decades since the break-up of the Soviet Union, yet our fascination with it shows no sign of going into that same terminal decline. And one way that manifests itself is by visiting the parks that are now home to those statues that once graced the squares and stre...

Our most popular tours
Weíre pleased to announce our most popular tours. City-breaks, Trans-Siberian trips, Russian river cruises, adventure holidays as well as visa-free tours to Russia. Please see below for more details.

Explore Russia Visa Free by Ferry from Helsinki: St. Petersburg - Moscow - 5 days (VF-01)
If youíre short on time and donít wish to apply for a Russian visa, then this is the tour for you, a 72-hour trip taking in the highlights of Russiaís two largest cities. Our professional guides and driv...
From £1,135 5 days
Explore Russia Visa-Free by Ferry from Helsinki: St. Petersburg - 5 days (VF-02)
Itís possible to visit Russia without the need for a visa, and this tour is one such holiday. Arriving by ferry from Helsinki, youíll be able to discover the beautiful city of St Petersburg. Youíll stay in a centrally located hotel at Nev...
From £545 5 days

Winter Romance and New Year Fun in the Russian Capitals (CB-10)
Celebrate New Year 2020 in Russia! This eight-day holiday is a very special city break offering you the chance to join the Russians for their unrivalled New Year celebrations. Combining elegant, romantic St Petersburg with mod...
From £1,145 8 days
Best of Moscow & St. Petersburg Guided Tour (CB-17)
This is our most popular tour and deservedly so. Combining Russia's two greatest cities, you'll experience the best this country can offer. Offering a full sightseeing programme, this eight day tour encompasses Russia's cultural treasures, iconic archite...
From £945 8 days

Discover Russia and Mongolia: from Moscow to Ulan Bator (TS-29)
This two week itinerary brings together the highlights of a Russian Trans-Mongolian rail journey with a more comprehensive dip into Mongoliaís wild national parks than most visitors allow the...
From £2,295 16 days
Discover Russia and Mongolia: from Moscow to Vladivostok via Mongolia (TS-28)
This tripís perfect if you wish to follow the classic Trans-Siberian route to Vladivostok but just canít bear to miss Mongoliaís spectacular landscapes. Travel across Russia exploring its history and rich cultural heritage bef...
From £1,995 18 days

5-Star Luxury River Cruise - Moscow - Golden Ring - St. Petersburg - 12 Days (CR-57)
This 12-day tour combines Russiaís present and former capitals with a leisurely journey aboard the luxurious MS Mustai Karim. Comprehensive sightseeing programmes are included in both cities, ensuring you donít mi...
From £3,195 12 days
4-Star Russian River Cruise - Moscow - Golden Ring - St. Petersburg - 12 Days (CR-45)
This twelve day tour aboard a 4 star vessel provides a comfortable base from which to enjoy the fabulous scenery as you cruise from Moscow to St Petersburg via the Golden Ring. The extensive facilities onboard include sma...
From £1,645 12 days


Recommend a friend and get a £50 reward per person
Recommend a friend to Go Russia and if they book a holiday or any other travel related service with us we will give you both a £50 discount per person to say "thank you". Read more about our recommend a friend scheme.

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GO Russia, Boundary House, Boston Road, London W7 2QE, UK
tel.: +44 (0) 20 33 55 77 17
e-mail: info@justgorussia.co.uk