The Golden Ring

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The Golden Ring

04 Sep - 16 Sep
12 Days
Maximum seats

The Golden Ring is a ring of cities northeast of Moscow, the capital of Russia. They formerly comprised the region known as Zalesye.

These ancient towns, which also played a significant role in the formation of the Russian Orthodox Church, preserve the memory of the most important and significant events in Russian history. The towns have been called «open-air museums» and feature unique monuments of Russian architecture of the 12th–18th centuries, including kremlins, monasteries, cathedrals, and churches. These towns are among the most picturesque in Russia and prominently feature Russia’s onion domes.

There is no official list of which cities make up part of the Golden Ring with the exception of the eight principal cities of Yaroslavl, Kostroma, Ivanovo, Suzdal, Vladimir, Sergiev Posad, Pereslavl-Zalessky and Rostov Veliky. In addition to this other old cities in the Ivanovo, Vladimir and Yaroslavl regions also considered themselves as part of the ring, including Palekh, Plyos and Shuya (Ivanovo Region) Gorokhovets, Gus-Khrustalny, Murom, Yuriev-Polsky (Vladimir Region) and Rybinsk, Tutaev and Uglich (Yaroslavl Region).

You will ride BMW R1200 GS motorcycles during your route (motorcycle operation is possible only as part of the program with a guide).

The route is thought out in a way that you will have the opportunity to stop in historical places and take photos of picturesque nature.

All included. You will receive a motorcycle and health insurance. All museums tickets are included in the price.

It is possible to change the program if only it’s the group wish.

Throughout the route you will be accompanied by a guide, guard and mechanic (we will replace motorcycle in case of serious damage).

The average length of the route is 900 km.

All inclusive tour

Transfer and
(in all cities)
Food (arrival day
and throughout
the route)
museum tickets,
Technical costs and
charges related to toll
roads and parking
Guard and mechanic
Give yourself an unforgettable adventure!
And we will make sure that it goes perfectly

Tour overview

Day 1

Arrival Day

Meeting at the airport, transfer to the hotel, accommodation; you will get a motorcycle, meet with the team, sign a contract and have a dinner
Day 2

Moscow - Pereslavl Zalessky

Moscow To Sergiyev Posad To Pereslavl Zalessky 150 Km

Sergiyev Posad

Sergiyev Posad grew in the 15th century around one of the greatest of Russian monasteries, the Trinity Lavra established by St. Sergius of Radonezh, still (as of 2015) one of the largest monasteries in Russia. Town status was granted to Sergiyev Posad in 1742. The town's name, alluding to St. Sergius, has strong religious connotations. Soviet authorities changed it first to just Sergiyev in 1919, and then to Zagorsk in 1930, in memory of the revolutionary Vladimir Mikhailovich Zagorsky. The original name was restored in 1991.

Holy Trinity Lavra of St. Sergius

Founded in 1337, the Trinity Lavra of St. Sergius is undeniably the major draw for the city and the symbol of Russian Christianity. The monastery is comprised of over 50 historically significant constructions, including the sixteenth century Assumption Cathedral and fifteenth century Cathedral of the Holy Trinity. It’s nearly impossible to explore the entire complex properly in one day. Prospekt Krasnoy Armi (Red Army Street) is the central city street.

Pafnutievsky garden

The story of the Garden takes the origin in the XVII century. It was at the monastery and was divided into two sections: in one section monks grew onions and the other section was flourished an apple orchard. In the garden there was a greenhouse where monks grew strawberries, peaches, plums, lemons, grapes and flowers. In Soviet times, the garden served as a city park of culture and recreation of the city of Sergiev Posad. Now it belongs to the Lavra and gradually restores its former beauty. Monument to the "Defenders of the Fatherland" was perpetuated by heroic peasants Nikon Shilov and Peter Slote, who saved the monastery during the Polish-Lithuanian war, destroying the enemy's tunnel under the Pyatnitskaya Tower at the cost of their lives. Monument to Peter and Fevronia of Murom.
Departure to Pereslavl Zalessky, accommodation
Day 3

Pereslavl Zalessky

Known as Pereyaslavl until the 15th century, it was founded in 1152 by Prince Yury Dolgoruky as a projected capital of Zalesye. In 1175–1302, the town was the seat of the Principality of Northern Pereyaslavl (not to be confused with the Principality of Pereyaslavl in modern-day Ukraine). In 1302, it became a part of the Grand Duchy of Moscow. Pereslavl-Zalessky was devastated numerous times by the Mongols between the mid-13th century and the early 15th century. In 1611–1612, it suffered from the Polish invasion. In 1688–1693, Peter the Great built his famous "fun flotilla" on Lake Pleshcheyevo for his own amusement, including the so-called Peter's little boat, which would be considered the forefather of the Russian fleet. The Botik (small boat) museum chronicles the history of the first Russian fleet and keeps one of the original model boats. In 1708, the town became a part of Moscow Governorate. Just before the Moscow Olympics in 1980, the city of Moscow rounded up a large number of people it considered 'undesirable', many thousands, and decreed that they must be moved at least 120km from Moscow in order to improve the city's image. Pereslavl is approx 130km from Moscow and as such the population of the town soared prior to the Olympics.

Lake Pleshcheyevo

Located on the shore is a legendary twelve-ton boulder, the "Blue stone", which was worshipped by pagans in centuries past, and is still a venue for celebrating Russian Orthodox holidays. In 1688–1693, Peter the Great built his famous "funny flotilla" (i. e. training flotilla) on Lake Pleshcheyevo for his own amusement, including the so-called Peter's little boat, which would be considered one of the forefathers of the Russian fleet. The Botik (small boat) museum in Pereslavl-Zalessky chronicles the history of the first Russian fleet and keeps one of the original ship models. in 1925 author Mikhail Prishvin spent a year at a research station near the lake and wrote up his observations of the landscape in the widely admired Springs of Berendey. Lake Pleshcheyevo is now a protected area under the Pereslavl Governmental Nature-Historical Natural Park authority. The lake covers an area of over 51 km², its length being 9.5 kilometres and its shoreline 28 kilometres. Although it is 25 metres deep in the middle, the waters near the shore are quite shallow.

Museum-Preserve of Pereslavl-Zalessky

The museum expositions occupy the premises of the Goritsky monastery, which was abolished in the middle of the 18th century. The structure includes the main building, the art gallery, the Transfiguration Cathedral, the Boat of Peter the Great, the Ganshin Estate Museum and the exhibition hall in Pereslavl-Zaleski. The exhibition areas feature icons, paintings, wood sculpture, and a variety of historical exhibits.

Nikitsky Monastery

The Nikitsky Monastery was founded in the 12th or possibly even the 11th century. Although it consisted only of wooden buildings it became famous because of the holy feats of a hermit there who was later canonised as St Nikita the Stylite. Having led a sinful youth, Nikita became a monk at the Nikitsky Monastery. However this was not enough for Nikita who decided to chain himself to a pillar where he would remain in prayer. Nikita remained on his pillar until he was killed in 1186 by robbers who believed his chains were made out of silver. The first stone building work took place in 1528 on the orders of Grand Prince Vasily III, but more extensive building work was carried in the 1560s overseen by Tsar Ivan the Terrible. During this period stone walls were erected around the monastery. During the Time of Troubles the monastery was besieged and burned in 1609 and 1611. It was subsequently fully restored in the mid-17th century. In 1918 the monastery was nationalised and completely closed in 1923. It was later variously used as a school, as accommodation and as a woman's prison. In the 1960s and 1970s restoration work on the monastery was carried out and the monastery was reopened in 1993, which was followed by more restoration work.

Museum of old sewing machines

The exhibition consists of rare sewing machines, as you might guess from the name. The number of exhibits is more than 100. There are antique pre-revolutionary devices, Soviet typewriters and products of famous world manufacturers.

Radio museum

The museum shows the history and achievements of radio engineering. All of his small space is occupied by radios of various sizes and formats brought from all over the world. In the shop at the museum you can buy rare items for the repair of vintage vehicles.

Alexander Nevsky Museum

The museum was opened in 2012. The exposition is devoted to the period of the city’s history, when Alexander Nevsky ruled it. It has no analogues in Russia. During the excursion you can see the layout of the XII century Pereslavl-Zalessky sample, icons depicting the prince, awards (medals and orders) bearing the name of Alexander Nevsky, the composition “Three Warriors” consisting of figures of the Teutonic knight, Russian knight and Tatar-Mongolian rider.
Departure to Rostov-Veliky, accommodation.
Day 4


Rostov is a town in Yaroslavl Oblast, Russia, one of the oldest in the country and a tourist center of the Golden Ring. Rostov was preceded by Sarskoye Gorodishche, which some scholars interpret as the capital of the Finnic Merya tribe, while others believe it was an important Viking trade enclave and fortress guarding the Volga trade route. Also Scythians were setteled there. It seems likely that different ethnics like Vikings, Scyths, Slavs and Finns are the ancestors of todays people in that region. First mentioned in the year 862 as an already important settlement, by the 10th century Rostov became the capital city of one of the most prominent Russian principalities. It was incorporated into Muscovy in 1474. Even after it lost its independence, Rostov was still an ecclesiastic center of utmost importance. In the 14th century, the bishops of Rostov became archbishops, and late in the 16th century, metropolitans. One of those metropolitans, Iona (Jonah) Sysoyevich (ca. 1607-1690), commissioned the town's main landmark: the kremlin that many regard as the finest outside of Moscow. Ravaged by the Mongols in the 13th and 14th centuries (last sack by Edigu in 1408) and the Poles in 1608, Rostov became a medium-sized town. The metropolitan see was transferred to Yaroslavl late in the 18th century.

Rostov Kremlin

Rostov's most famous sight is of course its Kremlin which is located in the very centre of the city. It was built between 1670 and 1683 on the orders of Metropolitan Iona Sysoevich of Rostov and Yaroslavl to serve as a new residence for himself. Even though the strong fortified walls and 11 towers were really more for decorative purposes rather than defensive ones, the new residence nevertheless started to be referred to as a kremlin. After the Rostov and Yaroslavl Eparchy was reorganised as the Yaroslavl and Rostov Eparchy in the late 18th century, the seat of the eparchy moved to Yaroslavl and the kremlin began to fall into disrepair. This trend was only halted in 1883 when a group of merchants decided to establish a Museum of Church Antiquities on its territory. In 1918, after the Revolution, the kremlin became state property and a museum which existed under several names until it became known as the Rostov Kremlin State Museum Reserve in 1995. Today it remains state property although Patriarch Kirill has been leading the calls for it to be returned to the Russian Orthodox Church to be used as a monastery. A ticket must be bought to enter its territory and individual tickets must be bought to visit each of its exhibitions. Inside the kremlin is separated into three parts: Cathedral Square, the central part and the Metropolitan's Gardens.

Assumption Cathedral

In the center of the city there is the Cathedral Square. There you will see the oldest church in Rostov, the magnificent Assumption Cathedral, which was founded in the time of Yaroslav the Wise. First a wooden church appeared on the central square. It burned down in 1060. In the time of Andrew Bogolyubsky, in 1161-1162, the site was used for the single-domed stone temple. However, the building lasted only for a few decades - in the beginning of the 13th century it collapsed. The temple was repeatedly burned and rebuilt. Only in 1473 on the site of the ancient temple was erected a magnificent new five-domed cathedral, which today is the architectural treasure of ancient Rostov.

Rostov Finifti Museum (Rostov Enamel)

In the museum you will get acquainted with the unique products of the factory, made in different years by its outstanding artists and jewelers, the secrets of the technology of creating the enamel and life of the workshops of the 19th century. The master class will allow those who wish to create their own enamel miniatures. Visiting the production with your own eyes you will see how the artists create paintings, and the jewelers painstakingly collect the jewelry pattern. Rostov the Great from the 18th century to the present day is the center of the enamel art in Russia. Finifty in Russia is called artistic enamel. There is no consensus on the origin of the word "Finift". Some scientists believe that it comes from the Greek "finigitis", which means "light, shiny stone", while others believe that it originated from the Byzantine word chemist, which in turn leads from the Greek verb meaning "to pour, melt". At present this term is used with reference to the Rostov art industry and is present in the same name of the factory "Rostov Enamel". During the revolution, hard times came, but many masters with their devotion to art were able to preserve the trade and, reunited, reintroduced the artel, which after the Great Patriotic War was reorganized into the factory "Rostov Enamel", which still carefully preserves the traditions of the first enamel masters. The Soviet period of Russia's life has formed a new ideology, other forms of expression in art. The art workshop turned into folk art. "Rostov Finift", like many other crafts, managed to overcome great difficulties, preserved production technologies and revived the lost traditions. A new generation of masters has determined the further creative development.

The City Park

The park has been operating since 1830. In the XIX century, visitors were entertained by a brass band, a restaurant and carousels were working. After a major renovation in 2012, the park has become a popular recreation area.

The Varnitsky Trinity Monastery

The monastery was founded by Archbishop Ephraim in 1427. Many churches were built in the XIX cen tury at the expense of Rostov merchants. In the XX century, the complex was almost completely destroyed, including the main cathedral, residential and economic buildings. After the revival in the 1990s, the architectural ensemble was rebuilt.
Day 5

Rostov The Great To Yaroslavl To Kostroma 150 Km

Yaroslavl is considered the unofficial capital of the Golden Ring and is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is believed to have been founded in 1010 by Prince Yaroslav the Wise, after whom it is named. The city’s main sight is the Spaso-Preobrazhensky Monastery which is now a museum and among its many beautiful churches the most famous are St Elijah the Prophet’s Church and the John the Baptist’s Church, both of which are beautifully decorated with frescos. Yaroslavl is just a 3-hour express train ride from Moscow.

Spaso-Preobrazhensky (Transfiguration of the Savior) Cathedral of the Spassky (St Savior) Monastery
Typical for a Russian monastery of the Middle Ages, the Spaso-Preobrazhensky Monastery in Yaroslavl was not built to be no more than a place of worship, but also to be a citadel and kremlin in case, in times of war, there was a need for such a facility. This is still visible today as the monastery is surrounded by a thick 16th century, white-painted wall, complete with watchtowers and embattlements. Within these walls stand the magisterial churches, which, with their asymmetrically-ordered towers and beautifully decorated interiors, make for wonderful examples of traditional Russian sacral architecture. In addition to this there is a gatehouse church, with which the monastery's dungeons and treasury were connected. The monastery has long had a place in the history of Yaroslavl and continues, albeit nowadays as a museum, to play a significant role in the life of the city. It was largely thanks to the impregnability of the monastery that, during the time of the Troubles, the Russian peasants' army was able to defend the city and then go on to liberate Moscow from its Polish-Lithuanian occupiers. At the end of the 18th century, the oldest known text of the Tale of Igor's Campaign, the most renknowned work of Russian-language literature from the Middle Ages, was found in the library of the Spaso-Preobrazhensky Monastery. This masterpiece is now on display as a permanent exhibition within the monastery, along with other works of the age and an exhibition showing the conditions an author of the era would have lived in.

The Kazan Convent
The monastery was founded in one of the most difficult historical periods of the Russian state - in the era of the Time of Troubles. Its history began in 1610 with the construction of a wooden church, near which nuns from the burnt Christmas monastery soon settled. Here the sisters were able to find a long-awaited shelter.

The Museum of the History of Yaroslavl
The museum opened to visitors in 1999. The exhibition is located in the historic mansion of the late XIX century, which once belonged to the merchant Kuznetsov. In 1919 the building was ceded to the city authorities.

Monument to Yaroslav the Wise
The monument is located on the Epiphany Square. It was installed in 1993, and designed by A. Bobovich, N. Komov and O. Komov.

Departure to Kostroma, accommodation.
Day 6


The city was first recorded in the chronicles for the year 1213, but historians believe it could have been founded by Yury Dolgorukymore than half a century earlier, in 1152. Since many scholars believe that early Eastern Slavs tribes arrived in modern-day Belarus,Ukraine and western Russia 400 to 600 AD, Kostroma could be much older than previously thought. The city shares the same name as the East Slavic goddess Kostroma. Like other towns of the Eastern Rus, Kostroma was sacked by the Mongols in 1238. It then constituted a small principality, under leadership of Prince Vasily the Drunkard, a younger brother of the famous Alexander Nevsky. Upon inheriting the grand ducal title in 1271, Vasily didn't leave the town for Vladimir, and his descendants ruled Kostroma for another half a century, until the town was bought by Ivan I of Moscow. It is understandable why the Romanov Tsars regarded Kostroma as their special protectorate.

The Ipatievsky monastery was visited by many of them, including Nicholas II, the last Russian Tsar. The monastery had been founded in the early 14th century by a Tatar prince, ancestor of the Godunov family. The Romanovs had the magnificent Trinity Cathedral rebuilt in 1652; its frescoes and iconostasis are a thing of beauty. A wooden house of Mikhail Romanov is still preserved in the monastery. There are also several old wooden structures transported to the monastery walls from distant districts of the Kostroma Oblast. Town status was granted to Kostroma in 1719 In 1773, Kostroma was devastated by a great fire. Afterwards the city was rebuilt with streets radiating from a single focal point near the river. They say that Catherine the Great dropped her fan on the city map, and told the architects to follow her design. One of the best preserved examples of the 18th century town planning, Kostroma retains some elegant structures in a "provincial neoclassical" style. These include a governor's palace, a fire tower, a rotunda on the Volga embankment, and an arcaded central market with a merchant church in the center. The First Workers' Socialist Club based in Kostroma was one of the best documented workers' clubs run by Proletkult. Organised around the principle of a "public hearth" (obshchestvennyi ochag) this club combined both practical support for workers in need of accommodation, food or furniture, as well as providing a focus for popular education.

The Ipatiev Monastery
A male monastery, situated on the bank of the Kostroma River just opposite the city of Kostroma. It was founded around 1330 by a Tatar convert, Prince Chet, whose male-line descendants include Solomonia Saburova and Boris Godunov and dedicated to St. Hypatios of Gangra. During the Time of Troubles in Russia, the Ipatiev Monastery was occupied by the supporters of False Dmitriy II in the spring of 1609. In September of that same year, the monastery was captured by the Muscovite army after a long siege. On March 14, 1613, the Zemsky Soborannounced that Mikhail Romanov, who was in this monastery at the time, would be the Russian tsar. Most of the monastery buildings date from the 16th and 17th centuries. The Trinity Cathedral is famous for its elaborately painted interior. The church of the Nativity of the Mother of God was rebuilt by the celebrated Konstantin Thon at the request of Tsar Nicholas I to celebrate the 250th anniversary of the House of Romanov. The Soviet authorities demolished it in 1932, but it was rebuilt in 2013. The main entrance from the riverside was also designed by Konstantin Thon. A private house of Mikhail Romanov was restored on the orders of Tsar Alexander II, though the authenticity of the reconstruction was questioned by Konstantin Pobedonostsev

Kostoma Sloboda Museum-Reserve
Located just outside the walls of the Ipatievsky Monastery is the 'Kostroma Sloboda' Kostroma Architectural, Ethnographical and Landscape Museum-Reserve - an open-air museum of wooden architecture. Inside many beautiful examples of wooden churches, houses, huts and banyas have been bought here from neighbouring villages. Unlike other open-air museum of wooden architecture, this museum has the additional charm of being laid out in the plan of a village, complete with cobblestone paths. Sadly in 2002 one of its most famous churches - the Transfiguration of the Saviour Church from the village of Spas-Vezhi burned down, it has since been rebuilt. In addition to the wooden architecture, the museum also has various other exhibitions on traditional culture and craftwork and runs events around New Year when children can meet Snegurochka the Snow-Maiden.

Wizard Forest
The wooden building of the museum resembles a fabulous tower and a country mansion at the same time. There are the heroes of Russian fairy tales inside.

Ivan Susanin Monument
This monument to the man credited with saving the life of Mikhail Romanov from Polish interventionists is a Soviet creation which was unveiled in 1967. An early monument to Ivan Susanin was created in 1851 on the orders of Emperor Nicholas I. This monument featured a bust of Tsar Michael on a column with Susanin standing at the base. This monument was demolished in 1918 although there are plans to recreate it.

Gostinyi dvor (Trading Arcades)
This is a historic Russian term for an indoor market or shopping centre. It is translated from Russian either as "guest court" or "merchant yard", although both translations are inadequate. These structures originated as collections of small shops where merchants from other cities could, at designated times, come to sell their wares. Such structures, constructed in every large Russian town during the first decades of the 19th century, are fine examples of Neoclassical architecture.

Museum of Flax and Bark
A small private collection, created in 2005 by N. Zabavina. For more than 10 years of its existence, the museum has gained popularity and has become sort of the must-see. The collection is assembled from a variety of crafts from traditional Kostroma flax and bark.
Day 7

Kostroma To Ivanovo To Suzdal 180 Km

The city is first mentioned in 1561, when it was given to the Cherkassky princely family by Ivan IV, after the latter's marriage to Maria Cherkasskaya. However, the relevant document has since been lost. The modern city was created by merging the old flax-processing village Ivanovo with the industrial Voznesensky Posad in 1871. Yakov Garelin—a patron of arts, historian, manufacturer, and public figure—is considered to be the founder of the city and its second head. Under his government, the city began to develop, industrialise, and grow. In Ivanov the legendary air squadron (then - known as a Regiment) "Normandie-Niemen" began operations. By agreement between the Soviet government and the "Free French" government-in-exile in late 1942, a group of French pilots was sent to the Soviet Union. Construction of a new airport began on the northern outskirts of the city. The pilots were provided with decent housing, and 14 Yak-1 fighter aircraft. During 1943, the French fought alongside the Soviet Air Forces. Ivanov/Ivanovo was bombed in World War II and fought over, briefly in the Russian Civil War. After the war, along with the continued textile industry in Ivanovo engineering and other industries developed. In the 1960s, the city became the center of the Upper-Economic Council.

Museum of Soviet Car Industry
The collection is dedicated to the automotive industry. In the museum you can see all the Soviet classics: “Volga”, “Chaika”, “ZIL”, “GAZ”. All cars are in good condition so you can try any cars.

Vvedensky Convent
The convent was founded in 1991. The complex of buildings of the monastery is located in the center of Ivanovo around the Church of the Presentation of the Virgin - an architectural monument of the beginning of the 20th century.

Transfiguration Cathedral Construction of Transfiguration
Cathedral began on August 27, 1889 and lasted until 1893 under supervision of Moscow architect Alexandr Stepanovich Kaminsky. Most of the funds for the new church was provided by wealthy industrialist M.N. Garelin. The consecration of this church took place on August 24, 1893. External details were made in a manner similar to Russian architecture of the 17th century. Icons of iconostasis were written (not painted in Russian tradition) by Moscow artist Y.I. Ruchkin, while the wall frescoes were made by another artist Belousov. Many of the icons in the church were donated by Garelin family.

Museum of the artist A.I. Morozova
The museum of people's artist of Russia A.I. Morozov was opened September, 19, 2001.This is the only museum of the outstanding Russian artist of the XX century in the country. Having lived 75 years out of his 95 in Moscow Morozov devised his collection of paintings and graphics, archive and things to Ivanovo Regional State Arts Museum. His donation includes more than 3000 units. The house where the art and memorial exhibit display is situated now was chosen by the artist himself. There is a park with old lime trees near the house. The exposition atmosphere is made up of the house architecture, paintings and graphic works, photographs, documents, onstage dresses, musical instruments, memoirs, video materials, artist's things.

Museum of Industry and Art
The museum was opened in 1914 by the industrialist and philanthropist D.G. Burylin. For several decades, the manufacturer has collected many items belonging to different eras: paintings, weapons, coins, books, which he decided to donate to the city. At the moment, the museum has several permanent exhibitions, and a concert hall is open.

Departure to Suzdal, accommodation
Day 8

Suzdal To Vladimir To Gus Khrustalny 120km

Suzdal is one of the oldest Russian towns. In the 12th century it became the capital of the principality, with Moscow being merely one of its subordinate settlements. Nowadays Suzdal is the smallest of the Russian Golden Ring towns with population of around 10,000, but is a major tourist attraction. Several of its monuments are listed as UNESCO World Heritage Sites The town's history dates back to 1024 and in 1125 Yury Dolgoruky made Suzdal the capital of the Rostov-Suzdal principality. Suzdal began to function as a capital at the time when Moscow was still a cluster of cowsheds. In 1157 Andrei Bogolyubsky moved the capital from Suzdal to Vladimir, from which time the principality was known as Vladimir-Suzdal. Set in a fertile wheat-growing area, Suzdal remained a trade centre even after Mongol-led invasions. Eventually, it united with Nizhny Novgorod until both were annexed by Moscow in 1392. Today, the town operates as an important tourist center, featuring many fine examples of old Russian architecture—most of them churches and monasteries. Although having just under ten thousand residents, Suzdal still retains a rural look with streams and meadows everywhere and chicken and livestock a common sight on the streets, some of which remain unpaved. This juxtaposition of stunning medieval architecture with its pastoral setting lends Suzdal a picturesque charm, and in the summer, artists and easels are a common sight.

Suzdal Kremlin
While archeological evidence suggests that the Suzdal Kremlin was settled as early as the 10th century, the fortress itself was built in the late 11th or early 12th century. The fortress was strategically located on a bend of the Kamenka river on three sides and a moat to the east. It was surrounded by earthen ramparts that remain to the present day. A settlement to the east became home the secular population - shopkeepers and craftsmen, while the Kremlin proper was the home of the prince, the archbishop, and the high clergy.

The Saviour Monastery of St. Euthymius
The monastery was founded in the 14th century, and grew in importance in the 16th and 17th centuries after donations by Vasili III, Ivan IV and the Pozharsky family, a noble dynasty of the region. Among the buildings erected during this period were the Assumption Church, the bell tower, the surrounding walls and towers, and the seven-domed Cathedral of the Transfiguration of the Saviour. The cathedral was built in the style of the Grand Duchy of Vladimir-Suzdal. Its interior contains restored frescoes by the school of Gury Nikitin of Kostroma, dating from 1689. The tomb of Dmitry Pozharsky lies by the cathedral wall.

Gostinyi dvor (Trading Arcades)
Gostiny Dvor was built at the beginning of the XIX century. It was designed for 100 merchant shops, which later turned into full-fledged shops. The complex is the most impressive monument of civil architecture in Suzdal. It is the center of trade and tourist life.

Shchurovo mound
The museum, located within the hotel complex HELIOPARK Suzdal, which was created on the basis of the scenery for the film P. Lungin "Tsar". It is a reconstruction of the Slavic settlement of the X century. For visitors there are a variety of interactive programs.

The Wax Museum
Suzdal wax museum started with a small exhibition held in the 1990s in Sokolniki Park. For quite a long time the exposition traveled around the world and Russia, as a result, it remained in Suzdal. Moreover, it is developing and new exhibits keeping up to produce.

Departure to Vladimir, accommodation
Day 9


Vladimir Traditionally, the founding date of Vladimir has been acknowledged as 1108, as the first mention of Vladimir in the Primary Chronicle appears under that year. This view attributes the founding of the city, and its name, to Vladimir Monomakh, who inherited the region as part of the Rostov-Suzdal Principality in 1093. It is named there as Volodymyr. On the 17th centuries maps, it was identified as Wolodimer, while its region as Volodimer. Being established long after the city of Volodymyr in Volhynia, initially it was named Vladimir-on-Klyazma. In 1958, the 850th anniversary of the city foundation was celebrated, with many monuments from the celebrations adorning the city. The city's most historically significant events occurred after the turn of the 12th century. Serving its original purpose as a defensive outpost for the Rostov-Suzdal Principality, Vladimir had little political or military influence throughout the reign of Vladimir Monomakh (1113–1125), or his son Yury Dolgoruky (1154–1157). Modern Vladimir is a part of the Golden Ring of the ancient Russian cities and a popular tourist destination. Its three chief monuments, White Monuments of Vladimir and Suzdal, inscribed by UNESCO on the World Heritage List.

Cathedral Square or Sobornaya Square
The historic center of the city, located on a hill near the Klyazma River. There are a lot of churches, monuments and other remarkable places.

The Dormition Cathedral (Assumption Cathedral)
It is part of a World Heritage Site, the White Monuments of Vladimir and Suzdal. The cathedral was commissioned by Andrew the Pious in his capital, Vladimir, and dedicated to the Dormition of the Theotokos (Virgin Mary), whom he promoted as the patron saint of his lands. Originally erected in 1158 to 1160, the cathedral, with six pillars and five domes, was expanded in 1185 to 1189 to reflect the augmented prestige of Vladimir. At of 1178 m², it remained the largest of Russian churches for the next 300 or 400 years. Andrew the Pious, Vsevolod the Big Nest and other rulers of Vladimir-Suzdal were interred in the crypt of this church. Unlike many other churches, the cathedral survived the great devastation and fire of Vladimir in 1239, when the Mongol hordes of Batu Khan took hold of the capital. The exterior walls of the church are covered with elaborate carvings. The interior was painted in the 12th century and then repainted by Andrei Rublev and Daniil Chernyi in 1408. The Dormition Cathedral served as a model for Aristotele Fioravanti, when he designed the eponymous cathedral in the Moscow Kremlin in 1475 to 1479. A lofty belltower, combining genuine Russian, Gothic and Neoclassicalinfluences, was erected nearby in 1810.

The Cathedral of Saint Demetrius
The Cathedral of St. Dmitrii in Vladimir, Russia was built by Vsevolod III in 1193-7. It was one of several large churches he had built which also include the much larger Cathedral of Dormition, 1158-60, also in Vladimir, Russia. The cathedral was dedicated to St. Dmitrii of Salonika (St. Demetrios of Thesseloinka in Greek). The Cathedral of St. Dmitrii was originally connected directly with Vsevolod’s palace and was for his personal use. The palace no longer exists and the church has been renovated many times since it was first built but it has kept is predominant features and iconographic program. The most extensive renovation was in 1832 when the some attached structures which used to connect it to the palace were removed. At that time, some of the exterior blocks were moved and some replaced with newly carved blocks. Being an important component of the White Monuments of Vladimir and Suzdal, the cathedral belongs to the World Heritage of UNESCO.

The Golden Gate of Vladimir
Golden Gates existed in the holiest cities of Eastern Orthodoxy: Jerusalem, Constantinople, and Kiev. On making Vladimir his capital, Andrew the Pious aspired to emulate these structures, commissioning a lofty tower over the city's main gate to be erected in limestone and lined with golden plaques. According to ancient Russian chronicles, the masons were invited from Friedrich Barbarossa. The main arch used to stand 15 meters tall. The structure was topped with a barbican church dedicated to the Deposition of the Virgin's Robe and symbolizing the Theotokos's protection of Andrew's capital. The gate survived the Mongol destruction of Vladimir in 1237. By the late 18th century, however, the structure had so deteriorated that Catherine the Great was afraid to pass through the arch for fear of its tumbling down. In 1779, she ordered detailed measurements and drawings of the monument to be executed. In 1795, after many discussions, the vaults and barbican church were demolished. Two flanking round towers were constructed in order to reinforce the structure, and artisans then reconstructed the barbican, following the drawings made in 1779. The Gate belongs to the World Heritage of UNESCO.

Historical Museum
The museum exposition is located in the building of the pseudo-Russian style, which was erected at the beginning of the 20th century.

Gostinyi dvor (Trading Arcades)
Shopping center, located in the building Gostiny Dvor. A hundred years ago merchants' shops with various goods were located here, and trade was conducted. Today, almost nothing has changed The Gostiny Dvor complex was erected in several stages at the end of the 18th century, in the 20th century it was reconstructed, while considerably damaging the historical appearance.

Observation decks and Georgievskaya street
Georgievskaya Street is a pedestrian alley in the center of Vladimir, along which many city sights are located. This place was mentioned in the XVII century for the first time. Especially for tourists two observation decks was made.

Borodins Forge Family forge is a museum, where craftsmen work in compliance with old technologies. For tourists there are organized excursions and master classes.

Departure to Gus Khrustalny, accommodation
Day 10


Gus-Khrustalny was founded in 1756 with the construction of a crystal plant, Gus Crystal. It was granted town status in 1931. The name of the town may be translated as "crystal goose", for it is known as one of the oldest centers of glass industry in Russia and stands on the Gus River. There are reasons to believe that its name is not derived from goose directly, but rather from the common Slavic term "goose" (in the respective languages) for a large (up to several gallons) bottle.

Monument to the Goose
The monument staying on a small monument. Actually, the goose ш s depicted on the city's coat of arms.

Museum of Maltsevi family
Museum of Maltsevi (or Maltsevy) family is actually a former Russian Orthodox Church of Saint George. It was constructed in 1892- 1903 by Yuri Stepanovich Nechaev- Maltsev, one of the members of the Maltsevi clan who made glass for many decades in the city. The architect of the beautiful cathedral was Leonti Benois and many of the of the frescoes were painted by a famous Russian artists Viktor Vasnetsov. It was constructed in a Byzantine style that was quiet popular at the time. The only thing that is left from the original interior is a mosaic over the the former altar. The church miraculously survived survived Soviet era, but it lost its bell tower and the top of the main building. Instead it in 1974 it was converted into a museum of glass that was historically produced here.

St. George's Cathedral
The temple itself deserves special attention. The cathedral was built in 1892-1903, on funds of the famous Russian art patron and glass manufacturer Yu.S. Nechaev-Maltsov. And the expenses were considerable, since the cathedral was built according to the project of L.N. Benois, professor of the Academy of Arts and one of the most famous architects of Russia at that time. By the way, the patron himself for many years was an honorary member, and then vice-president of the Academy of Fine Arts. The temple was extremely beautiful and became the pride of not only the city, but the entire Vladimir province. Benois himself noted that this temple is one of his best creations. St. George's Cathedral is a masterpiece of the "Russian style". It was a grandiose structure with a refectory, side-chapels, tents above the bell tower and porches, galleries. In the design of the facade, the author used original decorative elements of ancient Russian architecture: rows of kokoshniks at the top of the building, beautiful window frames with keeled arches, carved portals, high covered porches with patterned pillars, tiled wall decorations. The combination of natural color of red brick with white-stone decoration makes the building refined and elegant. The interior of the temple is designed in the style of a basilica with a colonnade of black labradorite. In addition to the traditional church decoration, the cathedral amazed with a huge picturesque canvas on the western wall – "The Last Judgment" of the famous V.M. Vasnetsov’s brush. Returned here after a long absence, the canvas is now a special interest of specialists and art lovers. The artist painted a few more non-preserved paintings for the cathedral, as well as sketches for the bronze and enamel iconostasis.

Crystal market
Gus-Crystal for many years is known for the production of high-quality and very beautiful crystal products. The glass market is one of the places worth visiting to admire beautiful products and buy something as a souvenir.

Trading Arcades
The arcades is an architectural monument of the 19th century. “The shop of haberdashery manufactories and foodstuffs” was the original name of the stalls that were built in 1853 to serve the workers of factories. Shopping stalls had a great influence on the appearance of the city because located in the center. This is a spacious two-story brick-red building. The decor is white columns and balconies on the second floor.

Chapel of Saint Martyr Varvara
The city also houses the chapel church of Great Martyr Varvara or Barbara. The chapel was built in 1765 on the site of the image of the Great Martyr Barbara. The church itself was built only in 1885. It is an octahedral structure with side porches, covered with a low tent with a cupola. The church was closed during the Soviet period, in 1991 it was returned to believers, and three years later it was restored and consecrated.

Accommodation, dinner.
Day 11

Gus Khrustalny To Moscow 250 Km

Return of motorcycle, farewell dinner and photos
Day 12
Departure From The Hotel, Transfer To The Airport
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