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Sunday/Monday in St Petersburg? And more questions


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We are debating between two cruises in late August 2022, both of which offer 3 days in St Petersburg and one in Riga (that was our criteria). One is Oceania and the other is Regent Seven Seas. Not sure if Regent is worth the extra money (comments/advice on this is appreciated). The Regent cruise is in St Petersburg on Sunday-Tuesday, and I was wondering whether places are closed and if our touring options will be limited. We also want to do the ballet. It seems that Regent lists all of the tours, but doesn't seem to distinguish between what is available each day. Thank you.

 

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I haven't sailed either line.  As a general rule, this is an exhausting cruise and perhaps not the one to splurge on an amazing room/line as you'll be a bit too tired to enjoy it as much as on other cruises.  However, you can look to see if one allows you more convenience - smaller ships can dock right near Market Square in Helsinki, and are more likely to make it through the archipelago in Stockholm, so those are factors that will affect your touring experience.  The Hermitage is closed on Monday, so you'd need to do that on Sunday or Tuesday.  They used to have early entrance so that might be an option.

 

The following list of closures were in effect 5 years ago, and I honestly have no idea what they look like today due to covid changes.

 

The Hermitage and the palace at Peterhof are closed on Mondays (please note that the fountains at Peterhof are open on Mondays even though the palace is closed)

The Russian Museum and Tsarskoye Selo (Catherine's Palace) are closed Tuesdays

St. Issac's and the Church on Spilled Blood are closed Wednesday (other religious sites may also be closed, on Wednesdays so please check this ahead of time if you are interested).

Edited by kitkat343
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3 hours ago, Carlafrank said:

One is Oceania and the other is Regent Seven Seas.

We spent 3 days in Saint Petersburg on an Oceania Cruise (Marina) several years ago - it was excellent. I have no experience with Regent.

Baltic cruises are very port intensive and, if you are like us, you will be tired at the end of each day. IMHO, a Baltic cruise is all about the ports, not the ship on which you sail. There was really very little time to enjoy the amenities aboard ship as we were off the ship a majority of the time. We didn't book any of our tours through the ship - we used an independent tour operator (Alla Tours) in Saint Petersburg and in a few other ports as well - the rest we DIY.

No need to worry what is open or closed in St. Petersburg - tours will simply be changed around to visit a venue on a day when it is open. Since you will have 3 days in St. Pete, no worries.

BTW - the food was very good on the Marina.

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We did a Baltic cruise in 2018 on Oceania Nautica which was totally delightful and I look forward to sailing with them again.  This trip was two weeks overall, with three days in Saint Petersburg where the ship docked within walking distance of the Hermitage, which was super convenient.   We obtained our own visas for Russia in advance, which was a bit of hassle and expense, but we wanted to truly be independent with our time rather than having to stick with a tour guide/minder guide and their schedule for everything.  This gave us the freedom to linger in areas of the Hermitage that were meaningful to us, go to the ballet when it suited us, etc.  We still did a few guided tours here and there even though DIY was fine much of the time.  

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