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Do you reccomend two days in st petes or one day in Moscow? We are not big museum people but do love to sightsee.

Moscow sounds like a great place to see as it holds so much history.

Lots of time we are not leaving until next May on the constellation (14 days).

Jeff [img]http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_cool.gif[/img]

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Hi Jeff,

Just my opinion, and I'm sure that the opinions on this subject will be strong either way, but we chose not to do Moscow because there was so much to see in St. Petes that we could not do it justice in a day. We're so glad we did the 2-day tours with Red October. We want to go to Moscow too (my niece was adopted from Russia), but we thought that we need to do that on a return trip to spend 2-3 days there too.

Hope you have a great trip,
Donna
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I'll provide the opposing view! [img]http://messages.cruisecritic.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif[/img]

I highly recommend making the trip into Moscow. I'm not quite a senior, but old enough to remember the Cold War. Getting to stand in Red Square was a real thrill for me. Going into the Kremlin and touring the armory was mind blowing. Room after room, display case after display case of priceless treasures. The Czars had so much wealth while the people had nothing. It's not a cheap trip, and you don't return to the ship until midnight. But I am so glad I did it. My DW decided to stay in SP ... but after seeing my pictures and all she wishes she had gone into Moscow with me.

Yes, there is too much to see in SP in just one day. Shoot, you couldn't see it all in a week! But Moscow holds real history for me during my growing up into adulthood years that it was imperative for me to go. I'm so glad I did.

'Vegas Jim
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Take it from somebody who used to live there:
If you ever planning to take another cruise with St. Petes as port of call, by all means spend two days in Leningrad. A lot to see. I f you never will be back, I will recommend to take a tour to Moscow. Two cities are very different. St Petes is very European in base, was build with a lot of european influence and rebuild by Russians after WWII. Moscow is unique on it's own.
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We were on the 5/28 sailing of the Jewel of the Seas and did the Moscow trip. We loved it. Our feeling was - how could we be THAT close to Moscow and not go there! We were in Russia the day Pres. Reagan died. We found it ironic because if it hadn't been for him, we probably never would have been able to go to Russia.

Bottom line: We HIGHLY recommend the trip.

Sue G.
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  • 2 weeks later...
I lived in Moscow for many years and have been in St.Petersburg a few times. My personal preference is St.Petersburg because it's diversity. Beside world famous museums it has many unique archetectural sides, plus a great location with many canals and king's summer residences. If you have a specific question, e-mail me and I will be happy to help you. Also, I can recommend a tour guide in Moscow.
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We went on the Celebrity shore excursion to Moscow. I will re-post my review because I think it got washed away in the 'Board change over' However, I must say I'm lovin' these new boards.

We knew we wanted to take the Moscow Day tour with the ship. We booked this way ahead of time on the Celebrity website. There was a high price tag (approx $700 USD – just under $1000 cdn dollars for us.)

My parents had gone to Moscow and Leningrad (St.Petersberg) in 1975 and we have been seeing their slideshow for years. There was no way we were going to be that close and not go. It was one of the best days of my life. For those that are interested here’s what we did on the ‘Journey to Moscow’
June 13, 2003.

 We docked in St Petersburg approx. (all the times in this are approximations) 7am.
 Our tour left about 8am. There were 44 people that went from the ship. Throughout the day we were split into two groups of 22 on two buses. This was nice because each bus was half full and everyone could have a window seat if they wanted. Each group had their own tour guide from St Petersburg as well as a guide in Moscow as well.
 On our way to the St Pete’s airport we got a bit of a city tour and we went to see St Isaac’s Cathedral and spent time there. I liked this idea because it was smart to let us hang around there and shop at little market stalls and take photos, rather than having us wait around the small airport. On the way out to the airport we did get to see a lot of St.Pete’s
 Once at the airport our St.Pete’s Guide (Marina) got all the boarding passes together and we merely had to go through security check and go out to the plane.
 It was very interesting to actually be on a Russian airline, it was similar and at the same time completely different. It was like a flashback to the 1970’s. The flight left at 10am and was pretty much uneventful. They served a drink and a chocolate bar. It took about 50 min
 When we arrived, we were pretty much told not to look at the older security officers and not take pictures. The explanation from Marina was the older guys are still set in their Soviet ways, and if they wanted to they could make trouble. But if no one was looking go ahead and take pictures.
 We met up with our buses and there was a small bag of food/lunch for everyone. A bottle of water, croissant, cheese, chicken sandwich, apple, and a piece of cake.
 Then we met our driver Viktor and our Moscow guide Irena. She was excellent, could not have been better, she had lived in Moscow all her life, was university educated in History and talked about every aspect of life in Moscow and answered questions easily.
 On the way from the airport to our first stop, they drove around pointing out places and points of interest as well as any pertinent facts. On the way to town we saw the new Ikea, Home depot type stores, we saw the first McDonalds, Gorkey Park and the like
 Our first stop was on the subway; Moscow has a very special underground. It was very deep (like Washington DC’s) and much like a museum, Marble walls, detailed carvings, bronze sculptures, we traveled and got off at three different stops to see how each was different, then our last stop was walking distance to Red Square
 I think Irena sensed we were very interested in the present day life in Moscow as well as what it was like in Soviet times. She spoke freely on both and answered our questions well.
 When we reached Red Square it was like a daydream, very surreal. The enormous size, the huge walls and buildings, St Basils and that huge clock tower. I can’t get the images out of my mind.
 We had some discussion, then we asked for some free time to walk around, and they were hesitant (we later realized because of the visa issue) but they let us go and hang out for about 40 min then we had to meet at St Basils.
 We couldn’t go in and view Lenin’s body in the tomb because it closes at 1pm, some of us were disappointed but in the whole scheme of the day it didn’t matter.
 I bought a Russian army hat with numerous CCCP and Lenin medals, there was one special KGB medal that the guy pointed out as being important. They were real they felt very heavy. Some other medals that were being sold you could tell were cheap aluminum imitation. Our guy wanted $10 and I guess I could have bargained but I wanted it. This one in Moscow was filled with medals (over 40) some of the ones in St Petes only had 10 or so. They are probably worth $5 and they even sell them on the ship after you leave Russia but they are garbage and they wanted $10.
 I should mention during this excursion to Moscow everything was included (as it should be) just souvenirs and shopping were extra. All you need is $USD and it has to be crispy bills. No roubles were needed.
 I also bought a painting of Red Square in Red Square to commemorate the day.
 Next we went to the Kempinski Hotel, a 5-star hotel across from Red Square to have tea. This is the hotel where dignitaries and rock stars would stay
 After the break it started to cloud up to we drove around a bit to some more sights from the bus until it cleared. The Driver and Guides seemed to be very good about having us do the walking when it was clear and driving when it was rainy. We had one good cloud burst before we went to the Kremlin and then it cleared up
 After some photo stops we went to the Kremlin (around 2 – 3pm ) and saw the armory and walked around and saw cathedral square and walked around the Kremlin buildings.
 The armory museum is like their national gallery and housed a multitude of priceless treasures from the Czars. Royal sleighs and carriages from the 17th century. Crown jewels and ornate robes covered in gemstones, jewelry, china, and gold riches, very similar to the treasures at the tower of London but even more opulent.
 The famed Faberge Christmas eggs that are part of the collection, were on tour, and again some people including myself were disappointed but when you saw the other collections from Faberge, not seeing the eggs didn’t ruin anyone’s day
 We then drove to some more sights after leaving the Kremlin. A convent where the Czars sent their wives when they wanted to marry other lovers, the university, that has a view high above Moscow, the stadium of the 1980 Olympics.
 Then we went to the posh literary club for dinner. This was a place where Russian poets and VIPs have been dining for 100s of years. We had first class service and dined on caviar, stroganoff and bottomless Russian Vodka and Italian Chianti. A perfect relaxing end to a great day
 The flight back was around 10pm it was interesting but safe and we arrived back in St Petes to a full moon.
 We got back to the ship around midnight.
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