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Adding excursions is a great way to explore your chosen destination and make your trip a memorable experience. Whether you're keen to soak in the warm water of the geothermal Blue Lagoon in Iceland, spend a night in a Mongolian ger camp or watch the sunrise in Burma from a hot air balloon, it's the experiences that make a Regent Holiday.



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Iceland excursions area a great way to enjoy Iceland during a city break, fly drive or tailor made tour. Bask in the warm water of the geothermal Blue lagoon, race through beautiful wilderness on a snow-mobile or a superjeep, or search for whales on a whale watching tour.

Christina Gibbons

My first visit to Russia, or to the then Soviet Union, was in 1973. Oranges were a sought after luxury and the tour guides towed the party line. Many illusions of down trodden, sullen people were dispelled – with temperatures hitting the upper 80s folk were out and about in summer clothes, eating ice creams, swimming in the rivers, picnicking and queuing at street barrels for the alcohol-free malt beer kvas. So started a long love affair with Russia.

I have since returned many, many times but my excitement for the country has never waivered. There is always a frisson of tension and a hustle and bustle about the place, especially in Moscow. One cannot fail to be awe-inspired by the former wealth of the Tsars and the autocracy with their opulent palaces and priceless art collections. It is worth venturing off the well-trodden tourist routes to experience the vastness of the world’s largest country.

Take the train from Moscow to Irkutsk - an amazing piece of engineering in itself - to gaze in wonder at the world’s deepest lake, Lake Baikal. Stop en route in Yekaterinburg, Russia’s first industrial city; and the gateway between Europe and the East with the Ural Mountains forming a natural boundary Yekaterinburg’s main claim to fame is as the city where the last Tsar of Russia’s family were assassinated.

My first tour with Regent was over 27 years ago to the then staunch communist state of Albania. All foreigners were viewed with suspicion and one had to walk through a disinfectant trough on entry in order not to contaminate the local populace. Several times I was hauled before the secret police because members of my group had tried to venture on to a train. It took much persuasion to convince them of the British love of rail travel. North Korea is not dissimilar today; in order to pay your respects to the late Great Leader and founder of the present-day state, you have to be fumigated!

If I had to pick a favourite tour it would have to be Russia and the trip I took down the river Volga. There's the Kremlin, GUM and Red Square in Moscow at the start and the Great Palace and famous museums of St Petersburg at the end, but the best bit is that you get to see Russian life from the banks of the Volga. There is also a stop in Kizhi Island. The huge wooden churches here are one of Russia's least known but most impressive attractions. You can travel on a similar trip on one of our 5-Star Russian River Cruise holidays. 

Andrea Godfrey

I was a Regent Tours Manager for the Baltic States and Russia for many years starting back in 1995. As a Russian and Soviet Studies graduate, I have always been fascinated by this vast country and love discovering something new on every return visit. One of my favourite Regent tours is the Great Siberian Sayan Ring and I heartily recommend including a visit to Siberia or at least seeing more than just the major cities when travelling in Russia  - being in the wide open space of the tundra, picnicking beside shimmering birch trees and visiting provincial towns is to experience the real Russia. One of my most memorable trips was an incredible journey along the Trans-Siberian Railway with my family. My travel advice for this epic journey? Don't try and keep up with the Russians when vodka drinking!

In 2009, I led Regent’s inaugural tour to Kosovo and was overwhelmed by the generous hospitality of the local people. More recent travel adventures have taken me to Iceland – one of my favourite ever destinations. Iceland is simply one of the most visually stunning countries I have visited with its thundering waterfalls, ice-filled lagoons, fjords edged with steep, flat-topped mountains and jagged glacier tongues. And how I can forget the northern lights? What an amazing, awe-inspiring spectacle.

Read more about my travel experiences in my blog

Ella Stearns

Travel has always been in my blood. Having been born and brought up in Hong Kong I boarded my first long-haul flight aged 6 months. I spent my childhood being taken to exotic, off the beaten track destinations by my parents and as I grew older my desire to explore the world only increased.

I knew that a career in travel was for me when I returned from backpacking around Japan, South East Asia, Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific. If I could provide amazing travel experiences and memories for others, like the ones I had, then why would I want to do anything else? It’s a treat every day to be able to share my passion with others.

Recently I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to embark on a fly-drive around Route 1, the ring road circling Iceland. A country that I am completely in awe of. It beggars belief that around every corner there is a new and equally spectacular waterfall, lava field or glacier to feast your eyes upon. It’s hard to put into words how breathtakingly beautiful the scenery is, how friendly the people are and how fascinating the history, geology and nature of Iceland is. A particular highlight of mine was travelling down the south coast and visiting Reynisfjara black sand beach and Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon, never have I experienced anything quite like it. There is so much more to Iceland than the northern lights! 

 

 





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