Explore Russia’s fourth largest city, Yekaterinburg, on our short break. Yekaterinburg – the economic capital of the Ural Mountains and gateway to Siberia – is a bustling city overflowing with history and culture, offering a wealth of museums cafes and restaurants. This tour will take you on a historical journey from the city streets of Yekaterinburg to rural villages in the Ural Mountains, visiting the highlights and taking you off the beaten path.
Fly to Yekaterinburg via Moscow.
Arrive in Yekaterinburg and transfer to the hotel for an early check-in and relax for the remainder of the morning. In the afternoon, meet your local guide and prepare for a fact filled tour through the central streets of Yekaterinburg. Visit statues of communist leaders, marvel at the Church of All Saints - the site of the Romanovs murders, and visit the Ural Mineralogy Museum - one of the best collections of minerals in the world. Stop at the Black Tulip memorial which commemorates the conflict in Afghanistan during the 1980’s, admire villas of the gold merchants built in the 19th century and buildings from the neoclassical Stalin era. (B)
Spend today exploring the Europe/Asia border marked by the Ural Mountains. Buckle up and begin your day with a drive to the Romanov Monastery followed by a visit to the Europe-Asia obelisk. The tour will then make a short stop at the GULAG memorial before reaching the border where you will get the chance to stand at the exact point where Europe and Asia meet. Perhaps step across the border into the ‘Wild East’ to receive a special certificate and a glass of Soviet Champagne! The tour continues with a visit to Russia’s largest private collection of military equipment and vehicles, where you can get up close to the tanks, trucks aircrafts and helicopters. (B)
Begin the day with a drive to the 300 year old village of Koptelovo. This old and beautiful Siberian village was founded in the 17th century and has a rich history, which you will learn about on this excursion. Listen to a folklore concert performance in the local Museum of Farming and Crafts, learn about the folk crafts and trades and visit a traditional Izba – a typical Russian rural cottage. Depending on the time of year, catch a ride on a sharaban (carriage) in summer or a koshevka (sleigh) in winter to explore the village. (B)
Enjoy this free day at leisure. Perhaps head deep into the pristine Taiga Forest in search of mushrooms and berries – a Russian past-time that has been passed down from generation to generation. Travel with an experienced guide who will instruct you on how to find and identify mushrooms and berries. Or if you fancy something more relaxing spend 2 hours bathing in a traditional Russian steam bath. (B)
Transfer to Yekaterinburg airport for flight back to UK. (B)