RUSSIA ITINERARY AND BUDGET COST
November 22, 2019
The Russian government renewed Filipino travelers’ interest in visiting their country after they included the Philippines among the countries that can avail of their free E-Visa scheme to visit Saint Petersburg. Personally, it was one of my favorite countries, and I would always remember my visit there with great fondness. In this blog post, I will reveal my Russia itinerary and the expenses incurred during my eight-day visit to Moscow and Saint Petersburgh last November 2018.
TRAVELING TO RUSSIA
Most people think that Russia is an expensive country to travel around – I can’t entirely agree. Believe it or not, it was one of the cheapest Western countries. People were shocked and surprised whenever I tell them that Russia can be as cheap as the Philippines somehow. I always ate complete, hearty meals at stolovayas (Russian cafeterias), and they cost as low as $3. Hostel rooms only cost $5 a day, and a metro ride costs $1.
I would suggest you get a Russian Tourist visa for Filipino travelers so you can visit Moscow and other cities. Getting one is not complicated, and I consider it one of the most straightforward visa applications. Check my Russian Tourist visa application story for more information.
RUSSIA ITINERARY BREAKDOWN
Here is the breakdown of my trip to Russia. I arrived in Moscow from New Delhi, then traveled to Saint Petersburg by bus (I used GoEuro – now Omio). Lastly, I flew to Paris from Saint Petersburg. Ultimately I spent eight days in total in both cities.
- The metro system in Moscow connects to almost all tourist sites. You will notice that it is more profound than in other countries because it also serves as an emergency bunk in case of war or catastrophe.
- Moscow metro is very artsy, and tour companies are organizing guided tours here – Well, you can do it on your own! Visit the following metro stations and gawk at its beauty – Mayakovskaya, Komsomolskaya, Novolobodskaya, Prospect Mira, Belorusskaya, Kiyevskaya, Pavelevskaya, and Taganskaya.
- From Domodedovo airport, I used the Aeroexpress, then transferred to Paveletsky station to reach the city center.
- The best place to buy Russian souvenirs is at Izmailovo Kremlin. Be sure to haggle!
- Stolovayas are the best places to eat if you are on a budget. It’s a Russian cafeteria where they lay out the food, and then you pick whichever you like. The stolovayas at the GUM mall are the best – they even have Uzbekistan and Georgian food options!
- You cannot take pictures inside the Armory (too bad! I loved the carriages and royal thrones).
Day 1 – November 11, 2018
- Early morning arrival at Domodedovo airport
- Check-in at Tretyakovka hostel
- Quick tour at the Red Square
Day 2 – November 12, 2018
- Red Square Tour
- Kremlin, Cathedral Square, and the Armory tour
- Church of Christ on Spilled Blood
Day 3 – November 13, 2018
- Izmailovo Kremlin Tour
- Vodka Museum
Day 4 – November 14, 2018
- Moscow Metro tour
- VDNKH(Exhibition of Achievements of National Economy) tour
- A late-night trip to Saint Petersburg
- Saint Petersburg is cheaper by almost 40% than Moscow.
- Someone nearly pickpocketed me here. The thief followed me when I entered a restaurant and tried tugging my backpack. When I noticed it, they quickly left, and I just saw my bag already opened. Fortunately, they got nothing from me.
- I was supposed to visit the Peterhof Palace but got so exhausted that I decided to cancel. Feel free to add it to your itinerary, though.
- Another activity that I did not witness was the lowering of the drawbridges. Feel free to add it to your itinerary too.
- Be prepared when you visit the Kunst Kamera museum. They have an entire hall filled with specimens with medical anomalies and true to life fetuses. I found it disturbing, and as a sign of respect, I will not post any pictures of the babies here nor on my social media account.
Day 5 – November 15, 2018
- Early morning arrival from Moscow
- Check-in at Cozy Place hostel
- Church tour – Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood, St. Isaac’s Cathedral, Kazan Cathedral
Day 6 – November 16, 2018
- Hermitage Tour
- Nevsky Avenue
Day 7 – November 17, 2018
- Peter and Paul Fortress
- Kunst Kamera Museum
Day 8 – November 18, 2018
- Free day
- Late-night travel to Paris, France