12 Moscow Family Cruise Reviews

We just got back from doing the absolutely delightful UNIWORLD Imperial Waterways of Russia river cruise. What a wonderful experience. We did the cruise the last two weeks of July via the Moscow to St. Petersburg option, versus the ... Read More
We just got back from doing the absolutely delightful UNIWORLD Imperial Waterways of Russia river cruise. What a wonderful experience. We did the cruise the last two weeks of July via the Moscow to St. Petersburg option, versus the reverse. I highly recommend this option because Domodedovo Airport (IATA code DME), serving Moscow is south of Moscow and right at two hours from the Severniy River Port, which is up on the north side of Moscow. Whereas, the Pulkovo Airport (IATA code LED), which serves St. Pete is only 30 minutes from the St. Petersburg river port, both being on the south side of town. We left our boat at 3:30 am for our 5:55 am flight on Lufthansa out of St. Petersburg to go to Frankfurt. You would probably have to leave the boat around 2 am to go to the airport if your were flying out of Moscow. Uniworld, as usual, provided a world class experience. All the Russian staff, from the cruise managers to the Front Desk folks to dining room staff to the bar tenders spoke good to fluent English. And everyone was so gracious and friendly, making everyone feel special. We were met upon arrival at the airport in Moscow. Departure at the St. Petersburg airport went very smoothly. Embarkation and disembarkation on the ship were both easy and quick. If you have mobility problems, you need to request cart or wheelchair service at the Frankfurt and Moscow airports. They are both huge airports. The arrival and departure gates in Frankfurt are in different terminals. The dining room service was wonderful. The food was always delicious, with a great variety of dishes, always very tasteful and well presented. And yes, I ate too much. The River Victoria is a wonderful, modern vessel. Very, very nice, It appeared to have been through refurbishment recently. The veranda stateroom we had was standard riverboat size, ie large enough, very modern and well furnished. The beds were just right for sleeping after a days worth of adventures. The ship's elevator is modern, and very responsive. The decor throughout the ship is beautiful. The gift shop had a great variety of beautiful gifts if you could not find enough stuff ashore to buy. The wi-fi service was good throughout the cruise. Almost all vendors and stores ashore took rubles, credit cards, Euros or dollars. Smaller vendors took only rubles. The vendors would take a US note before they would take a Euro. But the notes have to be newer, clean and cannot have any writing of any kind on them. One lady would not take the tea colored US notes, saying it was dirty. Just take lots of ones, fives, and tens. No one wanted to take a US twenty or US or Euro coins. We bought 80 dollars worth of rubles our first day in Moscow for day-to-day small purchases and came home with only 300 rubles, about $5. I used 60 rubles to the dollar for quick easy conversion. The shore excursions were always amazing and very informative. The tour groups were usually limited to 25 to 30 people. All ports were handicap accessible. The ship's crew was very helpful getting people on and off the boat. The VOX boxes were new and worked flawlessly. All of the shore excursion guides we had spoke good to fluent English. They usually taught English as a second language at the local high school or college. The buses were all new or nearly new. A lot of the times they were Mercedes Benz buses. All in all, the trip was an absolutely wonderful experience. I highly recommend it if you want to learn about Russian history and meet the warm friendly people of their great nation. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
On July 7th my husband and my self we star our 5th river cruise in Moscow Russia.We had four amazing cruise and are looking forward for this one to learn about the culture of Russia.Since we are Orthodox Christians we are looking forward ... Read More
On July 7th my husband and my self we star our 5th river cruise in Moscow Russia.We had four amazing cruise and are looking forward for this one to learn about the culture of Russia.Since we are Orthodox Christians we are looking forward to visit all the churches that are the gem of this country.First day one the ship with a warm welcome and all the information for the following day and shore excursions.Everyone who was working was very polite and very professional.Everything was very well organized from the tours the shows on the ship and of course the amazing night at the ballet theatre at Saint Petersburg.How can you say thank you to the best cruise director who was from earlier time in the morning until late at night around the ship.But the most important role of course was played the master of cooking in the ship mr Leonidas Kritharas.He was excellent in preparation and presentation of all kind of food.The soups was the best and of course the lamb dish my husbands favorite and all the Russian food he made was the best.We visit the small kitchen the place with the final preparations.The most cleaning place you ever seen.We hope to meet him at another cruise soon.Viking river cruise are our favorites.We are thinking for Vietnam for next year. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Just came back from this cruise from Moscow to St Petersburg (Sep 4-15 in 2018, on Vodohod Georgy Chicherin, booked through Gate1). Me and my wife enjoyed every minute of the whole experience. The excursions in each port were great (the ... Read More
Just came back from this cruise from Moscow to St Petersburg (Sep 4-15 in 2018, on Vodohod Georgy Chicherin, booked through Gate1). Me and my wife enjoyed every minute of the whole experience. The excursions in each port were great (the places visited, the guide, the logistics, the free time). We only wished we could have more time in Moscow (only 1.5 days as compared to 3 full days in St Petersburg). The on-ship experience was most memorable. The food was delicious at each meal, the service was extremely pleasent and sweet. The onboard activities were wonderful. We especially enjoyed learning Russian songs and singing in a choir. Although this was not a luxury 5-star ship, the cabin and ship facilities were sufficient enough for us, and the onboard services and experience was 5-star to us. We highly recommend this cruise and this ship. The value versus price was way beyond our expectation. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
This is our second Viking cruise. Loved 'Waterways of the Tsars' cruise. We loved the entire cruise, and all the tours. The tour guides were very knowledgeable and friendly. Viking also had three tour guides who traveled with ... Read More
This is our second Viking cruise. Loved 'Waterways of the Tsars' cruise. We loved the entire cruise, and all the tours. The tour guides were very knowledgeable and friendly. Viking also had three tour guides who traveled with us for the entire duration of the cruise. Andrei,Valeria and Dmitri are excellent tour guides. Their presentations on Russian history were excellent. The cabin was spacious and very clean. Would have loved if there was a walking track on the sun deck like in the long ships in Europe. We were very impressed with Moscow. Loved all the towns (Uglich, Yaroslavl, Kuzino, Kizhi, Mandrogy) we visited on our way to St. Petersburg. Liked how we sailed on canal, river, lakes and finally river again to get to St. Petersburg. St. Petersburg is beautiful and also has so much history. Loved Swan Lake ballet. Food was excellent, waiters were wonderful and courteous. Got to taste Russian specialties. Maitre D was very nice and welcoming. I preferred to sit in the same area of the restaurant most of the time and so got to know our waitress Helga. She is so pleasant and accommodating.The pelmini cooking demonstration was funny! Our tour director Sasha was wonderful and has a good sense of humor. Daniel- the ship's manager was also wonderful and very funny. All in all it was a wonderful trip. Looking forward to more trips with Viking. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
I had been to St. Petersburg before and consider it the most beautiful city I've visited. I wanted to see more, though, so I chose a Viking River Cruise and traveled from Moscow to St. Petersburg and everywhere in-between. This was ... Read More
I had been to St. Petersburg before and consider it the most beautiful city I've visited. I wanted to see more, though, so I chose a Viking River Cruise and traveled from Moscow to St. Petersburg and everywhere in-between. This was a truly fantastic trip -- very educational, informative, and beautiful in every way. The food onboard was terrific, and the whole experience gave me a lasting memory of this beautiful country. The room was comfortable, the beds small but comfortable, and plenty of storage. What I liked the best were the excursions. The ones provided as part of the cruise were top rate and provided much more education and information than I expected, with a nice mix of music, dance, art, and history. The extra excursions I added were exceptional as well. A hightlight of the trip was the Faberge museum, with the thousands of exquisite gems and, of course, the faberge eggs. If you're thinking about taking this cruise, by all means TAKE IT! Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We wish to place on record that we were delighted with our cruise on MS Tolstoy. All the staff were professional and accommodating. The Dining room was very good. Breakfasts were top class, with a good variety. The lunch and dinners ... Read More
We wish to place on record that we were delighted with our cruise on MS Tolstoy. All the staff were professional and accommodating. The Dining room was very good. Breakfasts were top class, with a good variety. The lunch and dinners were absolutely fantastic. Despite our dietary issues, the kitchen staff went out of their way to serve food of our choice as we are very fussy with our diet. Nothing was an issue. There was always something on the ship (when we were not docked) to do. We had Russian language lessons and are now using it as much as we can. It is useful indeed when travelling around Russia. The excursions that were offered seemed to be a way to try and please everyone’s interest. Especially we enjoyed Moscow city tour. The excursion buses were always neat and clean. The drivers were professional. We always felt safe in their care. The local tour guides were always informative and interesting. We were provided information in a smooth and relaxing style that made each visit to their city, one that we would be able to appreciate long after we got back home. We have been on many cruises in the past and given the size of the MS Tolstoy, it is world class. At the same time very personal. The cabins were good, considering that we spent little time therein. The maids were very polite and we always found the cabins clean and neat. All in all, the MS Tolstoy compares exceptionally well to the larger 18 storey liners! Next year we're going for a cruise to Astrakhan Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
So we are off to Russia. What are we meant to expect, is it going to be the cold concrete face that we so often see portrayed in our news reels, is it going to be safe, and will the people be welcoming, let's wait and see I suppose? ... Read More
So we are off to Russia. What are we meant to expect, is it going to be the cold concrete face that we so often see portrayed in our news reels, is it going to be safe, and will the people be welcoming, let's wait and see I suppose? The reviews we read sound promising however. So we arrive at the airport in Moscow and go through Customs and Immigration which is a breeze. Personnel are only too willing to offer assistance to us in entering into their country. Through the doors and into public area and we are immediately greeted by the Scenic hostess, who took care of everything from our arrival, to our luggage, to the taxi and being delivered to the boat it was an exceptional greeting, with everything in place, our luggage in our rooms and all we have to cart is ourselves. We have been to St Petersburg, Estonia, Sweden, Finland and through a couple of the Asian countries but we never had a preconceived idea of what we were about to be imported into. Russia is cosmopolitan, friendly, impeccably clean, safe, robust in its construction development, has traffic jams with mercs caused often by Ladas. The young people speak excellent English and bend over backwards to assist where they can. I have wonderful memories of the ambiance, culture and people of Russia and would recommend a visit to anyone contemplating such an adventure. Our tour was on board the Scenic Tsar (Alexander Grin). Never did we feel in jeopardy with anything we did, including our own free time in the City. Four of the crew were Scenic Group and the rest employed by the owners of the ship but you could not split them up for their service and consideration. Each had a role to play and each should have taken home an Oscar for the contribution they made to the tour. Our suite was excellent and accommodated all we wished for. I too liked the touch of the chocolates on the pillows at night but I have yet to find where mine disappeared every evening. Every organised tour was with a tour director who it is evident to see in the numerous photographs standing unobtrusively but with the focus of being our guardian angel. Overseeing the guardian angels was she who must be obeyed and whom made the tour a seamless flow of experiences, culture, integration and fun, the Cruise Director. I now pinch my wife's comments: The Cruise Director, Diana, was an absolute gem. She was never too busy for a chat whatever the subject and always the energetic pocket rocket for us all. Nothing was a problem, if there is a solution it will be solved, if there is not there will be an alternative and it will work. The onboard activities were well organised and the Russian lessons were lots of fun. Thank you Svetlana for being so patient. The choir should top the charts soon given the encores requested finally leading to a full instrumental reciptile. The Hotel Manager, Olga, did a great job looking after everyone's needs and was always on hand if you needed to make special requests etc. The spontaneous play will provide several Oscars this year. The tour directors Svetlana, Elena and Vadim were a wealth of knowledge and ready and willing to answer any questions about Russia, even a few political jokes were made during the course of the tour. I do hope Russia does not revert to one ply paper. The Directors kept their energy going at all times which regularly gave us all that extra lift we needed after a full day out. Last but not least a big thank you to Kapitan Vyacheslav Kochet Kov for keeping all of us safe on the waterways of Russia, and his wonderful welcome and departure dinners. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
My wife and I have sailed with Viking before (on the Danube) and so thought this would be more of the same, just with different ports. Also, our whole lives we have considered Russia to be a dark country, filled with communists and run by ... Read More
My wife and I have sailed with Viking before (on the Danube) and so thought this would be more of the same, just with different ports. Also, our whole lives we have considered Russia to be a dark country, filled with communists and run by dictators, Well, apparently we have always been wrong, it was a most welcoming country (even though we had to pay $500 for visas to get in--this is one of the sanctions that Obama has put into place to punish Russia...) Moscow was a VERY European city and not at all what we anticipated. Lots of fine and expensive cars, well dresses young people--the men and women appear to be in good physical shape, not like the fat-sos we see when we walk the sidewalks of NY. The guides knew the answers to all our questions, and they could name all the leaders starting with the Tsars of the fourteenth century and running right though Puton. Our final stop was St Petersburg and the traffic there is dreadful. Our dock was only about 15 miles from center city, but it was 1.5 hours by bus in the traffic. So on a day when we had a long tour, then back to the ship for a snack, and back on the bus to go to the ballet--that day was 6 hours in a bus. If we had known, we'd have stayed in town and had dinner at a local restaurant before the ballet. We were told that the dock we stayed at was as close as we could get due to the bridges being closed during the day--but really, the capt could have navigated through the bridges when they were open (from 2 AM until 6 AM), and then--like the ocean cruise ships, we'd have been in the downtown, and no need for all the busses. Who makes these plans? Well if it is the Cruise Director, I would say she was not at the top of her game (or if she was, she needs a new assignment). If someone else--they should be told. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
We wanted to do a safe mother daughter trip in Russia. We started In Moscow and ended in St. Petersburg. We loved the trip. The included tours and lectures were great. The local guides were wonderful. Our ship guides, Alexei, Vadim, and ... Read More
We wanted to do a safe mother daughter trip in Russia. We started In Moscow and ended in St. Petersburg. We loved the trip. The included tours and lectures were great. The local guides were wonderful. Our ship guides, Alexei, Vadim, and Sasha were wonderful, knowledgeable, and open to any questions. They made the trip. We paid extra for a behind the scenes trip to The Hermitage that was well worth the money. All the workers on board were helpful and friendly. Constantine, the videographer, did a super job. We enjoyed all the stops along the river, especially Uglich and Kizhi. We were glad to be on the right side of the ship as we were able to see many of the stops as we approached them. Viking took care of us when our luggage was two days late. The Viking Doctor took good care of my daughter when she was ill. Be sure to go the ballet. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
We had a WONDERFUL time on Viking. We had gone on Viking 10 years ago from Amsterdam to Budapest and we thought it was good, but this time it was terrific. Our room was perfect, the food was quite good and the staff were so helpful and ... Read More
We had a WONDERFUL time on Viking. We had gone on Viking 10 years ago from Amsterdam to Budapest and we thought it was good, but this time it was terrific. Our room was perfect, the food was quite good and the staff were so helpful and professional. The itinerary was interesting and I was quite pleased to see Moscow for the first time. It was much prettier than I expected and the people were very friendly. Luckily our weather was great and the interpreters were amazing and knowledgeable. The tours were very good but the traffic in the regions was quite bad. It took a long time to get back to the ship. The busses were comfortable. The ship was very clean. I did find the crew was not as friendly as the rest of the staff. The service was great. The American program director (OMG I forgot his name) was a nice touch and very helpful. So, go Viking! You did a great job and we enjoyed it very much!! We celebrated our 58th wedding anniversary aboard. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
Wow, where to begin. We would have never travelled to Russia on our own. After seeing how Viking handled our two week "Grand European" tour in 2013 from Budapest to Amsterdam during the "500" year flood, we knew that we ... Read More
Wow, where to begin. We would have never travelled to Russia on our own. After seeing how Viking handled our two week "Grand European" tour in 2013 from Budapest to Amsterdam during the "500" year flood, we knew that we would always be safe and stress free with Viking. We were right. It was a marvelous trip to a country we would have never put on our wish list if Viking was not hosting it. They continue to amaze us. The staff, the service, the food, the cleanliness and the tours are all 5 star. They offer us interesting places to visit not only stress free but with a feeling of security. In addition, their teams are friendly, helpful and full of fun and enjoy their work. Great service is the norm. As I said before, "Viking rules the rivers". Gord Haddock, Saskatchewan, Canada PS We are already booked on Vikings first ocean going ship the Star on their maiden voyage. I already know that we are going to have a wonderful trip. It's Viking........that's all we need to know. Read Less
Sail Date June 2014
Having enjoyed the AMA tulip time cruise, we booked the AMA Russian Waterways cruise. A mistake! AMA advertises "their" luxury re-built ship as the "most comfortable elegant vessel completely renovated and reconstructed from ... Read More
Having enjoyed the AMA tulip time cruise, we booked the AMA Russian Waterways cruise. A mistake! AMA advertises "their" luxury re-built ship as the "most comfortable elegant vessel completely renovated and reconstructed from bare steel". Not true. They lease a partially redone Russian ship with original noisy vibrating engines and inadequate air conditioning in the dining rooms and meeting room. The food was of such poor quality that many people got sick and/or developed swollen ankles from the salt laced soups. Fortunately, the doctor on board was very good. Pork chops would have made good tennis rackets and everything was tasteless and over cooked. As a result lots of people stopped eating for days. WIFI a joke, had to keep getting new authorization codes that didn't work. Television didn't work between ports. Toilet paper cheapest quality. Bed sheets not changed during entire cruise; dirty glasses left in the room. Beds hard as rock and no foam available to soften the bedding. Toiletries not worth stealing. Boat was always parked far from City centers requiring long bus rides during which we noticed other cruise ships parked much closer. Young Russian cruise staff was fine. Entertainment given the size of the ship was fine. Bottom line: AMA Russian Waterways cruise, which was a day less than other cruises yet more expensive, was not a luxury cruise as advertised so we will never take another due to the misrepresentation. More important, there isn't much to see between Moscow and St. Petersburg so a better bet would be just to fly into St. Petersburg which is worth a week by itself. The Hermitage was full (and hot) on weekends and early in the week. We went back mid afternoon mid-week...no lines no crowds (the cruise ships had left) but still hot...July hot in St. Petersburg and no a/c in historic buildings. Be prepared for price shock, eg. $8 to $16 for bottled water. Read Less
Sail Date June 2011

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