Russian North: Karelia Republic, White Sea and Solovetsky Monastery

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On the Solovetsky Islands in the White Sea there is a place where man can find ancient pagan architecture, Solovetsky Monastery ensemble and the first Soviet labor camp museum

  • Dates: 05 Jul - 15 Jul 2019
  • Duration: 11 days
  • Total mileage: 3,300 km
  • Roads: 95% asphalt, 5% gravel
  • Difficulty: Intermediate (gravel and roads, off-road skills needed, changing weather conditions)
  • Price: 2450 EUR (includes BMW F700/800GS rent)
  • Extra charge for BMW R1200GS: 500 EUR
  • Deposit for the motorcycle: 1000/1200/1500 EUR for F700GS/F800GS/R1200GS
  • Price if you ride your own motorcycle: 1350 EUR  
  • Price for the passenger: 1250 EUR
  • Single room supplement: 350 EUR

Key tour highlights: St.Petersburg, Valaam, Solovetsky Islands, Kizhi, Valday

Included services:

  • Motorcycle rental (BMW F700/800GS)
  • Petrol (for rented motorcycles only)
  • Accommodation in 3-4* hotels (based on sharing a double/twin room)
  • Breakfasts (during all days)
  • Meals during the riding days (lunches and dinners)
  • English-speaking guide on a motorcycle
  • Support VAN
  • Entry tickets to places of interest
  • Visa assistance

Services not included:

  • Air tickets to/from Russia
  • Personal medical insurance
  • Visa counsel fee
  • All services not mentioned as included

Optional services:

  • Extra motorcycle insurance (500 EUR, no deposit needed, full coverage)


Route: where we will go

Moscow – Seliger – St. Petersburg – Sortavala – Kem’ – Petrozavodsk – Valday – Moscow

DAY 1. Arriving in Moscow

Today you arrive in Moscow. After some rest, there will be a kick off meeting regarding the tour. We will provide you with the details and itinerary, and give some advice about rules and customs in Russia. After the kick off we will go for a walk and explore Moscow, as well as have a dinner at a nice restaurant with the Russian cuisine near the Kremlin.

DAY 2.  Moscow – Seliger, 380 km

We will leave Moscow early in the morning. Our first stop will be at Savvino-Storozhevskiy monastery in Zvenigorod where will go for a swim and get a bit closer to the history of this place. We will also visit Nealo-Stolbenskiy monastery named so in honor of ven. Neal who passed away here. After that we will drive to Zvenigorod where we will stay for a night.

DAY 3. Seliger – St. Petersburg, 510 km

We will start our day with visiting a very special place – source of the Volga river, where it starts just with a small spring. After that via Luga we will approach Gatchina, one of the suburbs of St. Petersburg, where we will see a beautiful Royal Palace. Our next stop will be in the Northern capital of Russia which is considered to be one of the most breathtaking places in Russia. We will stay for a night here to get ourselves ready for the upcoming journey to Karelia.

DAY 4. St.Petersburg – Sortavala, 330 km

We will leave St.Petersburg using a brand new toll road and head towards Karelia, one of the Northern regions of Russia. A stage Priozersk – Sortavala is considered to be one of the most spectacular roads in Russia. We will spend a night in Lamberg recreation center.

DAY 5. Sortavala, rest day

On this day we will make a visit Valaam monastery which is based on a small archipelago in the big Ladoga lake. We will get there by boat and after returning back to the hotel we will enjoy dinner at the lake shore.

DAY 6. Sortavala – Kem’, 700 km

It will be a long ride to the North. There will be plenty of beautiful roads with no traffic. In the evening we will approach Kem’ which is at the White Sea.

DAY 7. Solovetsky Monastery, rest day

We will leave our bikes at the hotel parking and go to the Solovetsky Islands by boat. Here we will find a majestic Spaso-Preobrazhenskiy monastery which is considered to be one of the most outstanding architecture gems of Russia together with being one of the most sacred places for Russian Orthodox Church. First monks arrived here in the early XV century and since that time a monastery was playing a very import fortification role. It also worth mentioning that this place was infamous for the Soviet labor camp which was established here in 1930s. During a private tour we will be able to learn something new about the history of this place and enjoy the fantastic nature of the Russian North.

DAY 8.  Kem’ – Petrozavodsk, 410 km

We will approach Petrozavodsk, Karelia’s capital, in the afternoon. As soon as we are there will make a boat trip to Kizhy island where we will see a fantastic example of exclusive wooden architecture – Kizhy Pogost. We will finish our day with a local food in a traditional Karelian restaurant.

DAY 9.  Petrozavodsk – Valday, 640 km

On the pre-last day of this tour we will visit Iversky monastery, placed in Valday. It was founded in 1653 by patriarch Nickon in honor of Iverskaya Holy Virgin icon. The monastery played a very important role in unification Russian Orthodox church. One of the first tile manufactories and typographies of ancient Rus’ are placed here.

DAY 10. Valday – Moscow, 400 km

Heading back to Moscow via Konakovo ferry crossing.

DAY 11. Moscow, departure

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