Classic Golden Ring of Russia bicycle tour in the most interesting region of the country. This Russian biking holiday takes in the best northeast of Moscow.
The Russian biking holiday is designed for international cyclists, and it will introduce you to the real Russia. Bicycling is an ideal way to explore this fascinating country. Our tour is comfortably paced and you will enjoy biking in the quiet Russian countryside. In addition to cycling, we offer a special cultural program.
We visit a lot of museums and exhibitions (some of them are little known). You will meet friendly local people and see how Russians really live. It is not possible to be in Russia and not to try Russian steam bath (banya). The menu promises to give you the opportunity to taste authentic Russian food that is unlike anything you’ve tasted before!
The Golden Ring of Russia bicycle tour (the region northeast of Moscow) is the most famous tourist route in the heart of Russia. It goes through numerous picturesque and ancient Russian towns: Vladimir, Suzdal (UNESCO world heritage), Yaroslavl (UNESCO world heritage), Kostroma, Sergiev Posad with Trinity Sergius monastery (UNESCO world heritage), Uglich (the Church of Dmitry on Blood is in the list of the world’s most beautiful churches), Rostov, and others known for their ancient history and inspiring architecture.
The tour starts in Moscow, where you have a guided downtown excursion. We will see the beautiful Russian countryside and Volga River, magnificent Orthodox churches and monasteries. The bicycling part starts in Uglich and ends in Vladimir 10 days later.
During the day you can cycle at your own pace, and a car will wait for you at appointed places along the route. Experienced guides will look after you in case of any difficulties. If you are tired you can always take the car for part of the route. Even non-riding spouses, or friends are welcome to join the tour and they can follow the group in the car.
In 10 cycling days on this Russian biking holiday we ride about 500 km. Most roads along the route do not have heavy traffic and are paved with asphalt. We stay in good quality hotels (double/twin or single accommodation with private bathroom).
Golden Ring of Russia bicycle tour: Itinerary
Day 1: Moscow (no cycling).
Arrival in Moscow. The hotel is located in the east part of Moscow next to the biggest Moscow park and 5 minutes walk from an underground station. It takes 15 minutes to get to the Red Square by metro. After short briefing we will go for a walk in the center of Moscow. Buffet dinner at the hotel.
Day 2: Uglich 20 km
We take a bus to Ratmanovo (about 220 km). On our way we will stop in Sergiev Posad for a tour of The Holy Trinity Sergius Lavra (UNESCO world heritage). From Ratmanovo we cycle 20 km to Uglich (some parts of the road are not paved). Today is a short day – we need to adjust bikes and there is lots of sightseeing. Uglich – a charming town on the Volga – one of pearls of our tour. We meet the Volga River – a main river of Russia which we will follow next 7 days. After city tour and visiting the museum of vodka. We stay at the nice hotel faced to the river.
Day 3 of Russian biking holiday Uglich – Myshkin 40 km
We visit a very interesting museum of hydropower in the morning. Then we cycle 40 km by a quiet road to Myshkin. Myshkin (“mice town” in Russian) is a small town on the Volga with plenty of museums. Again we stay next to the river. After taking a shower we have a tour of Myshkin with a local guide. After the tour we have free time to walk around the town.
Day 4: Myshkin – Rybinsk 75 km
We ride along Volga River by a quiet road. Along the road you may see lots of old wooden houses of 19 - beginning of 20 century (typical architecture of that time). After crossing the Volga by ferry we continue to Rybinsk. In Rybinsk we visit the historic museum of the region and then continue 18 km further to a nice countryside hotel with a swimming pool and spa.
Day 5: Rybinsk – Yaroslavl 90 km
The longest day leads us to the capital of the region, 1000 years old city Yaroslavl. On the route we stop in small town Tutaev which preserves its authenticity since 19 century. We visit an old 17 century church with frescos of famous Gury Nikitin. In Yaroslavl we stay in a modern hotel in the center of the city.
Day 6: Yaroslavl, no cycling
Walking tour of Yaroslavl with a local guide. The whole center of the city with around 140 architectural monuments has been included on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Free time in the afternoon. Special dinner and video in the evening.
Day 7: Yaroslavl – Viatskoe 60 km
After leaving Yaroslavl we make for the old merchant village Viatskoe. In the middle the road is bumpy (10 km). In Viatskoe we will find out how Russian people lived few centuries ago. We will have experience of real Russian banya (steam bathhouse, black style).
Day 8: Vyatskoe – Kostroma 57 km
The main adventure is going to be today. We cycle through a wood by sand road (7 km) to a place where we will cross the river by boat. Before the sand part we cycle 26 km by very quiet road. After the boat crossing we continue by a small road to Kostroma (20 km). We visit the Outdoor museum of Wooden Architecture & Peasant Life and stay for a night in a hotel in the very center of the city next to the river. Dinner at a boat with local drinks tasting.
Day 9: Kostroma – Ples 63 km
We use some unpaved shortcut to go out of the city (2 km). Today the route leads us to the small town Ples where famous Russian artist Isaak Levitan used to work in 19 century. The town is also famous for its incredible landscape. To get to the town we use boat crossing Volga again. Cycling tour of Ples with visiting the Cathedral hill and famous coffee shop named after Sofia Kufshinnikova, friend of Levitan. Here you may try favorite cookie of I. Levitan and Russian cheesecake “Kuleika” (not included). Transfer to Suzdal (150 km).
Day 10: Suzdal 20 km
Cycle tour in the world famous town Suzdal (UNESCO world heritage). Guided tour in Spaso-Ephimy monastery. Cycling to Kideksha with the old church of Boris and Gleb (1152). Free time. Farewell dinner in one of the best restaurants of the town.
Day 11: Suzdal - Bogolubovo – Vladimir – Moscow (50 km, if weather permits)
If weather permits we cycle to Bogolubovo by small roads. If it is rain we go by bus. We will visit the famous Church of Intercession on the Nerl. Then bus transfer to Vladimir to have a guided tour of the historic center including the Assumption monastery with Andrey Rublev frescos. Bus ride back to Moscow (180 km). Arrival to Moscow around 7-8 pm depends on traffic. Dinner at the hotel.
Day 12: Departure after an excellent Golden Ring of Russia bicycle tour.