The MS Russ is one of several motorships run by Vodohod which travel the rivers and lakes between Moscow and St. Petersburg and vice versa.
This is NOT ocean cruising. The Russ, built in 1986 but refurbished, accommodates about 280 passengers mostly in fairly basic cabins. There are 2 smallish beds with a small table between, adequate wardrobe space, storage shelves and a frig. There is a large window over the table.
Although the ship is 30 years old it was very well maintained. Our cabin was kept spotlessly clean as were all public areas and the outside decks looked like they had been painted the day before. The bathroom is small and interesting! On entering all you see is a hand basin and toilet. You make the shower by diverting the water from the tap over the sink via a hose to a shower head and pull a plastic curtain around you to stop the water going everywhere. Different, but worked well and hot water was always plentiful. The only provided toiletry is a cake of soap so take your own shampoo etc.
I had no complaints with the food. Breakfast was always buffet style with plenty of hot and cold dishes. Lunch (4 courses) and dinner (3) had to be preordered the day before and you had to sit in the same place at the same table for the whole trip to ensure you got what you ordered. No drinks included on the Russ - well not with the Australian company we booked with.
But the main point of this trip for me was to see Moscow and St. Petersburg and the country in between and this part I would give 5 stars. In both cities we were accommodated on the ship and there were included and optional tours. All were very good and some of the tour guides outstanding.
I found all the ports of call along the way most interesting with the highlight for me being tiny Kizhi Island (permanent population about 100), the most northerly part of the trip being only about 30 miles from the Arctic Circle. This island is home to some of Russia's most fantastic wooden architecture - the churches are stunning. And the young bell ringer produced the most beautiful, ethereal sound I have ever heard. It was hard to believe that one young man could pull so many bells to play such an intricate piece.
There were various on-board activities to help pass the time - there are 2 large lakes to cross with not a lot to see so take a book. Wifi was available in a small bar but very hit and miss. I notice another reviewer says it was always good in a lock and there are quite a few of them.
Best russian cruises
Russian river cruises
While you're in Russia, a cruise down its greatest rivers can be a perfect opportunity for you to better understand the Russian soul world-known for its mysteriousness. A Russian river cruise is not a simple trip from one point to another - it's an unforgettable experience that will remain in your memory for all your life. While cruising down the river in Russia, you can enjoy unique Russian cuisine and breathtaking folk music and decorative arts and immerse yourself deeper in Russian history while visiting greatest Russian cities.
And, of course, a Russian river cruise is probably the best way to travel if you want to fully enjoy the beauty of gorgeous Russian landscapes. Just imagine how spectacular the sunset on a river can be!
VODOHOD enhances the fleet
Navigation 2018 has officially started in Russia and VODOHOD introduced three newly refurbished ships. This year, in addition to the scheduled maintenance, VODOHOD’s three vessels were upgraded from 3 to 4 stars. On board fully refurbished MS "Nikolay Chernishevsky", MS "Konstantin Fedin" and MS "Kronshtadt" we now offer an enhanced level of comfort, quality and service.
WE ARE HAPPY TO INFORM YOU THAT SALES 2019 ARE OPEN!
Dear Partners!It is high time to open sales for the cruises of season 2019!
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