• Explore the historical and architectural evolution of Russia’s capital against a backdrop of seasonal festivities
• Discover a selection of beautiful and historical monasteries, including the UNESCO-listed Trinity-Sergius Lavra Monastery in Sergiev Posad
• Enjoy the sights, sounds and tastes of Orthodox Christmastide during Moscow’s Winter Festival
Depart Heathrow 1040 on Aeroflot, arriving Moscow 1620. Transfer to Hotel National, Moscow, for six nights. Evening introductory lecture: "The History and Urban Development of Moscow."
Morning: Kremlin including cathedrals, Armoury and former Patriarch’s Palace (time allowing). Afternoon: Red Square including St Basil’s Cathedral, Kitay-gorod district with Church of the Trinity in Nikitniki and Old English Court. Revolution Square for Winter Festival.
Orthodox Christmas Day Monasteries of Moscow: Novospassky (including Christmas Day liturgy), Spaso-Andronikov (Andrei Rublev icon museum), Krutitskoe Podvorie Estate, Pokrovsky (relics of St Matrona), Old Believers’ settlement at Rogozhsky Poselok. Evening lecture: "Russian Art at the Tretyakov Gallery."
Historic Zamoskvorechye district (Marfo-Mariinsky Convent, Church of St Gregory of Neocaesarea) followed by Tretyakov Gallery. Cathedral of Christ the Saviour (tallest Orthodox Christian church in the world) and Pushkin State Museum of Fine Art (largest museum of European art in Moscow, archaeological collection including ‘Priam’s Treasure’). Free evening.
Coach tour of Moscow including Novodevichy (‘New Maidens’) Convent, Church of St Nicholas in Khamovniki and Leo Tolstoy House-museum. Afternoon visits to Sparrows’ Hill, Fili (Church of the Intercession of the Virgin) and ice sculptures exhibition on Poklonnaya Hill.
Morning: Kolomenskoye Historical and Architectural Museum including Ascension Cathedral (exterior only) and House of Peter the Great, followed by sledge ride (optional). Afternoon monastic visits: Danilov (headquarters of the Russian Orthodox Church) and Donskoy.
Excursion by coach to Sergiev Posad (ancient Golden Ring town, site of the UNESCO-listed Trinity-Sergius Lavra Monastery). Depart Moscow 1925, arriving Heathrow 2125.