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Classic Karelia
Classic Karelia

Kizhi, Valaam and Ruskeala with glamping accommodation

New
Classic Karelia
Difficulty
Difficulty levels
Easy. Passive relaxation and sightseeing — cruises for example. No physical activities. Good for older people.
Normal. Active tours. You don’t have to be a sportsman, but you need to be strong enough to ride a snowmobile or go hiking in the mountains.
Advanced. Get ready for a challenge — long trekking with a heavy backpack on the shoulders, rafting along mountain rivers.
Hard. Professional training and perfect physical fitness are required. The level involves climbing to the tops of the mountains (above 3000 meters), freeriding and North Pole diving.
Age
7 y.p
Group size
from 6 to 20 person
Duration
3 days

Accommodation during the trip

2 nights

Languages

EN
guide
FR
guide
Start date
9 July 2021
  • 9 July 2021
  • 23 July 2021
  • 13 August 2021
  • 3 September 2021
End date:
11 July 2021
490 EUR

In just three days you will visit the main sights of Karelia: the ancient monasteries on Valaam and Kizhi islands, the marble quarries of the Ruskeala Mountain Park and the picturesque Ladoga skerries. However, unlike the usual excursion programs, this tour has two advantages. First, includes non-standard routes that will allow you to see all the famous places from a completely different view. And secondly, you will live in the only dome glamping in Karelia located on the island of the largest lake in Europe.

New
Classic Karelia
Difficulty
Difficulty levels
Easy. Passive relaxation and sightseeing — cruises for example. No physical activities. Good for older people.
Normal. Active tours. You don’t have to be a sportsman, but you need to be strong enough to ride a snowmobile or go hiking in the mountains.
Advanced. Get ready for a challenge — long trekking with a heavy backpack on the shoulders, rafting along mountain rivers.
Hard. Professional training and perfect physical fitness are required. The level involves climbing to the tops of the mountains (above 3000 meters), freeriding and North Pole diving.
Age
from 7 y.p
Group size
from 6 to 20 person
Duration
3 days

Accommodation during the trip

2 nights

Languages

EN
guide
FR
guide
Start date
9 July 2021
  • 9 July 2021
  • 23 July 2021
  • 13 August 2021
  • 3 September 2021
End date:
11 July 2021
490 EUR

Experiences you'll have

Excursion tour to glamping on Lake Ladoga

We have prepared for you an individual program of exploring the protected areas of Karelia with unusual accommodation — in a modern, comfortable and eco-friendly glamping located on an island in the heart of the Ladoga skerries. During the day you will enjoy personal excursions, hiking and water trips accompanied by professional guides. And in the evening you will have a chance to relax in cozy spherical tents surrounded by a pine forest, admiring stunning starry nights over Ladoga and tasting Karelian cuisine prepared by the chef.

This program will appeal to fans of a comfortable sightseeing tours. Transfers along the route will be minimal and tiresome, and individual excursionswill  allow you to fully get acquainted with the main natural and historical sights of Karelia.

In just 3 days, you will:

  • see not only the top sights of Karelia — the Valaam Monastery and the Kizhi Pogost, but also take a boat through the picturesque straits to the secluded sketes of the Valaam archipelago and explore the "hidden corners" of the Kizhi island, where tourists usually do not get to
  • walk along the famous Marble Quarry in the Ruskeala Mountain Park, and, if you want, you can go down into the underground tunnels of the XVIII century
  • take a ride on motor boats through the "water labyrinths" of the Ladoga skerries and climb to its highest point — the Aino Mount, which offers a magnificent view of the vast Ladoga expanses

 

See also the similar 2-days individual tour to Karelia with hotel accommodation in Petrozavodsk and a more active tour in the Northern Ladoga Region with accommodation in glamping.

 

Note: for your group of 2 people or more, we can organize this program on any date, see the cost in the "Common questions" section.

 

Photos by Ekaterina Kangina, as well as Marketing Director of RussiaDiscovery Alena Chudanova.

Itinerary

The journey begins in Petrozavodsk, where you need to get on your own on the first day of the program. We recommend train №18 "Karelia" with arrival in Petrozavodsk at 7:55 am. Return tickets should be purchased for train №160A departing from Sortavaly at 8:20 pm on the final day of the tour.

 

We are ready to help with the purchase of tickets, if necessary, leave a comment in the application.

Day 1 Kizhi Island

After meeting at the Petrozavodsk train station you will be taken to the hotel for breakfast, after which you will walk along the embankment of Lake Onega. It is famous for its unusual art objects, as well as sculptures and monuments donated to Petrozavodsk by the twin cities.

 

Further you will take a high-speed boat to Kizhi Island (1 hour and 15 minutes on the way). First, you will have a private sightseeing tour of the central part of the island. You will visit the recently restored churches and the bell tower of the Kizhi Pogost, which are considered to be monuments of wooden architecture of the XVIII-XIX centuries.

 

Then you will find an extended program  yo the "hidden corners of Kizhi", during which you will walk through the most picturesque places and island villages. You will see historical and cultural objects brought from various parts of the Zaonezhye region: residential buildings and farm buildings from Karelian, Russian and Vepsian villages, ancient chapels and household items.

 

After the tour you will have lunch in a cafe on the pier, and then go back to Petrozavodsk by speedboat. At the city pier you will change to minibuses, which will take you to the Northern Ladoga region (2.5-3 hours on the way). This is one of the most picturesque areas of Karelia. It is famous for Ladoga skerries — many small rocky islands separated by narrow straits.

 

In the evening you will arrive at the city pier of Sortavala, from where you will go by motor boat  to the Havus island, located in the heart of the Ladoga skerries (15-20 minutes on the way). Here you will stay in a comfortable glamping for the next 2 days. You will be accommodated in cozy domed tents surrounded by a pine forest and will have a welcome dinner of Karelian cuisine from the chef.

Day 2 Valaam Archipelago

After breakfast you will take a private tour of Valaam directly from the island pier on speedboats. Together with a local guide you will visit the central estate of the monastery and the Saviour Transfiguration Cathedral, and then have lunch in the refectory of the monastery.

 

After lunch you will get acquainted with the ancient sketes of the Valaam archipelago. First, you will go for a walk to the Nikolsky Skete. It is located on the Krestovy Island at the entrance to the Monastery Bay and is considered to be one of the most beautiful in Valaam. Along the way you will discover picturesque views of the bays, numerous channels and inland lakes of the archipelago.

 

In the XIX century the monastery customs house was located in the Nikolsky Skete. On the site of the preserved Church of St. Nicholas the Wonderworker, built in 1853, there used to be a stone chapel. It served as a lighthous for those arriving on Balaam: at night, a lantern was lit in it.

 

Further from the Nikolsky skete along the inner straits of the Valaam archipelago you will go by boat to the secluded sketes: All Saints Skete — the very first and largest on Valaam and Smolensky Skete. During the tour you will see the bridges and canals of the XVIII-XIX centuries.

 

The route will end near the Voskresensky and Gefsimanskiy Sketes, called "New Jerusalem". Then you will return to glamping by boat, where you will have a hot dinner from the chef. After that, if you wish, you can relax in the furako on the shore of Lake Ladoga (for an additional fee).

Day 3 Ladoga Skerries and Ruskeala Mountain Park

After breakfast you will enjoy a circular route on motor boats along the Ladoga Skerries. One of the striking features of this part of Ladoga is the so-called "reef mountains". They are sheer cliffs that drop into the lake from a height of up to 80 meters. You will climb to the highest point of the Ladoga skerries — Mount Aino. It offers a magnificent view of the vast expanses of Ladoga and the Valaam Archipelago.

 

Also during the boat trip you will see the islands where the Finnish farms used to be. Here the foundations of the houses resembling bunkers are preserved. These farms were used as long-term firing points and were part of the defense line during the Soviet-Finnish war of 1939-1940.

 

For lunch you will return to glamping, and then continue the excursion program and go to Sortavala by boat. There you will change to minibuses and go to the Ruskeala Mountain Park (30 minutes on the way).

 

Ruskeala marble quarry is a monument of cultural heritage of Russia. Development here began in 1765. The walls of the famous St. Isaac's Cathedral, Ladozhskaya and Primorskaya metro stations in St. Petersburg are decorated with Ruskeala marble.

 

The quarry is a huge system of underground tunnels and drifts connected by vertical shafts. Most of them were flooded after the Great Patriotic War, and the quarry turned into a surprisingly beautiful lake with a turquoise hue of water, the transparency of which reaches 15-18 meters.

 

After an individual tour of the quarry you will have free time in the park. If desired, and for an additional fee, you can take an exclusive route through the underground corridors of Ruskeala (paid additionally).

 

Then you will be taken to Sortavala, where you will have free time. You can stroll through the historic center and have dinner at the national Karelian cuisine restaurant (extra charge) before heading to the train station for the evening train to Moscow.

New
Classic Karelia
Difficulty
Difficulty levels
Easy. Passive relaxation and sightseeing — cruises for example. No physical activities. Good for older people.
Normal. Active tours. You don’t have to be a sportsman, but you need to be strong enough to ride a snowmobile or go hiking in the mountains.
Advanced. Get ready for a challenge — long trekking with a heavy backpack on the shoulders, rafting along mountain rivers.
Hard. Professional training and perfect physical fitness are required. The level involves climbing to the tops of the mountains (above 3000 meters), freeriding and North Pole diving.
Age
7 y.p
Group size
from 6 to 20 person
Duration
3 days

Accommodation during the trip

2 nights

Languages

EN
guide
FR
guide
Start date
9 July 2021
  • 9 July 2021
  • 23 July 2021
  • 13 August 2021
  • 3 September 2021
End date:
11 July 2021
490 EUR

Accommodation during the trip

You will stay at glamping — the cozy domed campsite with a high level of comfort located right on the shore of Lake Ladoga. Glamping is located on Havus Island, surrounded by a picturesque pine forest and Ladoga Skerries. 

 

On the territory of glamping there are:

  • panoramic domed restaurant, where every day you will be served breakfast and dinner. Inside the tent, there are a dining and tea area (always available for guests), as well as a lounge area with a fireplace, board games and a large screen for watching movies on a projector.
  • 10 cozy domed tents designed for two people. Each of them has two comfortable lower beds (800x2000) and an additional bed upstairs — a double bed (1400x2000) with bed linen and towels, bedside tables, a table with armchairs, a wardrobe, as well as sockets and a bio toilet
  • a washing area, showers on the shore of Lake Ladoga and Japanese furako (a heated outdoor wooden bathtub)
  • campfire area with fire bowl and seating
  • pier for boats


Glamping RussiaDiscovery in Karelia will be opened for the first time in the summer of 2021. Therefore, the gallery contains photos of our glamping on the Kola Peninsula — the dome camp on Ladoga will be much like it.

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Common questions

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Who will be my guide +

During this tour, a whole team of specialists will work with you: experienced English, French and Italian-speaking guides, as well as drivers and captains who will manage motor boats on Ladoga.

 

Tour leader Roman Terentyev will accompany you on excursions and tell you a lot of interesting things about the culture and traditions of the Karelian natives. Roman grew up on the shores of Ladoga, lived and worked on the island of Kizhi for several years, and is qualified as a first-class tour guide.

 

The glamping chef Dmitry Kuzmin will prepare delicious and nutritious breakfasts and dinners with Karelian cuisine. Dmitry has more than 12 years of professional experience. He worked as a sous chef and chef in restaurants of 4-5* hotels in Petrozavodsk, Sochi, Nizhny Novgorod and Krasnodar. He has also experienced working in expedition conditions: at the Barneo ice camp at the North Pole and at the hunting camp in the NAO.

Meals +

The tour price includes three meals a day, except the dinner at the restaurant in Sortavala on the final day. On the first day of the program you will have breakfast in the restaurant of "Fregat" Hotel in Petrozavodsk, and have lunch in a cafe on the pier of the Kizhi island. Lunch on day 2 will be served in the refectory of the Valaam Monastery.

 

Breakfast on days 2 and 3, lunch on day 3 and dinners on days 1 and 2 will be served in glamping. The menu will include a variety of Karelian cuisine: red fish of different cooking methods, "lohikeitto"— cream fish soup, "kalitki" — open pies stuffed with millet, fish and berries, as well as cranberries in sugar, tinctures and jam from northern berries.

What transport is used on the route +

Comfortable minibuses will be used on the route from Petrozavodsk to Sortavala, as well as to the Ruskeala Mountain Park.

 

Water trips on Lake Ladoga and Valaam Archipelago will take place on high-speed closed boats (boarding for 5-6 people) and inflatable motor boats "Admiral" with an Yamaha/Tohatsu outboard motor with a capacity of 15 hp.

What to bring with me +

Personal belongings and equipment:

  • documents in sealed packaging: passport, medical policy
  • comfortable clothing sets for different weather conditions (a waterproof jacket or raincoat, a fleece jacket or sweater in case of cool weather, as well as light clothes for hot weather)
  • comfortable shoes (for long walks)
  • a small backpack (it will be convenient to carry a raincoat, a camera, water and other personal items)
  • sunglasses and sunscreen and after sunburn
  • individual first aid kit
  • bathing accessories


In addition: women will need a head cover (hat, scarf) and skirts (or palatine put top of the trousers) to visit the temples.

What will the weather be like +

From the end of May to the middle of July there is the period of white nights in Karelia, when the evening twilight almost merges with the morning.

 

The end of June — mid-August is the warmest time on Lake Ladoga. The average temperature is +16-17°C, during the day the air can warm up to +20°C and above. The water temperature also varies between +13-18°C. On Lake Ladoga, there are often strong winds, but thanks to this, there are almost no mosquitoes and midges in the summer.

 

At the beginning of the season, there are a lot of strawberries on the Ladoga islands, and at the end of summer, the shores are covered with cranberries, blueberries and  cloudberries cranberries.

Mobile connection and Wi-Fi +

In Petrozavodsk and Sortavala you will have stable mobile communications and mobile Internet. In glamping, the most stable signal is from the Russian mobile operator "Megafon".

The cost of the program for individual groups of two or more people +

We can organize this program in an individual or corporate format on any other dates.

 

The cost will depend on the size of the group:

  • 5 people — 526 EURO per person.
  • 4 people — 575 EURO per person.
  • 3 people — 665 EURO per person.
  • 2 people — 826 EURO per person.
  • 1 person — 1255 EURO per person.

Booking

New

Classic Karelia

Difficulty
Difficulty levels
Easy. Passive relaxation and sightseeing — cruises for example. No physical activities. Good for older people.
Normal. Active tours. You don’t have to be a sportsman, but you need to be strong enough to ride a snowmobile or go hiking in the mountains.
Advanced. Get ready for a challenge — long trekking with a heavy backpack on the shoulders, rafting along mountain rivers.
Hard. Professional training and perfect physical fitness are required. The level involves climbing to the tops of the mountains (above 3000 meters), freeriding and North Pole diving.
Age
from 7 y.p
Group size
from 6 to 20 person
Duration
3 days

Accommodation during the trip

2 nights

Languages

EN
guide
FR
guide
490 EUR
What's included in the price:
  • accommodation in twin domed tents in glamping (2 nights)

  • three meals a day with traditional Karelian cuisine

  • all transfers as per program (minibuses, motorboats and speedboats)

  • individual excursion programs

  • services of experienced English-speaking guides, as well as captains and chef

Extra charge:
  • railway tickets to Petrozavodsk and from Sortavala (starting at 48 EURO per person for a round-trip ticket)

  • dinner on the final day of the program

  • additional payment for entrance tickets to sightseeing sites (+45 EURO per person per tour)

  • tour through the underground part of Ruskeala Mountain Park (+17 EURO per person)

In the price:
Included Extra charge
  • accommodation in twin domed tents in glamping (2 nights)

  • three meals a day with traditional Karelian cuisine

  • all transfers as per program (minibuses, motorboats and speedboats)

  • individual excursion programs

  • services of experienced English-speaking guides, as well as captains and chef

  • railway tickets to Petrozavodsk and from Sortavala (starting at 48 EURO per person for a round-trip ticket)

  • dinner on the final day of the program

  • additional payment for entrance tickets to sightseeing sites (+45 EURO per person per tour)

  • tour through the underground part of Ruskeala Mountain Park (+17 EURO per person)

9 Jul 2021, Fri — 11 Jul 2021, Sun
490 EUR
23 Jul 2021, Fri — 25 Jul 2021, Sun
490 EUR
13 Aug 2021, Fri — 15 Aug 2021, Sun
490 EUR
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