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20

Yes, the situation has greatly changed since 2001 :) Today you can get into Saint Petersburg in many ways by ferry: By St. Peterline company ferries: by "Princess Maria" Monday, Thursday, Saturday at 19:00 from Helsinki (you'll be at St-Petersburg at 09:30 AM next day) by "Princess Anastasia" (sorry, only link in Russian are available) Wednesday, ...


17

Going with a cruise line is an exception to the rule that you need a visa. Basically, Russia uses the visa requirement to control the inflow of visitors. But if you are with a cruise line that has ALREADY submitted to Russian controls, you are effectively "controlled." The cruise line will only organize tours/excursions approved by the Russian government, ...


15

Actually, this is one exception where an organized "shore excursion" works better than venturing out on your own. In other words, you will be better served taking the tour with the cruise line. The cruise line takes care of the paperwork involving the entry visa. We disembarked at St. Petersburg with the cruise company and had the visa taken care of, ...


15

It's called SAPSAN, there are 7 trains in both directions Saint-Petersburg > Moscow and Moscow > Saint-Petersburg. Here is link to schedules (Google Translate) Prices are here (translation). There are business and economy class tickets available. The average journey is no longer than 4 hours in one direction. All trains serve every day except train 154 ...


10

The authoritative answer is at Way to Russia, but I'll summarize for posterity. Whoever you're staying with, be it hotel or apartment, is supposed to take care of registering you. They can take care of the registration at any police station or post office, you do not need to be present. When it's done, they'll get a piece of paper for you that confirms ...


10

Your best choice seems to be Trans-Exim that operates two times a week. The ferry line Ust Luga (Saint Petersburg) - Sassnitz (Germany) - Baltiysk (Kaliningrad) has come instead the previous one (valid from 2001 till 2007) “Saint Petersburg – Kaliningrad – German ports”. The Ust Luga port is located in 150 km from Saint Petersburg. The port Baltiisk is ...


8

You DO NOT need a Russian visa if you book for shore excursions through ANY licensed tour operator (absolutely not necessarily through the cruise line). Smaller tour operators offer better services and more personal care. You can have a look at the tour operator Tour De Force or any other - I have been working in the shore excursions industry in St. ...


8

Average temperatures during the year. Freezing cold in winter, with temperatures dropping down to −25°C and below at times. Below is a chart showing average daily maximum temperatures for the city. Averages Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Highs °C −5.1 −4.1 1.1 8.1 15.6 20.1 21.9 20.0 ...


7

Visa applications for Australia can be done completely online! (For Australia) So firstly, to confirm, yes Polish citizens do need a visa for Australia. Then, apply for it online. There are sites explaining the whole process. Travelers are not required to visit the Australian embassy nor send in their passports. Once online visa applications are ...


7

The booking of tickets is rather strange. If you book from Helsinki you will need to do this via Finnish Railways, if you're doing this from Russia you will need to do this via RZD. And depending on date, time and class tickets fluctuate between 65 Euro to 165 Euro. Allegro Train (SPb Finlyandskiy) would be the fastest option. Lev Tolstoi (SPb ...


6

To answer your follow-up question, your friend is definitely wrong if he meant that the ship is not subject to the local laws and somehow allowed to go everywhere and disembark passengers without visa in each and every country of the world, just because they are not staying for the night. As far as I know, the only situation in which international law would ...


6

Cheapest travel Michael Borgwardt is right about the cheapest alternative: a combination of early-booked trains, buses, rental cars would be the cheapest. If you want to see the northern lights, you need to go the far north, best is north of the Arctic Circle. The Aurora Sky Station in Abisko is very good for aurora watching, as it's right in the auroral ...


5

I know you want to travel by train, but if price is a concern, you really should know that minibuses are much cheaper: €15-25 vs €65+ for the train. Details for schedules, boarding points etc on Wikivoyage. And if you're willing to compromise, you could try taking a bus to Vyborg (Viipuri) just across the border, and then a cheap domestic Russian ...


5

I really don't recommend trip suggested by @Geeo. Cabin really exists, but they are not designed for tourism - much more for expeditors and workers on ship. And you have nothing to do on ship right until the end of your trip. Other thing is that you have to firstly go to the Baltiysk on bus or train, and even if you come to Ust`-Luga(small town near the ...


5

Just adding an interesting option to Michael's excellent answer. If you want to see both fjords and northern light I suggest getting on the Hurtigruten from Oslo (or Bergen) up to Narvik. It is not very cheap but probably cheaper than driving a rental up there. From Narvik there is a night train to Stockholm. It passes by Abisko so you can get off to look at ...


5

It's possible but unlikely that there is a cruise or tour that is affordable, covers what you want to see and runs in your desired timeframe. I'd ask a travel agent to get some offers. The best (and reasonably cheap) alternative would be a self-booked combination of flights, rental car and ferries: Fly from the UK to Copenhagen, or take the ferry from ...


5

Australia now does electronic Visas for most tourist Visas, so you will likely be able to apply over the Internet at http://www.immi.gov.au/. There is no need to have a physical stamp in your passport, and no need send your passport anywhere.


5

My understanding is that St. Peter is the only currently operating scheduled operator, although there are irregular visits by the usual suspects (P&O, Princess etc). Russian immigration rules are notoriously opaque, but my understanding is as follows: The 72-hour visa-free entry is only available if booked as part of a package, stays over 24 hours ...


4

First of all, want to note that @jpatokal is right and St. Peter line is really the only operator who serves the ships directly to St.Petersburg - please, review my old answer here: Are there currently any international ferries that travel to Saint Petersburg, Russia? Main principle for this kind of journey is that local authorities must know where are you ...


4

First of all, I want to note that my city (Saint-Petersburg) can be a great place at any time, if you have a good company for it :) Also, see the official site for tourists (in English). Climate Weather in Saint-Petersburg is in somewhat similar to Kaliningrad's one, but with some differences. Here the air humidity always over 80%, and this is quite ...


3

As @Karlson answered the question using information for current times, I want to add the information for futher trains. Technically this is not a direct trains from Helsinki to Saint-Petersburg, but there are plans of RZD to develop some general non-highspeed trains on regular basis. The Federal Passenger Company and the Government of Karelia plan to ...



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