Pay attention! Only the 'I need a visa for entry Russia, but my country is not on the list for obtaining an e-visa, or I was refused (E-Visa denied)' case is considered here!!!If you have a visa (or if you intend to apply), study the detailed manual clicking 'By Cruise Ship + Visa' tab
The most important thing - do not worry! Of course, you can obtain an ordinary visa at the consulates of the Russian Federation. But not forget, that you can come to St. Petersburg even without any visa. Citizens of any country
arriving in St. Petersburg by sea are allowed a 72-hour visa-free entry!
You can come to St. Petersburg by sea in two ways.
a) on a cruise ship
b) by ferry
Let's compare these methods and find out all their advantages.BIG CRUISE SHIPA cruise on the Baltic Sea
by luxury ship is a great way to spend a vacation and visit St. Petersburg. But! There are several limitations that you must remember. ✱ Сruise companies
make only a one or two-day stop in St. Petersburg. However, our advice is not to run from one museum to another at the speed of Usain Bolt. Choose one or two attractions for each day of your stay and be sure to plan your free time for walks, restaurants and shows..✱
The territory of stay is limited within St. Petersburg only! You can visit such suburbs as Peterhof
, Pushkin (Catherine Palace
), Pavlovsk, Strelna (Konstantinovsky Palace
), Oranienbaum, Kronshtadt (are part of St. Petersburg), but it is forbidden to visit, for example, Gatchina (located outside St. Petersburg).✱
You must leave St. Petersburg in the same way (on the same ship) as you arrived. Therefore, do not be late for boarding. Otherwise, you will have big problems.✱
All visa-free passengers are required to purchase a shore tour
from a licensed operator for the entire duration of their stay in the port or separately for each day. It is necessary to present confirmation when passing passport control.
There is a life hack here - read below ↓
The port for large sea liners 'Marine Facade'
is located quite far from the city center and main attractions. Connection by public transport
is not very convenient, If you return to the port yourself - you need to get to harbour from the metro by bus.
Therefore, most likely you will have to take a taxi
or private transfer
to the pier or buy a tour
with included round trip transfers.
And something else. A very important trifle. To get ashore you must have, among other things, a medical insurance policy
. If you forgot about it in your holiday bustle, buy a policy online right now
from a reliable Russian company for only a couple of euros.Our advices and life-hacks ✪
You are not required to buy only those tours that the carrier (cruise organizer) offers you. Most often, they are unreasonably expensive. ✪
You can buy the tour yourself online before arriving at the port, for example from Viator
or from GetYourGuide
or from another authorized operator.✪
If cruise staff insist on buying a tour from the cruise operator, say that you will file a complaint about their illegal actions. ✪
When buying a tour, pay attention to all services and tickets (not) included in the price
and, most importantly, whether the operator provides the necessary papers (confirmations) for the border authorities.✪
If you are told that you must buy a tour for the whole day to leave the ship, do not believe it. To go ashore, you can buy the shortest and cheapest tour.✪ About the rule of permanent stay in the group. Attention - life hack!
Formally, you must follow the rules of the territory, duration (the beginning and end of the tour) and permanent stay in the tour group. However, you can get much more.
The main requirement for cruise passengers (unlike ferry passengers) is the need to spend the night on board the ship. The border authorities are not strict
for the time of returning to the ship, the main thing is just to return, including after midnight (you can buy an evening or night show or go to a restaurant). A later time of returning to the ship does not entail any fines for you.
Why travel agencies do not report such an opportunity? Firstly, this is bad business. Your time is their money. It is much more profitable to sell you several tours or one big tour. But, the main reason is that your shore guide must be sure that you are back on board the ship. If you do not return, the travel company will have huge problems, even canceling the license. That's why shore agencies are so strict.
What can be done? Our universal advice is a personal arrangement with a guide, perhaps for extra charge. Here, for example, is one of the possible options:
After the tour, you go to a restaurant, walk, and then return by taxi to the pier. By boarding (it is forbidden to photograph the passport control zone), take a selfie photo by smartphone and send it via WhatsApp to the guide no later than a certain time. If you do not, the guide informs the police about the violation of the visa-free stay.
How everything will be in reality is up to you, but one way or another, you must notify your guide of returning back.✪ And this is our main advice!
If you like to travel on your own, first buy the cheapest tour (in accordance with the requirements above), go ashore and enjoy the freedom of movement! But do not forget to return on board and notify your shore guide!That is not all! How to get a little more than others
Most cruise ships are moored at the port 'Marine facade'
. But some are allowed to arrive right in the city center
. In addition to a great connection to all attractions, you will have fantastic iconic photos
, which others do not have. Take a look
How to get this? The fact is that very large liners cannot stop at the Neva River embankments
. They are too big for that. But there are smaller ships. The main criterion for choosing is the number of passengers. Choose those where the capacity does not exceed 600-700 people. This is not a 100 percent guarantee, but the chances are very very high.
Hint. Pay attention to these cruise companies:
And another, perhaps the most important piece of advice.
We recommend buying cruises from Dreamlines
agency Yes, this is an agent (world-famous agency!), but here the prices are often much lower than those of official carriers.
But that's not all! Here is our main secret. Prices of the Russian webpage
are even lower! Compare for yourself! Here are prices for the similar cruises on the local page for the United States
customers, here for Australia
, and here prices for Russia
Feel the difference! Why pay more when you can pay less?Use any online translator (e.g. Google Translator) for information only, not for reservations - there is a possibility that reservations via translated webpage cannot be completed correctly. For booking use one of the original local page only.
Also available inGerman
See you in St. Petersburg! ☺