1) all my questions before the trip were dealt with quickly and competently and answered. Never did Pascal give me the feeling that a question might be stupid. The material list helped me prepare myself well.
2) The whole trip was PERFECTLY organized. Visa application, Check-In, room bookings, luggage deliveries, program changes; everything was taken by Pascal and Alexis in the Hand, so that I as a participant was just allowed to take a vacation.
3) complications were always solved immediately and competently so that I as a guest never had the impression that I had to interfere or to worry so everything went well.
4) Pascal Manetsch is a very caring motivating and supportive guide and companion who takes care of his guests competently, their well-being and their individual needs. He made sure that I was the weakest in the group on the ski tours to indicate the pace, which took a lot of pressure from me and so I managed to reach the set goals and to cross my own limits.
5) the team on site has joined together in such a way that they gave a well-rehearsed Team for us guests. The daily routines went smoothly.
6) Our cook was a 5-star pearl. It was so fantastic that you emptied all the pots even without feeling hungry.
So this trip is in my best memory and my great gratitude is especially to Pascal and Alexis, who together as communicators and organizers gave a well-established Team. But also the other group participants have been able to convey to me the feeling of security and safety. Whether a trip is good or not, is mainly dependent on the fellow people and I was surrounded by people who lived through this adventure with me with benevolent and high social competence.
Di Semple, Canada
We are are having a fantastic tour ! This country has such an interesting history,
Our guides are excellent , of course!
In Moscow Ilya introduced us to the country.
Our tour to Suzdal showed us the countryside.
But, here in St Petersburg we have enjoyed the interesting days with Anna.She has tailored the tour to us. We have eaten Russian food in good restaurants and in fast foods. Great fun! She knows how to get through palaces the best ways!
Plus, our driver Arton is exceptional! He drops us off at the closest point and he picks us up right away.last night he sat for three hours in the car in the rain waiting to bring us back for a ten minute trip to the hotel!
B y the way. Our seats for the ballet were unbelievable. I had not been to a ballet so it was a wonderful experience.
You didn’t have to worry. We are in excellent hands.
Enjoy your holiday!
Stefano, South Africa
We are back home - today a week already! My apologies that I am writing to you now only.
First of all: Thank you VERY much for the well organised tour you had prepared for us! The entire group had a wonderful time, and I am still getting messages of thanks and praise about the tour. We all enjoyed the tour thoroughly.
I am already planning our next tour for 2019. I think it should be at the end of July like this year.
I also have the following ideas: to present a second tour with music and ballet performances - and to include the Valaar monastary in this one. Tanya told me that it is possible to do it with hydro-something boat! in one day, and that that could cut considerable cost. What do you think? Perhaps we could then cut some of the otherr visits as well, to keep the lenth of the tour almost the same as the past one.
My next idea is to have a Christmas Tour to Russia. To include Moscow, Boshoi Ballet and a few extraordinary visits in Moscow, and to go by train to St Petersburg (4-5 hours?). There an orchestral performance, Catharine Palace and the Hermitage, etc. What about a sleigh ride on the snow at Pavlovska? What else would you suggest. This tour could be a little shorter...I thought we could include a luxurious dinner in a larger beautiful place at or near Christmas perhaps with a chamber ensemble?
Michael, thank you again for our wonderful tour!
Rona Karimzada, USA
Hi Tari Team,
My name is Rona Karimzada, and I work in the Customer Care department at Kensington Tours.
One of our clients, Hyang Lee on trip Lee4T-430809 left some amazing feedback about their trip to Russia. The family was so impressed and very pleased with your team and wanted me to pass along this message to you. Thank you so very much for taking such good care of our clients!
In addition, Mrs. Lee wants to personally thank her guide in St. Petersburg, Victoria. She was asking about Victoria’s contact details as she wants to send her something as a token of appreciation. Could you kindly forward me her email address that I can pass along to the Lee family?
Thank you so much!
Howard (and Imy), USA
We are soon saying goodnight to our last day in Russia. We will be picked up (hopefully) at 5 AM tomorrow morning for our 8:20 AM Lufthansa flight to Munich continuing on to Chicago.
Thank you for the wonderful job you did in managing our travels and tours. Our guides, Elena in St. Petersburg and Svetlana in Moscow, were truly outstanding. They were extremely knowledgeable, spoke English perfectly, and were delightful to be with.
I would also compliment Kensington on the vast majority of their organizing. There were a few things that bothered me and believe they deserve to be shared with them:
We had an excelllent car (Toyota Camray) and Driver (Michael) during our stay in St Petersburg. The car was clean and bottles of water were readily available to us.
Also, though not a huge problem: our seats on the train from St. Petersburg were, in my opinion, anything but first class even though our car #2 was called “first class.” In fact car #1 had the type of seating that was, in fact, first class. I don’t know what we paid for car #2 but would certainly have preferred the seating in car #1 however, we never were presented this as an option. It was a less than comfortable 4 hour train ride..... and with no guidance as to how to use the wi-fi. It seems to me that the train booking and instructions in English would have been an opportunity for them to demonstrate a
High-touch level of service that would have distinguished them from those miss the details and dropped the ball.
I must say that we found each of our hotels comfortable and worthy of they five-star ratings. Indon’t Think we could have been any more satisfied were we to have stayed at the Four Seasons or the Ritz.
Each of the locations was perfectly situated. Even so, we did a ton of walking
This was the trip of a lifetime and everything was perfect! Thanks to your impeccable planning and the expert guides/drivers. In St. Petersburg we made a friend for life with our guide, Arina. She really got to know us and what we liked and spent time each evening to prepare little surprises for the next day tours. Things like outdoor parks were we could walk, talk and take in the great weather and she even took us to the world renowned Vaganova School for Ballet where the Mariinsky Ballet trains their students. The evening of our performance my favorite ballet dancer of all time actually performed.
The accommodations were first class and the breakfasts were a feast, more than we could eat in a lifetime.
Needless to say we did not want to come home and would go back for the same trip again. We thought Ireland would be the next on our list but St Petersburg took our hearts.
Thank you for all the time and planning you did for us. We were able to see palaces and museums in St. Petersburg that a lot of my Russian friends have not been able to get to. Especially the Gold and Diamond Rooms at the Hermitage.
Lincoln J, USA
I wanted to email you and tell you that everything - every thing - on this tour went perfectly. It was a model for how a tour in St. Petersburg should be. The planning, the visa company, the hotel, the pickup and drop off and the touring were expertly done. This tour was smooth and efficient - we got to, and saw everything without aggravation and so could genuinely enjoyed the trip.
Our pickup and drop off by Ali was done comfortably, smoothly and efficiently. He was a warm and welcoming fellow who got us in and out at the airport and hotel including check in and check.
Our guide Tanya Svatodumova was spectacular. She got us into what we wanted to see, despite massive crowds and provided spot on analysis and critiques of art, culture, history and daily life throughout the days. The day at the Hermitage was outstanding, long and terrific.
Sergei Levshenkov, our driver was also fantastic. He was attentive, safe, punctual and helpful.
At one point I turned to Kim and said “these two are the dream team.”
The best example was when we needed an extra bag. As we were wrapping up our time before the final drop off, the two of them took a route to get us exactly what we needed in a local shop. You could see the discussions and the work they were doing to get us what we needed.
I cannot recommend this pair highly enough and I know myself well enough to say my standards are pretty high.
I wanted to let you know about this. I understand my friend Marianne Dinsmore is likely using Kensington for a substantial trip to Africa based on our referall to/through you. I hope her trip goes as well as ours. I understand Kensington is expensive but in the final analysis it was worth every penny.
This is a perfect example of what happened. It’s a snap of Kim and Tonya directly in front of one of the two Da Vinci’s in the Hermitage.
Kensington Tours, USA
Just pulled back in from Russia and wanted to let you guys know the trip was incredible. Ilya got to meet some of the workers there who knew him at the orphanage and we were able to walk around the orphanage for ½ day and then went to hospital and also talked with agency that handles adoption. The people there really wanted to help us. They thought it was cool that we were back looking for his roots We found out his birth mother’s name – Oxana Nickoli Kereshenko - and that she was 28 and this was her 2nd pregnancy. So somewhere Ilya has a sibling. Moscow is so much nicer that it used to be. I really like Russia. Really amazing history and just place I really like. But even better for Ilya to get closer to finding out his roots.
We will go back there for sure and hope to meet his mother. We are going to work on some legal stuff with Russia and US but hope to get permission to speak to his birth mother if she wants. This was really start of the adventure that is going to take little more time than I thought but we found out so much
Russia really is beautiful country. Here are some pics. The one with Ilya and those 2 ladies are ladies who worked with him when he was baby.
The translator and guide for first 2 days really deserves some accolades from her boss. Impossible to say how great she was. Kind, great English, smart and caring. The one for last day was also good but the one for first day was just super.
Thank you for everything!! This was amazing event in my son’s life. I could not be happier with the tour package
Peter & Elaine Reseigh, England
Hello, I would like to let you know what a great holiday my wife and I had
in Moscow and St Petersburg recently in your recent November trip.
Everything was perfectly timed. The meet in Moscow was spot on with the guide waiting at the arrival
gate in full view so there was no frenzied searching. Transfers were seamless and the hotels in both
locations were comfortable and modern with all the facilities that you could want and all staff were very
friendly and helpful.
Guides were excellent. Both were extremely well informed and went out of their way to answer any
question that was thrown at them.
The transfer from Moscow to St Petersburg was so easy with Porters having been organised beforehand
to take care of the luggage at both stations. An Excellent train Journey on a clean comfortable and
All the excursions were excellent and the coaches and drivers were very good. At no time was there ever
that call for tips for the drivers etc.
Special mention has to go to the Folk show in St Petersburg held at the Palace with the fabulous meal
afterwards. It was like going back in time. Really the highlight of the Trip.
So a big thank you Newmarket Holiday. We have never felt the need to write comments about a holiday
with anyone before but we couldn't not this time.
We would certainly use you again. Many thanks and best wishes for a successful and prosperous 2018.
Peter & Elaine Reseigh
AZ Tour Agency, New Zealand
Vladivostok – Irkutsk – Ulan-Ude – Krasnoyarsk – Kazan – Moscow – Golden Ring – Moscow – St. Petersburg
Michael, Hello! all the tour was over all very happy. Changed opinion about Russia in a good way. A big thanks to you from a group for an organized tour.
Thanks again, nice to meet you, hope to continue cooperation.
Insider-Tour, Robyn Grayson, USA
My tour in Moscow was also excellent. Zoya ( ? Spelling) was also a wealth of knowledge and gave me a very good two days seeing Moscow.
I am very pleased I made the trip to Russia as I had considered pulling out when Susan had to cancel. I was very nervous about doing the trip alone. It was with the help of your guides, particularly Marina, who put me at ease and also the fact I was staying at very good hotels in good locations. You have an amazing country with so much to see and do.
I would always highly recommend that anyone travelling to Russia used Insider Tours to ensure they got the most out of it.
Thank you once again,
Rotem, Yeadimtravel, Israel
How are you?
Barnea couple is back home. They just called us to say thank you and that they had the best tour ever!
So, want to say thank you as well for your support!
Hope for mutual cooperation in the future for this kind of FIT's.
Thanks a lot,
Kensington tours LeAnne, USA
We're having a glorious time in Russia! Our tour guides have been professional and knowledgeable, as well as warm and interesting. We would recommend both Oksana and Irina highly. Our itinerary has been the perfect mix of guided tours and time to wander on our own. I remarked to my husband today that the locations of our hotels have allowed us to explore Moscow and St. Petersburg safely.
Thanks again for all your help!
WinskoopToere, South Africa
We are safely back in South Africa.
I gives me great pleasure to inform you that there is not one tour member who is not extremely satisfied with the tour you designed and organised for our group!
We all enjoyed the program tremendously, and the good guides you used made this tour very special!
Russia is such an interesting country. Moscow is really great, and the Golden Ring cities with Tver and Novgorod (and especially Sergev Posad! ) were wonderful! I am so grateful that you assisted me to go there! And then St Petersburg - the most beautiful city in the world!! We enjoyed it so much! So much art, so much beauty - everywhere! And here Tanya did such a good job! We think she is the best guide in the world! And then she has such good humor as well!
From the bottom of our hearts we thank you for these wonderful days. Thanks also for the upgrade of the hotels in Moscow and St Petersburg - we loved the hotels. (And even in Suzdal - I am still looking for the wooden huts... !!!) Our hotel was of course much better than any hut...
We loved the lunch in Vladimir as well as the first night's dinner in St Petersburg. Thank you so much.
Hope you received the African mask I sent with our guide.
My next tour in 2018
I want to bring another group in August 2018. Almost the same itinerary. 7 - 17 August 2018 (possibly with an annex from 17 - 19 to Valaam)
I will send you my proposal for the program - I want to leave out a few places to give the group more free time, especially in Moscow. And perhaps we can try to offer a postlude (as an extra) to Valaam - only to the people who are willing to pay extra. Tanya also said it is a very special place. (I will prepare the proposal in July and send it to you, so that you have it when you get time to look at it...)
I do not want to wait to long to finalise the tour, because everybody is going to enquire about next year's Russia tour now, and I must get it on our web page ASAP. But if it almost stays the same, you could give me the green light and I can start marketing.
Michael, a warm thank you again to you!
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Students CIEE, USA
The students are now settled in at MGIMO and I have a minute to give you some feedback on our stay at Holiday Inn Sokolniki and city excursion.
Regarding the hotel: the students and I found the rooms comfortable and clean. The staff was very pleasant and accessible. They provided registrations with no errors or reminders (often this is a problem at hotels). The conference room was a good size and had the equipment we needed. Staff provided support with IT issues.
Regarding food: the breakfast buffet offers a nice selection. Students always enjoy it. The one complaint (and it's not really a complaint, just a reminder to myself), the food at dinner is very generic. It is not bad, but it is not unique. For the price I think we can do better at another restaurant.
Regarding the city bus tour: Gennady did an excellent job of giving student the right amount of information and orienting them to the city. We made several stops -- at the Ukraine hotel to see the Panorama (this was new for me and very interesting), at Novodevichy Convent, at MGU, and at Red Square. It was a fabulous start to the student's year in Moscow. We are looking forward to the tour of the Kremlin with him on Sunday.
Regarding the drivers for both the bus tour and our transfer to MGIMO: no complaints, they were polite and drove safely.
Thank you for your help organizing this very successful event!
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