Apr 1 - 10, 2021
10 days
$8,940per person, twin share (land content only). $1,480 supplement for sole use of a hotel room.

Tour Leader

Robert Veel
Apr 1 - 10, 2021

Tour Leader

Robert Veel$8,940per person, twin share (land content only). $1,480 supplement for sole use of a hotel room.
  • Tour Info
  • Itinerary
  • Tour Leader
  • Hotels
  • Inclusions


We’re delighted to offer a long stay tour to one of the world’s great musical capitals, with nine performances included. St Petersburg, the place where many of the great Russian works of the 19th and 20th centuries were composed, has long been an important city in music history. In the last 15 years the music scene has dramatically expanded. The famed Mariinsky Theatre now has four stages, the St Petersburg Philharmonic and Symphony Orchestras maintain busy schedules, and the Mikhailovsky Theatre continues to offer world-class ballet and opera. Join us for great music, theatre and art. (*The tour takes place over the western Easter period. Russian Orthodox Easter is in May 2021.)


  • At least nine performances overall, including private recitals. Performance details available from September 2020.
  • Opera, ballet and orchestral music at the Mariinsky Theatre, including the ‘old Mariinsky’,the cutting-edge Mariinsky II and Mariinsky Concert Hall
  • An orchestral concert by the St Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, Russia’s finest ensemble
  • Ballet or opera at the historic Mikhailovsky Theatre
  • Private recitals in the apartment-museums of composer Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov and singer Feodor Chaliapin
  • Visits to St Petersburg’s renowned art museums, including the Hermitage and The State Russian Museum
  • Five-star accommodation at the Kempinski Hotel

Itinerary Overview

Days 1–3: Arrive St Petersburg. Explore the city and its history, and enjoy performances at the Mariinsky Theatre.

Day 4: The Museum of Theatre and Music, private recital in Rimsky-Korsakov’s apartment, plus ballet at the Mikhhailovsky Theatre.

Days 5: Visit Catherine the Great’s Palace outside the city and enjoy an evening performance.

Days 6–7: Explore the Hermitage Museum’s various departments, with evening performances.

Day 8: The State Russian Museum; private recital in Feodor Chaliapin’s apartment-museum, plus an evening opera.

Day 9: Visit the Yusupov Palace, farewell lunch and evening at the Mariinsky.

Day 10: Optional visit to the Fabergé Museum.

Start & Finish

The tour begins and ends at our hotel in St Petersburg. Emirates and Qatar Airways offer suitable connections into and out of St Petersburg from most Australian cities. Contact us for quotes and bookings.

Detailed Itinerary

A detailed itinerary for this tour will be available in the coming weeks. To receive a copy of the published itinerary once available, please register your interest below and we will be sure to email you a copy. If you have any questions in the meantime, please don’t hesitate to contact us on 02 9235 0023.

Robert Veel

A cultural historian and founding director of Academy Travel, with a strong interest in visual arts, architecture and music.

Robert Veel is a cultural historian with over 20 years’ experience leading tours to Italy, the USA, Scandinavia and Turkey. He has a strong personal interest in the visual arts, architecture and music, and is a founding director of Academy Travel.

Robert holds a BA, Dip. Ed and M.Ed, all from the University of Sydney. He worked as a lecturer at the University of Sydney before a long stint at the University’s Centre for Continuing Education, lecturing in Italian history and culture and working as Assistant Director.  Robert continues to teach occasionally in Continuing Education courses.

Robert’s historical and artistic knowledge stretches from the Middle Ages through the early 20th century. In Italy he has led many tours focusing on the Medieval and Renaissance periods.  In the United States he likes to focus on the founding of the Republic and the Gilded Age of the early 20th century. In Scandinavia he is particularly interested in national identity and its role in Scandinavian literature, design and architecture. Robert speaks fluent Italian.

Robert led his first tour to Italy in 1990 and has not looked back! He has led more than 50 tours and designed many of Academy Travel’s most popular tours, including Sicily, New York, Rome and Venice residential tours, and our Scandinavia tours. More recently Robert led the first offering of Academy Travel’s tours to Tasmania and New Zealand.

We asked Robert, what do you enjoy most about leading tours?

“I really enjoy travelling with like-minded, interested travellers who are up for a bit of an intellectual adventure. It’s often the unexpected things that create the ‘shared joy’ of group travel”, says Robert “a wonderful, but little-known painting, a great performance or a fabulous meal. These are the things we travel for.”

“Over the years travellers have commented on my seemingly boundless enthusiasm. It’s true that I am curious about most things – people, places, history and artistic expression. There’s a kind of alchemy when this enthusiasm rubs off on others – hopefully with a bit of useful information as well!”

View Bio & Upcoming Tours

Kempinski Hotel Moika 22

Situated in the heart of St Petersburg on the Moika River, in an aristocratic mansion built in 1853, the 5-star Kempinski Hotel Moika 22 is flanked by Palace Square and the Hermitage museum. The hotel is just five minutes’ walk from Nevsky Prospect and close to all major sights and shopping districts.

Furnished with antiques, the rooms are decorated in classic marine style with white and gold accents, and come with a flat-screen TV, air conditioner, minibar, en suite bathrooms with heated floors, and fine bathroom amenities. The hotel also features a spa.


Tour Inclusions

What is included in the tour price? 

Unless otherwise stated in the itinerary, our tours include the following:

  • Any flights mentioned in the itinerary that take place during a tour
  • Land travel by private air-conditioned coach. Where appropriate, taxis or public transport are also used for short distance travel on some tours
  • All accommodation in hotels or apartments as stated in the itinerary
  • Breakfasts, lunches and dinners specifically stated as included in the itinerary
  • Drinks at welcome and farewell meals. Other meals may not have drinks included
  • Background talks on tour, site notes and online resources
  • Services of tour leader throughout tour
  • All entrance fees to sites mentioned in the itinerary
  • Local guides at some sites
  • Tips for drivers, local guides and restaurants for included meals
  • Costs involved in obtaining visas for countries visited, where required and when stated as included

Airport Transfers

Tours begin either at the arrival airport or the first hotel, depending on the itinerary. If you have booked your international flights with Academy Travel and arrive before the tour commences, we will provide airport to hotel transfers to the closest main city on your arrival, and to the closest airport at the end of the tour. These may be either individual or group transfers.

What is not included in the tour price?

Our tours do not include the following:

  • Return international/domestic air travel unless those flights take place during the tour
  • Special taxes and airport levies that can only be paid in cash at the destination. We will advise you of these charges (if any) before you depart
  • Travel insurance. We require all participants to have comprehensive travel insurance. A typical policy for one of our tours will cost from $160 upwards, depending on your age, pre-existing medical conditions, the countries you are visiting and the overall length of your trip
  • Lunches and dinners not specifically mentioned as included in the itinerary
  • Personal expenses such as laundry and phone calls
  • Costs associated with any activity mentioned as “optional” in the itinerary, or any suggested free time activity

Tour Details

Fitness Requirement

Grade One

A Grade 1 tour is appropriate for travellers in good health with good mobility, who can comfortably participate in up to 3 hours of physical activity per day on most days.
More Details


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Speak to a consultant

For further information or to secure a place on this tour please contact:
Lynsey Jenkins or 1800 639 699
(outside Sydney)

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