Park Avenue Synagogue | A Jewish Journey to Russia
Revolutions, Repression and Renaissance
Led by Rabbi Cosgrove and Rabbi Savenor

price per person from $5815

to view departure dates and pricing click register now!

Prices:
Per person sharing a double room: $5,815
Per person in a single room: $6,785
Estimated airfare on group flights: $1,000

Vilnius Extension:
Per person sharing a double room: $1,490
Per person in a single room: $1,760

* The Initial non-refundable, non-transferable deposit of $500 per person is due at the time of reservation.

Main Trip
November 3-11, 2019


Optional flights as listed in the air section of this program (Taxes and fuel charges are included and are subject to change by the Airline).
7 nights’ accommodation at select hotels

4 days of touring in a luxury, air-conditioned bus + 2 days of walking tours (Moscow) with licensed, English speaking local tour guides

Da’at tour educator (one per bus) accompanying the group from arrival to departure

Da’at field representative (aka hostess) throughout the tour (1 for the whole group)

Economy class Sapsan (high-speed) train ticket from St. Petersburg to Moscow, with separate luggage transfer the night before

1 group transfer and assistance to and from the airport

All site entrance fees and program fees as per itinerary

Meals: daily breakfast 5 lunches and 5 dinners

Portage at the airport and hotels

Mineral water on the bus throughout


Extension to Vilnius
November 11-13, 2019
 

2 nights’ accommodation at select hotels

2 days of touring in a luxury, air-conditioned bus with licensed, English speaking local guide.

Da’at tour educator accompanying the group from arrival to departure

Land-only cost includes a one-way flight from Moscow to Vilnius (estimated rate)

1 group transfer and assistance from the airport

All site entrance fees and program fees as per itinerary

Meals: daily breakfast and 2 dinners

Portage at the hotel

* The initial non-refundable, nontransferable $500 deposit per person is due at the time of reservation.

Day One: Sunday, November 3, 2019
DEPARTURE 

  • Depart the U.S.A.

Overnight: Flight


Day Two: Monday, November 4, 2019
ARRIVAL IN ST. PETERSBURG 

  • Arrive at St. Petersburg International Airport.
  • Welcome by our representative and assistance with arrival formalities.
  • Transfer to the hotel.
  • Check into the hotel.
  • Introduction to the History of the Jews of the Russian Empire and the Origin of the Jewish Community in St. Petersburg: Welcome dinner and dialogue with Professor Shimon Iakerson, Head Researcher at the Institute of Oriental Manuscripts of the Russian Academy.

Overnight: Four Seasons Hotel, St. Petersburg


Day Three: Tuesday, November 5, 2019
AN INSIDE LOOK INTO ST. PETERSBURG'S HISTORY & CULTURE            

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Visit the Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood on the site where Tsar Alexander II was assassinated and was dedicated in his memory.
  • Enter the Peter and Paul Fortress, the oldest building in St. Petersburg and the founding location of the city. The fortress, located on the smallest island on the Neva River, was planned as a defense against the Swedes but the Swedes were defeated before its completion. Its main use until 1917 was as a political prison; one of its first inmates was Peter the Great's own son, Alexey. Walk through the Peter and Paul Cathedral, which is the final resting place of all of Russia's pre-revolutionary rulers from Peter the Great onwards with a few exceptions.
  • Visit the Grand Choral Synagogue, the second largest in Europe after the Dohany Street Synagogue in Budapest.
  • Building a Community: Dialogue with Chabad Rabbi Menachem Mendel Pewzner. In 1992 Rabbi Pewzner became Lubabitcher Rabbi's emissary in Petersburg, he has served as the rabbi at the Grand Choral Synagogue. Since 1996 he is the Chief Rabbi of St. Petersburg.
  • Lunch at LeChaim kosher restaurant.
  • Visit Isaac's Cathedral, the largest Russian Orthodox Cathedral, dedicated to Saint Isaac of Dalmatia, a patron saint of Peter the Great who was born on the feast day of that saint.
  • Return to the hotel.
  • Dinner on own and evening at leisure with the opportunity to attend cultural performances such as opera/ballet or Russian folklore. (Cost not included; details and costs for cultural events to be advised closer to the date.)

Overnight: Four Seasons Hotel, St. Petersburg


Day Four: Wednesday, November 6, 2019
DELVING DEEPER WITH THE LOCAL JEWISH COMMUNITY 

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Visit the Hermitage Museum. Housed in the lavish Winter Palace from which Tsars ruled Russia for one-and-a-half centuries and housing what was once their private art collection, the Hermitage is one of the world's most famous and greatest art museums, comprising 18th century masterpieces by Leonardo, Titian, El Greco, Van Dyck, Rubens, and Rembrandt, amongst many more.
  • Lunch at a restaurant with leaders from the Jewish Agency for Israel.
  • Program with Holocaust survivors in coordination with the Joint Distribution Committee (JDC). (Details TBA closer to the date.)
  • Return to the hotel.
  • Dinner with Jewish community leaders at YESOD, the Jewish Community Center in St Petersburg built in 2005 and the largest building dedicated to Jewish life in Eastern Europe. YESOD, which means foundation in Hebrew, has programs for all ages.

Overnight: Four Seasons Hotel, St. Petersburg


Day Five: Thursday, November 7, 2019
CATHERINE'S PALACE & ONWARD TO MOSCOW 

  • Breakfast at the hotel and check out.
  • Travel to the small town of Pushkin, named in honor of the great Russian poet.
  • Stop at the Formula of Sorrow, a memorial to the Jews of Pushkin who lost their lives during the Holocaust.
  • Visit the Summer Palace and park of Catherine the Great, one of the most photographed palaces in Russia and the elegant rococo-style summer residence of the Russian Czars, named for Catherine I (widow of Peter the Great).
  • Lunch at a restaurant.
  • Transfer to the train station in St. Petersburg.
  • Travel to Moscow by Sapsan high-speed train. (The train journey is approximately 4 hours.)
  • Transfer to the hotel.
  • Check into the hotel.
  • Dinner at the hotel with the Israeli and American Ambassadors to Russia.
  • Caviar and vodka tasting.

Overnight: Four Seasons Hotel, Moscow


Day Six: Friday, November 8, 2019
MOSCOW - THE HEART OF RUSSIA | walking tour 

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Visit the Kremlin Territory, the chief architectural ensemble of the city. The fortified complex in the heart of the city includes five palaces and four cathedrals and serves as the home of the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin. Take in this extraordinary development, including the Kremlin Armory, one of Moscow's oldest museums, established in 1808.
  • Visit the Red Square, the heart of the famous historical center of the city.
  • Visit the Lenin Mausoleum, the resting place of the founder of the Soviet State.
  • Lunch on own at the GUM mall.
  • Return to the hotel with free time to relax and prepare for Shabbat.
  • Kabbalat Shabbat services at the Moscow Choral Synagogue.
  • Shabbat dinner with leaders of the local Jewish community, including Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt, the Chief Rabbi of Moscow (pending confirmation).

Overnight: Four Seasons Hotel, Moscow


Day Seven: Saturday, November 9, 2019
SHABBAT IN MOSCOW | walking tour 

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Shabbat services at the Moscow Choral Synagogue, followed by lunch.
  • Free time to relax or explore the city on your own.
  • Dialogue with Ilya Alexandrovich Altman, a Russian historian and founder and co-chairman of the Russian Research and Educational Holocaust Center in Moscow.
  • Ben Kodesh Lechol:
  • Evening tour of the Moscow Metro, which is well-known all over the world as the most beautiful underground transit system. It is one of the main and significant memorials of the Soviet Union era. Many stations here will remind you of the halls of palaces, with beautiful sculptures and chandeliers, decorated in a style of communist's ages - huge statues of workers, farmers and soldiers.
  • Dinner on own and the remainder of the evening at leisure, with the opportunity to attend a cultural event at the Bolshoi. (Cost not included; details and costs for cultural events to be advised closer to the date.)

Overnight: Four Seasons Hotel, Moscow


Day Eight: Sunday, November 10, 2019
MOSCOW'S JEWISH COMMUNITY - PAST, PRESENT, FUTURE 

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Visit Victory Park, located on Poklonnaya Gora (literally “bow-down hill”), one of the highest spots in Moscow. The park has served as an open-air museum to the Russian victory over Napoleon in the 19th century since the 1960's.
  • Participate in a memorial service at the Holocaust Memorial Synagogue, which was built in 1998 and stands as a unique memorial to the memory of Jewish victims of the Holocaust.
  • Explore the Jewish Museum and Tolerance Center, the largest Jewish museum in the world. The museum is dedicated to the complex history of Russian Jewry and is thoroughly modern in approach, favoring personal testimony, archival video footage and interactive displays - all translated into Russian and English.
  • Lunch at a kosher restaurant.
  • Possible meeting with Chief Chabad Rabbi Berel Lazar.
  • Visit the Jewish Agency Activity Center in the heart of Moscow and learn about JAFI's work in the region. (Details TBA closer to the date.)
  • Return to the hotel.
  • Final Thoughts and Feelings: Farewell dinner and group reflection at a restaurant.

Overnight: Four Seasons Hotel, Moscow


Day Nine: Monday, November 11, 2019
RETURN HOME 

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Check out of the hotel.
  • Transfer to Moscow International Airport.
  • Departure flight to the U.S.A., arriving the same day.

 

Extension to Vilnius
November 11-13, 2019

Day One: Monday, November 11, 2019
ARRIVAL IN VILNIUS

  • Arrive at Vilnius International Airport.
  • Welcome by our representative and assistance with arrival formalities and
  • Begin your trip in the Baltics with a panoramic introductory tour of Vilnius, Lithuania's largest city and its capital. First mentioned in written sources in the beginning of the 14th century, the Old Town was recognized as a UNESCO Heritage site in 1994.
    Traveling through the Old Town, the tour will include:
    • The Vilnius Castle Complex, a group of defensive, cultural and religious buildings which evolved between the 10th and 18th centuries, including the Lower and Upper Castle and the remaining Gediminas Tower, the traditional symbol of Vilnius, and the Cathedral.
    • The Old University, founded in 1579 by the Jesuits, is Lithuania's largest university and one of the largest in Eastern Europe. The collection of university buildings, exhibits various architectural styles, from Gothic and Renaissance to Rococo.
    • Hill of Three Crosses, originally constructed in 1916 by Polish sculptor Antoni Wiwulski, was torn down by the Soviets in 1950 and reconstructed in 1989 by Henrikas Šilgalis.
    • Anna's Church, originally erected in 1394, has been continually expanded throughout the centuries, using various art and architectural styles.
    • The Chapel of the Gates of Dawn, the only surviving of the ten original gates in the town wall, houses the famous icon, The Blessed Virgin Mary Mother of Mercy - dating from the early 17th century.
  • Check into the hotel.
  • LaDa'at Focus A Jewish Journey to the Baltic States: Where have we been and where are we now. Welcome dinner at a restaurant.

Overnight: Kempinski Hotel, Vilnius


Day Two: Tuesday, November 12, 2019
HISTORICAL MEMORY, PERSONAL JOURNEY  

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • LaDa'at Focus Yerushalayim De Lita: Join your tour educator and begin to unravel the story of Jewish life, thought and prayer in Vilnius, that rivaled Jerusalem itself.
  • Guided visit through the Medieval Jewish Quarter and what was traditionally known throughout the Jewish world as Vilna, ‘The Jerusalem of Lithuania'. Vilna was one of the most significant pre-Holocaust European communities with a community of over 100,000, a world center for the study of Torah and the home of Rabbi Eliyahu Kremer, also known as the Vilna Gaon (the Genius from Vilna).
    Walking through what was once the heart of the Jewish people, the tour will include visits to:
    • The Vilnius Choral Synagogue, built in 1903 and today the only active synagogue remaining in this city that once boasted over 100.
    • The Vilna Gaon Jewish State Museum, dedicated to the history of Lithuanian Jewish life, including an exposition on the Holocaust and a contemporary Center of Tolerance.
    • The building which housed the Judenrat (Vilna Ghetto Jewish Council) during the Holocaust.
  • Da'at Encounter Re-birth and renewal: Meet with representatives from the local Jewish community for a conversation on Jewish memory and current reality.
  • Lunch on your own, en route.
  • Memories of the past come alive: Visit the Jewish Cemetery of Vilna.
  • Visit Ponar Forest Holocaust Memorial, in honor and memory of the 100,000 people who were killed during the Holocaust, of whom more than 70,000 were Lithuanian Jews.
  • Depart for Trakai, one of Lithuania's most charming towns located on a peninsula between two lakes. Founded before 1321, Trakai served as the ancient capital of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. Famous for its medieval castles, beautiful lake fronts and iconic national landmarks, Trakai has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage City.
  • Return to the hotel.
  • Dinner at a restaurant.

Overnight: Kempinski Hotel, Vilnius


Day Three: Wednesday, November 13, 2019
RETURN HOME  

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Check out of the hotel.
  • Transfer on own to Vilnius International Airport.
  • Departure flight to the U.S.A., arriving the same day.


Da'at Educational Expeditions itineraries may contain suggestions for activities for your leisure time; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider and the decision to participate in any such activities should be made independently.

2019 Land Only Air & Land Status  
Nov 03 $5815 $6765 On request

Flight Details


Accommodation Details



Four Seasons Hotel St. Petersburg Image

Four Seasons Hotel St. Petersburg
St. Petersburg

Within a 19th Century Russian royal palace, its entry guarded by two marble lions, Four Seasons St. Petersburg reveals a restored luxury hotel treasure in the historic Admiralteysky district - just two blocks from the Hermitage Museum and close to Nevsky Prospekt and the Mariinsky Theatre.

Four Seasons Hotel Moscow Image

Four Seasons Hotel Moscow
Moscow

A modern replica of the legendary Hotel Moskva, originally opened in 1935, luxurious Four Seasons Hotel Moscow is connected to history, yet sylish and contemporary. Enjoy a convenient location in the heart of the historic district with views of Kremlin, Red Square, the colourful domes of St. Basil's Cathedral, and the State Duma.


  • Registration deadline: July 4, 2019.
  • Group rates are per person based on double occupancy and a minimum of 60 full paying participants. Should the number of participants drop below the minimum listed above, we will adjust the cost of the trip to reflect the additional expense of operating the program.
  • Tour prices are per person in U.S. dollars. All hotel accommodations, motor coach transportation, special dinners, sightseeing, admissions, luggage handling and the services of local guides, drivers, and the tour guide/educator are included.
  • Payment Policy
    Da'at Educational Expeditions reserves the right to adjust its terms of payment, including cancellation policies and initial deposits. Notification of any changes will be made explicitly to the participants where relevant.
    - The Initial non-refundable, non-transferable $500 per person is due at the time of reservation.
    - Final payment is due 105 days before the scheduled trip begins (July 22, 2019), or as specified in your invoice.
  • Cancellation Policy:
    Cancellations need to be made in writing. Cancellation fees will be based on the date that the written cancellation is received.
    Cancellation fees:
    • 105 days or more prior to departure: the deposit
    • 104 to 60 days prior to departure: 50% of the total trip cost
    • 59 days to the day of departure/no-show: 100% of the total trip cost
      Cancellation fees may also include:
      - Hotel or supplier cancellation fees.
      - Group airfare penalty fee.
  • irport Taxes & Fuel Surcharges are estimated and subject to change at any time. 
    Airport Taxes & Fuel Surcharges are not guaranteed unless the group air tickets have been issued. Group air tickets are issued approximately 35 days prior to departure. Group air tickets are only issued upon receipt of full payment from all of the trip participants. 
    Air and land packages are open for registration until Sep 08, 2019 (based on availability), thereafter the tour will be available for land-only services. Cancellation of group air reservations after Sep 08, 2019 (and before the group flight tickets are issued) will entail a penalty of $100 per ticket. 

    Airfare to the tour departure point and from the tour ending point is not included. 
    Airfare may be purchased from us for travel originating in the United States. Please see Flights tab in the right-side toolbar.
     
  • Hotel Accommodations: The trip price includes all hotel accommodations, in hotel rooms with private baths. Our standard is to provide the best available hotels while considering value. Although the level of the accommodations may differ slightly from hotel to hotel, we are committed to your comfort. Two-bedrooms are reserved in most hotels. Triples are two-bed rooms with a rollaway cot where available and are not recommended when considering the comfort of those in the room. King-size beds are not available in most hotels; what is considered king-size usually consists of two single beds pushed together and made up separately, but with one headboard. Some two-bed rooms may have two twin - not full- or queen-size - beds.
  • Meals are included as specified in the itinerary.
  • Tour Educator or Guide: All trips are conducted by our tour educators or local guides who remain with the group throughout the tour.
  • Gratuities Included: All gratuities for restaurant staff at group meals are included.

 PRICE EXCLUDES

  • Visa to Russia
  • Transportation in the evening when dinner is on own.
  • Amendments to the program: In the event that any sites, programs or meals etc are added to the program, an additional fee may be required.
  • Personal extras: Items of personal nature such as laundry, wines, mineral water, beverages, coffee, tea, food other than the table d'hotel menu, passport and visa fees, insurance, and foreign port taxes, unless otherwise specified.
  • Snacks on the bus (unless indicated otherwise)
  • US and foreign airport taxes, Q fuel surcharge and border taxes when applicable.
  • Gratuities for Tour Educator (Guide) and Driver. We recommend the following guidelines for tips (amounts indicated in US dollars):

TRIPS TO DESTINATIONS OUTSIDE OF ISRAEL:

  • Group of 20 participants and more:
    • Da'at Tour Educator: $8 | Local Guide: $5 | Driver: $3 | Hostess: $2 - per participant per day