Leo Plank on his long distance cycle tour from Saint Petersburg to Murmansk in Northwest Russia Long distance cycling tour Northwest Russia for indivials or groups including accommodations
Long distance cycling tour from Saint Petersburg to Murmansk in Northwest Russia Long distance cycling tour Northwest Russia Visit Saint Petersburg Winter palace
Long distance cycling tour from Saint Petersburg to Murmansk in Northwest Russia Long distance cycling tour Northwest Russia Alexander Svirsky Monastery in Staraya Sloboga
Long distance cycling tour from Saint Petersburg to Murmansk in Northwest Russia Long distance cycling tour Northwest Russia Kizhi Island in Onega lake
Long distance cycling tour from Saint Petersburg to Murmansk in Northwest Russia Long distance cycling tour Northwest Russia Half way to Murmansk
Long distance cycling tour from Saint Petersburg to Murmansk in Northwest Russia Long distance cycling tour Northwest Russia Solovetsky Islands
Long distance cycling tour from Saint Petersburg to Murmansk in Northwest Russia Long distance cycling tour Northwest Russia Almost in Murmansk on Kola Peninsula
Long distance cycling tour from Saint Petersburg to Murmansk in Northwest Russia Long distance cycling tour Northwest Russia View on Murmansk from icebreaker 'lenin'
Long distance cycling tour from Saint Petersburg to Murmansk in Northwest Russia Long distance cycling tour Northwest Russia Reached my goal: Barents Sea in Norway!

Long distance cycling tour Northwest Russia

Long distance cycling tour from St-Petersburg through Karelia to Murmansk on the Kola Peninsula (minimal 13 days depending on your interests). We prepared for long distance cyclists this alternative route through Northwest Russia to the North of Europe! It combines perfect with a visit to the North Cape in Norway. The cycling route brings you to three seas;

  • Baltic Sea (Leningrad region)
  • White Sea (Karelia and Kola Peninsula)
  • Barents Sea (Murmansk region and Norway)

Cycle 1.800 km in minimal 13 days, or spend more days staying longer in the most interesting cities on the way. This cycle tour gives you a unique chance to see the real Russia, not from a bus window but with a panoramic view from your bicycle saddle. You will meet ordinary Russians and experience their hospitality. You will enjoy an unhurried cycle tour with picturesque views and through hilly landscapes, breathing the fragrances of fields and forests, with gentle breezes caressing your face, knowing that your places for overnight are reserved for you. Additionally we can reserve excursions and activities on your way. We organize this cycling tour during summer up to early autumn.
For your cycling tour we provide you with:

  • Visa support
  • Registration at Migration Service after arrival
  • Information about crossing the Russian border
  • Information about documents and insurances required for your trip
  • Camping sites or other accommodations
  • City maps indicating points of interests (POI)
  • Recommendations about what to see, where to eat, where to get drinking water and most of all where to relax
  • Detailed roadbooks with photos explanations and including GPS coordinates (tracks)
  • Information about prices of local excursions and food/meals
  • Free use of the Kola Travel's stand-by telephone numbers, should you require assistance during your trip

We do our best to make your cycling tour in Northwest Russia successful, pleasant, hassle-free and unforgettable!

Long distance cycling tour Northwest Russia itinerary:

Day 1: Finland: Narva or Vyborg - Pushkin . (145 km)
Cycle to Pushkin, a suburb south in Saint-Petersburg if you arrive from south like border crossing point Narva. Stay at a motel in Pushkin town. Or: If you cycle via Finland and Vyborg crossing point, you can stay the night north of Saint Petersburg in Kingisepp town or in Volocovo town.
Optional opportunity: Day of excursions in Pushkin. Pushkin is a beautiful town with lots picturesque parks and historical sights, which make the town of Pushkin a great historical and cultural treasure. The town is obliged by its fame to some generations of poets, writers, the genius representatives of the Russian culture, who lived, worked or just were inspired by its beauty. Pushkin is also called "The Town of Muses". Take a cycle ride through beautiful alleys and be inspired too.
Optional opportunity: Day of excursions in Saint Petersburg. Pushkin is located just 24 km south from the centre of Saint Petersburg. You can explore Saint-Petersburg on your own or take a Guided excursion in St. Petersburg (see Optional). Saint Petersburg is recognized as one of the most beautiful cities in the world. The city was always in the high road of Russian history - during two centuries it was the Capital of the Russian State. Now the city won a good name as a Culture Capital of Russia and plays an essential part in Russian cultural and scientific life.
All your luggage and bicycle can be left safe in the hotel. Overnight in the hotel.

Day 2: Pushkin - Staraya Ladoga. (150 km)
After breakfast you can cycle from Pushkin to Staraya Ladoga town. This city is perhaps the oldest Russian city, which once was one of the ten biggest cities in Russia. In 2003 Staraya Ladoga celebrated its 1250th anniversary. Here you can visit the Staraya Ladoga Museum of Local History and Tradition Preserves and the Nikolo-Medvedsky (St. Nicolas) Monastery.

Day 3: Staraya Ladoga / Syastroy - Olonets (150 km)
Cycle to Olonets city. Check in at the hotel. Explore Olonets city and the park by foot. Visit the historical museum: it has a model of the Old Fortress, where now the park and museum is located. Also you can visit the beautiful Smolensky Cathedral on an island in a lake of the city. Stay overnight at a hotel in Olonets.

Day 4: Olonets - Petrozavodsk. (150 km)
Cycle to Petrozavodsk city, which is the capital of Karelia Republic and has the status of historical city of Karelia. It has gorgeous architecture and the square along with a nearby park offer great walking and biking opportunities. Overnight in a hotel in Petrozavodsk.
Optional opportunity: Excursions to Kizhi Island. Hike through this beautiful city to the harbour and board a boat to Kizhi Island; a peaceful and undisturbed island, which serves as an outdoor museum of 18th-century wooden architecture. You can be met by a guide to show you the Kizhi Island (see Optional). You will be back in Petrozavodsk at 17:00 (see Optional). Optional opportunity: Excursion In Petrozavodsk city You can visit museums including the Museum of replicas of old ships, and the Smithy work shop. Or you can take a local guide to accompany you (see Optional). You can take two hour sailing trip on the old replica ship. You can study how to sail and how to rule the ship and even shoot from cannons. (see Optional).

Day 5: Petrozavodsk - Medvezhegorsk (164 km)
You continue your way to the North. After breakfast you start to cycle to Medvezhegorsk city which is located on the north shore of the Onega lake. It is surrounded by coniferous forests and enchanting cliffs. On the way you will have an opportunity to visit Kivach waterfalls. Nice and beautiful place, only 5 km from the main road M18. The Kivach Waterfalls, are the second large in Europe (the first one is Rhein Waterfalls). Stay overnight in a cottage hotel.

Day 6: Medvezhegorsk - Segezha. (110 km)
Cycle to Segezha direction. The whole day is devoted to cycling. It gives you an opportunity to look around, enjoy the trip and see how the northern nature defers from even that which you have seen at the beginning of your adventure. Stay overnight in a hotel.

Day 7: Segezha - Kem. (164 km)
Start to cycle to Kem direction. Kem has a picturesque setting where the Kem River empties into the Kemskaya Bay of the White Sea. Kem used to belong to the Solovetsky monastery and has always had a close connection with the islands. During the 1920s and 1930s, the Solovetsky camps' administration was based in Kem and prisoners bound for the islands would be herded through the transit camp here. You can also visit the Museum about Gulags. Today, Kem is a relaxed low-rise town of mainly wooden houses, with plenty of open spaces and greenery in summer. Overnight in a hotel in Kem town.
Optional opportunity: Excursion to Solovetsky Island. Take a boat trip to Solovetsky Islands (from 8:00 till 20:00 ) You can take excursions to Solovetsky Monastery and Gulag Museum with a guide (see Optional). Rowing boat tour on the channels (see Optional). Return by 18.00 boat to Kem with arrival at 19.50. You can have dinner in the hotel. Overnight in the hotel. All your belongings and bicycle can be left in the hotel in Kem to be sure they are in a safe place. If you like you can expand your stay on Solovetsky Island with one or more days.

Day 8: Kem - Loukhi. (175 km)
Cycle to Kola Peninsula direction to Loukhi. Immovable northern nature will accompany you the whole day. Stay overnight in a hotel in the centre of Loukhi village. On you way there are some truckers caf"s for having lunch.

Day 9: Loukhi - Kandalaksha. (145 km)
Cycle to Kola Peninsula direction. On the way visit Kovda village and the famous wooden Kovda church. The landscape becomes more hilly and you will enjoy the nice panoramic view that opens in front of you. Stay overnight in a hotel in the centre of Kandalaksha. Dinner in recommended restaurant.

Day 10: Kandalaksha - Monchegorsk. (110 km)
Today will be a pretty heavy day. The hills become higher and steeper. But when on top you will forget the work you have done to reach it. Take your time look around and enjoy the low drives downhill. We will put you in bed in a brand new and nice hotel in the centre of one of the most beautiful and green city of Monchegorsk . After a rest you can explore the city. Monchegorsk is build on three blue lakes which divide the city in islands. Here you can find the biggest Orthodox Cathedral of Murmansk region is one of major places of interest in Monchegorsk city. You can learn more about the history of Monchegorsk when you visit the local Historical museum. Also you will visit the Museum of Coloured Stones. It consists of outstanding collection of minerals and items from the whole Russia. You can have dinner in the hotel or in a recommended restaurant.
Optional opportunity: 2 hour yacht cruise on the biggest lake of Kola peninsula named Imandra.
Optional opportunity: Expand your holiday with an extra day for a hiking tour to the waterfall Devichyi Kosi (Girls plaits) in Monche tundra with campfire lunch.

Day 11: Monchegorsk - Murmansk. (140 km)
Today you will cross the 69th parallel and meet Worlds Biggest city above Polar circle; Murmansk. You hotel will be in the centre of the city. Murmansk as the most northern harbour played a mayor role in the provisions of the armies defending Russia in the First and Second World. One of highlights of the city is Second World War Memorial "ALESHA". This majestic monument for The Defenders of the Arctic was installed on a high hill above Murmansk in 1974; a figure of a watchman with a rifle of a height of 34 meters, which is visible almost from any point of the city. There are a number of interesting places to visit that are related to the sea and maritime culture. These include the First Nuclear Icebreaker "Lenin", the Naval Museum, the Ship Company Museum, and the Oceanarium. We suggest you to visit the Regional Historical Museum, the Art Museum and the Folk Art Center.
Optional opportunity: Stay more days in Murmansk to explore the city on your own following the route maps and descriptions from us or by a guided city tour (see details).

Day 12: Murmansk - Titovka (100 km)
Today you cross the Kola Bay by the new bridge and cycle through a huge tundra area without any civilization. Notice that trees are converting into bushes, because of the hard climate. On your way you will see many war memorials because of the battlefields of the defenders of Russia. After 100 km you will come in Titovka, a very small village in an oasis of birch trees, which is halfway to the Norwegian border. You will stay in a simple motel with small cafe.

Day 13: Titovka - Kirkenes (120 km)
Your last day on Russian Territory! From Titovka you cycle 100 km on the tundra almost without any trees. You will pass some military villages and 25 km before the border the landscape change from tundra to a beautiful pine tree forest area. You will cross the border close to Kirkenes. In village Hesseng (15km from the border) there is an not expensive good Motel and in Kirkenes (25 km from the border) are many hotels. If you like we can book this too for you.

This long distance cycle tour is done by solo cyclist Leo Plank in 2011. We can imagine that the daily distances are quite long, so if you want shorter distances, to add some days of rest or days for visits / excursions please feel free to ask us.

Long distance cycling tour Northwest Russia details

Accommodation:
  • 12 nights in standard class hotels
Level:The participant must have experience in long distances cycling on asphalt and non-paved roads in hilly areas and must have a good condition. Knowledge about repairing bicycle on the route is preferable.
Group size:From 1 person
Duration:Minimum is 13 days + extra days as extension
Dates: On request. Recommended: from end of April to end of October.
Price: Prices on request.
Price includes:
  • Mentioned accommodations
  • Detailed information about the routes and cities (incl. road book)
  • visa invitation
  • Migration card registration
Route long distance cycling tour in Northwest Russia
The map shows the route of long distance cycling tour through Northwest Russia.
As you can see there are many possibilities to cross the Russian border.
This long distance cycling tour can be extended with the following optionals:
  • Saint Petersburg:
    • Folklore program in Nikolaevsky Palace "Feel yourself Russian" inclusive traditional Russian snacks.
    • Guided hiking excursions in St-Petersburg, 3 hourss.
    • Guided hiking and driving excursion in St-Petersburg, 3 hours.
    • 7 hour excursion to Tsarskoe Selo/Pushkin and Ekaterina Palace.
    • 7 hour excursion to Peterhof by hydrofoil “Meteor".
    • Entrance tickets for Hermitage: approx. EUR 18 per person.
    • Local guide-interpreter.
  • Petrozavodsk:
    • Trip to Zoo Complex located 70 km far from Petrozavodsk.
    • Trip to Kinerma village with excursion and lunch located 100 km far from Petrozavodsk.
    • Combination of trips Zoo Complex and Kinerma Village in a round drive. A taxi picks you up from Petrozavodsk, waits at the places and brings you back to Petrozavodsk.
    • Local guide-interpreter.
    • Entrance fees to Museums in Petrozavodsk will be between 5 and 10 euros per person.
    • Boat excursion to Kizhi Open Air Museum.
  • Kizhi Open Air Museum:
    • Two-way boat tickets in Kizhi Island.
    • English speaking guide in Kizhi Island.
    • Audio guide on Kizhi Island: EUR 4,-- per person
    • See link above for more info.
  • Kem harbour (5 min walk from boat to Solovetsky Island):
    • Overnight in a hotel: approx. EUR 51,-- per person in twin room
    • Overnight in a hotel: approx. EUR 85,-- per person in single room
  • Solovetsky islands:
    • Two-way boat tickets
    • Entrance tickets to expositions. Price to exhibitions approx. EUR 3 to 5 per person.
    • Guided excursions for groups from 10 persons: from EUR 8 to 18 per person
    • Extra overnights in hotel: approx. EUR 51 per person per night in twin room or approx. EUR 85 in single room
    • See link above for more info
  • Monchegorsk:
    • Entrance tickets museums: approx. 50 roubles per person
    • 2 hour yacht excursion on the biggest lake of Kola peninsula named Imandra. Up to 8 persons.
    • One day hiking tour to the waterfall Devichyi Kosi (Girl's plaits) in Monche Tundra with campfire lunch.
    • One day bicycling tour in hilly area with campfire lunch.
    • Karting centre in Monchegorsk.
    • Cross-country skiing in Monchegorsk suburbs (winter).
    • Skating in Ice stadion in Monchegorsk (winter).
    • See link above for more info.
  • Murmansk:
    • Guided excursions in Murmansk.
    • Tickets for museums and museum excursions cost between RUB 25,-- and RUB 400,-- per person.
    • Entrance ticket to Atomic Icebreaker to join an excursion in Russian language: RUR 150 pp. Individual excursion to Atomic Icebreaker with a lecture in English language can be arranged.
    • Trip to Saami settlement.
    • Trip to the Barents sea shore.
    • Trip to Husky Farm.
    • Trip to Lovozero village; Capital of the Saami.
    • Rent a car from Kola Travel and get the best rate, quality and service!
      Read more >> >> Rent-a-car
    • See link above for more info.

Biking tour specifications / statistics

Total length:1800 kmLargest daily cycling distance:175 km
Asphalt roads:1800 kmAverage daily cycling distance:145 km
Unpaved roads:0 kmLowest point of the route:0 meter
Smallest daily cycling distance:100 kmHighest point of the route:350 meter
Amount of active cycling days:13+ days  

Cycling/biking tours overview