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0 Enjoying a Russian Lunch @ Hotel Samson, St Petersburg

28 Aug 2016 | 18:19:00

Baltic Cruise (St Petersburg) . 2015 . Aug 9


This post is part of our Baltic Cruise + Southampton 2015 Trip Report and Itinerary. Do check out the full itinerary and our reviews here

After a most exhausting morning exploring the Catherine Palace and its adjoining gardens,  we finally had the chance to rest our tired feet and have a good lunch before we begin a second wave of walking at the Peterhof Palace.


One of the advantages of taking a Princess Cruises shore excursion was that we need not do the thinking nor the planning as compared to making arrangements ourselves, and that helps when you are dead tired as we were now.

Lunch was at the Hotel "Samson", which was just a short 5 minutes drive away from the Catherine Palace.  Due to limitations in seatings at the restaurant, other shore excursion groups were brought to different destinations for their lunch.


It seems that the hotel is frequented by Chinese tourists.  It was our first and only sighting of chinese words in Russia.  At least the translation was not too bad!



Our tour group of 40-50 took up the entire restaurant in the hotel. At least we got a cozier seat along the side of the wall.


Lunch started with, and was accompanied by traditional Russian performances.


Some "lucky" tour mates even got invited for a little dance with the performers! :)


Our 5-course lunch consisting of an appetizer, soup, main course, dessert and coffee/tea.



Our impression?  Pretty bland food, although we suspect this was the norm in Russia, and what we were served here was already considered as pretty high end.


Menu for extra beverages and dessert.  Honestly, we didn’t know how to place our orders even if we had wanted to.  We couldn’t even read the menu! We certainly had a taste of being illiterate for the entire 2 days we were in Russia.


Join us next as we explore the Peterhof Palace.

This post is part of our Baltic Cruise + Southampton 2015 Trip Report and Itinerary. Do check out the full itinerary and our reviews here.


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4 Baltic Cruise + Southampton Trip Report and Itinerary

Baltic Cruise + Southampton . 2015 . Jul 29 - Aug 16

Baltic cruises may not be as popular as Alaska cruises, but they are definitely ideal cruise options for those who are looking for an unique cruise experience. Baltic cruises are filled with interesting destinations in Northern Europe to explore. On our trip on board the Caribbean Princess, we woke up every day - ready to explore a new and exciting destination.


On board this cruise, we visited Bruges in Belgium and tasted some delicious chocolates. Docked in the wonderful port of Copenhagen, we were welcomed by the world famous 'Little Mermaid'. We were amazed by the spectacular Vasa Museum in Stockholm and were fascinated by the unique Chapel of Silence and Rock Church in Helsinki.

In St Petersburg, the highlights of the Baltics, we visited the Hermitage Museum, enjoyed a night of ballet and visited the Catherine Palaces and Peterhof Gardens.

Last but not least, the ports of Tallinn and Gdansk in Estonia and Poland also gave us some new insights to destinations that we might not have considered if we were travelling on land.

Here's our itinerary with some photos and links to our reviews for our trip.

Updated 28 Aug 2016


Day 0  Singapore -> London (Jul 29)

2100 - Check in at Singapore Changi Airport
2330 - Flight to London Heathrow Airport

Visiting London? Check out the best London Hotel Deals, Compare Rates, and Read Hotel Reviews on TripAdvisor

Day 1  Southampton F & E  (Jul 30)

0555 - Arrive at London Heathrow Airport Terminal 2
0700 - Clear Customs
0800 - National Express Coach FK203 to Southampton Coach Station
1015 - Reach Southampton Coach Station
1045 - Check-in Ibis Southampton Centre
1130 - Early Lunch
1300 - Visit West Quay Shopping Centre & IKEA
1600 - Walk around Southampton City
1730 - Early Dinner @ Chicago Rib Shack
1830 - Back to Hotel


Visiting London? Check out the best London Hotel Deals, Compare Rates, and Read Hotel Reviews on TripAdvisor

Day 2  Southampton F & E (Jul 31)

0800 - Rise and shine
0830 - Breakfast @ Mc Donalds
0900 - Visit Toy "R" Us
0930 - Visit Sea City Museum (Titanic Story), Dino Fest / Gateway to the World
1300 - Lunch @ Sprinkles Gelato
1400 - Shopping @ Marlands Shopping Centre
1600 - Shopping @ Primark
1500 - Walk around Southampton City
1900 - Early Dinner @ TGIF
2000 - Back to Hotel


Visiting London? Check out the best London Hotel Deals, Compare Rates, and Read Hotel Reviews on TripAdvisor

Day 3  Baltic Cruise starts (Aug 1)

0900 - Rise and shine
0930 - Breakfast
1045 - Check out Hotel
1115 - Taxi to Cruise Terminal
1200 - Embark on Caribbean Princess
1400 - Lunch on Board
1600 - Cruise departs London (Southampton)
1630 - Explore Ship
2200 - Bedtime

Day 4  Bruges - Belgium (Aug 2)

0800 - Arrive Bruges
0845 - Princess Cruises Shore Excursion (Bruges & Time On Your Own)
0915 - Walking Tour of Bruges + Church of Our Lady
1100 - Bruges Canal Cruise
1130 - Time on Our Own in Bruges
1300 - Chocolate Shopping @ Walplein
1430 - Souvenir Shopping
1645 - End of Excursion
1800 - Depart Bruges
2100 - Bedtime

Day 5 At Sea (Aug 3)

0900 - Rise and shine
1000 - Explore Ship
2100 - Bedtime


Day 6  Copenhagen - Denmark (Aug 4)

0800 - Arrive Copenhagen
0840 - Visit Little Mermaid
0911 - Walk around Rosenborg Castle Garden
1000 - Explore Rosenborg Castle
1030 - Explore Rosenborg Castle Treasury
1045 - Visit the Round Tower
1116 - Canal Tours' Grand Tour of Copenhagen (from Gammel Strand)
1230 - Visit Christiansborg Palace
1330 - Shopping @ Stroget (Shopping Street)
1544 - Walk back to Cruise Ship
1700 - Depart Copenhagen
2200 - Bedtime

Day 7  At Sea (Aug 5)

0900 - Rise and shine
1000 - Explore Ship
2100 - Bedtime

Day 8  Stockholm - Sweden (Aug 6)

0900 - Arrive Stockholm
0954 - Visit Vasa Museum
1126 - Visit Royal Palace
1310 - Shopping with Lunch
1525 - Walk back to Cruise Ship
1700 - Depart Stockholm
2100 - Bedtime

Day 9  Helsinki - Finland (Aug 7)

1000 - Arrive Helsinki
1051 - Visit Chapel of Silence
1201 - Visit Rock Church (Temppeliaukion Kirkko)
1253 - Visit Senate Square and Surroundings
1400 - Shopping
1500 - Walk around Market Square
1556 - Walk back to Cruise Ship
1800 - Depart Helsinki
2100 - Bedtime

Day 10  St Petersburg - Russia (Aug 8)

0630 - Arrive St Petersburg
0900 - Princess Shore Excursion (Hermitage Museum & St Petersburg On Your Own)
1600 - End of Excursion
1845 - Princess Shore Excursion (Evening at the Russian Ballet)
2315 - End of Excursion
0000 - Bedtime

Day 11  St Petersburg - Russia (Aug 9)

0630 - Rise and shine
0730 - Princess Shore Excursion Part 1 (Catherine Palace & Gardens)
1200 - Russian Lunch @ Hotel Samson
1300 - Princess Shore Excursion Part 2 (Peterhof Palace)
1715 - End of Excursion
1800 - Depart St Petersburg
2200 - Bedtime

Day 12  Tallinn - Estonia (Aug 10)

0800 - Arrive Tallinn
1000 - DIY Walking Tour
1400 - End of Excursion
1700 - Depart Tallinn
2200 - Bedtime

Day 13  At Sea (Aug 11)

0900 - Rise and shine
1000 - Explore Ship
2100 - Bedtime

Day 14  Gdansk - Poland (Aug 12)

0700 - Arrive Gdansk
0800 - Princess Shore Excursion (Gdansk On Your Own)
1500 - End of Excursion
1600 - Depart Gdansk
2200 - Bedtime

Day 15  At Sea (Aug 13)

0900 - Rise and shine
1000 - Explore Ship
2100 - Bedtime

Day 16  At Sea (Aug 14)

0900 - Rise and shine
1000 - Explore Ship
2100 - Bedtime

Day 17  London -> Singapore (Aug 15)

0700 - Arrive London (Southampton)
0730 - Princess Shore Excursion (Stonehenge - Disembarking Heathrow)
1345 - Reach Heathrow Terminal 2
1245 - Lunch at Airport
1730 - Check in Flight @ Heathrow Terminal 2
2050 - Board Flight to Singapore

Day 18  Reach Singapore (Aug 16)

1655 Arrive Singapore



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Do check out our Flickr photos & Youtube videos too!
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