Warm sunny days spent working on your tan may not be the first thing you associate with Russia, but it’s totally possible. Beaches run the gamut in Russia – from wild and rugged to stylish and glitzy to quaint and pebbly. So, if you’re in the country for the World Cup why not combine your trip with the glamour of the Black Sea or some rustic Arctic charm? Whatever you’re after, find your ideal Russian beach holiday here. Did you know – Culture Trip now does bookable, small-group trips? Pick from authentic, immersive Epic Trips, compact and action-packed Mini Trips and sparkling, expansive Sailing Trips.
World Cup host city and probably Russia’s most famous beach resort town, Sochi is a glamorous getaway on the Black Sea. It has also been the presidential summer residence since the collapse of the Soviet Union, a role it took over from Crimea. Not the destination for those who want to strip everything back to basics and nature, Sochi has booming nightclubs, a busy boardwalk, water and amusement parks, as well as a dynamite sunset. Stretching 150 kilometres along the coastline it has plenty to discover.
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
If you make it to Vladivostok, Russia’s most eastern major port town, well done you – it’s quite the hike. As your reward, the city has several options should you want to soak up some rays. Vladivostok itself has a few beaches. The best is Sportivnaya Harbor, where there is a half-submerged mermaid statue, which, as per custom, you should salute as you jump in. Alternatively, there are the easily accessible islands of Popov and Reyneke, each with beaches imploring you to explore.
Kurshskaya Kosa National Park
In the enclave of Kaliningrad, the Kurshskaya Kosa National Park is nestled in the Curonian Spit. A Unesco World Heritage Site, the Curonian Spit divides the Curonian Lagoon from the Baltic Sea and is a 98km (60mi) stretch of pristine white sand, dunes and remote, rugged beauty. Kurshskaya Kosa is only 50km (31mi), but that is still big enough to make sure your neighbouring beach-goer is nowhere in sight. Aside from relaxing in the sun, roam and explore this beautiful spot and get a feel for Kaliningrad’s wild beauty.
The Gulf of Finland
If you are in St Petersburg – another World Cup host city – and need to escape the heat, follow the locals and head up to the Gulf of Finland. It’s an easy day trip from Russia’s second city although there are plenty of options should you want to stay a little longer. Picturesque beaches, both sandy and pebbly, are flanked with pine trees creating the ultimate forest bathing experience. Popular beaches include Laskovy Beach, Tarkhovka and Repino, but there are so many others for you to explore.
The Kola Peninsula
Above the Arctic Circle in Murmansk, the Kola Peninsula might be a chillier Russian beach holiday, but in summer the days are literally endless. One of Russia’s most northern destinations, you’re almost as far north as Finland’s Lapland. The region is probably more well known for spotting Aurora Borealis, but a jaunt up here in the warmer months, when it can reach a not-so-scorching 15 degrees Celsius, is still worth it. Soak up the peninsula’s stunning wilderness under the glow of the midnight sun.
Also on the Black Sea, Gelendzhik is somewhat quieter – but not really quiet – than Sochi. Lesser known than its neighbour, it is still exquisite. While it is another resort town, the surrounding beaches and nature are a sublime payoff for those who venture out of the city. In fact, just outside of the city there are nature walks through conifer trees and mountains if you need to break up the lazing about.
Another Kaliningrad gem, Baltiysk sits on the enclave’s south, on the Baltic Sea. And it is stunning. Year-round strong winds make this an ideal windsurfing and sailing destination. This wind, which can build up a fair bit of momentum, blows the sand dunes about, creating the phenomenon of the dancing sand dunes – a major drawcard to the town’s beaches. On top of this, the sand and the dunes are coloured with amber, the fossilised tree resin which is common to the region, giving the sand and the dunes a warm yellow colour.
Why not diversify your holiday by also going skiing in Russia? See the best hotels for skiers and snowboarders in Russia and book your stay with Culture Trip.
Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip
meet our Local Insider
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It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
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I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
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Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.