A Day Trip to Suzdal and Vladimir in less than $304 min read
If you are already searching for a Day tour to Suzdal, you might have come across several websites selling the tour for as much as $500. Before you buy any tour let me explain you how can visit Suzdal in $30. Here are few examples of tours across the web:
If you look at the map and are ok using public transport then you will realize that it is so easy and cheap going to Suzdal. Moscow is connected with Vladimir via Trans-Siberian Railway. Every few hours a high-speed train called Strizh leaves Moscow for Vladimir and covers the distance in only 1 hour and 40 minutes. In my experience, Strizh was much nicer and faster than Amtrak in the USA or Via Rail in Canada. One way journey in this train costs only around 700 rubles, which is about $12 at the time of writing this article. From Vladimir, Suzdal is almost half an hour away by local bus.
You can check out the trains on the official website of Russian Railways.
Since I wanted to see both Suzdal and Vladimir, I took the earliest train at 06:35 from Kurskaya station. As soon as I reached Vladimir I went to the bus stop, which is right on the other side of the road as you come out of the railway station. Vladimir is a major city and there are a lot of buses connecting various cities. You will have to specifically ask for a ticket to Suzdal, which costs around 95 RUB. Buses leave Vladimir for Suzdal every 30 minutes. Please remember that once you leave Moscow, the only method of payment is in cash. Cards are accepted only in big restaurants and shops.
I could not find my receipt for my onward journey but below is the receipt of my return journey from Suzdal bus station to Vladimir.
The way from Vladimir to Suzdal is very smooth and scenic. I expected it to be not a very smooth ride, but I was surprised. The bus stopped at few bus stands on the way and we were at Suzdal bus station in about 30 minutes. Some people left the bus, but I stayed on the bus because I wanted to go to the city centre. The driver got up from his seat and started collecting extra 14 rubles from everyone who wanted to go to the centre. There was no receipt provided. Once you are in the city centre you can walk to all the important places. The town is very small, buildings and houses are colourful, roads and sidewalks are beautiful, clean and safe.
Returning from city centre can be a bit tricky. You will have to find the bus stand that is for the buses towards the main Suzdal bus station. When I went to the bus stand I realized after asking a lady that I was at the wrong bus stop, so I crossed the street and went to the right one. Not every bus goes to the main bus station. There was a girl standing next to me who told me that I have to catch the same bus, which she is catching. Although I can speak Russian, Google Translate will completely help you. There is good mobile network everywhere and people are very friendly and happy to help.
Back in Vladimir, the bus stand and railway station are in the centre of the city that makes it very convenient to walk to the city centre and see places of interest such as Holy Assumption Cathedral and Demetrius Cathedral. Unfortunately, I spent a lot of time in Suzdal, therefore, I had less time to explore Vladimir, but whatever I saw was wonderful.
One day trip of Suzdal and Vladimir is possible, but if you are an avid explorer like me then I would suggest keeping one day for each city.