Dear Vera and All the Russian Train Staff： Thanks again for your efficent and hospitable service, and also the kindly remind. I'm looking forward to spend my journey with the lovely Russian Train! A friendly regards from China Di LuDi Lu China
I am back now
thank you for helping to prepare
transfer was there at VVO airport(though a small and old japanese car ,with a young driver and a baby seat on back seat!!!not really a taxi...
train tickets went well
guide in VVO was perfect ,very very professional,excellent guide to recommend
opera tickest were well delivered in novossibirsk and moscow hotels
kazan was a good choice since the city is very pretty
so thanks globally ,I will recommend your services to others
Gerard Epin France
Thank you so much. Personally, I insist to say that your service is very kind, much better than most of European countries which I have travelled.
Have a nice dayNing Chu China
This is probably our last mail from Russia, and we want to say special thanks to you for all you have done for us. Everything went so well. Vladivostok turns out to be much more than we expected. It's a beautiful city with beautiful classic buildings. Mr. Putin's recent input added more to it. It is a great visiting spot and deserves more publicity. Easier visa arrangement would attract great many Japanese and Other tourists.
The guide Optima arranged, Anna, was great. The driver, Dennis, took us to his «secret» spot, which commands incredible coastal views.
Million thanks again, Natalia.
Yuzuru and Hiroko Shimizu USA
Dear Anastasia or team!
We just wanted to say thank you for your help in advance. We had a great trip and are enjoying St. Petersburg.
Claudia Verbeck Germany
Dear Marina, Margarita, Anastasia, Alisa and Natalia
Thank you very much for all the service you gave when I booked the tickets.
Now all ‘local’ tickets are booked, we only have to wait for the Almaty-Urumchi ticket.
No doubt that this will be managed too!
Once again: thanks!Pieter Bruinsma The Netherlands
The trip was excellent. Everything was arranged very well. The hotels and excursions were great. The train rides were fun. Russia is a fantastic country and the people are friendly and generous. The only bad thing about the trip is that it is was too short.Tamara Al-Hussaini USA
while travelling it is always a run, therefore I am finding some time to write you again only now.
We are in China since about 10 days ago now. In Xi'an. Of course. we have travelled from Beijing to Xi'an by train!
The journey to Beijing has been fabulous! We always had something to see and do. It was well worth all the troubles we shared before leaving! Crossing the Urals, the Baikal and Mongolia where the highlights as many say. But I also enjoyed staring out of the window the landscape of all Siberia with so many never ending purple flower fields and lakes. Time runs in a so very special way on that train!
Going by train has also allowed us to visit Moscow and this was an added bonus. We really liked the city. Pushkin museum and Kremlin are amazing.
Thank you very much again!
Stephanie & Valentina Italy
Thank you Anastasia,I have received the rail tickets and have printed them out.Your on-line booking service was very easy and straight forward to use.Thanks again.Ian Murray Australia
Attention: Anastasia EVEEVA
Thanks for the reservations on the train Juny 25 15.00 from St Petersbourg to Moscow..All was first-rate…
The travel was pleasant. The train is comfortable, silent with many good services....
We are delight from the discovery of St Petersbourg and Moscow… Again many thanks and best regards…Christian Freulon France
Dear Anastasia,thank you for this quick service.I didn't know that ordering train tickets in Russia could be that easy!Kind regards
Susanne Hauck Germany
I booked the wrong ticket by mistake and was amazed at how patiently Anastasia Evseeva helped me to correct my error and rebook my seat on the correct train. It's rare to find customer service that's so personal and helpful. Thank you.Francesca Kelly Austria
I have received electronic tickets.
Thank you very much!I am amazed with your full explanation and very grateful for extra information about sightseeing tours!Best regardsMaja Raicevic Montenegro
Thank you I have received the vouchers. I also want to thank you for a very efficient and good service. I was really impressed.
Louis Heyl South Africa
Just wanted to thank both of you for booking my train ticket & airport transfer during my recent trip to St. Petersburg. Everything worked out well, much appreciate your servcie.
Preethi Mathew India
Thank you a lot for your fast and perfect help !!
I will recommend your service !!
Thomas Nedelko Austria
Thank you so much for all your expert advice and your patience in answering my
quetions. I hope that all Russians are as nice as you. =)) I look forward to my
trip in Russia in August 2011 as I heard that it is a beautiful country.
Jacenta Kong (Malaysia)
Jacenta Kong Malaysia
Thank you. Your service is super.
Riaan de Villiers (South Africa)
Riaan de Villiers South Africa
Dear Mrs Tatiana,
We have receive the tickets and all the instructions. I want to thank you for the great service you gave us. We are starting to enjoy our visit to your amazing country, Russia! Thanks again! Your services is magnific!
Alexis Cambiaso Argentina
Once again thank you for your reply and information. It is most helpful and very reassuring.
We look forward with anticipation to visiting your beautiful city and most helpful people.
Kind regards, Patricia Kimber (Australia)
Patricia Kimber Australia
First, let me thank you for making our "Grand Trip" one of the most memorable experiences of our lives. We had planned to do this "Grand Trip" for a number of years and when we finally made the decision and had the good fortune to contact you and Optima Travel everything fell into place.
Although we left before the final arrangements where in place (our decision) Tatiana Lastovkina and Optima followed through and continued working on our adventure.
Hotels were booked,tours arranged, and tickets delivered to us in Bejing on time.
As a former Minister of Tourism for the Province of British Columbia, Canada, I know how difficult these arrangement can be especially when we where not available and in transit for weeks at end.
Now for the "Grand Trip"
We left Bejing on and boarded the train for Ula-Batar,a long and arduous journey,especially the 6 hr. border crosssing and train carraige (wheel) change). We were met at the station by our guide BaBa who deliverd us to our Hotel Edelwies.
Excellent accomodation and food were provided and the hotel was in easy walking distance to attractions, restuarants and shopping.
The tour to our Yert (Ger) was again on time and took into consideration our age with stops along the way for stretching our legs and sightseeing.
The Yert camp was very nice and offered us a chance to see and meet "real" Mongolia". Although I believe we might have hiked and travelled a bit more than our guide BaBa might have imagined for people of our age.
The food had to be complimented on.We were totally amazed at the breakfasts,lunches and dinners. Not only the quality and taste, but the prepration. We had to ask to meet and speak to the cook. Who was a young Mongolian chef who recently returned to her home country for the Czech Republic where she got her education and worked in a major hotel there.
On to Irkutsk and Lake Baikal,were we again greeted at the station by our driver and taken to the Hotel Victory in downtown Irkutsk.
The tour guide Anna was on time and we had a pleasant day with her. She was very knowledgeable and spoke excellent english.
She even help in negotiating with our purchasing of gifts.
I have to mention that the driver was late picking us up the day of our departure. He claimed it was the traffic, but we made the train with only 3 minutes to spare.
The Trans-Siberian is a long-long-long train ride the compartments are very comfortable and the passengers in our section all foriengers.
So we got to meet a lot of interesting people from around the world. Even some from Canada.
Even though we did not request it and was not part of our agenda, we were pleasantly surprised to find that Tatiana had arranged for us to be met by a driver at our our stop in Omsk. He took us to our Hotel Mika and also drove us back to the train. This time with lots of time to spare. Omsk is a compact city, in transformation into the "New Russian" the church of the Catherdral of Assumption was just completed and is spectacular.
We were surprised to learn from a wonderful woman who did her best to speak with us in her limited english and take us into the locked basement of the church to show us the reconstruction process and to learn that the city and state had contributed to the reconstruction.
We got back on the train to Ekanterinburg and were once again greeted by our driver at the station "Alexander" who took us to our "City Hotel 2" and we had a pleasant walk around the downtown area which is full of parks, theaters,and to Florence's delight shops.
The next day we were greeted by our guide (Maria?) and driver Alexander and given the royal tour of the city and surroundin area.
Statues, parks, churches, and to our pleasant surprise the top of the Urals. Where Europe Russia meets Asia Russia.
Some distance out of the city, and to our greater surprise Alexander pulled out a bottle of Champagne and some chocolates to celebrate.
I discussed "OUR" favorite sport HOCKEY and the Vancouver Canucks recent defeat. We were so impressed with his kindness that on our return I purchased a Vancouver Canucks jersey for him.
On to Moscow, we had left the agenda (other than the hotel) for this part of the trip open and for ourselves. An adventure and hopefully some surprises.
I had not been to Moscow for 20 yrs. and my previous trip had been with my then 19yr. old son. I was looking foward to seening what had traspired in those 20 yrs. And what peristroka had accomplised.
Moscow is a modern, vibrant and somewhat expensive city. With amenities and a cosmopolitism to rival any city in the world. The Hotel Izamalov was on the by the 1988 Olympics site. You remember the one that most of the world boycotted because Russia had "invaded" Afganistan. If only the west had second guessed that one. The hotel was right by the famous Moscow Metro and very easy to access and understand. We used it exclusively to navigate around Moscow. From the Kremlin, to the fabulous Moscow Circus, to the Arbat.
We used the travel agency located in the hotel to book the "fast train" to St. Petersburg. Relatively new and comfortable we enjoyed the trip
but had miscalculated the time. Having originally planned on the overnite to St. Petersburg and therefore arrived a day early.
The Hotel Petrovsky was able to accomodate us, but on the 5th floor with no lift and in 30D weather with no air conditioning.
And dispite promises to move us to our original disiganated room, they had all kinds of excuses not to. There was no phone in the room. On the last day there we were not allowed back in our room till 4PM. No explanation and when we did arrive the sheets and towels had not been changed. We got the impression this was punishment for our complaints.
The hotel was downtown and within easy walking distance of every convienience and attraction. But this did not offset the discomfort and rudeness of the staff.
St.Petersburg has changed in 20yrs. There are now over 5M visitors a yr. And every attraction has been spruced up and made accessable for a modern traveller. The highlite is of course the Hermitage and one can easily spend a week there.
Surprisinly the suvenier shop at the Hermitage is in most cases a cheaper and more affordable place to shop. Offering better quality and prices.
We also walked to the Optima Travel offices in St. Petersburg and booked at the "last minute" a flight to Amsterdam to visit my home country of Holland and relatives and friends.
Again our thanks to Tatiana and Optima for their arrangements. We recommend that anyone planning a visit to Russia contact Optima and Tatiana (who lives in New York and is planning on becoming a Doctor).
Gerard and Florence Janssen
Qualicum Beach BC Canada (former Minister of Tourism,Prov. of British Columbia)Gerard Janssen Canada
Dear Andrei, For some months now I have been meaning to write to you and to say thank you for your excellent service you will have forgotten and to say how pleased we were that everything worked out perfectly. And for that matter to add what an excellent time we had in Russia. Travellers throw themselves on the mercy of people like you and sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. When it does we are grateful.
My warmest wishes.
David McRae.Alex McRae Australia