Itinerary: AST - 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ - Group Stage Tour

Wednesday 13th June

Our Russian adventure starts today in Moscow with hotel check-in available from 3pm. This evening enjoy complimentary welcome  drinks and finger food (included in your tour price) as we meet our tour host Alex Tobin, your experienced AST tour rep, plus all your fellow AST travellers. Welcome to Russia!

Overnight: Moscow - Azimut Olympic Hotel (or similar)

Thursday 14th June

Today we enjoy our first taste of Russia's proud history and glorious architecture with a visit to central Moscow's famous Red Square. Renowned for its annual military parade plus Lenin's Mausoleum where the great leader's body lies embalmed to this very day, Red Square is neighboured by the Kremlin and the beautiful St Basil's Cathedral. Nearby you will find the grand Bolshoi Theatre and Russian ballet theatre, plus beautiful streets brimming with quality restaurants and high class shopping. As you will instantly discover, central Moscow is absolutely stunning and oozing with wealth.

 

Entry into the Kremlin and St Basil’s Cathedral is included in your AST tour price.

 

Tonight the tournament kicks off with hosts Russia taking on Asia's Saudi Arabia in the opening match at Luzhniki Stadium. For those lucky enough to secure tickets you are in for a real treat, whilst for everyone else we will be enjoying the match on TV together with our fellow AST travellers.

Match day: Russia v Saudi Arabia 6pm kick-off

Overnight: Moscow

Friday 15th June

Today you are free to explore Moscow either at your own leisure or alongside your AST tour rep and visit more of its famous sites, enjoy its world class shopping and fabulous array of cafes and restaurants. Riding on the Moscow Metro will be one of your many Moscow highlights – known as the Palaces of the People you will be amazed by the cleanliness of the trains and stations and the impressive artwork, archways, statues and mosaics that adorn many Metro stations.

This evening we travel on our overnight sleeper train to Kazan for what's sure to be an exciting travel experience.

Overnight: Sleeper train

Saturday 16th June

This morning we arrive in Kazan in readiness for Australia's opening Group Stage fixture vs highly fancied France. Prior to the match we enjoy our first pre-match luncheon and discuss the merits of Australia's chances with our expert tour host Alex Tobin (early lunch today due to early kick-off, food & drinks included). After the match, the city will be abuzz with fans from both teams enjoying the World Cup spirit together with the friendly locals.

Match day: Australia v France 1pm kick-off

Overnight: Kazan - Bilyar Palace Hotel (or similar)

Sunday 17th June

Today presents the opportunity for a well earned relaxing morning before an afternoon walk through Kazan’s city centre where we will enjoy a visit to its most famous tourist attraction, the Kazan Kremlin. This evening, enjoy the football action on TV with your fellow AST travellers, including Germany v Mexico and Brazil v Switzerland. 

Overnight: Kazan

Monday 18th June 

This morning we depart Kazan and travel by private coach to our next football destination, Saransk. Journey distance is 400km and our trip will include rest stops along the way to stretch the legs and grab some food & refreshments.

Upon arrival into Saransk you are free to spend a relaxing evening at the hotel or head into town with your fellow travellers to enjoy the festive atmosphere with supporters from Japan and Colombia who have converged on the city in readiness for tomorrow's big match.

Overnight: Saransk - Saransk Hotel (or similar)

Tuesday 19th June

Today Saransk plays host to its second match of the tournament with Asian powerhouse Japan taking on world no.13 ranked Colombia at the brand new Mordovia Arena.

If you have tickets for the match you will be enjoying an amazing atmosphere inside the stadium. For those without, your AST tour rep will be escorting the group to watch the match together on TV at a nearby bar with the proud locals. After the match why not party on with the visiting fans from both friendly nations.

Match day: Japan v Colombia kick-off 3pm

Overnight: Saransk

Wednesday 20th June

This morning we depart Saransk and travel by private coach to Australia’s next host city, Samara. Journey distance is 470km and our trip will include rest stops along the way to stretch the legs and grab some food & refreshments.

Upon arrival into Samara you are free to spend a relaxing evening at the hotel or head into town to enjoy the festive atmosphere with your fellow Australian supporters plus thousands of Danes who have converged on the city in readiness for tomorrow's big match.

Overnight: Samara - Holiday Inn Samara (or similar)

Thursday 21st June

Australia take on Denmark today in what is sure to be a pulsating fixture with both teams pushing their claims for a top two finish in Group C. Prior to the match we enjoy the second of our pre-match luncheons to discuss the merits of Australia's chances with our expert tour host Alex Tobin (food & drinks included). After the match, the city will be abuzz with fans from both teams enjoying the World Cup spirit together with the friendly locals.

Match day: Australia v Denmark 4pm kick-off

Overnight: Samara

Friday 22nd June

Today we fly to our next destination, Sochi. After an action packed opening to the tour, our five night stay in Sochi is designed to take the foot off the pedal. Here we enjoy two world class match days combined with soaking up the seaside holiday feel of the Russian Riviera on the Black Sea coast.

Upon arrival at Sochi Airport we will transfer by private bus to our hotel where you are free to relax and enjoy some more football action on TV.

Overnight: Sochi - Imeretinskiy or Russian Seasons,  Sochi Olympic precinct (or similar)

Saturday 23rd June

After a relaxing morning at the hotel, join your AST tour rep for a lazy stroll along the Sochi seafront. For those who are the aquatic types don’t miss the chance to take a swim in the clear blue waters of the Black Sea.


Tonight sees the first of two match days during our Sochi stay with World Champions Germany taking on fellow European side Sweden. Renowned as two of the mostsociable supporter groups in world football, no matter whether you’re attending the match or watching with your fellow AST travellers at the bar, the atmosphere will be incredible.

Match day: Germany v Sweden 9pm kick-off

Overnight: Sochi

Sunday 24th June

Following last night’s late kick-off, we once again welcome a nice and relaxing start to the day with breakfast at the hotel at your leisure. This afternoon we take a relaxing stroll through Sochi’s old town, including the impressive marina which will no doubt be brimming with luxury yachts and cruisers as the rich and famous converge on the city during the tournament.

Without doubt everyone will be keen to watch England v Panama as the Premier League’s home grown stars take on Central America’s real surprise packet.

This evening join your AST rep, host and fellow travellers for an enjoyable meal together  as we continue to soak up the holiday atmosphere of Sochi (dinner meal & light beverages are included in your tour price, alcohol additional).

Overnight: Sochi

Monday 25th June

Today is the exciting eve of Australia’s do-or-die clash against South America’s 5th placed dark horses, Peru, and the venue of Sochi could not be more fitting.

As we build up to the big day the other crunch matches will no doubt capture the attention of the locals and visiting fans alike, including hosts Russia taking on Uruguay. Spain & Portugal are also in action in tonight’s 9pm fixture slot. After a fun filled day make sure you get a good night’s rest before what is sure to be one of the biggest days of the tour tomorrow.

Overnight: Sochi

Tuesday 26th June

The time has come as Australia head into their final Group C clash against Peru, with a win for either side likely to be their ticket to the knockout stage. 

Today we enjoy all the build up to the match including our third & final pre-match luncheon. Alex Tobin will again be providing his insight into Australia’s campaign thus far, plus sharing his experienced thoughts on our chances in this afternoon’s fixture (lunch & drinks are included in your tour price).

Match day: Australia v Peru 5pm kick-off

Overnight: Sochi

Wednesday 27th June

Today we bid farewell to Sochi and fly to our final destination of the tour, St Petersburg. Upon arrival into St Petersburg Airport we transfer by private bus to our final tour hotel. After checking into your room you are welcome to join your AST tour rep for a leisurely walk along the walkways & bridges along the Neva River and get your first feel of this beautiful city known as the Venice of the East. Tonight also offers the tantalising opportunity to watch tonight’s big match between Brazil & Serbia live on TV at 9pm.

Summer in St Petersburg means long days and “white nights” with daylight barely disappearing on the horizon before the sun rises again just a few hours later. It is an amazing sight to witness a blue sky and street lights that have hardly taken effect even when the clock strikes midnight.

Overnight: St Petersburg - Oktiabrskaya St Petersburg Hotel (or similar)

Thursday 28th June

Today we enjoy a full day in beautiful St Petersburg with the opportunity to see as many famous tourist sites as you fancy. Your tour price fully includes a ticket on the famous St Petersburg Hop On-Hop Off open top bus, taking you to an endless list of famous sites and stunning architecture including the Church of the Saviour on Spilled Blood, Peter & Paul Palace, St Isaac’s Cathedral, the Winter Palace, Hermitage Museum, Kazan Cathedral, Kronstadt Naval Cathedral, Griboyedov Canal, and much more.

After a full day of sightseeing we will be meeting up this evening for our farewell night together to watch our final dose of football at one of St Petersburg’s many bars, plus enjoy the opportunity to reminisce over what has been an unforgettable two weeks in this most incredible country. The England v Belgium fixture live from Kaliningrad at 9pm (St Petersburg time) is one not to be missed!

Overnight: St Petersburg

Friday 29th June

Our tour comes to an end this morning with check-out from our St Petersburg hotel. If you have selected extra night/s you will be ready to explore more of this amazing city's beautiful sites. 

As we bid farewell to our new found friends, we head off on our onward journey with memories that will live forever. 

Thanks for travelling with AST!



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