12 days in Europe Itinerary

12 days in Europe Itinerary

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Route & dates

12 days in Europe Itinerary

Start: Moscow, Russia
1
Moscow, Russia
— 1 night
Drive:  14​h
2
Tallinn, Estonia
— 3 nights
Drive:  4​h 30​min
3
Riga, Latvia
— 2 nights
Drive:  4​h
4
Vilnius, Lithuania
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 30​min
5
Minsk, Belarus
— 3 nights
Drive:  9​h
End: Moscow, Russia

1
night
Moscow, Russia

Moscow
Russia's political, economic, and cultural center, Moscow remains the most populous inland city in the world, famed for its colorful history and rich architectural heritage.
For more things to do, ratings, other places to visit, and other tourist information, refer to the Moscow trip planner .

If you are flying in from Russia, the closest major airports are Sheremetyevo International Airport, Domodedovo International Airport, Vnukovo International Airport and Zhukovsky International Airport. In December, daytime highs in Moscow are -1°C, while nighttime lows are -5°C. On the 28th (Sat), you're off toTallinn.

Things to do in Moscow

Museums Historic Sites Nightlife
Find places to stay Dec 27 — 28:

3
nights
Tallinn, Estonia

Tallinn ©
A historic city with its eye firmly on the future, Tallinn blends medieval fortifications, gleaming skyscrapers, and charming boutiques with a spattering of Soviet relics.
Kick off your visit on the 28th (Sat): pause for some serene contemplation at Peapiiskopi Kirik. Here are some ideas for day two: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Aleksander Nevski Katedraali, contemplate the long history of Toompea Hill, then see the interesting displays at Lennusadam Seaplane Harbour, then get engrossed in the history at Tallinn Museum of Orders of Knighthood, and finally get great views at Patkuli Viewing Platform.

To see traveler tips, maps, other places to visit, and tourist information, you can read our Tallinn day trip planning tool .

Getting from Moscow to Tallinn by flight takes about 5 hours. Other options: drive; or take a train. The time zone difference moving from Moscow Standard Time (MSK) to Eastern European Time (EET) is minus 1 hour. Plan for somewhat warmer temperatures traveling from Moscow in December, with highs in Tallinn at 3°C and lows at -1°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 31st (Tue) so you can travel to Riga.

Things to do in Tallinn

Historic Sites Museums Neighborhoods
Find places to stay Dec 28 — 31:
Highlights from your plan
Tallinn Old Town ©
Tallinn Old Town
Patkuli Viewing Platform ©
Patkuli Viewing Platform

2
nights
Riga, Latvia

Riga ©
Often referred to as "The Paris of the North," Riga offers thriving nightlife and some of the best collections of Art Nouveau architecture in Europe.
On the 31st (Tue), delve into the lush surroundings at Dzintari Forest Park, take a stroll through Old City Riga (Vecriga), then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at St. Peter's Church, and finally appreciate the history behind Freedom Monument. On the 1st (Wed), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: admire the landmark architecture of Riga Stock Exchange Building, admire the landmark architecture of JJugenda Stila Nami, Riga, stroll around Bastejkalna Park, explore the activities along Pilsetas kanals, then hunt for treasures at Central Market (Centraltirgus), and finally get lost in a book at National Library of Latvia.

To find maps, traveler tips, reviews, and other tourist information, go to the Riga trip itinerary planning app .

Fly from Tallinn to Riga in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In December, daily temperatures in Riga can reach 3°C, while at night they dip to 0°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 2nd (Thu) early enough to travel to Vilnius.

Things to do in Riga

Parks Neighborhoods Nature

Side Trip

Dzintari Forest Park
Find places to stay Dec 31 — Jan 2:
Highlights from your plan
Old City Riga (Vecriga) ©
Old City Riga (Vecriga)
Dzintari Forest Park ©
Dzintari Forest Park
JJugenda Stila Nami, Riga ©
JJugenda Stila Nami, Riga

2
nights
Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius ©
The capital of Lithuania, Vilnius, boasts an impressive medieval quarter--one of the continent's largest and a World Heritage Site with almost 2,000 historical buildings.
Explore hidden gems such as Money Museum of the Bank of Lithuania and Ninth Fort. Venture out of the city with trips to Sugihara House (in Kaunas) and Trakai Island Castle Museum (in Trakai). Next up on the itinerary: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Vilniaus staciatikiu Sventosios Dvasios vienuolynas, take a stroll through Vilnius Old Town, see the interesting displays at KGB Museum (Genocido Auku Muziejus), and admire the natural beauty at Bernardine Gardens.

For photos, other places to visit, and tourist information, refer to the Vilnius tour site .

Traveling by flight from Riga to Vilnius takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Traveling from Riga in January, Vilnius is a bit cooler at night with lows of -9°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 4th (Sat) to allow time to drive to Minsk.

Things to do in Vilnius

Museums Historic Sites Neighborhoods

Side Trips

Kaunas, Trakai Island Castle Museum
Find places to stay Jan 2 — 4:
Highlights from your plan

3
nights
Minsk, Belarus

Minsk ©
As the capital and largest city of Belarus, Minsk represents a cultural center full of churches, libraries, museums, and theatres.
Here are some ideas for day two: don't miss a visit to Minsk City Hall, pause for some serene contemplation at Church of Saints Simon and Helena, contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Archangel Mikhail, then walk around Chelyuskinites Park, then take in the architecture and atmosphere at Church of All Saints, and finally browse the collection at National Library of Belarus.

For more things to do, reviews, maps, and other tourist information, you can read our Minsk planner .

Traveling by car from Vilnius to Minsk takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or fly. The time zone changes from Eastern European Time (EET) to Moscow Standard Time (MSK), which is usually a 1 hour difference. In January, daytime highs in Minsk are -4°C, while nighttime lows are -10°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 7th (Tue) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Minsk

Historic Sites Spas Parks

Side Trip

Mir Castle
Find places to stay Jan 4 — 7:
Highlights from your plan
Church of Saints Simon and Helena ©
Church of Saints Simon and Helena
Mir Castle ©
Mir Castle
Minsk City Hall
Minsk City Hall

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