Russian Visa – St Petersburg Visa Free Visits and Shore Excursions

Arrival in St Petersburg by Ferry, Cruise Ship and Private Yacht

We are often asked about the regulations for passengers visiting St Petersburg without a visa.

Visa Free from Helsinki:

You may visit St Petersburg for up to 72 Hours, when travelling by designated ferry from Helsinki.
For details of Visa Free tours to St Petersburg click here (opens external website).

Baltic Sea Cruises:

Passengers travelling on Baltic Sea cruise ships to St Petersburg, who book excursions exclusively through their cruise line do not require a Russian Visa.  You may not leave the ship at any other time, only with your shore excursion group.

Passengers who book independent shore excursions with an accredited Russian Travel Agency, licensed to carry out shore excursions may travel ashore visa-free. You may not leave the ship at any other time, only for your shore excursions. Our agency in St Petersburg is accredited and issues a voucher for presentation to the immigration authorities on arrival and our guides and drivers enter the port to meet you after immigration.

Note: Not all Russian travel agencies hold this special accreditation.  Please see the range of options  for visa-free independent shore excursions.

Passengers with a single-entry Russian visa  may not travel ashore in St Petersburg more than once.


We hope that this information helps and wish you a wonderful visit to St Petersburg!