I’ve wanted to go to Russia for as long as I can remember – and my reading over the last couple of years (particularly about the Siege of Leningrad and the Gulags) has only increased that desire. Last year, when we were planning the holiday that became Budapest, I contemplated Moscow instead (I didn’t know then that the visa requirement would have made such a last-minute trip almost impossible) but John, who was looking for an excuse to get a better camera, said we should wait until we could do the trip photographic justice. So a year on, equipped with the fruits of John’s current consumer obsession, we went on a two city break: Moscow and St Petersburg, with a night on the sleeper train inbetween.

(Full photo gallery to follow)

– written up at the start of September, 2005