Music was one of the features of the cruise as was the interesting architecture from bygone centuries.
A memorable occasion was the concert given by the professors of music at the University of Petrozavodsk.
We had been expecting to visit the island but due to delays caused by the weather the concert had to be rescheduled on board our ship.
They are enthusiastic in maintaining the traditions of the region.
We were treated to a recital of lively Russian folk songs accompanied by a full complement of balalaikas, accordion and percussion.
It was one of many occasions to be savored and recorded on video.
Music in various forms was been a feature of the trip.
A young Russian lady accompanied by a balalaika and a piano accordion often entertained us as she traversed the tables at dinner.
She was dressed in traditional Russian costume, as were her musicians.
Later in the week she gave a piano recital.
She displayed the talent, which I came to realize was prevalent amongst many of the Russian staff.
As a fellow passenger observed: "She played Rachmaninoff as only a Russian can.
" On reaching Moscow we attended a concert given by the Zlatoust ensemble with their magnificent voices, which filled the Kolomenskoe Palace.
This in spite of the fact that the domed and painted ceiling was some 40 feet high.
I spoke to the leader afterward.
At 6ft 4 inches he was a very big man about twice my girth and with an exceptionally deep voice.
He had a charming manner but he spoke as he sang and addressed me as though I were a public audience.
I could have heard him 100 meters away.