As reported by Censor.NET citing The Telegraph, they were interviewed by the editor-in-chief of state-funded RT - formerly Russia Today - Margarita Simonyan who said she had "spent an evening" with the suspects.
In the interview, they claimed to be in the fitness industry and said friends had suggested they visit "wonderful" Salisbury and to go sightseeing around Wiltshire.
A UK government spokesman rubbished the men's claims as "obfuscation and lies", while John Glen, the Conservative MP for Salisbury and South Wiltshire, called the statements "not credible".
RT ran part of the interview on Thursday morning, in which Petrov said: "We are those shown to you in the (CCTV) pictures. Yes they are our real names."
They are then accused of looking nervous, to which Boshirov responds: "What would you look like? When your life is turned upside down in a moment?"
When asked why they were in Salisbury, the men said: "Our friends had been suggesting for a long time we visit this wonderful town. Its famous Salisbury cathedral, famous for its 123m spire...the clock... the oldest of its kind in the world that is still working."
They asked for an apology and "for the real perpetrators" to be caught. They also told RT that the snow and "muddy slush" meant they cut short their planned visit to Stonehenge, and that they were only in Salisbury for less than an hour because of train delays.
Petrov told Simonyan: "Well, we came there on March 2, then went to a railway station to see the timetable. We arrived in Salisbury on March 3 and tried to walk through the town, but we lasted for only half an hour because it was covered in snow.
"Of course, we went there to see Stonehenge, Old Sarum, but we couldn’t do it because there was muddy slush everywhere. The town was covered by this slush. We got wet, took the nearest train and came back [to London]."
Boshirov added: "We spent no more than an hour in Salisbury, mainly because of the lags between trains," Boshirov said. Maybe we did [approach] Skripal’s house, but we don’t know where is it located."
The prime suspects also denied taking Novichok or a bottle of Nina Ricci perfume with them to the UK.
"Is it silly for decent lads to have women’s perfume? The customs are checking everything, they would have questions as to why men have women’s perfume in their luggage. We didn’t have it," Boshirov said.
Both men claimed to be afraid of going out, fearing for themselves and their loved ones. They said they frequently travelled to Europe for a business they supposedly had related to sports nutrition.
"We'd like it if one day the real perpetrators were found and gave us an apology," Petrov said.
"We can't go outside, we can't go to the petrol station," Boshirov said.
Simonyan promised to air the full interview later on Thursday, a day after Vladimir Putin called on the two men to speak to the media.
Petrov and Boshirov have been charged with attempting to murder of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury in March by spraying Novichok nerve agent on the handle of their door. Scotland Yard have said these names are probably aliases.
In a series of tweets, Simonyan said she was called by the two men and carried out the interview in Russian before it was translated to English.
She added: "I wasn't looking for them. More specifically, our journalists were searching for them just like all other professional journalists, through social networks, sources and so on. We even found a few, but not the right ones.
"They refused to give an interview to anyone else, even our journalists, because, in their words, they know me from TV and read my social media and for that reason, again in their words, trust me."
The full interview by RT