St. Petersburg is a Russian port city on the Baltic Sea. It was the imperial capital for 2 centuries, having been founded in 1703 by Peter the Great, subject of the city's iconic “Bronze Horseman” statue. It remains Russia's cultural center, with venues such as the Mariinsky Theatre hosting opera and ballet, and the State Russian Museum showcasing Russian art, from Orthodox icon paintings to Kandinsky works. The city is often called "Venice of the North" because of its unique architecture.
St Petersburg is an almost unrivalled treasure trove of art and culture. You can spend days in the Hermitage, seeing everything from Egyptian mummies to Picassos, while the Russian Museum, spread over four sumptuous palaces, is perhaps the best collection of Russian art in the world. Add to this world-class ballet, opera and classical concerts at the illustrious performance halls, and a slew of big-name music festivals over the summer months, and you won’t be stuck for cultural nourishment. Contemporary art is also available at the fantastic Erarta Museum, the Street Art Museum and in the buzzing gallery scene.
All Seasons City
Summer White Nights are legendary: the northern sun barely dips below the horizon. Revelry begins in May, with parks and gardens greening with flowering trees, and peaks in mid-June when performing arts festivals pack out concert halls and the entire city seems to party all night long. It's the busiest time to visit and the crowds can often be overwhelming. But Piter, as the city is affectionately known, is just as beautiful in early spring, golden autumn and even winter: the skies may be leaden and the ground covered in snow, but the culture still dazzles and delights.
Highlights of St Petersburg.
State Hermitage Museum at Palace Square,
St. Petersburg's most popular attraction, and one of the world's largest and most prestigious museums, the Hermitage is a must-see for all first-time travellers to the city. With over 3 million items in its collection, it also definitely rewards repeat visits, and new-comers can only hope to get a brief taste of the riches on offer here, from Impressionist masterpieces to fascinating Oriental treasures. The Museum as Hermitage collection is housed in the Winter Palace, formerly the official residence of the Romanov Tsars, and its several annexes.
Sprawling across the connected buildings of the Winter Palace, the Small Hermitage and the Old Hermitage, this vast, chaotic and incredibly rich collection is unquestionably the biggest draw for visitors to St. Petersburg. Founded by Catherine the Great, who bought up artwork en masse from European aristocrats, embellished by each of her successors, and then massively enriched by Bolshevik confiscations and Red Army seizures in conquered Germany, the Hermitage collection is incredibly varied, ranging from ancient Siberian artifacts to post-impressionist masterpieces by Matisse and Picasso. Equally impressive are the lavishly decorated State Rooms of the Winter Palace, testament to the incredible wealth and extravagant tastes of the Romanov Tsars.
Peterhof is a town of Tsarskoye Selo, within the Petrodvortsovy district in St. Petersburg, at the shore of the Gulf of Finland, located about 30 kilometers west of St. Petersburg.
The Peterhof complex consists of a set of palaces and gardens that were the residence of the czars until 1917. Later after 1918 it was transformed into a museum, though during World War II it was occupied and destroyed by German troops. After World War II it began its restoration, which still continues. The center of Peterhof complex is known as the Grand Palace (of Baroque style), though something much more spectacular than the palace itself are the gardens and fountains surrounding it, and you can visit smaller palaces and buildings that house museums. They are known as the “Russian Versailles” and are an UNESCO World Heritage site. Peterhof is composed of various palaces, museums, churches and other buildings. It is truly spectacular and worth seeing the complex.
The Catherine Palace is a beautiful palace situated in small town of Tsarskoye Selo, 30 km south of St. Petersburg, Russia and it's one of the world's great royal residences. It was the summer residence of the Russian tsars. The Catherine Palace is named after Catherine I, the wife of Peter the Great, who ruled Russia for two years after her husband's death. Originally a modest two-storey building commissioned by Peter for Catherine in 1717, the Catherine Palace owes its awesome grandeur to their daughter, Empress Elizabeth, who chose Tsarskoe Selo as her chief summer residence. Starting in 1743, the building was reconstructed by four different architects, before Bartholomeo Rastrelli, Chief Architect of the Imperial Court, was instructed to completely redesign the building on a scale to rival Versailles.
The cathedral was named after the "miracle-making" icon of Our Lady of Kazan, which the church housed till the early 1930s. The Bolsheviks closed the cathedral for services in 1929, and from 1932 it housed the collections of the Museum of the History of Religion and Atheism, which displayed numerous pieces of religious art and served anti-religious propaganda purposes. The current Cathedral is masterpiece of Russian ampere architecture style.
Nevsky Avenue is one of most beautiful avenues of the world and it become the central street of the capital of the glamorous Russian Empire. Every building here tells a story. Nevsky Avenue is called the Street of Tolerance and the Street of Banks. Tourist can see many interesting sites, palaces and churches.
The shop with State-of-the-art architecture, fantastic interiors and a lot of highlight stories related to the building.
Palace Square and Winter palace.
One of the most beautiful and harmonious ensembles of architecture in the world. Like Red Square in Moscow, Palace Square in St. Petersburg has been the setting of many major events in Russian history. The view of the main city square with an exquisite line of architectural masterpieces is going to take your breath away. If you heard about Saint Petersburg, you should hear about the Winter Palace - one of the greatest architecture masterpieces in the world, the residence for many years to Russian Emperor family.
The legendary river dominating the city landscape. A large granite embankment walkway along the river, originally built to prevent flooding, now housing landmark steps, sculptures, and docks along the river, designed by some of Russia's most prominent architects.
Statue of Peter the Great.
One of the most recognized symbols of city founder and national hero. The Peter the Great Statue is a 98-metre-high monument to Peter the Great, located at the western confluence of the Moskva River and the Vodootvodny Canal in central Moscow, Russia. It was designed by the Georgian designer Zurab Tsereteli to commemorate 300 years of the Russian Navy, which Peter the Great established.
Related to times of Russian fleet establish the dominating spire in the city skyline helps you to get oriented.
St Nicholas Naval Cathedral.
Probably the finest examples of the Baroque architectural style in Russia. Its's an outstanding monument of Russian architecture of the middle of the 18th century, The cathedral has preserved its historic image and interiors for over 200 years. Today, the two-story church remains a place of worship, as well as a popular tourist attraction, with visitors flocking to admire its magnificent paintings and gilded iconostasis, pay their respects at the memorials of lost seamen and take in the views from the belfry.
One of the most famous opera and ballet theatres in the world. Opened in 1860, it became the preeminent music theatre of late 19th century Russia, where many of the stage masterpieces of Tchaikovsky, Mussorgsky, and Rimsky-Korsakov received their premieres.Through most of the Soviet era, it was known as the Kirovsky Theatre. Today, the Mariinsky Theatre is home to the Mariinsky Ballet, Mariinsky Opera and Mariinsky Orchestra.
The Spit of Vasilevskiy Island.
The legendary architectural complex serving as the famous postcard-view of the city is one of the main and most fascinating architectural ensembles of the Northern Capital, an example of the harmony of architecture with the landscape of the Neva River. This is one of the most favorite places of St. Petersburg citizens and tourists.
"Aurora" Russian cruiser.
The legendary cruiser, the symbol of the Socialist Revolution of the 1917, which participated in both World Wars. It was its salvo that gave the signal for the storming of the Winter Palace on the night of 7-8 November, 1917 bringing the Bolsheviks to power in a coup that changed world history. Aurora is also the oldest surviving ship of the Russian Navy, having fought during the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-1905, WWI and during the Great Patriotic War her canons were used to defend Leningrad. Now the Aurora is a branch of the Central Naval Museum at the Petrograd embankment on the Neva. The exposition of the museum ship is located throughout six rooms. There are about 300 museum objects including model ships, paintings, objects of seamanship and life at sea, documents and photographs.
Summer Garden (Closed on Tuesdays).
The oldest park in the city founded by Peter the Great just the next year after the city foundation. It is located where the Fontanka River flows out of the Neva River. It was founded in 1704 by order of Peter the Great, who was personally involved in planning it, and is laid out according to strict geometrical principles. The Summer Garden is home to marble statues acquired from Europe especially for Russia's new capital, and also to rare flowers and plants, as well as fountains. It was a traditional location for courtly life outside the palace, and balls were held here by the nobility, who also enjoyed simply taking the air in the Garden.
Saint Michael's Castle.
St. Michael's Castle, also called the Mikhailovsky Castle or the Engineers' Castle, is a former royal residence in the historic centre of Saint Petersburg, Russia. St. Michael's Castle was built as a residence for Emperor Paul I by architects Vincenzo Brenna and Vasily Bazhenov in 1797–1801. It was named after St. Michael, the patron saint of the Royal family. The castle looks different from each side, as the architects used motifs of various architectural styles such as French Classicism, Italian Renaissance and Gothic.
St. Petersburg experiences a humid continental climate throughout the year. The summers are cool and the winters are quite chilly. This type of weather is the result of the city’s proximity to the Gulf of Finland. The average annual rainfall exceeds 600 mm in the months of August and September. The best months to visit the city are between mid-June to September, when the rainfall is less, and the weather is just on the verge of entering the cold winter season.
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Your vacation in St. Petersburg in Russia will be a memory to cherish forever as there are innumerable interesting and thrilling activities that you can indulge in during your trip. Adventure activities that you can experience in St. Petersburg include boating, kayaking and canoeing, parasailing and paragliding, river rafting and tubing, water skiing and jet skiing, food tours, bike tours, etc. All these activities allow you to explore the city and its surroundings in a unique way.
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