First Time in St Petersburg

  • If it is Your First Time in St Petersburg

    (Part 1)

    If it is your first time in St. Petersburg and you only have one day to explore it. We offer you an interesting route to get to see the main sights of the city.

    You can start with St. Isaac’s Square

    St. Isaac’s Cathedral

    One of the most beautiful and popular squares of the Northern capital. The square includes an ensemble of several buildings and attractions: hotel “Astoria”, recognized to be on the ninth place in the ranking of the most romantic hotels the world by Forbes magazine. The Blue Bridge -“the most invisible” —  is the widest crossing, reaching a width of 97, 3 meters. There is also a monument to Nicholas I, but the main attraction of the square is the St. Isaac’s Cathedral. It was built in 1818-1858, by architect Auguste Montferrand and is not only one of the most beautiful buildings in the city, but also one of the highest. To estimate its height, we recommend going up to the colonnade and enjoy a beautiful view of St Petersburg .

    The Admiralty

    Admiralty Building, St Petersburg

    Near the Cathedral is the building of the exhibition hall “Manege” (it was built in the spirit of classicism under the project of architect Giacomo Quarenghi), and on the other hand, the Alexander garden with a fountain and a bust of Przewalski (people note the similarity of the bronze Przhevalsky and Stalin, why call this monument “Stalin with a camel”) and the Admiralty, which is crowned by the legendary boat. According to the legend, there is a treasure hidden in the hollow ball under the boat. The ball really contains the treasure but it is not the gold. There is an account on all repairs of the spire with the boat, the names of the artists who participated in the repairs. There are also several St Petersburg newspapers of the nineteenth century, the Leningrad newspapers and documents on major repairs taken place in 1929, 1977 and 1999. In addition, there is a “Message to the future” left by modern workers.

    Palace Square

    Palace Square and Alexander Column

    Turning to the other side of the Palace passage we see the Palace square, the ensemble which is formed by the Imperial Winter Palace, the building of the Guard Corps, General Staff building with the triumphal arch and the Alexander Column. Its current view of the area owes to the era of Alexander the great, when a huge area has led to a single style, and the architect Montferrand built the famous Alexander column, which became a new dominant of the Palace Square and its surroundings. Unfortunately one day is not enough to visit the Hermitage and the General Staff . If guests have an extra day, they may spend it on visiting the major repositories of art in the Hermitage Museum.

    Nevskiy Prospekt

    Nevsky Prospect. St Petersburg. Russia

    Then we move on to the main road of the city on the Neva. Before you there are 4,5 km of landmarks built between the Admiralty to the Alexander Nevsky Lavra (Monastery).

    The Kazan Cathedral

    This is one of the main attractions of Nevsky Prospekt. The architect Voronikhin built it ten years from 1801 to 1811. The Emperor Paul I wanted the Kazan Cathedral to resemble the St. Peter’s Cathedral in Rome and this worked out indeed. You can see themajestic colonnade facing Nevsky Prospekt, a rich interior and the enormous dimensions.

    Admiralty Building, St PetersburgOpposite there is the famous House of Books.
    The bookshop opened in 1919 in the former office of the company “Zinger”. The house is built in a modern style and differs from many others by a wonderful tower topped with a sphere-globe which has a diameter of 2.8 meters. The building houses the main office of the Russian Russian Social network – “VKontakte”. It also houses a panorama café, from where you can admire the view of the Kazan Cathedral.

    Areal View of the Church on Spilled Blood in St Petersburg

    Church of the Savior on Blood

    Further, along the Griboyedov Canal is the Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood. The architect Alfred Parland designed it in the spirit of the late stage of the “Russian style”, which is closer to Moscow than to St Petersburg. However, this was the wish of Alexander III, who ordered to erect a Cathedral on the site of his father’s death from the bomb of terrorists. The temple opened in 1907.

    The Field of Mars

    First it was dusty place for military rehearsals (also known as Tsaritsyn Meadow). After the revolution there came the famous necropolis.

    Mikhailovsky Garden

    The wonderful Park, which often hosts interesting exhibitions. From The temple of the Savior on spilled Blood you can see beautiful grid in the Art Nouveau style.

    The Summer Garden

    The summer garden was founded in 1704 by the summer residence of Peter the Great. His original plan was revived during a recent renovation. Fountains, sculptures, pavilions, Summer Palace and great Bars — all this creates a wonderful atmosphere.

    Mikhailovsky Castle

    If you go in the direction of Nevsky Prospekt along the Fontanka river embankment you will see the Mikhailovsky (engineers) castle (former Imperial Palace, now a branch of the Russian Museum). This castle was built by Tsar Paul I, however, he have lived there for only one day.

    The Circus on Fontanka (now Ciniselli circus)

    This is Russia’s first stationary stone building for the circus.

    Malaya Sadovaya Street

    Here are a few interesting sculptures (the Wishmaster — the fountain “Ball”, a monument to the  cats and photographer during The Siege). This is a wonderful pedestrian street which is loved not only by tourists but locals as well.

    To be continued

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