The Cathedral of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, St Peterburg, Russia

A city of mystery to me: St Petersburg, Russia

In Europe, Inspiration, Mini Breaks, Our Journeys, Russia, Trip-Types, World Travel by JanisLeave a Comment

 Here’s why I wanted to visit...

St Petersburg is a city I have wanted to visit for years, and every year I have thought ‘right for my birthday this year it is going to by St Petersburg’.

The dome of Saint Isaac's church dominates the skyline over the Moyka River, St Petersburg, Russia St Petersburg, Russia

St Isaacs from the Moyka River

My birthday is in August, so at about January time I start looking at the flights and they are so expensive, so then I put it off for another year.
 
Eventually I thought no, enough is enough I really want to see this city, I’m going to book it, so very early January 2014 I booked the flights.

Quick Links

Who would have predicted that only 10 days later, Russia decided to pick on Ukraine and spark civil unrest throughout parts of the country…...why did it have to be 2014?
 
Anyway, it’s too late we’re going, we’ll just have to pack our hard hats.

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Covert Character

This city has always evoked mystery and clandestine rendezvous to me, so it was that feeling and the amazing architecture, like I had never seen before, that attracted me to St Petersburg.

The truly impressive Beloselskiy-Belozerskiy Palace, on the banks of the Fontanka River, nestled next to the Anichkov bridge.

The Beloselskiy-Belozerskiy Palace

Russia is so rich in history from the Tsars, the communism and the role it plays in the world today.
 
These are just a few reasons why St Petersburg was my birthday destination for 2014;

A useful guide

If you've yet to discover the incredible history and architecture in St. Petersburg, you're in for a treat. I found this DK Top 10 Pocket Travel Guide invaluable, they're extremely informative, easy to follow and the pictures and maps tempt you into discovering more.

We used a previous version of this book to plan our St. Petersburg adventure, now you can grab the revised copy.

DK St Petersburg cover

Saint Petersburg’s distinguishing architecture

Just by undertaking a little research and flicking through some websites I anticipate just how incredibly breath-taking the architecture is going to be throughout St Petersburg.
The green and white with mustard yellow trimmings exterior of the Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg, Russia

The Hermitage Museum

Here is a selection of the historic buildings I’ll be going on the hunt for;

- The Hermitage museum – Winter Palace
- Palace Square
- Church of The Savior on Spilled Blood
- St Isaac’s Cathedral
- Peter & Paul Cathedral
- Peter & Paul Fortress
- Kazan Cathedral
- Mariinsky Theatre
- House of Books (Singer House)
- St Nicholas Naval Cathedral
- The Admiralty

A pleasure boat passes by the Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood on the Moyka River in Saint Petersburg, Russia

The Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood

Looking across the lawn in front of the Kazan Cathedral, also known as the Cathedral of Our Lady of Kazan, in Saint Petersburg, Russia.  With its outstretched curved colonnades, it is said to resemble St. Peter's Basilica in Rome.

Cathedral of Our Lady of Kazan

Don't just take our word for it!

If you're tempted by the intriguing city of Saint Petersburg and its beautiful architecture and waterways, take a look at the 'Visit Saint Petersburg' official website.

Discovering the canals and waterways;

Saint Petersburg has often been referred to as the ‘Venice of the North’. With the love I have strolling by canals and rivers and gazing across open seas, I couldn’t wait to explore.

A small private boat moored up on the Griboedov Canal in Saint Petersburg, Russia

The Griboedov Canal

Russian food and drink

Well, I’m not too sure what we’ll find on the cuisine front. Surely Beef Stroganoff must be on the menu, along with Blini and Borscht.
 
The local tipple has to be Vodka, doesn’t it? Although, who knows what other beverages Russia is famous for (there is only one way to find out).

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Russian Dolls

These enchanting wooden dolls with their family hidden inside, will always be a lasting childhood memory for me. Their Russian name is actually Matryoshka Dolls.
A set of 8 female Russian Dolls I bought in Saint Petersburg, Russia

My set of Russian Dolls

Tempted To?

Visit Saint Petersburg, Russia's second largest city. Take a peek at our 14 reasons to lure you to St Petersburg or for a little fun check out our St Petersburg - Truths 'n' Trivia.

Saint Petersburg Weather

Mmmmm… well our mini break was in early August and the research I had completed for this time of year, was that the temperature should be early 20’s.
 
How wrong was I, it was early 30’s (lovely if you laying on a beach, not so good for a mini break)?

Looking over the Neva River on a bright sunny day towards the Peter and Paul Fortress, Saint Petersburg, Russia

A beautiful weekend in Saint Petersburg

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Inspired to visit Saint Petersburg, Russia?

Does the yyy tempt you? would you like to see the zzzz?

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