A view across Palace Square to the Hermitage Museum, with the Alexander Column on the right., St Petersburg, Russia

Whilst strolling in St Petersburg, Russia

In Europe, Mini Breaks, Our Journeys, Russia, Trip-Typesby JanisLeave a Comment

A city on foot

The best way to see the wonders of St Petersburg is on foot (comfy shoes essential), from wandering through some of the small local streets to the wide bustling boulevard of Nevsky Prospekt. This is a pleasureable experience, although the 30 degree heat in the August sunshine did take its toll at times.

Along the ‘Admiralty’, ‘English’, ‘University’ and ‘Palace’ Embankments that straddle the River Neva you can appreciate some the colourful architecture that St Petersburg is so elegantly laying before you.

The Kunstkammer with one of the red rostrum towers in the background, St Petersburg, Russia

Before crossing the Birzhevoy Bridge towards the Peter and Paul Fortress, spend some time strolling around Vasilevskiy Island.

The Rostral Columns, built in 1811, which stand flanking the Stock Exchange, were designed as lighthouses and the figures at the bottom represent Russia’s four biggest rivers (Volga, Dnieper, Neva and Volkhov).

On this island you can also visit two of St Petersburg’s many Cathedrals.

One of the rostrums at the split in the Neva River into Bolshaya Neva and Malaya Neva.  St Petersburg, Russia

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A beach?

A short hop over towards Peter and Paul Fortress and suddenly you have sand beneath your feet, who knew there was a beach in St Petersburg (an opportunity to top up the tan).

The fortress on Zayachy Island, as seen from the Neva river, St Petersburg, Russia

From within the fortress you can admire the stunning Baroque cathedral of Saint Peter and Paul and visit the Artillery museum.

Over another bridge you enter Trinity Square and you can observe one of Europe’s largest and most eye-catching mosques, which can hold up to 5,000 people.

The Great Mosque of St Petersburg, Russia

On crossing the beautiful Trinity Bridge which opened in 1903 to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the founding of St Petersburg, you may notice it consists of ten arches and crosses at the widest point of the Neva River.

Floating under the Trinity Bridge on the River Neva, St Petersburg, Russia

This is just one of the 800 bridges in this colourful city.

To relax those tired feet wander through the ‘Field of Mars’ and take a respectful rest by the Eternal Flame monument.

This monument was erected in 1957 and dedicated to those who died during the 1917 Russian Revolution.

The Eternal Flame in the Field of Mars, St Petersburg, Russia

Enough resting

Beyond the ‘Field of Mars’ you will come upon the Mikhaylovskiy Castle, this was built for Tsar Paul I in 1801, who had a fear of being assassinated, so had the castle surrounded by moats and drawbridges as well as a secret tunnel.

The Mikhaylovskiy Castle - main gate, St Petersburg, Russia

He was right to be paranoid as he was murdered after only 40 days of living in the castle.

Back on your feet again head to the Anichkov Bridge which was completed in 1841, it has four stunning bronze statues of men taming wild horses.

One of the 4 Horse tamer statues over the Anichkov Bridge in St Petersburg Russia.
One of the 4 Horse tamer statues over the Anichkov Bridge in St Petersburg Russia.
One of the 4 Horse tamer statues over the Anichkov Bridge in St Petersburg Russia.
One of the 4 Horse tamer statues over the Anichkov Bridge in St Petersburg Russia.

Viewed in the correct order you may notice that they appear to be broken in.

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Nevsky Prospekt

From the Anichkov Bridge head down the eight lane boulevard of Nevsky Prospekt (this is a must). This 4.5km (3 miles) stretch of culture is the hub of the city’s social life, nestled amongst the cafes and boutiques you will witness architecture like no other.

One noticeable building is the Singer House, also known as the House of Books, it is a wonderful example of Russian Art Nouveau.

The House of Books (Singer House), St Petersburg, Russia

The building was originally designed to be a skyscraper, similar to the Singer Building in New York, but due to St Petersburg’s building code it could not be taller than the Winter Palace, therefore it was adorned with a glass tower and globe.

Those comfy shoes must be coming in handy now…..

Nearing the bottom of Nevsky Prospekt head off along Bolshaya Morskaya Street (you won’t be disappointed), when you walk through the Triumphal Arch to Palace Square the vision will take your breath away.

The Hermitage Lecture Centre, St Petersburg, Russia

The Hermitage is revealed in all its glory, the colours of the Winter Palace, the Old and New Hermitage and the General Staff Building are stunning (to see this view was one of the main reasons I wanted to visit St Petersburg).

A view across Palace Square to the Hermitage Museum, with the Alexander Column on the right., St Petersburg, Russia

The Palace Square encircles the Alexander Column, which was built in 1834 and dedicated to Alexander I.

The 47.5 metre high monument is adorned by an angel holding a cross.

Have a well earned beer.

A well earned Baltika Beer after a lond day strolling around St Petersburg, Russia

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Have You

Visted St Petersburg? What took your breath away? What was the highlight of you trip?

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About the Author


Janis, the co-founder of Our World for You, was born in London and raised in Kent and the Isle of Wight. Along with Gary her partner, they have been travelling part time since 1995. In 2016, they decided that enough was enough with the 9 to 5, so armed with the knowledge and experience that they had gained on their adventures, that they wanted to inspire others to travel the world near and far.

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