The city of Saint Petersburg, Russia is one of the world’s most beautiful cities and has all the ingredients for an unforgettable travel experience – lavish architecture, an extraordinary history, wild nightlife, rich cultural traditions and high art that have nurtured and inspired some of the modern world’s greatest music, literature and visual art. The Russian city is hard to beat and is at par with the world in realm of historic landmarks, forts, estates, palaces and monuments. If you do take the time to explore this vast and beautiful city of over 5 million residents, you’re sure to reap memorable rewards. In short, consider adding these ten must see in Saint Petersburg to your list. Also, you should definitely check this website with must places to see in Moscow. Read on!
1. State Hermitage
Sitting astride the banks of the River Neva, the core of the Hermitage was constructed in the mid-eighteenth century and extended during later periods. The State Hermitage buildings such as The Great Hermitage, The Winter Palace of Peter I, and the Menshikov Palace has the most delightful, styles of architecture. The Treasure Gallery and the collection of the Department of Russian Culture will beckon to you with their unique and compelling treasures.
2. Church of Our Savior on the Spilt Blood
Love or hate it, the rainbow-colored Church of Our Savior on the Spilt Blood is an enthralling must-see sight. Whereas the exterior is sure to satisfy your desire for sparkle, its interior will wow you- the inside is covered in mosaics that mimic paintings of the famous Russian artists. Built on the exact site where Czar Alexander II was assassinated in 1881, its onion domes is one among the best iconic sites in the city.
Peterhof is located 29 kilometers west of Saint Petersburg. Its imperial estate is one among the world’s most popular day trips from the city. Peterhof is a UNESCO’s World Heritage municipal town and hosts a phenomenal palace and garden complex. The Grand Palace is lavish and extravagant in its own right. However, the real highlight of Peterhof is the Grand Cascade – a series of more than 140 fountains and canals cascading down a hill behind the Grand Palace. Forests, fountains, gazebos and several smaller palaces are some of the impeccably maintained grounds beyond the Grand Cascade.
4. Saints Peter and Paul Cathedral
Located in the heart of the Peter’s and Paul’s Fortress, the Cathedral was built in 1712 and was commissioned by Peter the Great. Its spire was the tallest until 1960’s when the television tower was built. The desire of Peter the Great to make the Cathedral more western has made it unique from most Russian churches – it is an exact outstanding example of Baroque architecture. What looks to be the most interesting feature is that this Cathedral is the final resting place of all but two Czars; Ivan VI and Peter II, a feature that has made it draw millions of visitors.
5. Catherine Palace
One thing that you must have realized is that Saint Petersburg is a city of palaces. The Rococo summer palace of Catherine I, however, built in 1717, is simply brilliant. The Catherine Palace also known as the Summer Palace at Tsarskoe Selo, is part of a gorgeous complex of guest houses, parks and the blue-and-gold palace itself. Peak tourist seasons may not be the best time to visit the palace, but even if you must go when crowds are high, this Palace can not miss your top ten most amazing must-see sights in the city.
6. Saint Isaac’s Cathedral
St. Isaac’s Cathedral is the greatest and among the most beautiful parochial buildings in St. Petersburg. Its dome dominates the city’s skyline and its beautifully gilded cupola can easily be seen glistening in the sky from anywhere within the city. The inside of the church consists of more than 43,000 sq. ft. and is filled with hundreds of 19th century works of art. You can also climb up the 300 steps up to the observation walk-way located at the very base of the great Cathedral’s dome. While up there, you get the opportunity to enjoy the breath-taking views of the city.
7. The Kazan Cathedral
The Kazan Cathedral, a cathedral of the Russian Orthodox Church, was constructed between 1802 & 1812 by the renowned Russian architect Andrei Voronikhin. The cathedral was constructed to a giant scale. It boasts of an impressive stone-colonnade, encircling a central fountain and a small garden. The cathedral is located on the Nevsky Prospekt and matches the iconic St. Peter’s basilica of Rome. It continues to attract visitors from around the world.
8. Navskiy Prospekt
Also known as Nevsky Avenue, it is the main street in the city, serving as the hub of nightlife and shopping. For backpackers and budget travelers, a walk along this most famous street in Russia can be, without doubt, one of the top ten free things to do in Saint Petersburg. You will also find museums, churches, restaurants, a concert hall, the Russian National Library, and a palace! This street is teeming with people from very early in the morning to very late in the evening.
9. Mariinsky Theatre
Being the home to the Mariinsky Opera, Mariinsky Ballet and Mariinsky Orchestra, Mariinsky is a wonderful place to spend some time at. The theatre has everything to make your vacation as enjoyable, memorable and a delightful experience as possible. Should you be travelling with your family, then you are likely to have a great time watching a remarkable performance together and sharing moments of pleasure with one another.
10. Russian Museum
The Russian Museum, which was opened in 1898, houses one of the planet’s greatest collections of art. It is housed in the Mikhailovsky Palace. The building itself is a work of art and is one of Carlo Rossi’s finest Neo-Classical creations. At the Museum you’ll be able to view Russian art creations through the ages, from Byzantine-style icons to the Socialist Realism of Stalin’s era.
Noe that you know the top ten must see in Saint Petersburg, pick up your raincoat and enjoy your visit.