Permeating through 150 palaces, 42 islands and 350 bridges over a time lapse of around 350 years, St. Petersburg has germinated from a squishy swampland to a effervescent metropolis. Erected from a scratch in 1703, the credit of this aesthetic manifestation goes to Peter the Great.
Drenched in Baroque and Neoclassical architecture, Peter employed a host of European architects like Domenico Trezzini, Carlos Rossi and Bartolomeo Rastrelli to craft the city with intricate feats and designs to make the city gleam in 18th century’s exceptional aesthetic spectacle. It served the purpose of replacing Moscow as the Tsarist capital and has since then retained the reputation of Russia’s first modern city
A web of canals knitted around the city, Petersburg is conjoined by a grid of bridges that earns it the comparison to Venice. Rest in the lap of the city that brought up prominent personalities like that of Tchaikovsky, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Nikolai Gogol and Tolstoy.
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Bisected by the river Neva and overspread by verdant royal gardens, the city has a façade that encompasses exquisite architecture and delightful countenance of art and culture. A weekend in St. Petersburg is perfect to get the impression of how the imperial Russia would have appeared then.
If you are here for the weekend, this is a perfect read for you as to how to spend a worthy weekend in St Petersburg.
Where We Are:
St. Petersburg, Russia
Best way to get around?
Board the elegant and deepest metro that runs from 5.45 a.m. to 00.30 a.m for a price of 25 roubles for one trip (0.80$) or instead you may opt for a card that is comparatively cheaper. One can also travel via buses, trolleys and trams that runs from 6 a.m to 12 p.m at a cost of 21 roubles.
Grab your morning meal at Сonfectionery Ferma and surround yourself with the European morning exuberance as you savour your scrumptious breakfast in its cozy and classic interiors.
10:30AM–6PM (Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, Sunday)
10.30AM -9 PM ( Wednesday, Friday)
As you are done with your breakfast, head straight to the 1,000-plus-room, State Hermitage Museum. Nestled in the Rastrelli-designed Winter Palace, the Hermitage was established in 1764 by the solitary Czarina Catherine, the Great. It commenced with just 200 paintings from Johann Ernst Gotzkowsky, and the museum today is replete with astonishing works of Rembrandt, Raphael , Ruben, Leonardo da Vinci, Picasso, Dégas and Manet.
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Ticket prices starts from 300 RUB. The monument exhibits Russian Culture with the portrayal of an impressive combination of Byzantine and Russian icons. The enormous size of the museum bestows regal manifestation conferring to its majestic exposition.
Gratify your taste buds for lunch at the Literary Café. An upscale restaurant, Literary Café serves you a blend of Russian and European dishes.
Open: Daily 11AM to 6PM (Except Monday and Friday)
Embark on the monumental ship that rendered a significant mission in the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917. The ship marks the commencement of the Russian revolution.. A blank shot was fired from the ship towards the Winter palace in October 25, 1917 signalling a rebellious attack. An entry ticket would cost RUB 600.00 while students can avail it at RUB 400.00.
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Timings: 10 AM-6 PM (keeps on varying)
Hosting fine art Russian collections, the Museum adds feathers to Russia’s grandeur. A former Grand Duke’s residence, the museum houses the collections of over 6,000 Russian icons that includes the likes of Chagall, Malevich and Kandinsky.
Unwind after a day of excursion at the L’Europe Restaurant and get amused by musicians, singers and ballet dancers at display as you splurge in your dinner and embrace tsar like hospitality. Unfurl the fatigue with the sonorous violin played to please your ears and soothe your soul. The restaurant gives you an unforgettable night of your life.
Wake up early and stroll through Nevsky Prospekt, main street in the city of St. Petersburg. Sprawling into the city, the pathway is surrounded by marvellous architecture and shopping stores for a good splurge. Appealing to the eyes, the magnificent ambience sets the perfect tone for a beautiful start to your day.
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Stroganoff Steak House
After rambling along the iconic Nevsky Prospekt, it’s time to have a breakfast at Stroganoff Steak House. The restaurant claims to be the only steakhouse in Russia investing in dry ageing and hand butchering of imported cuts.
St Isaac’s Cathedral
Timings: 10.30 am to 6 pm (Daily)
At a walking distance from the restaurant is the St Isaac’s cathedral. The church once served as the largest cathedral in Russia and now stands tall as a majestic monument of the city. The Golden dome of the church blends well with the overall structure to provide a lavish and regal façade. Constructed by French-born architect Auguste Montferrand, the frontage is embellished with huge granite columns and sculptures and the interiors are intricately configured by mosaic icons and paintings.
Tickets are available from RUB 50.00.
The Indian restaurant comes to your rescue if you are already feeling homesick. Avail to your appetite some Indian lunch such as chicken and vegetable curries and mouth-watering Indian desserts.
Church On Spilled Blood
Timings: 10.30am-6pm (Thu-Tue)
Soaked in medieval Russian architecture as opposed to the city, Church on Spilled Blood literally abides the name. The Church had been established at the site which witnessed Emperor Alexander II fatally wounded. His son dedicated the landmark to his father. With 7000 sq m of mosaics being employed in its interior decor and a classic Russian Orthodox façade, it took 24 years to consummate. The tickets are available at minimum RUB 150.
Overlook the beautiful canals as you enjoy your dinner at the Karavan. Try your hand at stuffed camel or platters of grilled meat or go light with dumplings and Grapefruit salad.
So, immerse yourself completely in Russian delights and make the most of your weekend in St Petersburg. Feel free to share any other recreations you may have enjoyed in this city in the comments below.