For some reason all the words disappeared from my original post when this was published so I’ll do my best to recount it!
Expectations of Russia, vodka..reality of Russia..vodka.
St. Petersburg truly impressed me because despite having studied Russian history extensively at school, I still didn’t really know what to expect from my trip there (unless watching Anastasia hundreds of times when I was young counts?)
St. Isaac’s Cathedral
The city is one of my favourites and its architecture is largely European influenced meaning there are some impressive structures around.
A top of this list of wonderful buildings is The Church of Our Saviour in Spilled Blood, amazing to behold both inside and out.
Once you step in the amount of mosaics which run from the ceiling to the floor are really something else to see.
After visiting we strolled down Nevsky Prospekt, the main shopping street to find not too far away is The Hermitage Museum, probably one of the best museums I’ve ever been to anywhere.
Besides its artefacts which lie within, it is located at the former Winter Palace. Walking around taking in the artwork and knowing the walls contain years of royal history is pretty cool.
The museum’s vibrant blue colour can be spotted from a far..
And up close my view was obstructed by this impressive feat of building and lack of OH&S as these men prepared what must’ve been a temporary stage of some kind.
Speaking of palaces, the Peterhof Palace is also worth a visit.
This UNESCO world heritage site’s lovely gardens surround the Grand Cascade or central fountain elaborately decorated in gold has water displays through out the day.
Another luxurious monument in Peter the Great’s name besides this palace can be found at the Peter and Paul Fortress.
Within the original fortress of St. Petersburg lies the church with its golden spires, which houses the burials of many famous Russian figures, including the Romanov family.
I didn’t read the Bronze Horseman until after visiting Russia and now badly wish I’d seen the monument of once again, Peter the Great, myself while in the city too!
Egyptian sphinx next to the Neva
Although the sun didn’t come out the ENTIRE time I was in St. Petersburg it was still fun to pass an hour doing a river cruise on the Neva to see the city from another perspective – this would be even better on a sunny day!
On our day tour the guide took us to the Monument To Heroic Defenders of Leningrad which is dedicated to those who fought against the Nazi’s during the siege of the city.
It’s a really interesting dedication with video, remnants and information to read for visitors.
Despite Russia not being the easiest place to get around as a tourist and the chances of ordering food you actually know the contents of slim to none, getting out of your comfort zone to experience the beauty of St. Petersburg is well worth the effort!
More snapshots from St. Petersburg…
Just a little Lenin statue..