Attractions, Monuments, museums and pictures of Saint-Petersburg
"The city of white nights" - this name is often attributed to one of the most beautiful cities in the world, its Majesty St. Petersburg. However the city has other names as well such as "Venice of the North" or "the City of Secrets." Over three centuries of its existence, St. Petersburg has become the largest center of not only Russian but also world culture. "This city will be based here..." - these words were spoken by the first Russian Emperor Peter I, by choosing the spot where the handsome St. Petersburg stands now. The choice of Peter the Great was no accidental, having built the city on the shore of the Gulf of Finland of the Baltic Sea in close proximity to the European Union, he thereby opened a "window to Europe", making St. Petersburg be a strategic center Russia. The city was founded on May 16, 1703. More than two centuries St. Petersburg was the capital of the Russian Empire. Now it is still called the Northern capital of Russia.
Milestones of history
Construction of St. Petersburg began with erection of the fortress "St. Petersburg", which now bears the name of the Peter and Paul Fortress. The city itself was being built around this fortress. In 1712 St. Petersburg was proclaimed the capital of the Russian state.
St. Petersburg was constructed in the image and likeness of Europe by truly talented architects. Along with Russian engineers and architects representatives of Italy, France, Switzerland and other European countries was participated in erection of the city. The result of such international construction was in unusually beautiful and exquisite look of the city, where traditional Russian architecture perfectly blends with the trend of Western European art. There was built a huge number of magnificent monuments that composed such well-known ensembles as the Admiralty, Palace Square with the Winter Palace and the General Headquarters building, St. Isaac's and Kazan Cathedrals, Vasilievsky Island, the Peter and Paul Fortress. In the 18-th century it seemed that spirit of Venice was hovering over Petersburg - the city channels and rivers were full of real Venice gondolas, amazing performances were presented in the theatres by Venice musicians, compositors and theatre stage designers.
Fully European city St. Petersburg became in the beginning of the twentieth century. By this time the city has turned into a major industrial center. In St. Petersburg there was produced almost everything required for the Russian Empire - ships, the most modern for that time and the most diverse range of light industry. Growth of Saint Petersburg was caused by the fact that the city was becoming more and more comfortable place to stay. Then, islands where the city was based on, were connected with dozens of bridges. Railway communication connected the capital not only with different regions of Russia but also with other European countries. A favorite mode of transport of St. Petersburg residents was the tram came in 1907.
St. Petersburg has lost its original name in 1914 when it was renamed as Petrograd. "The city of three revolutions" - this is Petrograd in the light of the dramatic events of 1917, which became symbols of such monuments as the cruiser Aurora, Champ de Mars, the Smolny.
During the period of being Leningrad the city has suffered a truly difficult period - the most difficult for the whole period of its existence - the blockade. The battle for the city was not ceasing during a period from 1941 to 1944 that is from the beginning of World War II almost up to its end. Nevertheless, Leningrad won a battle with a great sacrifice of life thank to courage of the city's defenders and did not surrender to the Nazi invaders. The war was over, the city needed urgent restoration. During postwar period there were many new built houses in Leningrad. The city has grown due to new regions such as the Gay Village, Kupchino, Citizen and others.
Particularly significant event took place in 1991 - a city on the Neva River returned its original name - St. Petersburg, historical justice might finally be served.
Saint - Petersburg today
Are you dreaming or planning to visit St. Petersburg? What does a modern city on the Neva River look like? That is the Neva River exactly we will start from as this is the main water artery of the city. Nevo - the ancient name of Lake Ladoga that the river name originates and begins from. There are 53 more waterways including rivers, streams and channels which except the Neva River had a significant influence on the formation of St. Petersburg laying on 47 islands of the Neva delta. Water surface is one tenth of the area of the city. Petersburg is a city of bridges, there are 308 bridges in the city, among which 22 are drawbridges. A total length of the bridges is about 16 km.
Now it is time to talk about weather. The weather of St. Petersburg is very changeable. Beautiful sunny day can suddenly become overcast. There are often torrential rains and snowfalls. However, as a song sings, "There is no bad weather". Petersburg is magnificent in the rain and snow. At the same time if you want to completely enjoy your stay in this wonderful city, it is better to visit St. Petersburg during the period from late spring until mid-September and not just because of the weather. At this season Petersburg is particularly interesting for tourists, because there are a lot of big events occurring within this period such as opening of fountains in Petergof, well-known festival of school alumni "The Scarlet Sails", jazz and classic music festivals, the day of the city and others.
The handsome Petersburg is the northernmost city among the largest cities in the world. Its geographical coordinates - 59 ° 57 'north latitude and 30 ° 19' east longitude. The climate is humid, close to marine. Summer in St. Petersburg is moderate and warm, average summer temperature is 18 ° C, but in the dry and hot weather can reach 30 ° C. The average temperature is -8 ° C in winter, but years of cold winter also happen when the thermometer drops to the level of -25 ° C. ..- 30 ° C.
What admirable White Nights are in St.Petersburg! This delightful and beautiful phenomenon of white nights is caused by high-latitude position of the city. When the sun sets below the horizon by about 9°, and the evening twilight practically coincides with the morning twilight the white nights appear. This happens on May 25-26. You can enjoy the white nights during their duration - about 50 days. The white nights period finishes on July 16-17.
The city on the Neva River is the largest transportation center, located at the intersection of transportation routes that connect the central regions of Russia, Baltic countries, Europe and Scandinavia. St. Petersburg has the largest seaport in the Finland Gulf, a river port in the delta of the Neva River as well as major rail and road routes. A large number of public transports - trams, trolleys, buses, taxis, subway are used in the city. The airport Pulkovo is sixteen miles from the city center.
Total square of the city 1 439 sq.km. Population of St. Petersburg comprises around 5 mln. people.
Today St. Petersburg is a very popular tourist centre year by year attracting more and more tourists from the different corner of the world. St.Petersburg was admitted as a city-monument of the world culture by UNESO decision. It is not coincidence, since St. Petersburg is not only a city with unique architectural appearance, but a city of traditionally high culture. Residents of St. Petersburg are well educated, many of them speak English and other foreign languages and they are friendly and attentive to guests of the city. Also St. Petersburg citizens are famous for their responsiveness. Wherever you are on the street, the train station, subway, in the museum or at the theater, asking question or request from St Petersburg citizen you can always count on their understanding and assistance.
Annually St. Petersburg receives 4.8 million tourists. New houses, hotels, roads - everything in St. Petersburg is done to make the city more comfortable both for citizens themselves and also for tourists and guests. The city has 51 foreign consulates, as well as the Representation of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Branch of the Eurasian Development Bank and the Interparliamentary Assembly of CIS member states.
Sightseeing of St.Petersburg
So you have arrived to St. Petersburg! Let's make a short excursion around this amazing city which has elegance of Europe, strict and harmonized combination of different architectural styles. St.Petersburg can freely vie with not only Moscow but also with any city of Europe for a number of interesting places and sightseeing.
Undoubtedly gorgeous and fantastic view opens to the ensemble of the Peter and Paul Fortress. The main attraction of the ensemble is the Peter and Paul Cathedral. Crowned with a golden spire, the Cathedral is not only interesting and colorful sightseeing but also particular symbol of St. Petersburg.
The famous Palace Square is rightly considered to be the heart of historic center of St. Petersburg. This is the main city square. Basic construction of the square is the Winter Palace, which was created based on the drawings of the great architect B.F. Rastrelli in the late 50's - early 60-ies of the XVIII century. In front of the Winter Palace, we can see the structure of the General Staff, made in the form of an arc with a huge triumphal arch at the outlet. In the middle of the Palace Square the Column of Aleksandr proudly rises. The Guards Corps headquarters are located on another edge of the Square.
Palace Square is adjacent to the architectural ensemble of the Admiralty, which is one of the most famous works of art of St. Petersburg and of the oldest buildings in the style of Russian classicism. In the heart of the Admiralty there is a tower with a tall steeple and a figure of boat. This figure is a distinction mark of St. Petersburg and is depicted in brochures and on postcards. The whole appearance of the Admiralty is the evidence of the strength of the Russian Navy.
There is the first Russian monument - the Bronze Horseman memorialized the glory of the great Emperor Peter I at the Senate Square in the historic part of St. Petersburg.
You will receive unforgettable impressions which will remain for a long time if you take a walk along the Nevsky Prospect - the leading line of St. Petersburg as well as if you visit the Summer Garden.
Luxury palaces and wealthy manors are another doubtless architectural treasure of St. Petersburg. The city has more than 600 palaces and mansions. Among them the Peter Palace shines with its brilliance, architectural and technical perfection, which can easily extinguish many summer residences of European monarchs.
Another place St. Petersburg is proud of is St. Isaac's Cathedral, the former chief cathedral in Russia. St. Isaac's Cathedral is the largest in St. Petersburg and one of the largest cathedrals in the world. The construction of the cathedral took 40 years. 400 kg gold and 16 tons of malachite were spent on the decoration. Designed by Auguste Montferrand the cathedral can accommodate ten thousand people.
One of the most unusual architectural decision is presented by the Cathedral of the Savior-on-Blood. Originality and grandeur of this cathedral is in the brilliant lighting designed by Italian architect and the lighting designer Piero Castellon.
There are interesting places marked with a seal of history in St. Petersburg. This is the famous cruiser Aurora as well as monuments addressed to the events of World War II.
Now it is time to visit a museum! The Hermitage! This is one the most famous and vast world museums. The Hermitage received its name from the similar French word meaning place of solitude. Works of art from different epochs and nations more than three million items were collected in 400 rooms of the Hermitage. The museum complex includes seven buildings on the Neva River, Palace Square and Million Street. Of course, a visit to the Hermitage is not enough even for superficial look at the works of great masters. True connoisseurs of beauty again and again returned to the Hermitage to fully enjoy watching the whole vast collection of masterpieces of world art.
The State Russian Museum, the world's largest collection of Russian art is also world known museum. About 400 000 exhibits compose a collection of famous Russian museum, which presents all types and genres of works of Russian art during the period from tenth to the twentieth century, all major trends and schools. Peterburg offers its guests to visit more than 170 museums.
Would you like to take a walk on the north of Venice? For sure, it's possible. St. Petersburg bridges and canals are an integral part of the city on the Neva and its romantic image. The Lion and Egyptian Bridge, Palace Bridge, Trinity Bridge, Lieutenant Schmidt Bridge - listing the names of Petersburg bridges and talk about them can take eternity. Here for example is one of the most unusual Bridges of St. Petersburg - the Blue Bridge on the River Moyka. Even standing on the bridge, you cannot see this and you naively assume that you are standing on the St. Isaac's Square, because this bridge is a square with a very original design. Name of the bridge originated from the eighteenth century, in those days the shores on both sides of Moyka were connected by a series of colored bridges - blue, red, yellow, green. These bridges were so much alike that even citizens used to confuse that is why it became necessary to paint the bridges in different bright colors. The bridges of St. Petersburg have its special color and unique charm. Proud Lions, forged lanterns decorating many St. Petersburg bridges are one more traditional attribute of the northern capital. You will feel the spirit of St.Petersburg as it is only if you have a walk by land or water on bridges and canals.
"For soon one dawn succeeds another with barely half-an-hour of night...". St. Petersburg white nights - one of the major attractions of St. Petersburg. If you happen to visit St. Petersburg during the White Nights, you will witness this exciting natural climatic phenomenon, praised by Russian poets and displayed on picturesque canvases. It's an amazing phenomenon, when for over six weeks the skies above the city did not go off, but only changed from bright sunshine to the soft pastels of dusk.
How many more "wonderful discoveries" are prepared for us in St. Petersburg! Exploration of this beautiful city with its history and sightseeing attractions certainly takes time. However even a single moment is enough to feel the delight of its magnificent culture and unique beauty!