Saint Petersburg’s architectural beauty and attractions: a photo essay

The Bronze Horseman, 1782 equestrian statue of Peter the Great, Senate Square, Saint PetersburgWhat do you do when you are in St Petersburg for a short time?

I basically did two things. One is a must: visiting the Hermitage Museum.

The Hermitage is a huge, super-rich collection of pieces of art hosted in buildings which are pieces of art themselves. One of them, the main one, was the royal palace, the Tsar’s residence.
I haven’t seen anything similar to the Hermitage in my life, except for when I visited the Louvre in Paris and the Vatican Museums in Rome.
How long you’ll stay in there depends on your resistance. I think it can be up to one whole day

But what else to do in St. Petersburg on a two-day stay?

Since its first stone was laid in 1703 by Peter the Great, the Tsars called the best European architects from all over Europe to build what is now known as the most Western-like city of Russia.
Mainly Italian and French architects, but also Russians, year after year, century after century, called by Tsar after Tsar, erected a wonderful historical center, made of several different styles: the Petrine Baroque, the Baroque, the Neoclassical, down to nineteenth century’s styles.
All that has produced a large downtown that is an open-air piece of art, and which was promoted UNESCO World Heritage site.

Therefore, I decided to take a bus tour. Below you can find a selection of the photos taken during that two-hour memorable bus ride.

If you’ve never been to St. Petersburg, by looking at the following pictures you can decide yourself whether I’m exaggerating in being so enthusiast about this Russia’s pearl.

From those who’ve been there, I’d love to hear suggestions about what else is worth a visit in St. Petersburg.

 

 

St.Petersburg Bridge

 

Busy street in St.Petersburg

 

St. Isaac’s Cathedral - St. Petersburg

St. Isaac’s Cathedral

 

Old Saint Petersburg Stock Exchange with Rostral Column

Old Saint Petersburg Stock Exchange with Rostral Column

 

Peter and Paul Fortress

Peter and Paul Fortress

Peter and Paul Fortress - Detail of The Angel

Peter and Paul Fortress – Detail of The Angel

 

FrozenCanal1 - Saint Petersburg

 

FrozenCanal2 - Saint Petersburg

 

The Winter Palace in Saint Petersburg, Russian Tsars royal palace, now housing the Hermitage Museum

The Winter Palace, Tsars’ royal palace, now housing the Hermitage Museum

 

Palace Square, Saint Petersburg

Palace Square, in front of the Winter Palace

 

Palace Square - Saint Petersburg

The other side of Palace Square

HorseMan - Saint Petersburg

 

Colonnade - Saint Petersburg

Colonnade

 

Peter the Great's cabin, Saint Petersburg. First residence of Peter in the under-construction city

Peter the Great’s cabin, his first residence in the under-construction city. Brick walls enclose the original wooden structure

 

A frozen Neva River, Saint Petersburg. The Winter Palace can be seen on the background

A frozen Neva River, on a cold winter day. The Winter Palace can be seen on the background

 

 

 

 

A Palace on the Neva river 1 - Saint Petersburg

A Palace on the Neva river

 

 

The Bronze Horseman, 1782 equestrian statue of Peter the Great, Senate Square, Saint Petersburg

The Bronze Horseman, 1782 equestrian statue of Peter the Great, Senate Square

 

Canal with the Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood, built on the site where Tsar Alexander II was assassinated. Saint Petersburg

Canal with the Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood on the background. The church was built exactly where Tsar Alexander II was assassinated

 

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7 Thoughts on “Saint Petersburg’s architectural beauty and attractions: a photo essay

  1. My eyes bulge out with awe every time I see a picture of the Hermitage museum. Lucky, lucky you! I would cut off my right foot to hobble inside there. And the Church on Spilt Blood is another building I long to beyond!

    Your photos are gorgeous, enough to make me absolutely incensed and hurl expletives at my computer screen. CAN YOU HEAR THEM TUSCAN?!
    Shing recently posted..Warning This Post Contains Penis… Iceland’s Phallological Museum in ReykjavikMy Profile

    • Ooops, I mean ‘long to behold’. See… see what beauty does to me? I can barely get my words out!
      Shing recently posted..Warning This Post Contains Penis… Iceland’s Phallological Museum in ReykjavikMy Profile

      • Thank you, Shing. Yes, now I know why my screen was shivering a few minutes ago. A case of Stendhal syndrome!
        No need to end with a severed foot. The visa can be a little bit expensive, but still not out of reach (not sure about the basic price thou, as I was so inconsiderate to use an agency–even whorse, a Swiss agency.)
        Photos are nothing if compared to being there. You really should go.
        Let me know when you will be walking in the same rooms where Tsars lived.

  2. Gorgeous photos! Stunning looking place. Very inspiring to make me want to take that long awaited trip to Russia. I went to a travel agent in Athens over a decade ago to buy a plane ticket to visit a friend in Moscow who I’d met on the road. But the travel agent told me I could not get the visa in time. So I went to Turkey instead.

    Now years later we usually wind up going where we don’t need visas. We did Lithuania and Latvia 2 years ago and loved those countries. I am inspired to make Russia a priority again! :)

    • Hi Alex! I tend to prefer countries for which I don’t need a visa too. I’m from EU, too spoilt in crossing borders easily.
      That being said, I couldn’t help taking the opportunity of getting to St.Petersburg when I was in Scandinavia…

  3. What an impressive photo gallery. I’ve now got an appetite for visiting St. Petersburg and engaging in a picture taking frenzy.
    Mike@Earthdrifter recently posted..Captured For the Camera: 20 Photos From HindustanMy Profile

  4. Mike: In St. Petersburg, I had it twice. Once on the street, and the other while I was inside The Hermitage..

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