Vasilievsky Island

Vasilievsky, one of the largest islands in St.Petersburg, was originally planned to be the centre of the city

  • points of interest 8,
  • squares 2,
  • streets 1,
  • palaces 1,
  • museums 2,
  • monuments 6
4 km, 162 m
Goods Sheds

Goods Sheds

St. Petersburg, Universitetskaya nab., 1

The Goods Shed with their rather plain architecture ideally fit in the ensemble of the Spit

1
Old Saint Petersburg Stock Exchange

Old Saint Petersburg Stock Exchange

The Spit of Vasilyevsky Island

The main building in the architectural complex of The Spit of Vasilyevsky Island

The building, which is situated at Birzhevaya Ploschad 4, is a significant example of the Greek Revival architecture. Designed by French architect Thomas de Thomon and inspired by the Greek Temple of Hera at Paestum, the stock exchange was constructed between 1805 and 1810. It was built for the St. Petersburg Stock Exchange, but was subsequently used for a different purpose. As of 2011 the building houses the exposition of the Central Naval Museum.

The Old Stock Exchange is sited to fill the majestic sweep of the Spit (in Russian Strelka) of Vasilievsky Island, just opposite the Winter Palace. Thomon's design called for a peristyle of forty four Doric columns resting upon a massive stylobate of red granite and supporting an entablature of triglyphs and slotted metopes. A monumental sculptural group similar in form to aquadriga featuring Neptune, and symbolizing maritime commerce, is mounted above the portico. Both inside and outside the Bourse, a motif of the semicircle is recurrent. The interior features a large colonnaded trading hall, now divided into eight exhibition halls. The central rooms are illuminated by an oblong skylight. The surrounding ceiling features double-sunk coffers.

96 m
2
The Rostral Columns

The Rostral Columns

Saint Petersburg, Vasilievsky Ostrov, Birzhevaya Ploschad

In the 18th century the columns fulfiled the role of lighthouses

The first two rostrum columns, Chesmenskaya and Moreiskaya, were built in the 1770s at Tsarskoe Selo (near Pushkin) in memory of the victories of the Russian fleet (see Russian Naval Memorials). In St. Petersburg there are two rostral columns erected from granite and pudost stone in 1805-10 (architect Jean-Francois Thomas de Thomon) on the spit of Vasilyevsky Island (see also Stock Market Square). From the very start they served as beacons for the trading port. Inside the rostral columns are spiral staircases, leading to the squares are chalice shaped lamps on tripods (since 1957 the gas beacons of the columns have been lit for celebrations). At the pedestal of the columns are sculptures (the craftsman S. Sukhanov, the sculptors J. Camberlain and J. Thibaud), they are traditionally considered allegories for the Volga and Dnepr rivers (the northern column), the Neva and Volkhov (the southern column). In 1999-2000, they were restored.

379 m
3
Makarova Embankment

Makarova Embankment

St. Petersburg, Vasilievsky Ostrov

The embankment was named after S.O. Makarov, Russian vice-admiral

Makarova Embankment between Birzhevaya Square and Smolenka River Embankment, on Vasilievsky Island, on the left bank of the Malaya Neva. In the 17th century, there was a settlement of fishermen on this site. In the first half of the 18th century, several stone buildings for Peter the Great's confidants - Count P.M. Apraksin, the Lopukhins, S.F. Klokachev and K.A. Naryshkin, were constructed on the ground of present Buildings 2-4. On the site of Buildings 6-8, the stone building of Gostiny Dvor was constructed in 1722-35 and demolished in the 1900s. In the 18th to the first half of the 19th centuries, berths and warehouses of the port were located along the embankment. In 1809-10, the granite embankment was built as far as Birzhevaya Line, in 1824-32, It was extended up to Tuchkov Bridge, that joins Makarova Embankment and Petrogradskaya Side. In 1809, the granite slope with lions was built by architect I.V. Roginsky. In 1826-32, the northern storehouse of the Stock Exchange appeared. In 1829-32, the Custom House was erected. In Building 6 Pavlov Scientific Research Institute of Physiology is quartered.

274 m
4
Institute of Russian Literature (the Pushkin House)

Institute of Russian Literature (the Pushkin House)

St. Petersburg, Makarov Embankment, 4

The first and the largest national literary museum in Russia

The historic building in the classical style is a part of the architectural ensemble of the Spit of Vasilievsky Island. The Customs was built in 1829-1832 under the project I.Luchini. Since 1927 the building are the Institute of Russian Literature and Literary Museum (Pushkin House). In corners of building gable there are three statues: Mercury, Neptune and Ceres (ancient Greek patron gods of commerce, navigation and fertility). Lions decorate the embarkment in  harmony with its simple, classic style.

The customs was built due to growth of the harbour that was on the Spit of Vasilievsky Island.

Compare the Customs Building with Kunstkamera  building. They are considered to have simular look and highlightе the symmetry of  the  ensemble of the Spit of Vasilievsky Island.

42 m
5
Pavlov Institute of Physiology

Pavlov Institute of Physiology

St. Petersburg, Makarova emb., 6

Pavlov Institute of Physiology of the Russian Academy of Sciences originates from the Physiological Institute of the USSR Academy of Sciences, which was founded in 1925 on the base of the Physiological Laboratory.

The first Director of the Institute of Physiology until 1936 was an outstanding scientist, the first Nobel Prize winner in theoretical medicine, Academician Ivan P. Pavlov. The main goal of the Institute was to study physiology of brain hemispheres by the method of conditional reflexes. By the early 1930s, the main problem investigated at the Institute included regularities of the activity of brain hemispheres, interactions of the excitation and inhibition processes, types of the nervous system, experimental neuroses as well as the higher nervous activity of primates. In 1934, new Departments were founded (Anatomy, Biochemistry, Biophysics, Experimental Psychology) and the ground was provided for detailed studies on the structural and physico-chemical basis of physiology and psychology of theanimal and human brain. Initiated by Pavlov, neurogenetical investigations began.

Investigations of the Institute not only are of important theoretical significance, but also promote solution of many practical problems of medicine, pedagogy, informatics, husbandry and give grounds for development and introduction of effective ways of an increase of organism adaptational possibilities and human activity optimization under  [Institute in Koltushy] onditions of the ecological and social stress.

The researchers of the Institute traditionally perform a large international cooperation: their studies are carried out with support both of the Russian and of various foreign programs and foundations. In the frame of this cooperation, for the recent decade, the Institute researchers went out more than 500 times for foreign missions both for performance of cooperative investigations and for participation in scientific events. During the same time, more that 700 foreign scientists were accepted at the Institute.

202 m
6
Library of the Russian Academy of Sciences

Library of the Russian Academy of Sciences

St. Petersburg, Birzhevaya liniya, 1

One of the largest libraries in the world

425 m
7
Akademika Sakharova Square

Akademika Sakharova Square

St. Petersburg, Vasilievsky Ostrov
55 m
8
Monument to Sakharov

Monument to Sakharov

St. Petersburg, Vasilievsky Ostrov

Andrei Dmitrievich Sakharov was a Russian nuclear physicist, Soviet dissident and human rights activist.

He became renowned as the designer of the Soviet Union's Third Idea, a codename for Soviet development of thermonuclear weapons. Sakharov was an advocate of civil liberties and civil reforms in the Soviet Union. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1975. The Sakharov Prize, which is awarded annually by the European Parliament for people and organizations dedicated to human rights and freedoms, is named in his honour

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Novobirzhevoy Gostinny Dvor

Novobirzhevoy Gostinny Dvor

St. Petersburg, Vasilievsky Ostrov, Mendeleevskay liniya, 5

The building has suffered little change since the construction till today

32 m
10
The Twelve Collegia

The Twelve Collegia

St. Petersburg, Universitetskaya emb.,7/9
353 m
11
Kunstkamera

Kunstkamera

St. Petersburg, Universitetskaya embankment, 3

Peter the Great's Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography 

Located on the banks of the Neva in the center of St.Petersburg, the Kunstkamera has been the symbol of the Russian Academy of Sciences since the early 18th century. Founded after Peter the Great's Decree, the Museum was opened to the public in 1714. Its purpose was to collect and examine natural and human curiosities and rarities. Today, collections of Peter the Great's Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) are among the most complete and interesting in the world. These collections contain nearly one million artifacts and reflect the diversity of traditional cultures in the Old and New World. The Museum has always been one of the world's largest centers where human cultural heritage is studied, continuing the traditions of the great Russian cultural and physical anthropologists of the 18 - 20th centuries.

305 m
12
St.Petersburg Academy of Science

St.Petersburg Academy of Science

St. Petersburg, Universitetskaya nab., 5
104 m
13
Monument to Lomonosov

Monument to Lomonosov

St. Petersburg, Universitetskaya embankment

Mikhail Vasilyevich Lomonosov was a Russian polymath, scientist and writer, who made important contributions to literature, education, and science. Among his discoveries was the atmosphere of Venus. His spheres of science were natural science, chemistry, physics, mineralogy, history, art, philology, optical devices and others. Lomonosov was also a poet and influenced the formation of the modern Russian literary language.

94 m
14
Palace of Peter II

Palace of Peter II

St. Peterburg, Universitetskaya nab., 11

The Palace of Peter II was built on the area of Alexander Menshikov's estate in the twenties of the 18th century. It is located on the Universitetskaya naberezhnaya of Vasilievsky Island.

Menshikov's daughter was affianced to Peter Alekseevich that's why in 1727 the new palace was laid down on the site of Menshikov. Previously there was a house of Menshikov's butler, Fedor Solovev. This house was reconstructed and became an eastern wing of new palace.

At the stone-laying ceremony attended Peter Alekseevich and architect Domenico Trezzini. In 1730, before the end of the building Peter II dies in Moscow from the disease. After his death the construction of the building had actually stopped.

Currently East and Philology faculties of St. Petersburg State University are located in the former Palace of Peter II.

151 m
15
Manege of the Cadet Corp

Manege of the Cadet Corp

St. Petersburg, Universitetskaya nab., 13
109 m
16
Rumyantsev Square

Rumyantsev Square

St. Petersburg, Vasilievsky Ostrov

The squre was named after the Rumyantsev Obelisk standing in its center

387 m
17
Rumyantsev Obelisk

Rumyantsev Obelisk

St. Petersburg, Vasilievsky Ostrov, Rumyantsev square

Field-Marshal Pyotr Rumyantsev was commander of the Imperial Russian forces in the Russo-Turkish War of 1768-1774. To mark this resounding Russian victory Vincenzo Brenna, court of Emperor Paul I, was commissioned to create a memorial.

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Russian Academy of Arts

Russian Academy of Arts

St. Petersburg, Universitetskaya nab., 17

Museum of the Russian Academy of Arts is a unique art collection not only in Russia, but throughout the world

The Russian Academy of Arts in Saint Petersburg, informally known as the St. Petersburg Academy of Arts, was founded in 1757 by Ivan Shuvalov under the name Academy of the Three Noblest Arts. Catherine the Great renamed it the Imperial Academy of Arts and commissioned a new building, completed 25 years later in 1789 by the Neva River. The academy promoted the neoclassical style and technique, and sent its promising students to European capitals for further study. Training at the academy was virtually required for artists to make successful careers.

Formally abolished in 1918 after the Russian Revolution, the academy was renamed several times. It introduced free tuition; students from across the country competed fiercely for its few places annually. In 1947 the national institution was moved to Moscow, and much of its art collection was moved to the Hermitage. The building in Leningrad was devoted to the Ilya Repin Leningrad Institute for Painting, Sculpture and Architecture, named in honor of one of Russia's foremost realist artists. Since 1991 it has been called the St. Petersburg Institute for Painting, Sculpture and Architecture.

219 m
19
Quay with Sphinxes

Quay with Sphinxes

St. Petersburg, Universitetskaya embankment

The Saint Petersburg Sphinxes are about 3500 years old

They are made from syenite and initially were in front of a magnificent temple, which was built in Egypt near Thebes for the pharaoh Amenhotep III. Their faces are portraits of Amenhotep III and the shape of their headwear (crowns "pa shemti") indicates that he was the ruler of two kingdoms—the Upper Egypt and Lower Egypt.

204 m
20
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