Mystical Petersburg

Petersburg is a modern city that can attract with its unique architecture and historical monuments. But it is also cloacked in the atmosphere of mistery.

During three thounds years of its history Saint Petersburg has amassed a great lot of secrets. This route will guide your through the buildings and monuments not only beatiful and admirable but misterious as well.

  • temples and cathedrals 1 ,
  • points of interest 3 ,
  • palaces 2 ,
  • museums 1 ,
  • monuments 2 ,
  • bridges 1
13 km, 241 m
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.

1
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.

35 m
2
Yusupov palace

Yusupov palace

The family residence of the princes, the Museum of Noble Life, the Regional Teacher's House, the Saint Petersburg Palace of Culture for Educators, a world-famous historical and cultural palace complex

The Yusupov Palace, one of the most magnificent ceremonial buildings of the "Northern Capital", is the site of administrative and diplomatic meetings, international conferences and symposia. The palace's book of honorary guests contains the names of Russian government officials, heads of foreign states, and international stars.

The palace has been visited more than once by Russian President Vladimir Putin. The governors of the city have held talks here on issues related to the development of Saint Petersburg and strengthening its international ties.
The Yusupov Palace was visited by Britain's Queen Elizabeth II with her husband the Duke of Edinburgh and Charles, Prince of Wales, King Constantine II of Greece and his wife Queen Anne-Marie, the King of Malaysia Tuanku Syed Sirajuddin, Queen Sophia of Norway, Queen Sirikit of Thailand, and Queen Silvia of Sweden.

The palace has also hosted prominent Russian and foreign scientists, representatives of culture and art, members of the banking community, educators and journalists as participants of important international conferences. Among them – the president of the Club of Rome and Prince of Jordan El Hassan bin Talal, the director of the Institute of World History at the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) Alexander Oganovich Chubarian, Nobel laureate Zhores Ivanovich Alferov, Honrary Vice-President of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences (RANS) Sergei Kapitsa, Chairman of the supervisory board of Italian bank "Intesa Sanpaolo" Professor Giovanni Bazoli, President of the General Conference of UNESCO Moussa bin Jaafar bin Hassan, writer Chingiz Aitmatov, artistic director of the Taganka Theater Yury Lyubimov, film director Andrei Konchalovsky, poet Bella Ahmadulina, artist Boris Messerer, editor in chief of the newspaper "Moscow News" Vitaly Tretyakov.

Palace guests over the years have included international celebrities, including the singers Sting and Cliff Richard, the rock band "The Rolling Stones" and its lead singer Mick Jagger, movie star Liza Minnelli, and supermodel Naomi Campbell.
Its reputation as one of the most interesting and popular tourist destinations in Saint Petersburg attracts tens of thousands of visitors every year from all corners of Russia and the world.

1 km, 521 m
3
Kokushkin Bridge

Kokushkin Bridge

St. Petersburg, Griboedova Canal

One of the most popular in literature bridges in St. Petersburg

The Kokushkin Bridge is a bridge across the Griboedov Canal in Saint Petersburg, Russia.The bridge got its name from the merchant Vasily Kokushkin, whose house was located at the corner of Kokushkin Alley and Garden Street. From 1786 to 1796 the name was spelled Kokushkinov Bridge and from 1801 to 1853 the bridge was mistakenly called Kukushkin Bridge (meaning Cuckoo Bridge in Russian). Until 1872 the official name of the bridge could be written both as Kokushkin and as Kakushkin.

1 km, 190 m
4
Tchaikovsky House

Tchaikovsky House

Saint Petersburg, Gorohovaya ul., 13

It was the last residence in Saint Petersburg for Tchaikovsky and it was in this house exactly

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1 km, 380 m
5
Monument to Peter I on Senate Square (Bronze Horseman)

Monument to Peter I on Senate Square (Bronze Horseman)

St. Petersburg, Senate Square

Monument to the founder of St.Petersburg

Commissioned by Catherine the Great, the monument was created by the French sculptor Étienne Maurice Falconet in 1782. The second name (the Bronze Horseman) comes from the same name poem written by Aleksander Pushkin (1833). The monument symbolizes the Russian victory over Sweden in the Northern War (1700-1721): the snake symbolizes a defeated enemy, the horse symbolizes Russia. The pedestal of this monument is a huge so-called "thunder-stone", which was delivered to Senate Square from a borough Lakhta.

There is a legend that one can find the name of Étienne Falconet on a fold of Peter the Great's cloak.

882 m
6
National Pushkin Museum

National Pushkin Museum

St. Petersburg, Moika river Embankment, 12

Memorial apartment is the last lodging of Russian poet Alexander Pushkin

The Pushkin Apartment Museum, located in one of the oldest stone mansions in St. Petersburg at River Moika, 12, which in XIX century belonged to several generations of the Dukes Volkonky. It is the Memorial Museum of the poet, telling about the last period of his life and creativity. That was Alexander Pushkin’s last apartment. There he died on January 29 (old style), 1837 after he had been mortally wounded at the duel.

The central part of exposition represents Pushkin's study. The Captain's Daughter novel and many other things were written here. A clock in Gothic style is placed on the wall. According to contemporaries, it stopped on February, 10 at 2 P.M., when Pushkin’s heart ceased beating.

2 km, 183 m
7
Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood

Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood

St. Petersburg, Griboedova canal embankment, 2, lit. b

This church was built on the site where tsar Alexander II was assassinated

This Church was built on the site where Emperor Alexander II was severely wounded and died in March 1881.The church was built from 1883 till 1907. The construction was funded by the imperial family.

Architecturally, the Cathedral differs from St. Petersburg's other structures. The Church contains over 7500 square meters of mosaics—according to its restorers, more than any other church in the world. The walls and ceilings inside the Church are completely covered in intricately detailed mosaics — the main pictures being biblical scenes or figures — but with very fine patterned borders setting off each picture.

543 m
8
Saint Michael's (Engineer's) Castle

Saint Michael's (Engineer's) Castle

St. Petersburg, ul. Sadovaya, 2

The largest architectural monument that closed the architectural history of the XVIII century

The Mikhailovsky Castle is the only Russian palace constructed in style of romantic classicism. It is the unique building, which involves a lot of stories and legends, often rather mystical. It amalgamates features of a medieval knight's castle and a European palace of XVIII century. Constructed for Paul I (1797 – 1801) upon the project of architects V. Bazhenov and V. Brenna, the Castle became the place of its owner’s mysterious death. That is why during the long time here, in the very heart of the imperial St. Petersburg, two windows of the emperor’s bedroom where his life came to a tragic end were thoroughly curtained during traditional festive illuminations of the city.

At the beginning of the XIX century the Castle, "a deserted monument of the tyrant, a palace consigned to oblivion", accepted in its walls  military men and cultural figures, and later it became the residence of the Engineering school, and magnificent interiors of the former imperial palace were reconstructed and adapted for its needs. During a long time the Castle was named Inzhenernyi, and this name was connected to the Engineering school.  Throughout the Soviet period the Castle was occupied by various military organizations.

And now the restored rooms of the Castle you can visit an interactive exposition "The Romanov Saga" and an open storage of XIX - the beginning of the XXI centuries sculpture, as well as the original marble sculpture of the Summer garden that is also stored here, and equally it is a place where temporary exhibitions are held.

638 m
9
Peter and Paul Fortress

Peter and Paul Fortress

St. Petersburg, Zayachy ostrov

A unique historical, architectural and fortification art monument of XVIII-XIX centuries

Founded by Peter the Great in 1703, St. Peter and Paul Fortress is considered to be a unique fortification monument of XVIII-XIX centuries. Its architectural ensemble is focused around St. Peter and Paul Cathedral where the tombs of all the Russian emperors can be found.

The Peter and Paul Fortress is put on May 27, 1703. According to the legend, Peter I himself chose a place for new fortress – the small Hare island (in Finnish – Enisaari), located in the Neva River mouth. The citadel in the form of a six-pointed star was constructed according to the project made by the French engineer Zh.G. Lamber with the participation of the tsar. Six curtains connect six powerful bastions, the associates of Peter I called by names.

The defensive system from the West and the East is closed by Ioannovsky and Alekseevsky ravelins. Two bridges — Ioannovsky and Kronverksky - connect the Hare island with Petrograd. On October 1, 1703 fortress consecrated. On the Monarchic bastion the Andreevsky colors were hoisted, on ramparts three hundred tools are installed. On June 29, 1703 in the center of the Peter and Paul Fortress put small wooden church for the sake of apostles Pyotr and Pavel on which place in 1712-1732 built a stone cathedral. From 1731 to 1858 Peter and Paul Cathedral had the status of the cathedral temple of the capital, then was ranked as court department. The cathedral served as a tomb of reigning House of Romanovs. Here the Russian emperors and empresses from Peter I to Nikolay II, except for Pyotr II and Ioann of VI are buried. To a cathedral the covered gallery connected the Grand-ducal tomb.

Within the XVIII-XIX centuries in the territory of fortress buildings and constructions of different function were built: Botny house, Artillery, Mint, Commandant's and Engineering house, an also guardroom and others. In the XVIII century fortress became a jail of the state criminals, in XIX — the main political prison of Russia. At the emperor Alexander I at the beginning of the XIX century fortress was for the first time open for visitors. In the 1900th years in Peter and Paul Cathedral tours on an imperial necropolis were conducted. In 1924 Trubetskoy's prison of a bastion turned into the museum. In 1954 the complex of buildings of the Peter and Paul Fortress was passed the State museum of history of Leningrad (St. Petersburg).

The territory of the fortress and the beach are open for public. The main cites include the history of everyday life in St.Petersburg in the XVIII-XIX centuries in the House of the Commandant of the garrison. One may visit the prison of Trubetskoy bastion that once used to be the political prison. Among those prisoners who are well-known in the world were L.Trotsky and F.Dostoyevsky. The Boat house shows the first ship that started the history of Russin fleet.

 

4 km, 187 m
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