Alongside the Universitetskaya Embankment

  • museums 2 ,
  • points of interest 3 ,
  • squares 1 ,
  • monuments 4 ,
  • palaces 2
3 km, 103 m
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.

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.

132 m
Zoology Museum of the Russian Academy of Sciences Zoology Institute

Zoology Museum of the Russian Academy of Sciences Zoology Institute

Saint Petersburg, Universitetskaya naberezhnaya, 1

The Museum of the Zoological Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences is the largest zoological museum in Russia and one of the largest in the world. Nearly 30 000 specimens of animals from all over the world are displayed in the Museum. The collection was started over 250 years ago, but has only been open to visitors since 1901.

258 m


Saint Petersburg, Universitetskaya naberezhnaya, 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.

44 m
Novobirzhevoy Gostinny Dvor

Novobirzhevoy Gostinny Dvor

St. Petersburg, Vasilievsky Ostrov, Mendeleevskay liniya, 5

The building has suffered little change since the construction till today

607 m
The Twelve Collegia

The Twelve Collegia

St. Petersburg, Universitetskaya emb.,7/9
487 m
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.

160 m
Menshikov Palace

Menshikov Palace

Saint Petersburg, Universitetskaya naberezhnaya, 15

Menshikov Palace was the first stone building in the city

Since 1981, it has served as a public museum, a branch of the Hermitage Museum.

The palace was founded in 1710 as a residence of Saint Petersburg Governor General Alexander Menshikov and built by Italian architects Giovanni Maria Fontana, and, later, German architect Gottfried Johann Schädel. It was opened in 1711, but the construction continued until 1727 (assisted by Domenico Trezzini, Bartolomeo Rastrelli, Georg Johann Mattarnovy and Jean-Baptiste Le Blond), when Menshikov with his family was exiled to Siberia and his property was confiscated.

In 1731, Cadet Corps were established and occupied the palace and neighboring buildings. At the end of the 19th century the Menshikov Palace was restored and became the museum of the Corps. In 1924, its collections were moved to the Hermitage and other museums. From 1956-1981 the Menshikov Palace was restored again and finally opened to the public as a branch of the Hermitage Museum with a collection of Russian art of the late 17th-early 18th century.

248 m
Rumyantsev Square

Rumyantsev Square

St. Petersburg, Vasilievsky Ostrov

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

375 m
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.

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.

169 m
 The Sphinxes and the Gryphon on University Embankment (Unversitetskaya Naberezhnaya)

The Sphinxes and the Gryphon on University Embankment (Unversitetskaya Naberezhnaya)

Saint Petersburg, Universitetskaya naberezhnaya

Sphinxes on University Embankment (Unversitetskaya Naberezhnaya) are about 3 500 years old

213 m