Top 10 Places to Visit in Saint Petersburg | Travel All Russia

Top 10 Places to Visit in Saint Petersburg

St. Isaac's Cathedral in Saint Petersburg

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Last updated:
02.12.2020

Surprising every guest with an immense wealth of unique sights and experiences to offer, from majestic palaces and monumental drawing bridges to elegant galleries and lively art hubs, Saint Petersburg has everything to keep you entertained for months!

Hermitage Museum

Indeed, any Saint Petersburg itinerary won’t be complete without its most famous visitor attraction beautifully set on the banks of the mighty Neva River, the Hermitage. The complex consists of six buildings, one of which is the legendary Winter Palace. This massive part of the Hermitage used to be the home for the Russian emperors and even today preserves its incomparable royal touch. Apart from being a unique masterpiece itself, the Hermitage houses one of the largest art collections on the planet, which is absolutely impossible to observe at once since it features over three million items!

Hermitage

Peter and Paul Fortress

While strolling along the mighty Neva River, a remarkable 122-meter-bell-tower (400 ft) will definitely catch your eye. This is an honorable part of the monumental Peter and Paul Fortress gloriously standing on Hare Island. Today being among the most famous places in Saint Petersburg, this citadel was built by Peter the Great to protect the city during the Northern War. Moreover, this structure consists of several noteworthy buildings, including the State Museum of Saint Petersburg history and the Trubetskoy Bastion. Apart from delving deeply into the town's historical past, as a bonus, you will be provided with magnificent panoramas of Northern Venice and its surrounding islands.

Peter and Paul Fortress

Interesting to Know
During your visit, you can also hear the fire of the cannon which announces noon according to the ancient tradition.

Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood

Located right on the Griboyedov channel, this multicolored church is among the city’s main symbols. Funded by the Romanov family, the Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood was constructed on the spot where Emperor Alexander II got tragically assassinated by politician nihilists, which explains the suffix “on Spilled Blood” in the name of the cathedral. In addition to its eventful past, the church strikes all visitors with its splendid looks. Let yourself get mesmerized by the incredible amount of intricate details making its interior so awe-inspiring and, of course, the mosaics, which occupy more than 23 000 feet of its walls!

Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood

Peterhof

Eager to go a bit beyond? You should then know that one of the best Saint Petersburg destinations for one-day trips is the Peterhof complex, located just 30 kilometers (18 miles) from the city. Built by Peter the Great, this former residence of Russian Tsars is dotted with fancy statues, lush gardens, and, shockingly, 173 fountains of various designs supplied with the water from underground springs! The most famous one is called “Grand Cascade” and features 64 fountains beautifully placed on different levels creating a striking composition!

Peterhof

Catherine's Palace

Once served as a summer residence of the imperial family, charming Catherine's Palace just can't be missed during your trip to the city of Tsars. Although this fantastic place is located in Tsarskoe Selo, Catherine's Palace is still listed in our rating of the "best places to go in Saint Petersburg" thanks to its impressive historical significance and ethereal architectural beauty. Hard to believe, but over 100 kilos of gold was used to embellish this royal ensemble! A must-see treasure of the museum is the richly decorated Amber Room, which was accurately reconstructed after the devastation by Nazi soldiers.

Catherine's Palace

Fun Fact
Empress Catherine was famous for her attention to detail: the legend says that the complex was renovated at least 6 times!

Faberge Museum

Hosting over 4000 exhibits, the wonderful Faberge Museum is situated in the Shuvalov Palace. Carl Faberge started his career by creating jewelry but made his name with his unique eggs that were initially conceived as Easter gifts for the royal family members. Even though many Faberge items were gone throughout history, today, you can see some of the well-preserved eggs in the museum and appreciate the details of their adornment with your own eyes!

Faberge Egg

Mariinsky theater

Classical ballet is the national pride of the country and a true trademark of the Russian culture. Looking for a chance to see the greatest show? Indeed, one of the most beautiful places in Saint Petersburg is the world-renowned Mariinsky theater. Set right in the heart of the city, this flamboyant complex provides a unique opportunity to witness iconic opera and ballet performances held according to time-honored traditions. Since its opening in 1860, this chic, luxurious opera house has welcomed some of Russia’s most talented performers like Fioder Shaliapin, Matilda Kshesinskaya, Vatslav Nizhinsky, and Anna Pavlova, to name a few.

Russian Ballet

Fun Fact
The very first ballet school in St. Petersburg was founded in 1738.

Kazan Cathedral

During your walk along the Nevsky Prospekt, make sure to stop by the stunning Kazan Cathedral, which is located right near the Singer House. This marvelous monument's architectural design stands out thanks to the imposing features of the Empire style, which create this enduring look of the cathedral. Being a cathedral of the Russian Orthodox Church, this place is named in honor of Our Lady of Kazan, often referred to as a "miracle-making" icon in Russia.

Kazan Cathedral

Yusupov Palace

Do you have a thing for mysteries? If yes, think about including enigmatic Yusupov Palace into your Saint Petersburg route. Here you can learn more about the fate of Grigori Rasputin, who was believed to have superhuman powers and, therefore, an influence on the Tsar's family. The building's exterior may seem relatively simple from the first sight, but once you get inside, be ready to get enchanted by the generously decorated halls with fancy furniture, extravagant artworks, and graceful frescoes that still reflect peculiarities of the aristocratic lifestyle.

Yusupov Palace

Drawing of the Bridges

Eager to spice up your Saint Petersburg vacation with an engaging activity and discover the city from another perspective? This place has something exceptional for you since you can spend a memorable evening enjoying the legendary drawing of the bridges! Scattered around the area, 342 bridges were constructed in different periods of time and today impress all guests of the town with a variety of styles. To witness the fabulous show, head to one of the four grand drawbridges: the Blagoveshchensky Bridge, the Palace Bridge, the Trinity Bridge, and the Foundry Bridge.

Drawing of the Bridges

The most beautiful drawing bridges in St Petersburg:

  • The Palace Bridge
  • The Blagoveshchensky Bridge
  • The Trinity Bridge
  • The Foundry Bridge

Even though this list is really extensive, we covered just a part of Saint Petersburg attractions that should be included in your sightseeing itinerary. Still have any questions left? Then feel free to contact our destination specialists, who will gladly help you by planning a perfect Saint Petersburg route allowing you to see the best in the city. Looking for the best way to reach Saint Petersburg from Moscow or travel vice versa? Check more information about Sapsan high-speed train providing a direct connection between outstanding Russian capitals!

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