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Saint Petersburg, Russia: Sights and Attractions

Updated on June 19, 2013

Skip The Tours

Ok, I get it, not all us want to skip the tours; they give us a certain level of comfort. Being with people who know how to navigate a location and can take you straight to the most popular sites can be luxury, but I’m going to make the argument that if you stay within a certain radius, most of what you want, and should see, in Saint Petersburg is within your reach with nothing but the two feet under you.


Staying on the main shopping street, Nevsky Prospekt is key to a succesful trip.
Staying on the main shopping street, Nevsky Prospekt is key to a succesful trip.
Saint Petersburg has the deepest subways in the World.  Skip them, use your feet.
Saint Petersburg has the deepest subways in the World. Skip them, use your feet.

Where To Stay

Whether you stay in one of the many hotels in Saint Petersburg or if you rent an apartment (my recommendation), be sure you stay within the historic area of the city with access to the main retail street, Nevsky Prospekt. Personally I would recommend staying directly on Nevsky Prospekt, sure it would be on a busy street, and perhaps a little noisy at night, but keep in mind you are in a city and it will be noisy wherever you stay. The public transportation system only makes limited stops and with its steep escalators descending into the deepest subway tunnels in the World, by the time you figure out how to use the system and actually ride the trains, you mind as well have walked to your location. Stay near the action.

The flea market behind the Church of Spilled Blood is a perfect place to buy gifts.  Be sure to haggle!
The flea market behind the Church of Spilled Blood is a perfect place to buy gifts. Be sure to haggle!

Not To Be Missed

Everyone has their own interests and you should always tailor your trip around seeing the things that interest you and your travelmates, but in Saint Petersburg there are a handful of sites that should not be missed by anyone:

The Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood

Any trip to Saint Petersburg should include a visit to The Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood.
Any trip to Saint Petersburg should include a visit to The Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood. | Source
The Church of Spilled Blood is completely covered in mosaics.  Not to be missed!
The Church of Spilled Blood is completely covered in mosaics. Not to be missed!

Kazan Cathedral

This ornate cathedral is a filled with Eastern Orthadox icons and relics.  You may see people lined up to kiss them when you are inside.
This ornate cathedral is a filled with Eastern Orthadox icons and relics. You may see people lined up to kiss them when you are inside.

The Hermitage

Some of the greatest art collections in the World can be found in this former palace of the Tsars.
Some of the greatest art collections in the World can be found in this former palace of the Tsars.

Petrhof

Spend the day at Peterhof, the palace of Peter The Great.  The short boat ride can be picked up behind the Hermitage on the Neva River.
Spend the day at Peterhof, the palace of Peter The Great. The short boat ride can be picked up behind the Hermitage on the Neva River.
One of the restaurants in Peterhof serves the exotic foods you may want to try in Russia.  Various caviars and even bear are on the menu.
One of the restaurants in Peterhof serves the exotic foods you may want to try in Russia. Various caviars and even bear are on the menu.

Do It Your Way

Of course these are just suggestions and there are many more sites to see in this amazing city. Make your trip your own. Have fun!

show route and directions
A markerChurch of Our Saviour on the Spilled Blood -
Church of Our Savior on the Spilled Blood, набережная Канала Грибоедова, лит. А, Санкт-Петербург, Ru
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B markerKazan Cathedral -
Kazan Cathedral, ulitsa Kazanskaya, 2, Saint Petersburg, Russia, 191186
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C markerHermitage Museum -
Hermitage Museum, Palace Square, дом 2, Saint Petersburg, Russia, 190000
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D markerPeterhof russia -
Petergof, Saint Petersburg, Russia
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E markerNevsky Prospekt -
Nevsky Prospect, Saint Petersburg, Russia
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    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 4 years ago

      The cathedral is beautiful and the palace is amazing. I could enjoy a trip here. I see that you mention to haggle -- that is always a fun activity no matter where you go. Thanks for the tour.

    • saitam profile image

      saitam 4 years ago from Lisbon

      Nice hub, never been to St. Pet. but it seems to have beautiful buildings.

      Do you know what was the person eating in the restaurant photo? Looks different from what I am used to.

    • Boulism profile image
      Author

      Boulism 4 years ago from Short Beach, CT

      Thanks for reading! Saitam, that's me and it's caviar in a crepe like pancake with sour cream and chives. Yum!

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