Named the capital of culture, St. Petersburg is an incredible destination where you can find culture, art, shopping, architecture and excellent Russian food.
1. Visit The Hermitage Museum
The first thing that you have to do is visit the Hermitage museum, founded by Catherine The Great in 1764 it is the second-largest museum in the world. You will find more than three million artworks inside. From paintings by Rembrandt, Van Gogh, Rubens, Picasso to sculptures by Michelangelo. The Hermitage Museum consists of six architectural buildings that are located on one of the banks of the Neva river. Of the six buildings in the main museum complex, five - namely the Winter Palace, Small Hermitage, Old Hermitage, New Hermitage, and Hermitage Theatre - are open to the public. The entrance ticket for foreign tourists costs more than the fee paid by citizens of Russia and Belarus. However, entrance is free of charge the first Thursday of every month for all visitors, and free daily for students and children.
2. Walk Through Nevsky Avenue
With almost 5 kilometres of avenue, a walk through Nevsky is an essential experience. It is especially beautiful at sunset, when the light creates shadows and highlights its elegant architecture silhouettes. The avenue is full of shops, but also Baroque palaces, churches, cafes and shops - many of them historic. You can also find one of the first covered shopping centres in the world, original from 1757, and The Passage - a commercial passage with a glass roof over the Russian shops.
3. See The Church Of Our Saviour On Blood
This temple, in a neo-classical style, is a unique landmark of the city. With its multi-coloured bulbous domes and intricate interior mosaics it is hard not to be impressed. The church always attracts attention by its curious name and decorative bold colours. Yet it surprises even more when you step inside to see the beautiful and colourful architecture.
4. Watch Ballet At The Mariinsky
Is there anything more Russian than watching a ballet at the famous Mariinsky theatre? Mariinsky is currently one of the most important dance companies in the world. For those who do not like ballet, the building is an incredible visual treat and the acoustics are incomparable.
5. Climb Up The Golden Dome Of St.Isaac's Cathedral
The Golden Dome of St.Isaac's Cathedral is hard to miss. It rises majestically over Italian-style mansions and palaces in a bright gold colour. It is worth climbing the 262 steps to experience the fantastic panoramic views of the river, the Winter Palace and The Bronze Horseman.
6. Immerse Yourself In Russian Art At The Russian Museum
The Russian Museum is dedicated to national art that occupies four amazing palaces in the centre of St. Petersburg. The main building, the Mikhailovsky Palace, contains a fascinating collection of Russian art. For its part, the Marble Palace houses a wing of the Ludwig Museum and the Stroganov Palace dazzles with a spectacular interior.
7. See The White Nights
The most wonderful experience of St. Petersburg occurs in mid-June, when the sun does not go completely down, and the nights are painted in an amazing whitish grey. Many festivals are celebrated, and the city enjoys a very relaxed atmosphere.
8. Go On A Canal Tour
Saint Petersburg is a city that is best appreciated from the water, so crossing the canals is a unique experience. This way you can see unique architectural gems from different point of view and without getting tired feet. In winter it is not possible to navigate through the canals, but when they are frozen it is wonderful to be able to walk along and see them glisten under the winter sun.
9. Visit The "Russian Versailles" Peterhof Palace
Known as the "Russian Versailles" The Peterhof Palace consists of a series of palaces and gardens which were the residence of the Tsars. Throughout the complex you can visit small palaces and buildings that are museums. All this is a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
10. Enjoy Russian Cuisine At The Eliseevy Merchants Shop
The most opulent food court of the Russian Empire. This store is not only a food store, it also includes haute cuisine restaurants and in some cases, it can serve as a great hall for celebrations. You can find different delicious souvenirs and gifts from St. Petersburg, as well as fish and meat delicacies, rarefied alcohol, spices, oils and natural sauces.