San Petersburgoprint

General City Information

Apparently it never was a great place for a settlement. Even the closest people to Tsar Peter the Great were speaking against the planning of the new city. “This is not a place for human beings because humans are no fish” Prince Menshikov once said to Peter I. However, during its short history, the city had experienced floods, revolutions, putsches, war sieges, destruction and resurrection. Today the city with its marvelous palaces, wonderful parks, elegant channels and many more attractions ranks amongst the most beautiful cities of Europe.

St. Petersburg—aka "Venice of the North"—aka "The City of The White Nights“—was founded in 1703. It has approximately five million inhabitants and is the second largest city of Russia and the largest one in the North. During the time of the tsarist regime 1709—1917 St. Petersburg was the capital of the country. Three times the city changed its name: St. Petersburg 1703—1914, Petrograd 1914—1924, and Leningrad 1924—1991 and in 1991 by the people’s choice it became St. Petersburg again. The locals commonly refer to St. Petersburg as “Piter”.

The 74 km long river Neva cuts through the city and reaches width of 1 km in the city center. During winter months the river is frozen and no navigation takes place. The city sits comfortably in the delta of Neva and expands over many small islands, which are responsible for many small rivers and man made channels. In St. Petersburg there are more than 320 bridges, approximately 120 museums, ca. 40 theatres, and around 1000 architectural objects of interests. Therefore, this city is also known as “a museum under the open sky”.

Today, there are two airports, five train stations and an excellent Metro system, which gets places real fast. Sometimes it runs 100 m deep. The metro of St. Petersburg is famous for its luxurious interior. It worth a look and for this purpose along it certainly worth a ride. The center of St. Petersburg was designed on the drawing board and built under strict planning regulations. The center of the city is an apex of three roads that run from the center outwards. Nevski Prospect (commonly known as Nevski) is the main cultural and shopping mile of the city. It is 4.5 km long and 60m wide, and at one end of it towers the building of Admiralty. Its spire carries the image of a ship—the town’s emblem.

The suburbs of St. Petersburg, which were the summer residences of Russian tsars, are exceedingly beautiful. The most famous are Tsarskoe Selo and Peterhof. Catherine’s Palace of Tsarskoe Selo, has experienced a recent restoration of the Amber Room and Peterhof, Russia’s “Versailles” directly at the Finish Gulf, is offering visitors its beautiful park with hundreds of fountains.