St Petersburg Travel Guide

St Petersburg Attractions

St Petersburg is filled with a wealth of beautiful buildings and churches, many of them along one of Russia's most famous streets, Nevsky Prospekt. Nevsky Prospekt is a wide and sweeping boulevard running through the centre of the city all along the Neva River. The Admiralty, the Alexandr Nevsky Monastery where many famous Russians are buried, the wide Griboeva Canal, Kazan Cathedral, and the Church of Our Saviour on the Spilled Blood are all located along Nevsky Prospekt. While based on the more famous St Basil's Cathedral in Moscow, many consider the Church of Our Saviour on the Spilled Blood to be the more interesting example of Russian folk-inspired architecture.

St Petersburg's most famous attraction is probably the Winter Palace and the Hermitage Museum, located on Palace Square. This massive green, white and gold Russian Baroque palace houses one of the world's greatest museum collections, ranging from ancient Russian historical artefacts to modern European art, with the sumptuously decorated rooms an exhibition in themselves. The museum is far too big to explore in one visit, so it's a good idea to choose a section when visiting.

The Peter and Paul Fortress houses old jails and dungeons open to tourists, as well as several historical museums, the country's Mint, and the Cathedral of St Paul and St Peter where every Russian emperor since Peter the Great is buried. St Isaac's is another famous church worth visiting, both for its impressive Russian Classic architecture and the climb to the top of the church's dome for panoramic views of the city.

Travellers planning a lot of sightseeing in St Petersburg should consider purchasing the Petersburg Card which allows free entry to certain attractions and lots of other discounts and specials.

St George's Hall in the Winter Palace

The Winter Palace and the Hermitage Museum

The magnificent green, white and gold Winter Palace is superbly situated on the banks of the Neva River. At 656 foot-long (200m), the Russian Baroque building is the biggest and most lavishly decorated palace in the city. It was the official residence of...  see full details

Palace Square

Palace Square

Palace Square is the main square of St Petersburg and one of the world's most magnificent plazas. It contains the picturesque Baroque buildings of the Winter Palace and Hermitage Museum on one side and the Classical yellow and white former General Staff buildings of...  see full details

Nevsky Prospekt

Nevsky Prospekt

Almost three miles (5km) long, Nevsky Prospekt is one of the best-known streets in Russia and is the main thoroughfare of St Petersburg. The Nevsky Prospekt starts at the Admiralty building whose gilded spire is a famous city landmark, passes the Moscow Railway Station...  see full details

Dome inside St Isaac's Cathedral

St Isaac's Cathedral

The golden dome of St Isaac's Cathedral dominates the skyline of St Petersburg, with the colonnade around the cupola offering superb panoramic views over the city. It was commissioned by Tsar Alexander I to be a magnificent imperial cathedral, and the ensuing masterpiece was...  see full details

Peter and Paul Fortress

Peter and Paul Fortress

Situated across the river from The Hermitage Museum, and on a small island on the Neva Delta, the Peter and Paul Fortress is the oldest surviving building in St Petersburg. Planned by Peter the Great as a defence against possible attacks from the...  see full details

Pavlovsk Palace, St Petersburg

Pavlovsk Palace

The Pavlovsk Palace lies about 19 miles (31km) outside St Petersburg, and is one of the smaller and more restrained of the palaces located in and around St Petersburg. It was built in 1780 by Catherine II's son, Paul (the future Emperor Paul...  see full details

Catherine Palace in Tsarskoe Selo

Tsarskoe Selo

Tsarskoe Selo ('Tsar's Village') is a former Romanov summer residence located about 15 miles (25km) outside of St Petersburg. The estate was originally a gift from Peter the Great to his wife Catherine I, and over the course of many years it was...  see full details