Travelling is all about adventure, fun and relaxation and I am generally of the opinion that some trips should be left mostly unplanned to leave room for spontaneity and hence more adventure. Having said all that, a bit of planning goes a long way, especially if you’re only visiting a place for a weekend or so. With that in mind here are a few tips to help you plan your next weekend or short stay in the amazing Russian city of St. Petersburg.
It might get cold
This one is a bit obvious, but yes if you’re going to brave the Russian winter make sure you don’t forget to pack those thermals and a proper jacket, as winter in St. Petersburg can be quite unforgiving whilst summer is unpredicitable. On the other hand don’t forget to pack your bikinis/swimwear as well, and try out the Degtyarniye Baths, an old age Russian tradition, or to simply have a dip in one of the luxury spas at your hotel.
…to the Fabergé museum for the most authentic Russian experience. The museum was founded to promote Russian cultural heritage. Housed at the Shuvalov palace is the most astounding collection of Peter Carl Fabergé’s most famous works and that of craftsmen of his generation and those to follow.
Get underground or catch a car
The fastest way to go around St. Petersburg especially if you’re covering long distances is the metro, one of the most efficient underground systems ever bested only by the one in Moscow. If you’re covering a short distance and aren’t scared to negotiate a little, then don’t be afraid to stick out your hand, soon enough a civilian car will stop and give you a ride for little money if it’s on their way. A lot of Russians do this ‘unofficial taxi’ thing to supplement their income.
Go to Church
Even if you’re not into religion or harbor a different faith, make sure you visit the Church on the spilled blood. This is by far the most ornate church in St. Petersburg decorated in a classic Russian Orthodox on the exterior whilst boasting of about 7000 square feet of mosaics on the inside.
Although surprisingly enough the most common alcoholic beverage in St. Petersburg is beer, Vodka is the preferred drink of choice for warming yourself up. Yep you heard it. Served icy cold with some sort of pickles or potatoes (a questionable measure to keep you from getting drunk), vodka is found at every corner, bar café or music venue