St. Petersburg, the second largest metropolitan of Russia, has recently been announced as the best tourist city in Europe by ‘World Travel Awards’. Home of Hermitage Museum, Mariinsky Theatre and many more iconic Russian establishment, St. Petersburg has been chosen for this honor for it’s rich history, centuries-old traditions and excellent tourism management. The city topped to the final list of this prestigious award last year too. But this time defeating 13 cities including Amsterdam, Barcelona, Berlin, Paris and London, the former Russian capital snatched the award which is commonly known as the Oscar of tourism.
Let’s check some of the main attractions of St. Petersburg for a tourist ..
Hermitage Museum :
This is one of the largest and oldest museum in the world. Built in 1764, Hermitage Museum contains almost 11 vast collections from Egyptian archeology to Swedish art work. The area of the museum is so huge that it will take almost a week to complete visiting the whole thing.
Peter and Paul Fortress :
Land, water or sky.. from wherever you look at Peter and Paul Fortress, it will definitely going to draw your attention. The building built in 1703 by Peter the Great was sometimes used as fort, sometimes as prison, sometimes as museum or sometimes as tourist center. The fortress carries the memories of many famous political prisoners of Soviet Russia.
The State Russian Museum :
This central museum is quite newer comparing to other museums of the country. But the building is a old one and was used as residence for royal members. It was opened as art museum in 1895.
The Catherine Palace :
Built as the summer residence of Queen Catherine I. The palace has gone through numerous changes and reformations for decades. Specially in World War II, the building has almost totally been destroyed. Nowadays it is used for high profile political and cultural events.
It is actually a tiny town of St. Petersburg. A beautiful palace, few gardens, many fountains and some science institutes are among which can attract tourists.
St. Isaac’s Cathedral :
It took 40 years to finish this magnificent cathedral. Completed in 1858, it is one of the four local cathedrals. The dome on the top is quite similar to Vatican’s. Though built for worship, after the fall of Soviet Union, leaving one part of the cathedral for prayer, the other section was opened for tourists and visitors.
Church of Our Savior on the Split Blood :
King Alexander III built this exceptional church in memory of his late father. According to design, pattern and color, it is one of the most exclusive churches in Russia. The church opened in 1997 after a long restoration process.
Summer Garden :
King Peter built this magnificent garden in 1704. Along with various species of trees, this garden contains a vast number of beautiful sculptures. Though to save the precious pieces from rain, dust and others, the authority displays the replicas of them, but still thousands of tourists every year come to enjoy this garden.
Mariinsky Theater :
Those who adore opera and bale, must not miss Mariinsky Theater while visiting St. Petersburg. Established in 1860, this theater is still a prominent name in the cultural world. Mariinsky Theater has produced numerous legendary opera singers and bale dancers so far.