What to see in Saint Petersburg this winter? 5 original ideas from an avid traveler
Vladimir Vinogradov December 24, 2023, 12:15 Moscow time Audio version: Your browser does not support the audio element.
At this time of year, the Northern capital looks a little different and will find something to please travelers.
President of Pro-Vision, author of the Vinogradov.story community
“Snowy winter, New Year’s lights and the atmosphere of the upcoming holidays transform any city, even one as self-sufficient as St. Petersburg. Below I will tell you what the northern capital has prepared for the new winter season and what places in Saint Petersburg you cannot miss in the next three months.”
Find ideas for New Year’s trips at the link:
Where to go for the New Year 2024 in Russia and abroad? Great address guide.
Skating rinks in New Holland, Sevkabel port and Okhta park
Without exaggeration, the main winter fun in St. Petersburg is ice skating. Since the mid-1860s, public skating rinks were organized in Fontanka, Moika and in the Tauride garden, literally from the first persistent cold.
Today you can still ride horse-drawn horses along the city’s rivers and canals, but lovers of high-quality ice and New Year’s aesthetics will probably enjoy it more on equipped urban sites: by the sea , in the port of Sevkabel, on the shores of the Gulf. of Finland, city – in New Holland or forest – in the fabulous Okhta Park.
Surprisingly different in mood, they all offer the same comfortable level of skiing and apres ski, although in this case it would be more appropriate to replace “ski”, “skis”, with “skates”.
Arctic and Antarctic Museum
It is not the most obvious exhibition, but it is the most wintry and snowy in Saint Petersburg, the one that is collected in the Museum of the Arctic and Antarctica on Marata Street. More precisely, three: about the nature of the Arctic and Antarctica, as well as about the development of the Northern sea route. The museum’s collection includes many interesting things: personal belongings of polar explorers, archival photographs and documents, dioramas and a grandiose model of the polar lights.
Winter is the best time to get acquainted with all the exhibits: firstly, the museum is very cozy and truly “lamp-like”, and secondly, the cold outside will help you better understand what it is like to be an explorer polar and fight constantly. with inhumane weather conditions.
Entrance gates of Saint Petersburg
Left as a memory of the time when all life was divided into front and backyard, the entrance doors of St. Petersburg have incredible appeal. Accidentally stumbling upon a luxurious front door with a fireplace and marble staircase is a rare stroke of luck. And only a few managed to travel in a working pre-revolutionary elevator: these addresses are carefully guarded and transmitted exclusively in great secrecy.
However, among the entrance doors there are also those through which guests are welcomed. These are the legendary “Romashka” in the Eliseev house, and the House with the rotunda and apartment buildings in Rubinshtein. The style of “that same” capital, Petersburg, is preserved right here, in the entrance doors. And not investigating at least one of them would be a mistake.
The Yusupov mansion in Moika is called the “palace of palaces” and is often compared to the classical imperial ensembles of St. Petersburg, such as the Winter Palace or Peterhof, sometimes not in favor of the latter. A little over a century ago, couples milled about in the Yusupov Palace, elegant conversations took place in the galleries and everyone in St. Petersburg gathered in their own home cinema – Pauline Viardot shone.
The façade of the palace, like the luxurious curtain of a theater lowered to the embankment, hid one of the most extensive private collections of luxury goods and art. The modern exposition is replenished with personal belongings of the Yusupovs, as well as numerous reminders of the difficult fate of the family. And the chamber theater continues to operate: the winter repertoire includes the operettas “Bayadera” and “The Merry Widow.”
The Pushkin suburb is the “Russian Versailles”, one of the monuments to the subtle taste of the three Russian autocrats and, of course, the place where the “sun of Russian poetry” rose. Tsarskoye Selo has very different moods.
At Catherine Park you can enjoy the tight proportions of a normal park and whet your aesthetic appetite before visiting the Amber Room. In Alexandrovsky it is easy to get lost in the semi-wild forest. Well, at the lyceum, you understand how precisely the expression “genius loci” connects Tsarskoe Selo with the biography of Alexander Sergeevich. It is best to come here when it is sunny and clear, so the lines about “frost and sun” are felt almost physically.
The previous article talked about interesting places that do not appear in tourist guides:
5 mysterious places in Russia that you will hardly find in tourist guides
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