St Petersburg - the city
Trip Start Aug 08, 2013
23Trip End Oct 23, 2013
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The first day in St Petersburg consisted of a city tour. Being refreshed by our overnight sleep (we can now sleep on any train, anywhere!). Woken at 0810 with omelette, roll and coffee Russian Railways are excelling themselves!
Off on a bus to the cultural area - opera, ballet, music conservatoria - then to a church that was built on the site of an assassinated person. Suffice to say another OTT (over the top) decorated church which also contains a 7,000 sqm mosiac - which we didn't see because of the queue. Just to take in the decorations of the exterior would take half a day
Then down to the river. There was nothing here in the delta of the River Neva before 1703 when Peter the Great wanted to build a city near to Europe and a port for Russia on the Baltic. He, and subsequent Tsars did a good job! The river is fronted by enormous buildings such as Winter Palace, the Hermitage museum, Customs House, Stock Exchange.
Our next stop was the fortress island containing the Russian Mint and the church of St Peter and Paul - the burial place of the Tsars. We have now seen where Nikolai II (the last Tsar) was abducted, executed and finally buried.
Our last call of the day was the cathedral St Isaac in central St Petersburg. Another enormous structure opulently decorated within. The scale, decoration just takes ones breath away!
Next installment are the Summer and Winter palaces.