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toma kuzminova
Why visit Saint Petersburg?
What is so special about this city that makes people come over to Saint Petersburg? Is it sightseeing? Or atmosphere?
There is a big story behind every place in our spanless world. Saint Petersburg does have one too. If it is essential for you to feel the spirit of a new place, then join us, and we will guide you through.

Once you decided to visit Saint Petersburg it is a good idea to have some highlights – essential facts folding in one picture. We are going to give you few so that you know what kind of expectation to pack in your travel bag. Let's get started!

A story of the history
The biggest story, to begin with, is history. It all started with Peter the Great who decided to give a birth to the city on Neva river back in 1703. Much has happened since then. Saint Petersburg became the city of the first and the last Russian emperor; the city of three Revolutions; the city survived the blockade during the Great Patriotic War…

Every event left its mark. That is why history here is essential to look back on. You will find insightful and even intriguing stories on different points somehow connected to historical figures and events: Winter Palace, Mikhailovsky Castle, Church of the Savior in Blooв, Saint Isaac's Cathedral... There is something Saint Petersburg wants to tell you at every step you take.


C is for Culture
Historical events are closely connected to the culture. Here comes the next highlight – Saint Petersburg is the Russian Capital of Culture. Although it is an arguable fact, every Russian knows it exactly. Fine and modern arts, literature, photography, cinema, music, a ballet that finds its home in numerous museums and theatres, exhibitions and festivals taken place throughout a year. The city is proud of its names: architects, musicians, poets, writers, artists, ballet dancers, actors and actresses… The cultural landscape is so manifold here – everyone can find fascinating routes to discover.

Once you find yourself in the heart of the city – Palace Square – you will be surrounded by architectural and cultural marvels (and sometimes hundreds of people trying to survive the checkout line to the Hermitage). Within walking distance there is the Neva river embankment overlooking Peter and Paul Fortress, Rostral Columns, Old Stock Exchange and again – dozens of sightseeing ships and boats during a summer and early autumn. Isn't that a culture?
Waters and Wind
Let us share another highlight – the Venice of the North. "Why is that so", – you may wonder. The reason is the number of canals – over 300 kilometers – and bridges – over 300 (again). Here comes short fact about bridges: some of them are bascule – Palace Bridge, for instance. It is an exciting attraction to see it opening in the middle of the night. But watch out! Once bridges are opened, it becomes costly to reach the other side of the city. However, if you're stuck in the city centre, you will always find a snug place to wait the night out. Especially in the summertime.

The proximity to the Gulf of Finland determines weather conditions – another feature Saint Petersburg is famous for. Wind, rain and steely heavens are natural here. But how grateful we are when the sun is shining! Сity transfigures and comes alive. It usually happens in late spring and summer. Now should be the time you realize that the best time to visit Saint Petersburg and not get soaked to the skin is summer.
Saint Petersburg has 3 times more bridges than Venice!
10% of the city surface is covered with water
Behind the scenes
But there is something more than just the history and culture. Unique creative atmosphere – these three words have a special meaning here in Saint Petersburg. The underground culture which includes music, literature, art, and poetry gave this atmosphere a go some time ago. It was hidden beyond the city's grand architecture and official art. The whole world was created, and we are proud of it today.

If you have heard about Russian rock, it probably was the one which came from Leningrad and Saint Petersburg: Kino, Aquarium. The phenomenon of post-Soviet masscult such as movie Brat (Brother) has come from Saint Petersburg too.

Even now creativity continues to be produced within this city, and you could have heard some of the names somewhere: rap artist and versus battle star Oxxymiron, rock band Leningrad, calligraphy artist Pokras Lampas and some other names which are worth mentioning. It is possible that you have never heard of these names till now. However, you could gave probably heard about Mr Putin, haven't you? He has his origins here too. It seems that fair share of creativity known beyond Russia has roots in Saint Petersburg.

History does play a significant role here, however, present does not forge ahead. Stay with us, and you will never get lost in this city. There is a story hiding behind every façade, and we are here to share them, or even more, so we invite you to take part.


Saint Petersburg has 3 times more bridges than Venice!
What is more
These are quick highlights to lay the foundation of a big story we are going to share with you.

Stay tuned for more and Say Hi to Saint Petersburg with us!

P.S. We suggest you watch the video down there. It is made by one of the most famous Russian rock bands I have already mentioned here, Leningrad, and considered a masterpiece by many Russians, including Saint Petersburg locals. Don't forget to turn on subtitles, even though the film itself is already worth watching.
Saint Petersburg has 3 times more bridges than Venice!
I am one of those daydreamers who was always thinking about moving to a big city. Originally Siberian, I have been enjoying Saint Petersburg for almost 5 years now – a big city of my dream.

I guess that travelling is what brings people together in Say Hi to Russia. At some point in my life, I travelled a lot, almost every weekend. It was an adventure of a lifetime I had never experienced before. What a feeling it is to step out of a bus, train or plane at a new place. And what a feeling it is to get to know locals who always have a word to share.

A short while ago I got a sense that there is so much to discover in Russia: it doesn't matter if it is a big city or a small village. My desire is to unite tourist and local experience in my writings. It is a way to rediscover day-to-day places and maybe inspire someone to visit Russia.


Toma Kuzminova
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