Museums, Saint Petersburg
This museum has two separate parts. The first is an indoor museum covering the history of railraods in Russia. Unfortunately, it was closed on the day we tried to visit it. We were, however, able to visit the other part of the museum, which is an outdoor exhibit of locomotives and railcars from various eras of Russian railroading. The outdoor section of the museum is located about a mile from the indoor section. On the day we were there, there were only about 10 people there, and we were the only non-Russians. Our daughter, who loves choo choo trains, was very happy that we went out of our way to visit it.
Here you can see how life was in 1930.
Serguei Kirov was the first secretary of Leningrad's communist party, it's the only chance to see with your own eyes an important part of the revolution history, you can visit his office with all the leader's portraits, his library, the living room, the bedroom and even a "made in america" General Electric refrigerator.
In the museum you can learn more about this man who was considered a hero among the population and that was killed in 1934.
The Vodka Museum is just of Dekabristov Square and consists of two small rooms filled with various old vodka bottles, manuals on producing vodka, articles on the subject. It's all in Russian, so it was a bit of a quick tour for me, though. At the end of the museum is a vodka tasting bar. Entrance to the museum is 50 rubles and you get a shot of some rather rotgut stuff at the end (White Doctor). They have a lot of better vodkas in the tasting room so if you want to stay a while and get serious about your vodka studies, you may.
My family has a tradition of finding wierd museams and this is amongst the wierdest.
The Russian State Museam of Hygene fetures mummys, human organs in jars, bones, lots of interesting things.
The hi-light, by far my favorite, is Pavlov's Dog, The actual dog. Stuffed and apparently once mechanized to drool when a bell rang.
Italianskaya Ul. 25
Admission 30 cents
Both the Museum of the Blockade and Defense of Leningrad (Solyanoy Pereulok 11, Metro Chernyshevskaya) and the Exposition on the Blockade at the St. Petersburg Historical Museum (Angliyskaya Naberezhnaya 44, on the Neva east of the Palace Bridge) have excellent exhibits on the Blockade of Leningrad, including many individual stories, based on diaries and personal narratives from this period. Unfortunately, many of St. Petersburg's museums are still not tourist-friendly - i.e. the exhibits are only in Russian. They still might be worth a visit however, especially if you can find a guide who speaks English.
One of St. Petersburg's (Leningrad's/Petrograd's) claims to fame is that the city has never fallen into enemy hands. One of the defining events in the city's history was the Blockade of Leningrad, which lasted from September 1941 through January 1944. During this period, known as "The 900 Days" (although if you do the math, it wasn't actually quite that long), the heroic citizens of Leningrad defended their city from the invading Germans. Although not as famous as the Siege of Stalingrad (today Volgograd), the story of this blockade is incredible, and a trip to St. Petersburg would not be complete without a visit to one of the many sites memorializing this historic event.
The cruiser Aurora, built in St. Petersburg between 1897 and 1900, took an active part in the Russian-Japanese War of 1904-05 and participated in the Tsusima battle, in which most of Russia's Pacific fleet was destroyed. After the war the ship was used for personnel training and during the October revolution of 1917 gave the signal (by firing a blank shot) to storm of the Winter Palace, which was being used as a residence by the democratic, but largely ineffective Provisional Government.
During World War II and the 900-day Siege of Leningrad the guns of the ship were taken down and used on the front line of the city's defenses. After the war the ship was carefully restored and used as a free museum and training ship for cadets from the nearby Nakhimov Navy School.
There are plenty of things to watch for in the palace ~ these initials worked delicately into the stucco molding of the entryway are but one. . .
The palace holds other, more bloody appeal (should you need more to draw you to it). Rasputin, advisor to the Yusupovs (as well as other influential families in the city ~ especially the Romanovs), was murdered here in 1916. Prince Felix Yusupov poisoned, then shot Rasputin. Still alive, he was chased and shot three more times, then beaten and dumped into a river to drown.
There is a special tour that you can take through the lower floor, where an exhibit on Rasputin can be viewed ~ during our visit, only tour groups could arrange this in English.
The small-in-scale, private theatre of the Yusupov Palace far surpassed the beauty of the Mariisnky (and of the Bolshoi, still to come at this point).
It's decorated in Rococo style and, as is the case with every room in the palace, is tasteful and exquisite.
You can attend performances in the theatre ~ it seats 180 ~ but we weren't able to coordinate this during our visit.
The rooms of the palace are unique and breathtaking. . .each generation of the family revamped certain rooms, so the styles are varied, but almost all are refined and impressive.
My favourite was the Moorish Room, pictured here, which is decorated in mosaics and lattice screens, with a fountain in the centre of the room.
At the time of writing, I haven't yet posted pages for Petergof or Tsarskoe Selo, but we did make those excursions from St. Petersburg. . .despite their magnificent scale and lavish spending, the Yusupov Palace made a much bigger impression on us.
It's an incredibly sumptuous and elegant palace and was the home of the (non-imperial) rich and powerful Yusupov family. During the 18th century, they were among the most influential families in Russia ~ they also amassed a world-renowned collection of art (most of which is now found in the Hermitage).
in vasilevsky island,near the university.
built in 1832.
since 1899 for his birthday centenary,becomes pouchkin's house or pouchkinski dom...and today is a literary museum
visit the Cruiser Aurora......
Built in 1897-1903
On the evening of 25 october (7 november) 1917,a shot from the war ship give the signal for the storming at the winter Palace.