Parks and Squares, Saint Petersburg
April 16th, 1917, was the date that was to interminably change the course of Russian history. This was the day that Vladimir Lenin returned to Russia from exile to assume leadership of the revolutionary Bolshevik party.
The previous month Tsar Nicholas II had been forced to abdicate and the country was being run by a provisional government made up of the Duma ministers and deputies of the Workers and Soldiers Soviet.
The provisional government seemed to lack both direction and authority which Lenin saw as an opportunity for his Bolshevik party. He arranged transport by train from Switzerland, with the assistance of the German government, arriving back to Russia at the Finland railway station here in St Petersburg (Petrograd as it was then known).
On arrival he gave an impassioned speech from the roof an armoured car in front of the station, denouncing the provisional government and the local soviet - the first event in the course of which were to lead to the October revolution and eventually the formation of the USSR.
The memorial statue was unveiled in 1926, one of the first such monuments following Lenin's death in 1924, and originally marked the exact spot from which his speech had been made. The square, and railway station, were redeveloped after WWII, in the Socialist Brutalist style and Lenin's statue moved to become its centrepiece.
Also of interest on this square is my favourite St Petersburg bar (to date), 1'ya Ryumochnaya.
For an architectural vignette of St Petersburg's Imperial splendour the buildings surrounding Palace Square are a perfect showcase.
On the north side is the green and white frontage of the Baroque Winter Palace, formerly the Tsar's main residence and latterly the main building of the Hermitage Museum. Work began on this in the 1750's under the direction of the Grand Duchess Elizabeth and the frontage was completed in 1759.
On the other side of the square, built almost as proportionately as the Winter Palace is the gracefully-curved classical former-headquarters of the Russian Army general staff. This was constructed between 1819 and 1829 by the Italian architect Carlo Rossi, who was responsible for many of the city's important buildings of that period. The triumphal arch in its centre leads to Nevsky Prospekt.
Other buildings surrounding the square include the golden spire-topped Admiralty, built by Adrian Zakharov between 1806 and 1823, in a style that has become known as Russian Empire and the neo-classical St Isaac's Cathedral, once the largest Russian Orthodox Church in the world with a capacity of 14,000. This was constructed by the French architect Auguste Montferrand between 1818 and 1858 with the first task requiring the pile-driving of 25,000 tree trunks into the marshy ground to provide the foundations.
At the centre of the square, drawing everything together, is the 155 foot Alexander Column - another of Monferrand's designs. This commemorates Alexander I's victory over France during the Napoleonic wars and was completed in 1834.
The square is often used for concerts and exhibitions and on the day we visited it was being prepared for the June 1st "Chidren's Day" with scaled-down replicas of some of the world's most famous buildings.
The Summer Garden - a park with beautiful fountains - excellent for a stroll to get some peace and quiet after running around the streets in Saint Petersburg.
The summer garden occupies an island between the Fontanka, Moika and the Swan Canal.
Inside the summer garden there is a little café where you can sit down and have an ice-cream, a pastry and something to drink in the idyllic surroundings.
The Summer garden was closed one day a week (Monday) for landscape maintenance, when I was there (July 2013)
This is one of the most wonderful places the city – the Botanical Garden, which began from the “Pharmacy garden” (“Aptekarsky ogorod”) organized by Peter I in 1714. The oldest building is interesting itself with its architecture, not only because of the perfect collection of the plants from all over the world.
St. Petersburg's Botanical Garden - or, to give it its full title, the Botanical Garden of the V.L. Komarov Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences - is located on the Petrograd side, and is one of the oldest Botanical Gardens in the country. The Garden was founded in 1714and soon became a center for horticultural research that was the equal of any other in Europe in terms of the importance and size of its collection. Originally the Apothecary's Garden focused mainly on growing medicinal herbs, but soon people began bringing saplings and seeds of rare and exotic plants - for which a greenhouse was specially built. Expeditions to various parts of the earth regularly augmented the Botanical Garden's collection with new sorts of trees, shrubs, flowers, and other plants.
Today, most of the Botanical Garden is designed in English landscape style. Plants from Russia's temperate zone grow uncovered, while the greenhouses house a large collection of tropical and sub-tropical plants; the Garden's 'Alpine hills' are also home to flora from the Caucasus, the Mediterranean, and Asia. In addition to all this, the Botanical Garden also has a collection of various types of fern, Chinese and Japanese plants, palms, bamboo, conifers, orchids, and much more. Giant water-lilies flower every summer and fall in the pool of one of the greenhouses - their leaves can reach 2 meters in diameter, and can support weights of up to 60 kg.
In May every year, the rare, tropical Queen of the Night flowers - for one night only. Because of this, the Botanical Garden remains open on that one night until midnight. The collection was seriously damaged during the Second World War, and unique examples of palms, ferns, and cacti died. But despite all the hunger that Leningraders suffered during the Siege, the Botanic Garden's collection of seeds and plants was not touched. After the War the collection was partially replenished, and today the Botanical Garden is again conducting large-scale research, with a rich collection of plants from around the world in its greenhouses.
Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays, 11 am to 5 pm. Last admission is at 4 pm.
Museum (not Garden) will be closed in July/August.
Admission: Park: Adult: RUB 40.00 Children: RUB 20.00.
Dendrarium: Adult: RUB 180.00. Children/students: RUB 90.00.
Museum: Adult: RUB 60.00 Children/students: RUB 40.00
Photo and video: Photo: RUB 50.00 Video: RUB 100.00
Alexander Park is situated in the Petrogradskaya area of the city. attractions nearby include the Peter & Paul Fortress, Leningrad Zoo and the Artillery museum.
The park itself is a pleasent place for a quiet stroll maybe after a visit to the zoo or the fortress.
Dotted around the park you will find many rather nice statues and also the free St.Petersburg in miniature exhibition.
In the city's ongoing efforts to enliven their parks and make them pretty, happy, family-friendly places to spend the day, they've added replicas of many of St. Petersburg landmarks including the Peter and Paul Fortress, the Hermitage, the Church on the Spilled Blood and more to the massive park outside of Gorkovskaya metro station and Peter and Paul Fortress. The park already boasts some of the neatest landscaping in the city, lots of shaded areas and well-maintained footpaths, plus the Leningrad zoo and planetarium. Perfect for a romantic stroll or a place to let the little ones run some energy off.
After decades of being little more than a melancholy ruin under the management of the military and several false starts on financing, New Holland has at least partially been opened. Currently the grassy lawn of the courtyard is open for game playing (you can rent or buy balls, rackets and other sports equipment in one of the cargo containers set up in the complex), strolling or sitting on pristine benches. There's also a fast food project courtesy of Ginza that includes a covered patio area, a community garden with plots for rent, a glitzy cafe/bar, a few scattered galleries and shops and wi-fi throughout for all. Unfortunately there's also very professional security staff who will wand you for weapons as you enter and confiscate any food or drink on your person, including water. In fact, baby food is the only exception, so come with money rather than with a picnic. Smoking is strictly prohibited except in designated areas.
Open Mon - Wed 11:00 - 22:00, Thu - Sun 11:00 - 23:00. Cafe New Holland open 12:00 till last guest.
The New Holland island is open for visits starting June,16 2012
St. Petersburg courtyards are often not included in the standard program of excursions for tourists, although they attract their attention. One of such popular facilities of St. Petersburg non-classical tourist route is a courtyard of the house 2 in Tchaikovsky Street. An ordinary yard began to be covered with mosaic. Walls, playground, curbs, sculptures – everything is covered with mosaics of pieces of coloured glass. The founding father and inspirer of this place is a painter Vladimir Lubenko for whom the cloth was an ordinary St. Petersburg yard. Pupils of Junior Academy of Art founded by him help him in this matter. Disciples of other schools of art from America, France, England and Germany came here to look at the unusual yard and gain invaluable experience from their peers.
The originality of this space attracts newlyweds and tourists who come here to have their photos taken. Some people consider the mosaic yard resembles work of the Catalan Gaudi, others see the influence of the Austrian Hundertwasser – but one thing is clear, the yard is interesting due to its experimental appearance. Vladimir Lubenko is not going to stop, his aim is improvement of the yards nearby. The students of the artist are ready to help him. It should be mentioned that no one gives any means for an improvement, all work is done at the expense of their own resources. Such creative altruism for the benefit of people in the name of art is worthy of respect.
Victory square (Russian: Пло́щадь Побе́ды, read: Ploschad Pobedy) is named after the Soviet victory in the WWII (Great Patriotic War for Russians) and especially to commemorate the victims and survivors of the Siege of the City that last 900 days. So, not in the city center like in other city in former Soviet Union that have square with this name. I visit this square in returning from Pushkin (Tzarskoe selo).
To the square you can reach by underground passage. It has circular shape and 48 high granite obelisk in the middle with subterranean Memorial Hall. It was build in in 9th May 1975 in so call Soviet style to commemorate 30 years of liberation from WWII. The inside of the ring is lit with gas torches. Outside of the ring you can find sculptures representing the soldiers, sailors and civilians who did not surrender. The authors of design of square are Lenin Prize winners Mikhail Anikushin, Sergei Speransky, and Valentin Kamensky.
It free to enter from Thursday to Monday, 10 am to 6 pm, Tuesday, 10 am to 5 pm except during Wednesday and the last Tuesday of each month when it close. There is also Museum but enter is not free of charge.
After a long and inspirative visit the Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood witch was after a long day of exploring the city with tour guide my friends and I try to find a nice and quiet place to rest and possibly cheap. We have a luck because just near the Church, on its north-east side is nice place "hidden" behind a very interesting and high massive gate. It have a very interesting columns that remind me some kind of towers and framed with interesting ornaments. It looks like it belong to some palace that we saw all over City. Especially when we see the gate. Outside the gate we we were not able to see nothing because of huge trees that is tick with the fence. Nevertheless we enter to explore place because we see other pedestrians that enter here. It turns out that it was park. We was happy. We walk a bit and find bench in shade on riverbank Neva and watch the river. Near gate is portable toilet.
Moskovsky Victory Park (Russian: Московский парк Победы) is a public park near Moskovsky Avenue. The name of the park was given in honor of Victory in the WWII.
Park covers an area of 168 acres (0.68 km2). It was officially open for public ( July 7, 1946) to mark the Allied victory in World War II over Nazi Germany.
The decorated with ponds, canals, avenues, and flower gardens. The main artery of the park is the Avenue of Heroes.The authors ware Soviet architects Evgeniy Katonin and Valerian Kirhoglani. They created a summer stage, fountains and several pavilions including two propylene-like buildings at the main entrance. A major alley called "Alley of Heroes" features busts of Soviet heroes, hence the name. Among statuaries in the park are the monument dedicated to Soviet marshal Georgy Zhukov and statues of Soviet war heroes Zoya Kosmodemyanskaya and Alexander Matrosov. In the 1990s, the Orthodox chapel and commemorative plaque were erected at the former site of the crematory facility.
The park hide a scary story. It was the crematory facility was heavily used for victims of siege of the City. It is estimate that here is unnamed graves for 117 thousand to over 600 thousand bodies. Locals swear that since a cross was erected on the sight of a mass grave, the ghosts of those who died and were not properly buried have ceased to haunt visitors to the park.
The park features several entertainment options including a small amusement park, playgrounds, cafés, boat rental, mini-golf, tennis courts and outdoor ice skating rink.
I been in hostel near the park but in that time is been under construction.
I taking many walking tours in City and in that time I discovery many square but Art square is something special.
Some general information about this place start with its name. Art square (Russian: площадь Искусств) derive Arts Square derives its name from fact that is center around it is many museums, theaters and concert halls that surround it. Early it was named Mikhailovskaya Square (Russian: Михайловская площадь, 1834-1918) after Mikhailov Palace (today Russian museum). Then, Lassalle Square (Russian: площадь Лассаля, 1923-1952) after German politic activist.
Some of the main cultural building around art square are: The Russian Museum (one of the country's two largest collections of Russian art), The Ethnographic Museum (representing all the ethnic cultures of the former USSR), The Maly Opera and Ballet Theater (also known as the Mussorgsky Theater) and The Large Concert Hall (Bolshoi Zal) of the St. Petersburg Philarmonia.
The square’s plan was drawn up by the Italian architect Carlo Rossi, who spent most of his life working in Russia and is considered by many to be a native Russian architect (both his contemporaries and present-day art historians have tended to call him by his Russified name Karl Ivanovich Rossi). He was responsible for all the most prominent buildings built on the square, including the Mikhailovsky Palace, which today houses the Russian Museum.
Why I find this square special?
Not only because many cultural institution of high class but because involve people to enjoy and take active part in art. In the central figure of square - monument dedicated to A. Pushkin, students, local and tourist get together and read and listen poem on Russian language.
I enjoy in that spontaneous performance, even I cannot to understand Russian language so got, I feel that I am part of this cultural event.
Our tour guide was include all main touristic sights and attraction and many other we discover ourselves during our free time.
First square we visit was Saint Isaac square.
Some interesting facts about this square is, first, it named after well known cathedral there - Saint Isaac Cathedral. Saint Isaac's Square (Russian: Исаа́киевская пло́щадь). One time is also known as Vorovsky Square (Russian: Площадь Воровского) between 1923 and 1944.
Interesting building there (besides St, Isaac cathedral) are: Mariinsky palace, Astoria hotel, Lobanov-Rostovsky palace, German building. Also, there are famous monument call The Bronze horseman (monument dedicated to Peter the Great) and equestrian Monument dedicated to Nicholas I. Also well known bridge call Blue bridge (the widest bridge in the city).
In my country square and parks are heart of city but it not that luxurious then nice and relaxing place. I like to discover new city and usually starts with one of main squares. There is also a viewing point and meeting place.
The Palace Square (Russian: Дворцо́вая пло́щадь) is probably most grandiose square in the city, connecting Nevsky Prospekt with Palace Bridge leading to Vasilievsky Island, is the central city square of St Petersburg and of the former Russian Empire. It was the setting of many events of worldwide significance, including the Bloody Sunday (1905) and the October Revolution of 1917. The General Stuff Headquarters Building and State Hermitage can be found here.
On the northern side of the square stands the picturesque Baroque Winter Palace, today famous Hermitage museum (built in 1754-62). Across the square, on the southern side, there is the classical yellow-and-white General Staff building (built in 1819-29 by Carlo Rossi). This building encircles the Southern side of the square and through its central arch, designed as a Triumphal Arch of the Classical World, you can reach Nevsky Prospect. On the eastern side a building of the former Royal Guards' General Staff tastefully closes the panorama of Palace Square, while on the West the square borders with the Admiralty and the Alexander Garden. The Alexander Column was erected in the center of the Square to commemorate the victory over Napoleon in the war of 1812, and to honor Emperor Alexander I. The facade of the Admiralty and the Alexander Garden that is in front of it, link the Palace Square to the Senate Square. In the center of the square there stands an impressive monument to the founder of St Petersburg — Peter the Great — known as Bronze Horseman. Vasilievsky Island is a district of Saint Petersburg, bordered by the rivers Bolshaya Neva and Malaya Neva (in the delta of Neva) from South and Northeast, and by the Gulf of Finland from the West. Situated just across the river from the Winter Palace, it constitutes a large portion of the city's historic center. Two of the most famous St Petersburg bridges, Palace Bridge and Lieutenant Schmidt Bridge, connect it with the mainland.
The square also serves as open-air venue for concerts by international acts, including Andrea Bocelli, Roger Waters, The Rolling Stones, AC/DC, Duran Duran, Anastacia, Elton John, Paul McCartney, Madonna and many others. During our visit in the City this square was a main meeting point.
Palace Square is an empty large square with tall red granite column. Alexander monument stands alone in the middle of the square. Historically it is important monument as it was erected to commemorate the victory of Russia against Napoleon. At the top of the column is an angel holding a cross and on the bottom is also decorated.