Side Trips from St. Petersburg: Places to Explore


  • Gatchina

    Gatchina, which is the name of both the city and the park-palace complex, dates to the 15th century, when it was a small Russian village. The main attractions of the most distant of St. Petersburg's palace... Read more

  • Konstantine Palace

    In 1720 Peter the Great commissioned work on this maritime country residence that was to be a "Russian Versailles." Italian architect Nicolo Micketti designed not only the palace, but also beautiful fountains... Read more

  • Kronshtadt

    Kronshtadt (Kotlin Island), to the west of St. Petersburg, was developed between 1703 and 1704 by Peter the Great as a base from which to defend St. Petersburg and to attack the long-standing enemy of... Read more

  • Lomonosov (Oranienbaum)

    Alexander Menshikov (circa 1672-1729), the first governor of St. Petersburg, began building this luxurious summer residence on the shores of the Baltic Sea in 1710. Before construction was complete, however... Read more

  • Pavlovsk

    The land at Pavlovsk had always been the royal hunting grounds, but in 1777 Catherine the Great awarded them to her son, Paul I, upon the birth of his first son, the future Tsar Alexander I. (Pavlovsk... Read more

  • Peterhof (Petrodvorets)

    Peter the Great masterminded this complex of gardens and residences, starting around 1720. His motivation was twofold. First, he was proud of the capital city he was creating and wanted its evolving Imperial... Read more

  • Pushkin (Tsarskoye Selo)

  • Valaam Archipelago

    An overnight trip by boat from St. Petersburg delivers you out of the bustle of the city and into the Republic of Karelia. The republic is one of the 83 federal subjects of the Russian Federation; though... Read more