St. Petersburg: Venice of the North

There are many cities claiming to be the Venice of the North, and Russia’s cultural capital, St. Petersburg, is on top of the list.

As this was again a short layover, we struggled to see the beautiful parts of the city as best as we can. Having only been to Moscow, which I found a tad bleak and serious (✌🏼), St. Petersburg is a refreshing take on Russia with its lively and colorful surroundings.

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St. Isaac’s Cathedral

It was a Wednesday, and as luck would have it, both the churches we went to are closed on this day of the week! We didn’t get to go inside, but we spent time admiring their beautiful exteriors.

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Church of the Savior on the Spilled Blood

Most must-see places are within walking distance of each other, but the subway is easy to navigate (again, unlike my experience in Moscow). Uber fares are also affordable, way cheaper than Manila’s Grab app prices.

Amidst all the walking, hunger struck just as we arrived at the Church of the Savior on the Spilled Blood, so we made for the nearest restaurant in the area. I thought it would be a tourist trap (proximal to site, but mediocre and expensive), but it’s the opposite! The food was really good, and fairly priced.

I don’t usually put food pictures in my blog because I suck at food photography, but please allow me to expound on the delicious Russian delicacies I had that day. I started with pirozhki – soft bread which may be stuffed with cheese, potatoes, meat, or vegetables; followed by shchi – a type of cabbage soup; and for the main course, beef stroganoff. All sooo good! I think the more popular soup though is borschtbut it’s made from beetroots, which I don’t like. The restaurant is just called “St. Petersburg Restaurant” (based on their business card), and there’s only a small sign on the window. Can it get any more vague than that? Haha! It’s the one just across the river from the church. You’ll most probably miss it, but there are many other places to get good food anyway. 🙂

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I look pregnant, but that’s just lunch.
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The Hermitage Museum and Winter Palace

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There are so  many places to see, museums to get lost in, and ballet shows to watch, but it will have to wait until next time. For now, I’m just happy that I got a glimpse of St. Petersburg’s classic beauty.

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