Saint Petersburg travel guide

Saint Petersburg Tourism | Saint Petersburg Guide

You're Going to Love Saint Petersburg

Saint Petersburg is the second-largest city in Russia and widely regarded as one of the most beautiful destinations in Europe. With a population of more than 5 million, it has a huge historic city center, which is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This is a city of architecture and culture but the nightlife is pretty great, too.

Top 5 Reasons to Visit Saint Petersburg

1. The Hermitage Museum/The Winter Palace

This is one of the world's greatest museums, with more than 3 million exhibits. It has countless priceless artworks by the great masters and the building itself is fabulous.

2. Opera and Ballet

Seeing an opera or ballet at the Mariinsky Theatre is one of the city's great treats.

3. Rooftop Tours and Restaurants

There are no towers in Saint Petersburg, so for the best views you need to take a rooftop tour or eat in one of the rooftop restaurants.

4. Canal Tours

This is a more leisurely way to see the best of the city and enjoy its beautiful network of canals.

5. Architecture

The city contains some astonishing architecture and just walking in the historic center allows you to enjoy some of the most splendid buildings.

Where to Eat in Saint Petersburg

Pirogi on Nab. reki Fontanki offers dishes of traditional Russian pies and salad for around ₽200. Austeria on Iohann Alley, by the Peter and Paul Fortress, has high-quality Russian cuisine for around ₽1,150.

When to visit Saint Petersburg

Saint Petersburg in March
Estimated hotel price
$105
1 night at 3-star hotel
Saint Petersburg in March
Estimated hotel price
$105
1 night at 3-star hotel

Saint Petersburg can get very cold in the winter. Daylight is also short, at less than six hours. Summers are wet and warm but spring is perhaps the best balance of dry and cool.

Data provided by weatherbase
Temperatures
Temperatures
Average
Celcius (°C)
Data provided by weatherbase

How to Get to Saint Petersburg

Plane

Saint Petersburg is served by Pulkovo Airport (LED), which has many international connections. It is 12 miles south of the city center and the number 39 bus will take you there for ₽40 in about 30 minutes. A taxi into the center will cost around ₽1,000.

Train

Saint Petersburg has no fewer than five main train stations. There are many domestic and international connections and the high-speed service will take you to Moscow in five hours for ₽2,000.

Car

Driving in Russia can be challenging, with Cyrillic road signs and some poor road surfaces. The main M10 motorway runs from the Finnish border to Saint Petersburg and Moscow and is a little better than most.

Bus

Saint Petersburg's main bus station is Avtovokzal, which has extensive connections to the Baltic States and major European cities.

Airports near Saint Petersburg

Airlines serving Saint Petersburg

United Airlines
Good (69,479 reviews)
Lufthansa
Good (28,397 reviews)
KLM
Good (3,805 reviews)
Air France
Good (4,361 reviews)
Turkish Airlines
Good (23,608 reviews)
SWISS
Excellent (9,187 reviews)
Qatar Airways
Excellent (11,528 reviews)
Emirates
Excellent (15,773 reviews)
Brussels Airlines
Good (2,481 reviews)
Singapore Airlines
Excellent (3,954 reviews)
Pegasus Airlines
Good (1,815 reviews)
Air Serbia
Good (736 reviews)
Oman Air
Good (669 reviews)
Qantas Airways
Good (4,906 reviews)
Korean Air
Excellent (4,987 reviews)
Royal Jordanian
Good (1,657 reviews)
Cathay Pacific
Excellent (6,313 reviews)
Kenya Airways
Good (1,259 reviews)
EL AL
Good (3,319 reviews)
Smartwings
Okay (486 reviews)
Show more

Where to stay in Saint Petersburg

The 1912 hostel on Chapayeva Street offers basic but central accommodation. At the other end of the scale, the Hotel Astoria by St. Isaac's Cathedral offers comfortable luxury rooms.

Popular neighbourhoods in Saint Petersburg

Palace Square - this is Saint Petersburg's historical and cultural center and is home to the beautiful Winter Palace.

Nevsky Prospekt - this neighborhood has some of the best hotels and shopping in the city and also some good bars.

Vasilievsky Island - Vasilievsky Island is an artsy district with lots of theaters and is home to the Saint Petersburg State University and Menshikov Palace.

Most popular hotel in Saint Petersburg by neighbourhood

Where to stay in popular areas of Saint Petersburg

Most booked hotels in Saint Petersburg

Hotel Saint Petersburg
Excellent (8.7, Excellent reviews)
$141+
Oktiabrskaya Hotel
Excellent (8.8, Excellent reviews)
$29+
Soul Kitchen Hostel
Excellent (9.8, Excellent reviews)
$54+
Azimut Hotel St. Petersburg
Excellent (8.1, Excellent reviews)
$35+
Ibis St Petersburg Centre
Excellent (8, Excellent reviews)
$40+
Nevsky Grand Apartments
Good (7.5, Good reviews)
$30+
See all hotels

How to Get Around Saint Petersburg

Public Transportation

Saint Petersburg has a huge subway system with frequent trains and a flat fare of ₽35. Buses and trolley buses cost from ₽30.

Taxi

Taxis are plentiful but watch out for scams. The initial fare is ₽200 and then ₽30 per mile.

Car

Driving in Saint Petersburg is relatively trouble-free within the city and car rental is widely available from around ₽3,000. Hertz and Avis outlets can be found in town.

Car hire agencies in Saint Petersburg

Find car hire in Saint Petersburg

The Cost of Living in Saint Petersburg

Shopping Streets

The area around Nevsky Prospekt is home to most of the big stores. Here you will find fashion, leather goods, jewelry, and technology stores.

Groceries and Other

24-hour supermarkets are common around the city. Milk is around ₽60 per quart and a loaf of bread is ₽44.

Cheap meal
$13.83
A pair of jeans
$141.34
Single public transport ticket
$0.98
Cappuccino
$3.73