Ok, I really need to get on these St Pete posts! We have been back for over two weeks now, and we have not been doing much of note, but I have been busy and I need to get caught up. Plus, I am afraid that I won’t label all the pictures and buildings correctly, I am going by memory and I am too lazy to look up the actual names of the buildings.
I think day 2 in St Pete might have been my favorite. It was the one day where I felt like we got in everything we could have, even though every day was just about perfect!
We started out our second day with a boat tour around the city! This is must if you are visiting St Petersburg since the city was meant to be a water city. The Neva river was meant to be the city’s main entrance and it is so impressive when viewed by water.
The boat tour left not far from our hotel, so we got up and ate at McDonalds before we headed over to the boat. We actually ate at McDonalds a lot. We ate at the McDonalds so much that I made a point of alternating McDonalds so that I wouldn’t be embarrassed when ordering because the cashiers were starting to recognize me! It was just an easy place to eat with Isla and very convenient plus it was the only place where you could get drinks with ICE. Also people can say what they want about McDonalds but I have never been in a McDonalds outside of the USA that wasn’t hoppin’!
Isla with her Cookie . I love this picture.
I don’t know what this building is called and I think that I want to keep it that way! Sometimes mysteries are more fun. We kept catching glimpses of it when we were walking and riding around the city, and I loved the blue domes. There were so many places that I didn’t get to see in St Pete, I seriously could have spent at least four more days there. This is just one thing to look forward to seeing when we return.
What a cute little boater!
This is St Nicholas’ Cathedral! I took the picture 1) for my Nick, and 2) because it was the only church (according to our tour guide) that stayed open throughout the Soviet/Communist era. I don’t know why but I find it so comforting that there was ONE church left open.
Plus it was so pretty!
Entering the Neva river from a side canal. Folks, there is no way my pictures can do it justice. It is immense and extremely beautiful and lined with the most incredible buildings on either side, including the Hermitage and the Peter and Paul Fortress. I am not even going to try. You will just have to make a trip to see it on your own!
Peter the Great’s house.
Or maybe it was this one???
Yikes, I can’t remember! Either way, for a man that founded a city as ornate at St Pete, he lived a pretty simple life.
We also passed a palace that we were informed was really a castle with a moat and a drawbridge. How cool is that? The only one in the city… plus it was called the “Engineer’s Museum”. I knew I had to schedule a detour so we could see it.
After the boat tour, we headed back to our hotel since it was close for a few minutes to drop off the big camera and regroup and figure out the rest of our day.
Me searching for how to get to the Engineers Museum! I MUST see it.
We knew we wanted to go and see the Peter and Paul Fortress next, and it was going to be a LONG walk. Fortunately, it was pretty easy to detour along the way to the Fortress.
Here it is.
We got there and decided we were tired of carrying Isla’s stroller up stairs so we decided to ask if we could use the lift/elevator. It turned out we had to wait for 5 minutes for a lady to go and find us a key, then we had to be chauffeured onto the elevator which was so slow and then chauffeured through another set of rooms and the whole process took about 15 minutes… just to use an elevator. After that we decided we would just suck it up and carry her stroller up stairs in the rest of the museums.
Unfortunately the museum wasn’t that interesting and Isla started being noisy so my mom took her outside all by herself, stroller and all, down one long windy stair, down two moderate stairs and then, down one set of enormous stairs all by herself. Wowzers. St Pete is not a stroller friendly city!
The next part was one of the best parts of our trip! We headed across the Neva river to the Peter and Paul Fortress; it was a crazy long walk.
Here we are outside the front of the Peter and Paul Fortress. I was very excited to see it! Cookie on the other hand was more into cementing Isla’s adoration into all out Cookie worship, and spent most of the time plying her with ice cream!
Here is a statue of Peter the Great. I had read that he was 6’8’’ and had a very small head for his size. If this statue is true to life then… wow, he had some creepy proportions.
Here we are listening together .
We went into the cathedral in St Peter and Paul fortress and it was the only cathedral that we got to visit the entire trip. It is also where nearly ever Russian ruler from Peter the Great through to Nicholas II and his children are buried… well, entombed. I enjoyed it so much, I am sorry that I didn’t get to see more cathedrals. The steeple is also the highest point in the city.
After we finished visiting the fortress, we decided to sit down on the lawn before we took our long walk back. Cookie got Isla more ice cream!
We also got to see some locals in action! Check out the hottie in the thong behind Isla and me. That guy was at least 70 and very comfortable with his body. I laughed so hard when he turned around and his tiny little bathing suit had a tuxedo in the front. He may be an exhibitionist, but at least he likes to keep it classy!
And we walked back.
And we walked some more.
And Isla slept.
When we got back to the room my mom was in the bathroom, and I was busy doing something. I turned around and what did I find but Miss Isla, stealing her first taste of coca cola!
She was so proud of herself and enjoyed it very much!
It was a great day, but a long one and we were happy to go to bed!