Sit right back and you’ll hear a tale of raccoon street performers, sketchy hostels, a bus accident, and snow in May.
All of which added up to the crossing off of my top travel bucket list item.
After our eventful first day in Moscow, we were happy to be stuck on a train* to St. Petersburg for a couple hours.
St. Petersburg was where we would spend the bulk of our time and I highly recommend any visitors do the same. We could’ve spent a month and not seen everything we wanted to see. (On that note, Peterhof Palace is one of the main destinations in St. Petersburg. However, it’s a couple hours round trip and we weren’t willing to give up the bulk of a day of our relatively short trip for just one destination with so many other things we wanted to do. Next time!)
We were blessed with GORGEOUS weather our first day there so we spent the first part of our day wandering down Nevsky Avenue.
While we would be going to the famous Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood the following day, we took a stroll down the canal for a preview.
We were going to visit a contemporary art museum, but after very awkwardly walking into a law office where the museum should have been and having a very awkward google translate conversation about how said museum shut down, we went to plan B, the Soviet Lifestyle Museum.
And, dearest Internet, LET ME TELL YOU HOW UTTERLY INCREDIBLE IT WAS. With the disclaimer that we are perfectly aware of the dark parts of Soviet history, this museum didn’t focus on historical events, just day-to-day life in the USSR. We spent a delightful few hours trying on Soviet-era clothes, playing Soviet-era games, watching videos of what can only be described as Soviet ABBA, and generally enjoying being the only visitors there at the time. It was such a unique look into a cultural era that so few people really know about and the lady who owned it was absolutely wonderful. I ended up with a few vintage pins from the 1980 Olympics which made my little sports heart happy.
We had a late, quick lunch at Biblioteka so we could make it to our last stop of the day. Highly recommend sitting on the second floor and asking for a table by the window to people watch.
To end the day we went to St. Isaac’s Cathedral to conquer our (my) fear of heights in time for sunset. And WHAT a sunset it was.
Tune in next time to hear about how we survived our first St. Petersburg metro experience and how we did not let rain ruin our day.
*Also, I know we’re all very anxious to hear about Zarina, Russia hostel owner extraordinaire, but I’m saving the best for last.
*Booked via russiantrains.com and have no complaints. We took the train from Lenengradskiy Station in Moscow to Moskovskiy in St. Pete and would recommend it. The Moscow station name in Russian is the exact same as a metro station in a completely different part of the city so as always with place names in Russia, double check everything.