Good bye St. Petersburg

We’re on a very clean and comfortable coach, equipped with wifi, and on our way to Tallinn, Estonia.

Despite several warnings of crime and to be on the alert (when am I not?), we had nothing but good experiences while here. As I mentioned before, it is spotlessly clean; the people aren’t pushy, prices not too bad, public transport easy and efficient, lots of green spaces, and beautiful architecture.

So glad we came.

St. Petersburg – day 3

A leisurely day – took an easy (and very inexpensive) ride out to Peterhof (summer palace) using the metro and a marshrutka (minibus). We’d contemplated going by hydrofoil, but were put off by the fare of $30 per person each way – our trip, same length of time, cost about $2.50 each round trip!

Before I start with photos of the magnificent Peterhof (modeled on Versailles), here are some pictures of what could be my new style back in Belfast!

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Each metro station has it’s own character and every one of them is spotlessly clean; in fact the entire city is the cleanest, along with Singapore, of any I’ve ever visited.

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Isn’t this just sometimes the case????

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Finally – Peterhof……

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The Hermitage

We spent the day, as planned, getting to the Hermitage, waiting in line to get in, and then exhausting ourselves viewing this ├╝ber vast collection of artwork in an ornate venue that also requires considerable attention. As forecast, it was raining first thing, but has cleared and we’re hoping for another nice day tomorrow.

Something that shocked me more than anything else was that everywhere we walked, we were walking on these beautiful parquet floors.

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Dennis in the hall of 332 heroic generals from the 1812 war.

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This could have been us if we hadn’t left!!!

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St. Petersburg – day 1

Wow! I am absolutely impressed. I expected grandeur, “Venice of the north”, etc., but was unprepared for how well the buildings are kept up, cleanliness on the streets, etc. And long gone are the days of the Lada!!!! Now it’s like anywhere else in western Europe – beemers, volvos, Mercedes, etc.

Their metro system is great, albeit, it takes forever to get down there – being deepest in the world. This photo only tells half the story.

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We walked, and walked, and walked … Thank god for dennis’s new knee. Then rewarded ourselves with a boat trip on rivers and canals.

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I couldn’t get enough of the church of spilled blood, as it’s known as, or church of the resurrection. The entire interior is covered with mosaic. It’s mind bogglingly beautiful.

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