Lonely Planet review
This island is basically a giant park, a delightful car-free zone that is a fantastic place to wander. It was landscaped by the architect Carlo Rossi, so you can expect the loveliest of settings. The centrepiece is the Yelagin Palace , also by Rossi, which Alexander I built for his mother Empress Maria. The rest of the island is a lovely network of paths, greenery, lakes and channels. At the northern end of the island, you can rent rowing boats (per hour R160) to explore the ponds or in-line skates to explore the paths; in winter it’s an ideal setting for sledding, skiing and skating. At the west end, a plaza looks out to the Gulf of Finland: sunsets are resplendent from here.