Art

Hermitage There’s nothing quite like the Hermitage, perhaps the world’s greatest art collection.

General Staff Building The Hermitage's amazing collection of Impressionist and post-Impressionist works continues across Palace Square.

Russian Museum This fantastic survey of all Russian art is also essential, even if you know nothing about the subject before going.

Erarta Museum of Contemporary Art A stunning museum of modern and contemporary Russian art on Vasilyevsky Island.

Marina Gisich Gallery One the city's leading private art galleries championing the cream of contemporary Russian artists.

Pushkinskaya 10 The one-time centre of the city’s alternative scene has aged a little, but it’s still worth a trip for art lovers.

Hermitage Storage Facility In case you came out of the Hermitage wanting more, this state-of-the-art space will definitely sate you.

Street Art Museum The disused part of a plastics factory on the edge of the city is now a canvas for colourful and creative street art.

Architecture

Winter Palace It’s hard to beat this spectacular piece of baroque excess.

Peterhof The spectacular fountains and views of the palace from Water Ave are breathtaking.

Smolny Cathedral This soaring sky-blue Rastrelli masterpiece never fails to inspire awe.

Admiralty The golden spire of this prime St Petersburg landmark looks handsome from many angles.

Singer Building Russian Style Moderne at the heart of neoclassical Nevsky pr.

Chesme Church This unique, striated red and white church is well worth the trek out of the city centre.

House of Soviets An unbeatable example of Soviet architectural taste in southern St Petersburg.

Russian Literature

Bronze Horseman Brought to life in Pushkin’s eponymous epic poem, the sculpture that inspired him is a must-see.

Site of Pushkin’s Duel The scene of great tragedy for anyone who knows the work of Russia’s national poet.

Dostoevsky Museum A wander around Dostoevsky’s apartment is a fascinating insight into the writer's life.

Raskolnikov House See Crime and Punishment come to life in the seedy streets of Sennaya.

Nabokov Museum Visit the house immortalised by the Lolita author in his autobiography Speak, Memory.

Anna Akhmatova Museum This museum honours the most quintessential Leningrad poet and survivor of the Great Purge.

Alexandrinsky Theatre See the theatre where Chekhov’s Seagull was first performed to terrible reviews.

Religious Buildings

Kazan Cathedral See the dramatic interior of this Orthodox stunner.

Sampsonievsky Cathedral One of the most impressive iconostases in St Petersburg.

Nikolsky Cathedral Perhaps the prettiest church in the city, this place is stunning both outside and in.

Church of the Saviour on the Spilled Blood Dazzling domes, incredible mosaics.

Alexander Nevsky Monastery One of Russia’s most important religious centres.

Buddhist Temple Incense also burns at the world’s most northerly datsan.

Mosque Beautiful historical working mosque modelled on Samarkand’s Gur-e Amir Mausoleum.

Naval Cathedral Neo-Byzantine wonder on Kronshtadt island.

Soviet History

Finland Station (Finlyandsky vokzal) Where Lenin famously arrived to lead the October coup.

Cruiser Aurora The ship that fired a blank round to signal the start of the October Revolution.

Winter Palace Where the provisional government was arrested.

Smolny Institute The home of Soviet power and still the seat of the city’s governor.

Kirov Museum Home of Sergei Kirov, Stalin’s ill-fated man in Leningrad.

Monument to the Heroic Defenders of Leningrad The moving memorial to the 900-day Nazi blockade.

Parks & Gardens

Summer Garden The oldest park in St Petersburg has been restored to its original state and looks superb.

Pavlovsk Park The best tsarist palace grounds to wander around.

Mikhailovsky Gardens The most beautiful park in the centre of St Petersburg.

Botanical Gardens A fascinating botanical garden that’s a real pleasure to walk around.

New Holland The city's newest park sports trees, flower and herb gardens, brilliant kids and toddlers playgrounds and free pétanque (a form of boules).

Yelagin Island Car-free island park on the Petrograd Side that's a joy to explore on foot or by bicycle.

Viewpoints

Peter & Paul Fortress Walk along the ramparts of this historic fort for brilliant panoramas of the city.

Strelka Look down the Neva from between the majestic Rostral Columns at the eastern tip of Vasilyevsky Island.

St Isaac's Cathedral The colonnade is open until 4.30am during the White Nights season for late-night views of the city.

Singer Building On specially booked tours it's possible to see the city from inside the glass dome of this iconic Russian Style Moderne building.

Solaris Lab Magnificent views over the russet rooftops to the glittering dome of St Isaac's from this rooftop tea house.