Monday, November 26, 2018

Wednesday, August 1, 2018 – St. Petersburg, Russia – Day 2 – Sunny – 80s

Beautiful weather again.

We got very little sleep last night after our big day in Moscow.

We took it easy this morning because we have a tour scheduled in the afternoon.  We also scheduled an easy excursion – a bus tour of St. Petersburg.  The last time we tried to do a similar tour, it rained so hard that traffic was snarled and we missed key sites in the city.  That won’t happen today.

Also, we left so early yesterday that I really didn’t get a chance to get some pictures of the Marine Façade Cruise port.  You can see from the shot below, how beautiful the weather was.

IMG_20180801_Marine Facade Seaport

The port was very busy today with several ships docked or anchored.

IMG_20180801_Lots of ships St PetersburgIMG_20180801_Marine Facade condos

Marine Façade Condos

We left Celebrity Central at 1:45 PM on our tour, “Panoramic St. Petersburg” (one escort on this tour). Anna is our tour guide – she speaks pretty good English and has lots of stories about Russia to share (not all positive). 

The tour proceeded along the Neva River because you can see many of the sites of the city from the river banks.  On this day, there was a Russian submarine in the river.

IMG_20180801_Neva and submarine

Submarine in the Neva River

We got a nice shot of St. Isaac’s Cathedral across the River

IMG_20180801_St Isaacs Neva

We didn’t visit the Peter and Paul Fortress but I did get a nice picture of it from the bus.

IMG_20180801_Peter and Paul Fortress

The bus did stop at one point along the river giving us an opportunity to get a sunny day picture of the two of us.

IMG_20180801_we Neva and St Isaac

We crossed over a number of bridges – this afforded nice shots of the river and some of the canals.  Lots of people out today.

IMG_20180801_On tour St Petersburg

IMG_20180801_Neva RiverIMG_20180801_on tour St Petersburg 1

IMG_20180801_on tour St Petersburg 2

The route took us past the park where the equestrian statue of Peter the Great is exhibited.

IMG_20180802_Peter the Great

Peter the Great Statue

and past the St. Petersburg Stock Exchange and the pair of Rostral Columns.

IMG_20180801_Rostral Column

The statues at the base represent the four major rivers of Russia (the Neva and Volga being two of them).  The rostra from several ships adorn the Doric columns.

As we wound through the city streets, the guide pointed out the house that Tchaikovsky (the composer) lived in.

IMG_20180801_tchaikovsky home

Tchaikovsky House

IMG_20180801_st Petersburg apartments

St. Petersburg Architecture

The tour had a couple of actual stops where we could spend a little time and take non-moving pictures.

The first was St. Isaac’s Cathedral.  We circled the Cathedral

IMG_20180801_St Michaels Cathedral

until we found a good parking spot.  We spent about 10 minutes here but that was enough time to walk around the building and get the best pictures.

IMG_20180801_St Isaacs Cathedral 1

St. Isaac’s Cathedral

Our next stop would be the Church of Spilled Blood (site of Tsar Alexander II assassination).   We could see the Church from Nevsky Prospekt as we made our way there.  This was the only shot I got during that earlier rainstorm.

 IMG_20180801_Church of Spilled Blood from Nevsky Prospekt

Nevsky Prospekt and Church of Spilled Blood

No rain today. The bus got a parking spot across the street.  Except for the random people and parked cars, I got a very nice shot of the Church as well as the canal that runs along side the building.

IMG_20180801_Church of Spilled BloodIMG_20180801_Church of Spilled Blood River

Church of Spilled Blood

On the way back, Anna got into the subject of recent Russian Presidents. In her opinion, Mikhael Gorbachev was worse than Joseph Stalin. Stalin killed a lot of people, but Gorbachev almost killed the country. Strong opinions from a Russian.

It took about a half hour to get back to the port.  Passport control was pretty quick this time.  They knew we were leaving, probably.

Dinner was in the Oceanview Café. I am continuing my attack on the delicious cherry tomatoes.

Showtime tonight featured Pete Matthews – Comedy Juggler – we may have seen him in the past and didn’t stay long – we were just too tired from the last couple of days.

We went out on the back deck to watch the sail away.

About 90 minutes (and 20 miles) out, we passed Kotlin Island and the town of Kronstadt. The island was taken from Sweden by Peter the Great – it now has a Naval Base and the site of an impressive church, the Naval Cathedral. It is possible to get to the island from the mainland by bus and many see it as a nice day trip.

The Costa Magica was also leaving and was right behind us.

IMG_20180801_Kronstadt Island SP sail away 1IMG_20180801_Kronstadt Island SP sail away Costa MagicaIMG_20180801_Kronstadt Island SP sail away

Kotlin Island and Kronstadt

A fellow passenger took our picture as we passed alongside the island.

IMG_20180801_on the back deck St Petersburg sail away

We also caught the Magic Moment in the Bay of Finland.

IMG_20180801_St Petersburg sail away magic moment

A couple of tiring but terrific days in St. Petersburg, Russia.

No comments:

Post a Comment