St. Petersburg

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St. Petersburg Travel Guide

Built in the 18th century (1703), the magnificent city of St Petersburg is the Grand Dame of Russia. 'Venice of the North', 'Window on the West', 'Russia's Crown Jewel' or 'the Cradle of the Revolution' - call it what you will, each name is equally appropriate to this impressive city.

As a young Tsar, Peter the Great went on a Grand Tour of the European capitals and returned home determined to build a city that would rival Europe's best.His vision combined the best of the east and the west - the tree lined broad avenues along the Neva River, the bridges and canals, the baroque architecture, the city squares and cathedrals are strongly European in style but their overall exuberance and grandeur are distinctly eastern.

St Petersburg evolved into the seat of Romanov dynasty, displacing Moscow as the capital of the Imperial Russia - a status it retained till 1918. Successive tsars and tsarinas contributed their bit towards making St. Petersburg a veritable cultural, historical and architectural treasure house. Visitors to the city are transported by its beauty, impressed by its grandeur and enchanted by the warmth and hospitality of its people.

Blowing hot and blowing cold in St. Petersburg! ‘Banya’ is a combination of dry sauna, steam bath, massage and plunges into ice-cold water. People go in for these baths armed with tea, fruits and beer. The process begins with the sauna, proceeds to the steam bath and ends in the dip into the freezing water. Its surely worth a dip.

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