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“Nothing is grander than Nevsky Prospect – well, at least not in St.Petersburg” wrote the famous Russian author Nikolai Gogol, with some intentional irony. So let's take a stroll along this famous avenue? Nothing major has changed here in over a century. The main visual change is that horse-drawn carriages have been supplanted by cars. This main artery of St.Petersburg runs from the Admiralty to the Alexander Nevsky Monastery, and the pulse of big-city life is ever-present. Yet three hundred years ago all you'd have found here was thick forest, and the sound of lumberjacks felling the trees. The original idea had been to fell a clearing, through which they could haul cut timber to the Admiralty shipyards. They began chopping from both ends – Swedish POWs from the Admiralty end, and monks from the Alexander Nevsky Monastery. None of them then dreamed they were clearing the ground for the greatest street of the Russian Empire. Nevsky Prospect was rapidly cleared and laid out.
Local Petersburgers habitually divide the two sides of Nevsky Prospect – the sunny, even-numbered side, and the sun-shaded odd-numbered side. Perhaps being on the same latitude as Alaska forms part of the world-view of locals here. Magnificent buildings barely get a second glance, while even dull exteriors might conceal luxury within.
St. Petersburg is known as Russian cultural capital. It is also called “Northern Palmira” or “Northern Venice” as it was founded on islands in the delta of the Neva River and has a lot of architectural masterpieces.
Nevsky Prospect is the main avenue and one of the best-known streets in Russia. It is a real treasury of Russian culture. The street was planned by Peter the Great as beginning of the road to Novgorod and Moscow. It goes through the historical center of the city, firstly - from the Admiralty to the Moscow Railway Station and then, after making a turn at Vosstaniya Square, to the Alexander Nevsky Lavra.
Life on Nevsky Prospect has always been the object of attention of writers. For example, it was described by Nikolai Gogol in his story "Nevsky Prospect". Fyodor Dostoevsky often employed the Prospect as a setting within his works, such as Crime and Punishment and The Double: A Petersburg Poem.
It is best to start your walk from famous Palace Square where you can visit one of the most prominent world museums – the Hermitage. In the center of the square you will see the Alexander Column, a very popular among tourists place. With Your Audio Guide you will listen to the history of the square and all its attractions (The New Hermitage, The Winter Palace, the Alexander Column and The General Staff Building).
During the tour you will walk through the Alexander Gardens, past the Admiralty, see a lot of historical houses – real architectural “pearls” - Wawelberg's Mansion Apartments, The Sivers-Treiberg House, The Chaplin Brothers House, Chicherin's House, etc. The chief sights of the Prospect include palaces, churches and cathedrals, shopping centers and department stores. Among palaces are the Rastrelliesque Stroganov Palace, the Anichkov Palace, The Beloselsky-Belozersky Palace, Grand-Princess Yusopova's Residence and the Mikhailovsky, or Michael Palace.
Nevsky Prospect deserves the name "the street of religious tolerance". Religious buildings are presented by the huge neoclassical Kazan Cathedral, the picturesque Russian-style Cathedral of Our Savior on Spilt Blood – a place where terrorists exploded the Emperor Alexander II, the Alexander Nevsky Lavra, St.Catherine's Cathedral - the oldest Catholic Church in Russia, and The Armenian Church.
Nevsky Prospect is also the city’s central shopping street and the hub of the city’s entertainment and nightlife. For that You can visit the Art Nouveau Bookhouse,Elisseeff Emporium, half a dozen 18th-century churches, , an enormous 18th-century shopping mall “Gostinny Dvor”, a mid-19th-century department store “The Passage” and The Alexandrinsky Theatre, in the yard of which a monument to Catherine the Great is standing.
Your audio guide is glad to present you a wide audio tour of the Nevsky Prospeсt with map and descriptions. With this map, you will never get lost and you will always know what surprise awaits you ahead.