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Saint Petersburg: the 5 most highly-rated city sights

The old imperial capital of Russia has many strings to its bow. As a centre of European art, culture and history for centuries, it has brought the world some of the finest literature, music, ballet and more.

But what is St Petersburg being endorsed for by real travellers today? According to Booking.com’s internal data, riverside walks, fine art museums, romance, architecture and churches are among its top endorsements.

Taking this data further, the data experts at Booking.com analysed its endorsements to find out which, of all Saint Petersburg’s city sights, were the highest-rated. The following list presents the top five city attractions as stated by Booking.com customers.

So if you only see five sights in St Petersburg, see these.

Tsarskoye-selo

Tsarskoye-selo

Though it’s 24km outside of St Petersburg, the town of Tsarskoye-selo is easily accessible and a must-see. Here you’ll find the Catherine Palace, a splendid Rococo summer residence of the Tsars. It’s a masterpiece of gold leaf, carved panels and every extravagant detail you can imagine. And the enormous, immaculate and hushed gardens are a delight, too.

The Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood

The Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood

The colourful, bulbous domes of this St Petersburg church are instantly recognisable. In its central location, it provides a strange contrast to the overall architectural style of the area and has become a symbol of the city. Its long and curious history includes it being the site of the assassination of Tsar Alexander II.

Saint Isaac’s Cathedral

Saint Isaac’s Cathedral

With a golden dome that commands the St Petersburg skyline, this Russian Orthodox cathedral is the fourth largest cathedral in the world. It was constructed with the most innovative technology of its time and the size of its dome, doors, windows and statues is still impressive by today’s standards.

Hermitage museum

Hermitage museum

One of the greatest art collections in the world, the Hermitage is phenomenal even before you factor in its setting. The museum takes up the Winter Palace, the historic former home of Russia’s tsars with an ornate gold and pastel-coloured façade, plus several adjoining buildings. With over three million pieces to view, it’s definitely worth a bit of forward planning so you get to see the bits that pique your interest. Alternatively, it’s easy to wander for hours, discovering magnificent works of art as you go.

Peterhof Palace

Peterhof Palace

Commissioned by Peter the Great, this palace has been given the nickname ‘Russian Versailles’. WWII damage means not much of the original building remains but it’s been rebuilt accurately and remains a testament to the Russian monarchy’s wealth and grandeur.

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