St. Petersburg is incredibly atmospheric in the autumn months, making this a fantastic time of the year to pay this Russian city a visit. From the golden leaves in the city’s famous parks to the benefit of fewer crowds after the peak summer travel season, here are just a few of the reasons as to why you should visit St. Petersburg in the fall.
The Autumn Colors at Tsarskoe Selo
Tsarskoe Selo, which is now called Pushkin, was the Tsars’ former summer residence, and, being just 24 kilometres from the center of St. Petersburg, is the perfect place for a day trip. This suburb is filled with lush maple trees, and, in the autumn, you will see nothing but golden leaves for miles. In addition to taking in all of the gorgeous colors around you, you can also spend some time exploring the 18th century baroque Catherine Palace, as well as the nearby Alexander Palace.
Seasonal Russian Foods
Dishes always taste their best when they have been created from seasonal ingredients, and while Russian cuisine is already pretty incredible, this is taken to a whole new level when the seasonal ingredients from autumn begin to show up on plates. From seasonal roots, such as turnips and beetroot, to seasonal herbs, such as heather and juniper, one of the best places to try these local delights is at COCOCO Restaurant. This eatery works with 20 local farmers from nearby regions and is known for being one of the best farm-to-table restaurants in the city.
There are so many sights to see around St. Petersburg, but these can often become uncomfortably crowded during the summer months, as hoards of tourists flock to each of them. However, the autumn travel season is much quieter, resulting in uninterrupted photo opportunities at all of the city’s famous sights. From the lack of queues at the State Hermitage Museum to the quiet serenity of the Church of Our Saviour on the Spilled Blood, sightseeing becomes a whole lot more enjoyable in St. Petersburg in the autumn months.
Autumn is known for being theatre season in St. Petersburg, with the city’s world-class theatre companies hosting a wide range of productions. The oldest theatre in the city is the Hermitage Theatre, and this is well worth visiting if you want to soak up some heritage along with a performance. Another option is the Mariinsky Theater, which has been running since the 1860s and is home to the Russian Ballet and Opera groups, who are considered to be in the top six in the world, making this quite the cultural highlight. The Mariinsky II is the newest theatre to hit the city, and this one is much more innovative and contemporary than the original Mariinsky, especially when it comes to technology and acoustics.
The severe cold that St. Petersburg faces in the winter months often puts the majority of tourists off, which is why they tend to flock to the city in the summer. However, a visit during the autumn months would be a much better idea, as not only is the weather still balmy, but the lack of crowds, as well as the incredible colors, will make your trip even more memorable.