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Cathedrals  |  Museums and Palaces  |  Monuments and Historical Sites  |  Bridges  |  Squares and Prospects  |  Parks and Gardens  |  Suburbs

Parks and Gardens

Every city in the world has its ???must-do?? sights, but there is no reason to deprive yourself of the pleasure of seeing something more savoury than the standard selection of city attractions visible from a bus window. To form the overall impression of the magnificent Saint-Petersburg and to hide from the relentless pace of modern life, make sure to while away some time in these amazingly beautiful and picturesque places.

Alexander Garden
Obscuring the Admiralty with its well-proportioned tower topped by a gilt spire, this splendid garden, named after the Tsar Alexander II, was laid out in 1872-1874 to the design by Edward Regele in place of Admiralty Square. Later on the illuminated musical fountain and busts of the celebrated Russian writers and composers were installed here.
Botanical Garden
A leafier extension of the Petrograd Side, Aptekarsky Ostrov takes its name from the medical kitchen gardens established beside the Karpovka River in 1713. Over a century later, these became the Imperial Botanical Garden, whose 16 hectares boast 700 species of trees and shrubs, and 3500 plants from places as far afield as Ethiopia and Brazil.
Catherine Garden
One of the city beauty spots is this square laid out in 1828-1834 to the design by Carlo Rossi in front of the Alexandrinsky Theatre. The Alexandrinskaya square, nowadays called Ploschad Ostrovskogo, is often reffered to as the Catherine Garden after the only statue in the city to the empress Catherine the Great erected here in 1873.
Located in Alexander Park, the Saint-Petersburg??s Zoo was founded in 1865 by the animal lovers Sofia and Julius Gerhardt on the basis of public menageries. Over 1700 animals, fish and birds, representing 400 species are being kept, exhibited and studied here - in the second largest Zoo in Russia.
Summer Garden
Laid out by the decree of Peter the Great in 1704-1730 in style of Versailles, the Summer Garden used to be a traditional venue for grand receptions held by the first Russian Tsar. Nowadays the oldest and most treasured public garden is an open-air museum adorned with fine fountains, marble statues, elaborately trimmed trees and the slender grille.
Michael Garden
One of the most picturesque places of the city is the Michael??s Garden - a unique combination of formal French garden with the English landscape. Located in front of the Michael??s Palace ?? the main building of the famous Russian Museum ?? the garden offers tranquil views onto the Golden Copulas of the Spilled Blood Cathedral.
Moscow Victory Park
The central ???Heroes?? Alley??? of the Moscow Victory Park, laid out by volunteer labour in 1945 to commemorate the Allied victory over the Nazis in WWII, is flanked with the busts of those Leningraders who either were twice awarded the title ???Hero of the Soviet Union??? or the ???Hero of Socialist Labour??? medal.
Tauride Garden
The Tauride Garden, laid out in 1783-1789 to the design by William Gould, backs onto the palace of the same name built by decree of Catherine the Great for her lover prince Potemkin to celebrate his annexation of the Crimea. At present the leafy garden, boasting the panoply of ponds and canals, is primarily a children??s park.
Central Culture and Leisure Park
Largely deserted on working days, a Central Culture and Leisure Park, laid out in 1931on the Yelagin Island, attracts families at weekends and hordes of revellers on public holidays thanks to its leafy alleys, serpentine lakes, shady clearings as well as tennis & badminton courts, fairground attractions and ice-rinks.

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