Neva River boat tour, St. Petersburg, Russia

Panorama along the Neva River with the Winter Palace (Hermitage museum) (center left), the Admiralty (center), gold dome of St. Isaac’s Cathedral, and the former Stock Exchange (right, with 2 red columns), St. Petersburg, Russia

Panorama along the Neva River with the Winter Palace (Hermitage museum) (center left), the Admiralty (center), gold dome of St. Isaac’s Cathedral, and the former Stock Exchange (right, with 2 red columns), St. Petersburg, Russia

 

From the myriad canals that we cruised through [see our previous blog post] we entered the Neva River for a cruise.  “Almost all of the major attractions of St. Petersburg are either placed directly beside the water or can be easily seen from a boat.  Among them are the Peter and Paul Fortress, the Spit of Vasilievsky Island, the Cruiser Aurora, the Winter Palace, the Bronze Horseman, the Summer Garden, the Alexander Nevsky Monastery, Smolny Cathedral, the Marble Palace, the Admiralty, the Academy of Arts, the Kunstkamera, the grim Kresty Prsion, and many more.  But the main attraction is, of course, the Neva itself, creating the unique atmosphere in the Venice of the North – a town between sky and water.” – saint-petersburg.com

 

Panorama along the Neva River with the Winter Palace (Hermitage museum) (center and left) and the Admiralty (right) – a UNESCO World Heritage Site -- St. Petersburg, Russia

Panorama along the Neva River with the Winter Palace (Hermitage museum) (center and left) and the Admiralty (right) – a UNESCO World Heritage Site — St. Petersburg, Russia

 

The Church of Our Savior on the Spilled Blood [Russian- Храм Спаса на Крови] viewed from the Neva River, St. Petersburg, Russia

The Church of Our Savior on the Spilled Blood [Russian- Храм Спаса на Крови] viewed from the Neva River, St. Petersburg, Russia

Saints Peter and Paul’s Cathedral, the resting place of the Romanov tsars, within Peter and Paul Fortress, the original citadel of St. Petersburg, Russia

Saints Peter and Paul’s Cathedral, the resting place of the Romanov tsars, within Peter and Paul Fortress, the original citadel of St. Petersburg, Russia

 

“The Neva is the main waterway of Petersburg and the town is situated along its banks and across the islands of its broad delta.  It is one of the largest rivers in Europe by volume of water and also one of the world’s shortest major rivers at only 74 kilometers.  The Neva connects Lake Ladoga, the largest lake in Europe, to the Baltic Sea.  For centuries, it was of great strategic importance for transport and so the interests of the Russians, Swedes, Finns, and Balts clashed on its banks.  From the 8th-13th centuries, the Neva was part of the trade route from Scandinavia to Byzantium, the road ‘from the Varangians to the Greeks.’   In 1240, the Novgorod militia led by Prince Alexander Yaroslavich defeated the invading Swedish army on the banks of the Neva. Because of the victory, the prince was thereafter nicknamed Alexander Nevsky (of the Neva).  But the main page in the history of this great river began to be written, of course, in 1703 when St. Petersburg was founded at the mouth of the Neva.” – saint-petersburg.com

 

The Admiralty (left) and the gold dome of St. Isaac’s Cathedral, St. Petersburg, Russia

The Admiralty (left) and the gold dome of St. Isaac’s Cathedral, St. Petersburg, Russia

 

Twentieth century Soviet-era office building along the Neva River, just outside the historic city center, St. Petersburg, Russia

Twentieth century Soviet-era office building along the Neva River, just outside the historic city center, St. Petersburg, Russia

 

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