St Petersburg – Canal and River Cruising. Part Two.

St.Petersburg tours

Continuing from last week, here are some more of the charming and enchanting waterways which will delight tourists who are keen to explore St Petersburg by river cruise or canal cruise…

  • The Kryukov Canal is one of this city’s least recognised canals, yet it is quite aesthetically beautiful, with bridges and embankments which are picturesque. It connects the Fontanka River, Moyka Canal, and the Griboedov Canal, and runs perpendicular to all three. Many of St Petersburg’s top attractions lie on the banks of this canal: the Mariinsky Theatre, New Holland, and the St Nicholas Naval Cathedral Bell Tower to name a few. This canal dates from 1717-1720, and at one time was adjacent to the now destroyed Lithuanian Castle and the Lithuanian Market.
  • The Karpovka River is a very picturesque three kilometre waterway dividing the Aptekarsky and the Petrogradsky Islands. Between the St Petersburg Botanical Garden and the Ioannovsky Convent is a winding and pretty section of the river with leafy green embankments, bringing a peaceful aspect to the middle of the city.
  • The Griboedov Canal is a narrow and twisting waterway of almost six kilometres, running through the very heart of the city. It is traversed by no fewer than twenty one bridges, and offers the canal cruiser a panorama of some of St Petersburg’s finest architecture: cathedrals, palaces, churches, tenements, and everything in between. Some of the city’s grandest churches lie adjacent to this canal, including the Kazan Cathedral, the St Nicholas Naval cathedral, the Estonian Orthodox Church of St. Isodore, and the Church of Our Saviour on the Spilled Blood – built on the exact site of the assassination of Emperor Alexander II.
  • Okhta River is the largest tributary of the Neva River. It is the archaeological site of a number of ancient fortresses and settlements, having been settled since the Stone Age, and the embankment has become known as “St Petersburg’s Troy”.
  • The Chernaya Rechka, or Black River, is the site of a famous duel between Alexander Pushkin and Georges d”Anthes in 1837. Much of this tiny waterway is now hidden in an industrial region of St Petersburg. It is located on the city’s outskirts, in an area that was once remote with meadows and groves; as such it became a popular site for the defence of honour by duel. This waterway is of note for historical reasons.
  • Finally, the Smolenka River separates the islands of Vasilevsky and Decembrists. It flows directly into the Gulf of Finland and the Baltic Sea. This river is famous for its historic factories, as well as the Smolenskoe Cemetery.

No visit to St Petersburg is complete without taking to the water at least once. It is a peaceful and enchanting way to see the best of what this old city has to offer.

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