No English - Workation in St. Petersburg

Hallo friends in PJs!
A couple of weeks ago I returned from a one month long workation during which I visited 4 countries, learnt about 4 very different cultures and had so much fun! In the coming weeks I wish to share the places I visited, some small issues I faced, things I learnt and how I managed all that while working for the majority of the trip. 

I started my adventure in St. Petersburg, this was my first visit to Russia and I'm glad it started right here. Peters, as some like to call it, is a magnificent city with very European culture. Peter the Great was very involved in the process of designing and building the city, many say that he was inspired by Amsterdam and that this is the reason St. Petersburg has over 300 bridges, well that, and the fact that it lies on river Neva that flows right there into the Baltic Sea. To me St. Petersburg was some sort of cross between Venice, Amsterdam and Paris, it's a truly incredible place. Given that the city is surrounded with so much water taking at least one of the many river cruises is an inevitable part of sightseeing. You will get a different perspective on the city and it's incredible architecture, but also a wonderful view on the beautiful bridge. So besides extensive walking tours, taking one of the boat rides from the Winter Palace area is a must. 

St. Petersburg definitely doesn't lack in sights and culture, the only thing you might lack is time. I've spent here about a week and I'm pretty sure I haven't seen even the half. Keep in mind that most of places will charge around 10e entrance fee. What really needs to make your list of things to see is Hermitage Museum, located in the Winter PalaceChurch of the Savior on Blood, St. Isaac's Cathedral, Peter and Paul Fortress, Faberge Museum and the list runs on. I think this is the bare minimum and you will be able to visit most of the places on foot easily in two days. But most locations are easily reachable by subway which you definitely want to get on your list of things to see, because, St. Petersburg subway stations are little works of art, actually they're not that little to be honest.  

The location I enjoyed the most was the famous Peterhof Palace, that is the summer palace of Peter the Great. Now, I lived in Vienna for many years and I'm pretty used to magnificent palaces at every step, I used to run in the garden of one of those, back in the day, but Peterhof just took my breath away. There are different ways of reaching the palaces, and I think I chose the worst one - by boat. Now, boat rides are awesome, but most of the touristy boat rides will consist in 30min "useless s*it" sales pitch during the ride that you paid a rather hefty price for. Not only was this annoying, there was barely any air left in the cabin, too. Besides being pretty quick way to reach this location, everything else was extremely annoying. To conclude, avoid the boat at all cost. But visit Peterhof at all cost. Take your time to explore the magnificent gardens surrounding the property and be carried away by the luxurious golden fountain right in front of the palace, and if time and you feet allow you, explore the inside of the palace, as well. This truly was the highlight of my trip.  

Besides incredible architecture and culture, St. Petersburg is a pretty hipstery city. There's a bunch of cool people around, a lot of street musician trying to catch their break by singing on every corner of the city, they say New York never sleeps, St. Petersburg doesn't rest for a moment either. If you lack energy the city will boost you and in no time you'll back at your feet exploring.

Russian people are quite a serious bunch, they don't smile, too much, or talk too much, but they will do their best to make you feel comfortable and welcome, that is if you speak Russian, if you don't, well I guess you must be open to an adventure. Luckily for me my native language is very similar so I didn't starve and it helped my bf speaks Russian. I feel that language issues can the biggest problem   in restaurant, but food in Russia is very tasty so whatever you take, you'll be fine. My favourites are Beef Stroganoff, Pelmeni and my absolute favourite Syrniki. If you're like me and you enjoy a lot of fat and carbs you will love the food in Russia. Also, when it comes to meal prices in restaurants, expect to pay a bit less than 15e per person with a drink included. Portions in Russia are smaller so you might need to order and appetiser and a main dish to fill up. One affordable and charming restaurant I can recommend is Kvartirka a soviet style place. Except the furniture and authentic food service was not very soviet, thankfully.  

When it comes to picking a place to stay in St. Petersburg, I believe the best value for money would be an AirBnb. I booked a hotel I was not very happy with for a couple of days and then I moved to a much nicer AirBnb. Also, for those of you who like to work and travel, St. Petersburg has many coworking options, I was very comfy in Praktik. They have nice space, in nice locations and quite affordable, too, around 10e per day. This for me was the perfect solution to working and travelling. 

So there you go my friends in PJs, next week we're hopping of to a very different place, Tallinn, Estonia. I'm gonna share how I got there from St. Petersburg and how and why it's so different. 
Till then, keep your jammies comfy and spirits lifter. 

Have a good one! 

Get 30e AirBnb voucher for your first trip, click here

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