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Inside the Church of Spilled Blood | © ninara/Flickr
Inside the Church of Spilled Blood | © ninara/Flickr

Everything You Need to Know About St Petersburg for Russia 2018

Picture of Anastasiia Ilina
Updated: 1 December 2017

As FIFA World Cup 2018 approaches, St Petersburg is getting ready to host incoming guests with post-match entertainment. There’s much to see and do in-between football games, so get ready to make the most of your stay in Russia’s cultural capital.

Eat like a local

Exploring in St Petersburg is often the best way to find your new favourite restaurant, but sometimes its good to have a trusted back-up plan. St Petersburg offers great choices for meals ranging from a quick snack to a sophisticated fine dining experience. Keep an eye out for restaurants from the Ginza project brand; they have over 40 restaurants across the city serving cuisine from all over the world. When you dine at Mansarda, you have a stunning view of St Isaac’s Cathedral in view. Even better, enjoy a meal overlooking the Neva river at Korushka. For a quick bite, explore creative fast-food joints such as Pita’s or Ketch Up Burgers. If in search of a sophisticated dining experience with a Russian twist, Cococo restaurant is the place to dress up and enjoy a glass of fine wine.

Mansarda, 3 Pochtamskaya Street, St Petersburg, Russia, +7 812 640 16 16

Korushka, 3 Peter and Paul Fortress, St Petersburg, Russia, +7 812 640 16 16

Pita’s, 65 Nevsky Prospekt, St Petersburg, Russia, +7 911 001 80 05

Ketch Up Burgers, 59 Liteynyi Avenue, St Petersburg, Russia, +7 812 908 80 70

Cococo, 6 Voznesensky Avenue, St Petersburg, Russia, +7 812 418 20 60

Grab a drink or two

Let’s be honest, in a short visit to St Petersburg, it will be impossible to visit every bar worthy of attention. But with some skilful barhopping, it just might be possible to get a preview. Start the tour on Rubinshteyna street, where there is a bar literally in every direction. Want a traditional pub? Step into Fiddler’s Green. Looking for wine? Drink your way through the wine list at Vinostudia. Hungry for some interesting bar food? Israeli street food is served at Bekitzer. If you’re wanting to combine a drink with a screening of football events at a sports bar, both James Cook Pub and Barslona serve that purpose and are located close to the fan zone.

Fiddler’s Green, 5 Rubinshteyna Street, St Petersburg, Russia, +7 812 240 12 02

Vinostudia, 38 Rubinshteyna Street, St Petersburg, Russia, +7 812 380 78 38

Bekitzer, 40 Rubinshteyna Street, St Petersburg, Russia, +7 812 926 43 42

James Cook Pub, 2 Shvedsky Pereulok, St Petersburg, Russia, +7 812 951 22 02

Barslona, 1 Bolshaya Konyushennaya, St Petersburg, Russia, +7 812 900 01 13

Get cultured

St Petersburg was once the capital of the Russian Empire and still holds the proud title of the cultural capital. Coming to St Petersburg and not visiting the Hermitage is simply shameful, so be sure to organise a visit to one of the world’s largest art collections as soon as possible. Explore the history of the city at the Peter and Paul Fortress and perhaps take a hydrofoil to the palace and gardens of Peterhof – a majestic summer residence with an unrivalled fountain park. As all the museums shut down for the evening, head over to St Isaac’s Cathedral to climb the colonnade and get a bird’s eye view of the city.  Time permitting, the summer residences of Tsarskoe Selo and Pavlovsk are pleasant day-trips to escape the city and see remnants of the lavish life of Russian royalty.

Hermitage, 2 Palace Square, St Petersburg, Russia

Peter and Paul Fortress, St Petersburg, Russia

St Isaac’s Cathedral, 4 St Isaac’s Square, St Petersburg, Russia

Gather for the FIFA Fan Fest

Getting together with like-minded football fans and cheering for favourite teams is a cherished experience for sports enthusiasts. To join the football party in St Petersburg, head over to Konyushennaya Square, located off Nevsky Avenue, within walking distance from centrally located hotels. If arriving by subway, the nearest stop is called Nevsky Prospekt. The Square is just to the right of the subway exit, located next to the Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood, a notable St Petersburg landmark and impossible to miss.

Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood, 2 Griboedov Channel Embankment, St Petersburg, Russia

Visit the new Krestovsky Stadium

In anticipation of the FIFA World Cup, St Petersburg erected a brand new stadium. The Krestovsky Stadium first opened in 2017, in time for the Confederations Cup. The stadium can host up to 68,000 visitors and has a retractable roof with an area equal to three Red Squares. The stadium is accessible via public transportation. The closest subway station is Krestovsky Ostrovand, located just on the other side of Primorsky Victory Park. The Krestovsky area has much to be discovered. It isn’t located in the historic centre, but has a lot to offer for those looking for upscale bars and restaurants.

Krestovsky Stadium, 1 Futbolnaya Alley, St Petersburg, Russia