Whenever most people think of Russia one of the first things that comes to mind is of course Russian vodka. So no wonder that nowadays in St Petersburg there is an excellent museum fully devoted to this strong alcoholic drink — The Russian Vodka Museum!

The museum is not too big but to visit it is a lot of fun. During the tour you will learn where it all started, that vodka was not that strong at first and was a product of distillation. In the times of Peter the Great if a person was late to one of his parties – so called assemblies – he or she no matter where they were from or how old they were had to drink one liter of vodka in one shot! Fortunately for those people in those days vodka was not that strong yet (not 40% as today), it was more like a strong wine, and that is why it was not as dangerous as it would have been today. However people could still faint.

In times of Catherine the Great a lot of people were producing vodka, so being a very wise woman, she introduced a special tax for vodka which reasonably increased the budget of the country.

And of course the exhibition reveals the secret of how the vodka we know today was invented. The recipe for ideal vodka was discovered just in the end of the 19th century and as such vodka is a relatively new spirit. The main idea of the exhibition is to show a deep connection between this strong traditional Russian drink and the history of this vast country.

The museum boasts of a great collection of small liqueur and shot glasses of different shapes, materials, and sizes. Among the exhibits there are bottles with tied necks (to remind us about the “dry law” when it was strictly prohibited to drink at all). On display there is also a bottle of wine taken from the cellar of Gering when the Soviet army reached Germany during the World War II.

However the museum is not just an exhibition. It is also a place where you will be able to try different kinds of vodka with traditional Russian snacks (such as pickles or a herring sandwich) and not only to try but also to buy! The bar of the museum offers a great variety of different vodkas produced all over Russia.

So during the visit you will learn that drinking vodka is not as simple as it seems! Drinking vodka is not just about drinking but also a fascinating rite (including lots of food) which was formed during centuries! So pay a visit and feel yourself Russian!

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The Faberge Museumhas the world-class collection of Faberge Masterpieces (including 14 Easter Eggs), gift boxes, Russian enamels etc.The collection is situated in 9 beautiful rooms of Shuvalov Palace. It was opened in November 2013 and was founded by the “Link of Times” Cultural Historical Foundation, established by Russian entrepreneur Viktor Vekselbergto repatriate lost cultural treasures to Russia.

The fourth tallest dome construction in the world. St Isaac’s Cathedral used to be the main Russian Orthodox Cathedral of the Russian Empire. The enormous decoration of the interior of the cathedral, was created in the Russian Academy of Fine Arts.Gilded bronze, malachite and lapis lazuli together with countless paintings, columns, mosaics, will take your breath away.

One of the best private palaces in the Europe .Its real gem is a home theater. Outstanding Russian singers and dancers performed there.In this palace young Felix Yusupov, the heir of the family, and other conspirators assassinated Grigory Rasputin.  During a visit to the palace you will learn about the plot of Felix and how it was brought to life.

Peter and Paul Fortress here our city was founded in 1703.Peter the Great started a fortress to protect the lands won back from Sweden. Now it is one of the most important 18th century fortresses in Russia and Europe.St Peter and Paul Cathedral is the burial place of almost all Russian Tsars from Peter the Great up to the last Russian Tsar Nicholas II and his family.

Many metro station vestibules and platforms are adorned with marble, granite, bas-reliefs and mosaics which makes them look like underground palaces. The very first 10 stations appeared after WWII and have various military and Soviet symbols reminding visitors about the glorious victory over Nazi Germany. Owing to the city’s swampy subsoil, most of the lines were built extremely deep underground.

Peterhof is definitely “a must-see” for any first-time visitor to St Petersburg.It is often called the “Russian Versailles”: it is a real “kingdom of fountains” and true paradise for little children (as well as adults) with amazing cascades, a variety of unique and playful fountains, Grand Peterhof Palace, and other small ones.

Catherine Palace Is a must to visit. Inside you will find a succession of interconnecting rooms in Baroque style and somewhere in the middle of that enfilade is the famous Amber Room which was called by contemporaries “the eighth wonder of the world”. The palace was badly damaged during WWII and amber panels were stolen by the Nazi. But they started restoration in 1979 and finished it in 2003.

St Petersburg Siege Memorialcommemorates the hardship that Leningrad‘s (the soviet name of our city) citizens endured during the siege which lasted 900 days (1941-1943) and took away about 1.5 mln lives. The most striking part of the memorial are the tableaux of soviet citizens facing south towards the enemy. It was designed to be viewed from a distance. In the subterranean memorial hall are relics from the siege.

Offers fresh food from all over the former Soviet Union: melons, tomatoes, farmhouse honey, pickles, sour cream, ham and gherkins, not to mention imports such as kiwi fruit. Most vendors offer the chance to taste a sliver before buying. Outside the market are “babushkas” (pensioners) who sell things they have grown at their dacha (summer cottage) or gathered in the forest.

Hermitage Museum one of the most important and oldest museums in the world. It has one of the largest collections of paintings. If you spent one minute viewing each exhibit of the Museum it would take you11 years to see everything. The collection of the French Impressionists is exhibited in the General staff building which is located opposite the Winter Palace.

Most famous for almost 21,000m² of mosaics that cover both the interior and the façade of the building. The mosaics were created in Russia, which makes them even more valuable. It is the only building in our citybuilt in the style of Moscow churches. The church was built on the place where Alexander II was assassinated, hence the name.

St Petersburg boat tours offer a perfect way to see the city under a bit different angle – sailing under numerous bridges along rivers and canals, and listening to curious stories from your guide. St Petersburg boat tours are especially majestic during the White Nights season in St Petersburg.

Alexander Palace was commissioned by Catherine II for her grandson, future Russian tsar Alexander I and later became the summer home of a succession of Imperial heirs, each of whom left their mark on the building.