Getting to St. Petersburg from Moscow is fast, comfortable and inexpensive. Most often, two of the three conditions are met simultaneously. The city has one Pulkovo airport and 5 train stations, and for those who are not in a hurry – a river station and even a seaport. The most profitable way to travel between capitals is by bus (from 1000 RUB). It also makes sense to use it when getting to St. Petersburg from the nearest cities, including even Kaliningrad. The fastest way would seem to be by plane; however, in practice, taking into account the requirement to arrive at the airport 2 hours before departure, in the same total 3 hours and 40 minutes you will rush from the Leningradsky railway station of the capital directly to the historical center on a high-speed “Sapsan”. The prices on the page are for February 2022.
According to cachedhealth.com, the first metro train whistle in St. Petersburg sounded only in November 1955. Today, the St. Petersburg metro is the second largest in Russia. These are 5 railway lines, 64 stations, 3.5 thousand trains and 2.5 million passengers a day. There are several closed stations – the platforms are separated from the tracks by doors, unlike open ones, where people can see the approaching train.
Previously, this paragraph was completed by a remarkable phrase: “Such stations were created to protect against floods, because St. Petersburg is a city on the water.” After a detailed letter from one St. Petersburg resident who is very indifferent to his city, we removed this nonsense, and now we decided to return it along with his comment, which is worth reading:
“A playful legend invented by Muscovites. These stations were built in the 60s and 70s solely for the sake of economy, so as not to spend money on “stucco and gilding” of the initial construction period. They are much more modest and even shorter than the first stations, and the doors are there in order to close the passages in the walls of the tunnels through which trains drive up to the stations. If you have been there, you have seen that there are significant gaps between the doors and walls to bleed air, so they will not protect the station from water (and how will it get there?). We laugh loudly at this delusion.”
The cost of one trip to the subway is 60 RUB. Be sure to pay attention to the mode of operation of the subway, it is different for all stations. Stations open from 5:30 to 7:00 and close from 20:00 to 00:45.
In the summer, during the construction of bridges in St. Petersburg, a night metro operates. From 1:00 to 3:00, trains run between the stations “Admiralteiskaya” and “Sportivnaya”, allowing you to get from the Central District to Petrogradka.
The St. Petersburg metro is also famous for its truly imperial decoration of the stations: here you can see stucco, mosaics, sculptures, valuable minerals and artistic lighting. The most famous in this sense are the stations of the first, red, branch: Avtovo, Pushkinskaya, Ploshchad Vosstaniya. Of the recently opened stations, it is worth visiting the Obvodny Kanal stations – because of the interesting urban interior decor and Gorkovskaya – for the sake of a futuristic lobby that looks like a giant flying saucer from the outside, especially in the evening.
Ground public transport in St. Petersburg is buses, trolleybuses, trams and fixed-route taxis. The fare for the first three is 50 RUB, minibuses cost differently, depending on the route. Once upon a time, in the summer months, a river taxi was added to them – but, alas, it has been eliminated for many years.
When moving around St. Petersburg on the ground, one should not forget about the bridges (of course, only during the navigation along the Neva), of which there are 13 in St. Petersburg. The wiring time is from 1:30-2:00 to about 5:00. Separate bridges are reduced for half an hour around 3:00.
Night buses, whose routes duplicate metro lines, operate only two nights a week: from Friday to Saturday and from Saturday to Sunday. The drawn bridges do not interfere with them much: at this time, their route is simply divided into 2 parts.
There are no problems with taxis in St. Petersburg. The companies are huge. It is most convenient to use those on the website of which you can immediately calculate the time and cost of the trip; especially since there is often a discount when ordering online. The normal price for a trip from the airport to Nevsky Prospekt by economy class car is about 800 RUB, from Ladozhsky railway station – about 350 RUB, from the river station – about 450 RUB.
Double-decker red tourist buses of the hop-on-hop-off system are now also in St. Petersburg. An adult ticket can be bought directly on the bus, at some metro stations and online on the CityBus website. Such a ticket allows you to use the bus all day, getting off and on any of the 15 stops of the route, located near the most popular attractions – St. Isaac’s Cathedral, Palace Square, the Savior on Spilled Blood, the Summer Garden, the Aurora, the Peter and Paul Fortress, the spit of Vasilyevsky Island. When boarding the bus, passengers receive a map of the city and headphones to listen to a free tour. Buses run on schedule, departure – 5-6 times a day.
In recent years, due to the worsening situation with traffic jams, they are actively trying to put Peter on two wheels. The city bike rental today has 90 automated stations, at any of which you can get / leave a public bike. There are several tariff plans designed for different rental times, from a day to a season.
Despite the fact that every year more and more locals ride bicycles to and from work and business, St. Petersburg, alas, cannot be called a bike-friendly city. There are simply no bike paths in the center, and the sidewalks are very narrow or are flooded with pedestrians, so you have to ride on the roadway.
Along rivers and canals
Water transport (boats, “rockets”, “meteors”, etc.) is in demand mainly among tourists. In the summer, a large number of water excursions are organized along the city’s rivers and canals, including those with access to the Neva and the Gulf of Finland.
The only suburb where “meteors” now go is Peterhof, and “thanks” to the price, this is a purely tourist mode of transport.
Hop-on/hop-off water excursions
This type of tourist transport was launched in St. Petersburg in 2015: 5 water routes operated in the city, on which it was possible to go and board an unlimited number of times a day at intermediate stops within a specified period (from several hours to several days). The routes are served by different transport companies and the ticket price for each of them is also different (the minimum cost is 500 RUB, the price includes a language-language tour in different languages).
One of the most popular routes is the City Cruise. The motor ship passes along five waterways – the Neva, Fontanka, Kryukov Canal, Moika and Winter Canal and makes 5 stops at the main attractions of the city – including the Bronze Horseman monument, the Kunstkamera, the Summer Garden, the Lomonosov Bridge and the Azimut Hotel, you can join the tour on any of these stops.
The duration of the route is 1 hour 50 minutes, the duration of the parking at the pier is 10 minutes, the ship departs every 40 minutes, the number of landings is not limited – you can ride at least all day. There are tickets for 24 and 48 hours.
Car rental in St. Petersburg
You can rent a car in St. Petersburg at a price of 900 RUB per day. Cars for rent are offered by both international companies (Avis, Sixt, Europcar) and many local ones. To order a car, you need to contact the representative office of the car rental company (or its website) and create an appropriate request. During the booking process, you need to choose a suitable car from the list of offered ones, as well as agree on the rental period and the provision of additional services.
When renting a car in St. Petersburg, you need to take into account that the traffic situation in the city, to put it mildly, is not very favorable. One of the main reasons is the famous St. Petersburg bridges, which make it impossible to move from one area to another: there are few of them, and transport constantly accumulates on them. Therefore, in recent years, residents are beginning to use intercepting parking lots, leaving the car at metro stations. And for moving from south to north, they use the Ring Road or the Western High-Speed Diameter (traffic along the WHSD is paid).
With parking in the center of St. Petersburg, things are both bad and good at the same time. The bad thing is that there are few organized paid parking lots in the center. The good thing is that in almost any part of the city, except for the oldest and most central quarters, you can, with patience, find a suitable roadside, yard or “pocket”.