Founded by the madly energetic, enormous figure of a czar – Peter the Great – St Petersburg is the most Western of Russian cities. He built his “window on the west” in the early years of the 18th century, during his great northern war with Sweden. Sitting on the banks of the River Neva is the St Peter and Paul Fortress with it’s gorgeous golden spires and domes and another weird and wonderful Russian experience – the city beach!
During the White Nights of the Northern summer, locals flock to this tiny beach beneath the fortress walls and sunbathe til the wee small hours! The River itself is deep, wide and cold and it lends a haunting beauty to the scene…