Nevsky Prospect

"There is nothing better than Nevsky Prospect, at least in St. Petersburg, it is everything for the city," once wrote famous Russian writer Nikolai Gogol. St. Petersburg's most popular street and its main artery stretching over 4.5 km from the Admiralty building to the Alexander Nevsky Lavra, which gave the street its present-day name. At different times it was built by Alexander Nevsky Lavra's monks and captive Swedish soldiers. The prospect (the Russian for 'avenue') features a small curve near Vosstaniya Square. A legend has it that during its construction the street was being paved starting from its ends (from the sides of the Lavra and the Admiralty) without any coordination between the workers, due to which two aisles could not be matched exactly. Actually, this legend is untrue: the two sides of the avenue were constructed at different times. The way to the monastery (Lavra) had to be paid for, 5 kopeks per cart and from 10 to 30 kopeks per carriage depending on the number of horses – thus, the colossal investments in the future avenue were returned. Travelers even used to pay with building materials or boulders, which is why by the year of 1720 the road was paved with stones.

The avenue vividly represents bright images of the epochs long past. This is a real architectural encyclopedia, just take the Stroganov Palace or the Baroque-style Anichkov Palace, Neoclassical Kazan Cathedral, modernist Singer House, Neo-Baroque Beloselsky-Belozersky Palace that reminds of Rastrelli's columns, etc. In the 18th-19th centuries the avenue saw construction of churches belonging to different confessions: the Roman Catholic Church of Saint Catherine, Armenian Apostolic Church of St. Catherine, the Lutheran Church of Saint Peter and Paul were built here. With the construction of the Big Gostiny Dvor and the Passage Nevsky became the city's center of commerce.

During the Siege the city suffered during the WWII the neighborhood of Nevsky was heavily bombarded and shelled, till today an inscription on the facade of 14 Nevsky Ave reads "Citizens! This is the most dangerous side of the road during shelling!"

Nevsky Prospect is also a popular festive event spot. On the New Year's Eve, the Victory Day and City Day the avenue turns into a pedestrian area all the way from the Fontanka River to Palace Square.

Address: Nevsky Prospect
How to reach: Nevskiy Prospekt, Gostiny Dvor, Mayakovskaya, Ploschad' Alexandra Nevskogo 1, Ploschad' Alexandra Nevskogo 2, Admiralteyskaya metro stations
Coordinates: 59.934837, 30.330538