The Wonder of White Nights in Northern Europe

White Nights Hike

Come inside the Arctic Circle, where during most of the summer, the sun never sets. Northern European countries that lie inside the Arctic Circle provide some very interesting White Nights experiences. Because the sun does not set throughout the night, you can take the opportunity to change the way you travel…take a chance, do something you haven’t done before, stay up late (really late.) Start ... Read Full Article

St. Petersburg, Russia – the Enchantress

Venice-like streets along canals in St. Petersburg

  “If Moscow and St Petersburg were sisters, Moscow would be serious and businesslike, compared to this relaxed, light-hearted sibling,” I say with a flourish to my husband Rick. The main street, Nevsky Prospekt, bustles with chattering people strolling arm-in-arm relishing the day. The historic area side-streets with imperial classical architecture in pastels of coral, opal, gold, and ... Read Full Article

Where to Stay in St Petersburg-Editor’s Picks

Wondering where to stay in St. Petersburg, Russia? Elegant St. Petersburg has many luxury hotels, but finding good mid-range and budget hotels is sometimes a challenge. We have scoped out these hotels for every budget in St. Petersburg. Luxury hotels in St. Petersburg Grand Hotel Europe 5-star Uber-expensive and grand indeed, the Grand Hotel Europe caters to the top-of-the-line luxury ... Read Full Article

A Walking Tour of St. Petersburg’s Nevsky Prospekt

  Many of Europe’s great cities have an epicenter – a thriving nucleus around which both history and city life revolves.  Paris has the Arc de Triomphe, Rome the Forum. For St. Petersburg, Russia the center of gravity is Nevsky Prospekt. A long commercial avenue, strewn with palaces, buzzing with Ferraris and Ducatis, Nevsky Prospekt defines the city.  It runs through central St. ... Read Full Article

The Fortress of Saints Peter and Paul

  Over three centuries old, the Peter and Paul Fortress still intimidates. We had crossed a fortified bridge and passed under a massive arched gatehouse, all of which would have been armed with guards a few centuries ago. When we entered the fortress, a heavy summer sun scalded the cobblestones. We walked down a wide lane seemingly out of a history book. A stone embankment rose on one ... Read Full Article

The State Hermitage Museum – St. Petersburg, Russia

The woman in the ball gown is waving at us. Her hair, elaborately piled atop her head, rises slightly in the breeze and settles back over her brows. “Zdrastvuyte!” she calls out.  She mimes taking a photograph. “Photo with Russian Countess only 100 rubles!” The actress is one of several who roam Palace Square in St. Petersburg. The pickings are ripe, for a determined Countess; tourists constantly ... Read Full Article

Exploring the Churches of St. Petersburg, Russia

St. Petersburg is like an old photograph: mysterious, alluring, strangely nostalgic. Its palaces, with their shuttered windows and paint peeling in pastel strips, invite fantasies of more elegant times. Flat-bottomed boats swoop through the canals, ducking past the remnants of Russia’s imperial past. While it has transformed into a bustling, modern city, St. Petersburg retains its historical ... Read Full Article

St. Petersburg, Russia and its Iconic Art

It was a frigid, bland kind of Tuesday in St. Petersburg. I could not tell if it was colder than the day before, but it was definitely weather for the wooliest, thickest socks and gloves. It was the kind of weather that starts to freeze the blood in your face so that you can't feel the tip of your nose, and it becomes hard to talk or even smile. The clouds, in a wan blue sky, were enormous, but it ... Read Full Article