Tuesday, April 12, 2016

St Petersburg Railway Stations

Date of visit: 23rd October 2015

Amazingly to know and shared the knowledge here that there are 4 train station altogether in St Petersburg City. We’ve been at 2 stations since we arrived at the city from Helsinki, Finland and departed to Moscow 2 days later, where the 2 destinations gave us that chance to be in 2 stations. Since we were not permitted to enter the Finland station when we arrived, I’m sharing photos snapped at Moscow station for this entry. Moscow station has a stringent security checks-in which is similar with the airport check-in system. I find it quite interesting to experience such a safe travel in Russian city.

Moscow Station is known as Moskovsky Vokzal locally. It is the city's oldest and busiest rail station which is located in the very centre of the city on Ploshchad Vosstaniya, at the junction between Nevsky Prospekt and Ligovsky Prospekt. It is a terminus for the Saint Petersburg – Moscow Railway and other lines running from Central and South Russia, Crimea, Siberia and Eastern Ukraine. The station is served by two metro station, the Mayakovskaya and Vosstaniya Square stations of the Saint Petersburg Metro, with both stations linked to the station building by an underground corridor. Ploshchad Vosstaniya is on the red line and Mayakovskaya is on the green line. It is a short walk from the station to several hotels, including the Hotel Oktiabrsakaya, the Ibis St. Petersburg Centre, the Corinthia Hotel St. Petersburg, and the Nevsky Express Hotel.

Moscow station is the oldest preserved station in the city, erected in 1844 till 1851 to a design by Konstantin Thon, an official local architect of Imperial Russia during the reign of Nicholas I. The station was named “Nicholaevsky” after Nicholas I of Russia was the reigning monarch and the greatest patron of railway construction in the realm at the time of construction. The name was rechristened as “Oktyabrsky” to memorialize the October Revolution in 1924, the station was not given its present name until 1930.

Although the large Venetian windows, having 2 floors of Corinthian columns and a two-storey clocktower at the centre explicitly reference Italian Renaissance architecture, the building incorporates other features from a variety of periods and countries. A twin train station, currently known as the Leningradsky railway station, was built to Thon's design at the other end of the railway, in Moscow. While Thon's facade remains fundamentally intact to this day, the station was expanded in 1869 and again in 1912. It was completely redeveloped internally in 1950 and 1967. A bronze bust of Peter the Great in the main foyer was unveiled in 1993, replacing a ruined Lenin statue.

Finland Station (Finlyandskiy Vokzal) is quite famous as it has been the site of Lenin's arrival on his return to St. Petersburg in 1917. Finland Station has gained a new lease of life as the terminal for the new Allegro express trains to Helsinki. The station is on the north bank of the Neva River, about 2km north of Nevsky Prospekt. The station is served by Ploshchad Lenina Metro Station on the red line, which is 2 stops north of Ploshchad Vosstaniya. The only hotel within walking distance is the Saint Petersburg Hotel.

Vitebsk Station (Vitebsky Vokzal) is St. Petersburg terminal for trains to/from Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova, and the Baltic States. Vitebsk Station is a beautiful historic building located in the southern centre of the city, just under 2km from Nevsky Prospekt. There are 2 metro stations connected to the mainline concourse, Pushkinskaya on the red line and Zvenigorodskaya on the purple line. Hotels within walking distance of the station include the Fifth Corner Hotel, the Asteria Hotel, the Brothers Karamazov Hotel, and the Neptun Hotel. It was formerly known as St Petersburg-Tsarskoselsky station, and is the first railway station to be built in Saint Petersburg and the whole of the Russian Empire. The station, located at the crossing of the Zagorodny Avenue and the now vanished Vvedensky Canal, was inaugurated in the presence of Nicholas I of Russia on 30 October 1837 when the first Russian train, named Provorny, departed from its platform for the imperial residence at Tsarskoe Selo.

Main ticket area & waiting area
Ladoga Station (Ladozhskiy Vokzal) is St. Petersburg's newest railway station. Ladoga Station is a sprawling modern building to the east of the downtown area, about 2km across the Neva River from the eastern end of Nevsky Prospekt. Ladozhskaya Metro Station, connected to the mainline concourse, is on the orange metro line, four stops from Dostoevskaya in the very centre of the city. In the vicinity, about 1km from the station, the Ladoga Hotel is the only hotel within walking distance.

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