St. Petersburg – my favorite city, and in winter it shines like the brightest toy on the Christmas tree. Therefore, I am very glad to write and publish an author's guide about the New Year in St. Petersburg – 2022!
The city on the Neva is one of the best options to spend the January holidays cheerfully, provocatively, with a twinkle. And so that this light is not blown out by our northern sea winds, I will tell you from the point of view of a local resident, what is the New Year in St. Petersburg (I will add reviews from tourists) and is it worth going to the Northern capital for the New Year?
< strong>Important:Since December 27, Quar codes are introduced in St. Petersburg – for checking into hotels and hostels and for visiting cafes and restaurants.
What is the weather like in St. Petersburg in winter?
There is such a joke about St. Petersburg constancy and stability – and year-round +8℃. This is partly true. But, firstly, in winter we still have a minus, and quite a decent one at that. For the last New Year holidays in St. Petersburg there were strong -5℃…-15℃ and a clear sky. And secondly, if you're not lucky, then because of the humidity, even +8 feel like -2. A note of coolness is also brought in by the wind that blows in winter from all sides at once (I don’t know how it does it).
But there is no bad weather, there are wrong clothes. Here are my tips on how (more precisely, what) you need to walk in the winter in St. Petersburg:
– Hat, scarf and mittens! This is a must have for every tourist. Even if you don't like hats that tickle your forehead. Our wind blows through any hoods and just rips them off your head.
– Layering is your best friend. So that when you need to unfasten, take off the excess, and then, if it's cold, put it back on. This primarily applies to walks with movements on the subway. The subway is deep, it is always very warm below.
— Umbrella: to take or not to take? Theoretically it might be necessary. Especially if you arrive in December – the rains at this time are quite autumn-long. But in January the weather is different: humidity drops, more sunny frosty days.
What to see on New Year's Eve in St. Petersburg?
They say New Year is a home holiday. But if you don’t have friends and relatives with living space in your city, here are three alternative options for celebrating the New Year in St. Petersburg:
- in the open air with a cheerful crowd and fireworks,
- in a hotel or apartment.
< li>in a restaurant or club,
I remind you that by the evening of December 31, there will be a requirement for QUAR codes for checking into hotels and visiting cafe-restaurants.
Let's talk about the first point. Already from the beginning of December, a special atmosphere appears in the city, fabulous and magical. If, for example, the New Year in Moscow is sweets-lambs, ruddy fun and samovars with dryers, then in St. Petersburg, the music from The Nutcracker constantly sounds on the streets!
< em>How to be in the right place on New Year's Eve so as not to miss all the fun?
First get off to Nevsky Prospekt. And just take a walk. Numerous Christmas trees (the brightest ones are near Gostiny Dvor and Kazansky Cathedral), shop windows decorated in the European style (check out the window of the Eliseevsky department store) and illumination along the entire avenue will definitely set you up for the New Year's regime.
Closer to midnight, is waiting for everyone >the main Christmas tree of the city on Palace Square. For many years, an artificial spruce was placed here. But in 2021, a real forest giantess was brought back. And they promise to do it again this season! The main celebratory program will also take place there, on Dvortsovaya Street: a concert, a laser show on the walls of the General Staff building and the Hermitage, broadcasting of the president's speech and chimes. And then DiscoEka!.. You can dance at least until the morning, or you can…
…cross the Neva to the Spit of Vasilyevsky Island. Another bright Christmas tree is set up near the Rostral Columns. From here you can perfectly see the fireworks, which are launched after midnight.
What to watch in winter in St. Petersburg? The same as in summer. Palaces and museums both stood and stand, and are good in any weather. We already wrote about where to go in St. Petersburg here (there are 30 best places and attractions).
Christmas trees and skating rinks< /h3>
Of course, the New Year in St. Petersburg is not limited to one festive night. During the New Year holidays, the city opens up many places where you can take a walk in the winter on the street. These are various fairs and outdoor skating rinks.
Any New Year's fair is not just a few stalls around the Christmas tree. This is a real mini-city, with a central square and small lanes of stalls, tents and shops. Here you can buy unusual souvenirs, gifts and interesting food from all over the world! For example, every New Year we are specifically looking for a place at fairs where they sell Hungarian kalachi.
The largest fairs that will open on New Year's Eve in St. Petersburg – 2022:
The work of all fairs is in full swing from mid-December until January 13 (Old New Year).
Open skating rinks in St. Petersburg work much longer: if the weather permits, you can ride throughout the winter.
Most popular city ice rinks :
- The ice rink in New Holland is trendy, bright, Instagrammable! And quite expensive. The cost of an hour of skiing is from 190 rubles (before lunch on a weekday) to 490 rubles (weekend evening). On holidays – 500 rubles. Plus skate rental for 390 rubles.
- Skating rink on Manezhnaya Square – located on the territory of the fair space, small, but very fabulous. The entrance is free. Skate rental: adults 200 rubles, children 100 rubles.
- The skating rink by the sea in SevKabelPort is an ice area overlooking the Gulf of Finland. The cost of a session in the morning on weekdays is 250 rubles, in the evening 300 rubles (on Friday 400 rubles.) On weekends – 350-450 rubles, respectively. Rental costs 350 rubles, you can bring your own skates.
- The skating rink on Obvodny is a new skating rink near the walls of the Planetarium No. 1 on the Obvodny Canal. Prices for skiing start from 250 rubles (weekday morning) to 450 rubles (weekend evening or on holidays). Skate rental 300 rubles. You can bring your own.
- The skating rink on Elagin Island is the most popular ice rink, without this fashionable tinsel and endless photo shoots. Free, and if you need skates, they cost 300 rubles at the box office.
There is also a Forest Skating Rink in Okhta Park – located outside the city (ski resort Okhta Park in the village of Mistolovo), but it would be a crime not to write about it. An unusual and very beautiful skating rink is not a flooded field, but ice paths laid for 1.5 km, winding between pines. Especially good at dusk. The cost of an entrance ticket on weekdays is 600 rubles for adults, 300 rubles for children; weekends and holidays – 800-1000 rubles for adults, 400-500 rubles for children (morning/evening). Rent from 300 rubles.
Where can I go from St. Petersburg in winter?
Where they do not offer holiday programs for the New Year in St. Petersburg. There are events for every taste, budget, duration and … distance from the city. Theaters and various concert venues do not lag behind them.
For those who first of all want to get to know St. Petersburg itself, to get to know it better, I offer three locations that are not devoid of New Year's flavor:
- Excursion New Year's quest in the center of St. Petersburg – in 1.5 hours, under the guidance of a guide, you will walk around the center of St. Petersburg and learn about New Year's customs, but you will also have to solve riddles, that's what you're counting on. Great option for family travellers. Excursion price: 2800 rubles for a group of up to 5 people.
- Organ concert in Petrikirche – the Lutheran Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul (Petrikirche) on Nevsky, 22/24 on New Year's Eve invites you to the concert “Christmas Organ”. Ticket price: 900-1600 rubles.
- The Nutcracker ballet at the Mikhailovsky Theater is a classic of the genre in every sense! I promise not to mention the Nutcracker again :) But the choreography by Marius Petipa directed by Nacho Duato is a must see. Ticket prices start from 2,000 rubles.
But there are those who are ready to leave festive St. Petersburg to find out what is interesting in the near and far surroundings. I share your zeal and move on to the next paragraph.
For the most indefatigable and easy-going, I made up the top 5 New Year's excursions from St. Petersburg:
1. Valdai-Veliky Novgorod – a bus tour to the “traditions of the old days” to the sound of Valdai bells. In the program: visits to temples, monasteries and museums of bell making. Price from 1990 rubles.
2. Marble Canyon in Ruskeala – fabulous winter Karelia, and that says it all! Trips to Ruskeala, by the way, are one of the favorite destinations of the Petersburgers themselves. Ticket price from 1990 rubles.
3. Mandrogi – folk festivals, master classes of Russian and Karelian crafts, tea from a samovar and the Vodka Museum. And all this in the scenery of painted huts and towers. In addition, you will see one of the oldest cities in Russia (Staraya Ladoga), the burial mound of Prophetic Oleg and many more interesting things. Great option for a trip with children!
4. Viking Village Svargas (Vyborg) is another place where children will squeal with delight. And along with them, dads;) You can get to Svargas by appointment via the Internet, on the official website. Groups are formed upon request, programs change from season to season. In December, Pikku Yolla (Christmas Eve) and Yule (Christmas and New Year) will be celebrated in the village. Cost: from 600 rubles adults, children under 7 years old free of charge. The price for a specific program can be found after registration.
5. Pushkin/Pavlovsk/Gatchina – a standard set of tourists, relevant in winter. On New Year's holidays, fair festivities are held near the walls of palaces in parks, which is also interesting. Entrance to the parks in winter is free.
The last two points of my selection are designed for independent trips. To do this, I advise you to use car sharing – from Delimobil (promo code for 400 rubles – REFSWOSK – for beginners) or from Yandex.Drive (50% promo code for the first trip – reftz5CP2 – for the fixed tariff). Convenient, practical, do not depend on anyone! You can find an iron horse of the standard class from 2000 rubles per day. Or get to the desired point within the city at a fixed price.
Prices in St. Petersburg for the New Year
It is clear that something extraordinary in relation to prices in St. Petersburg on New Year's Eve does not happen. Coffee in a coffee shop is not subject to a festive extra charge and will still cost 150-200 rubles. The fare on the metro* on New Year's Eve remains the same – 60 rubles per ticket. Yes, and donuts on Bolshaya Konyushennaya are also handed out for 20 rubles.
- What really rises in price from December 25 until the end of the holidays is any housing that earns money – apartments, rooms, hotels, hostels (more on that in the next section).
- You can cheat and save a little on airfare by choosing a better date for departure in the Skyscanner calendar. Fly from Moscow and back by plane for 5,000–6,000 rubles, from Kazan and other nearby regions – within 8,000–12,000 rubles.
*By the way, a little about the subway. In St. Petersburg on the New Year (on the night of December 31 to January 1), the work of the metro is extended until the morning. True, in 2021 this decision was canceled due to restrictions … We hope that everything will be different in this. Ground transport will also operate all night, but not in the center, where traffic will be blocked. Therefore, still count on the metro.
Housing – where to stay in St. Petersburg?
Are you going to St. Petersburg on your own? I never get tired of repeating the main criteria by which it would be better to choose accommodation:
- value for money
- within walking distance from attractions
- close to convenient bus stops public transport (or with free car parking)
- there should be at least one grocery store nearby
Compromise options on all counts, oddly enough, can be found almost in the very center of St. Petersburg.
And then the editors take the floor! Making frequent trips to St. Petersburg, we found very nice accommodation options in the center, where we would return again. On their example, we will compare the New Year's jump in housing prices:
(we take into account 5 nights for two with the capture on December 31)
1. A two-level studio on Stremyannaya Street (5 minutes walk to Nevsky Prospekt) – 27,000 rubles on holidays, 17,000 rubles at regular times. A cozy studio with everything you need, including a shoe dryer.
2. 4* The Faces Historical Center (5 minutes to St. Isaac's) — 52,000 rubles on holidays, 35,000 rubles at normal times. A modern and incredibly stylish chain of The Faces hotels with excellent reviews and location (there are still on Petrogradka and on the Moika embankment).
3. Mini-hotel Friends Loft (15 minutes walk to Rubinstein) – 18,000 rubles on holidays, 9,000 rubles at normal times. Friends is a chain of hostels, but this particular one goes like a hotel, and most notably, all rooms are located in the attic. The comfort level room is our favorite, spacious and with a cool round window.
As you can see, hotels and apartments for the New Year jump by 50-60% of the normal cost. What to do, holidays! Although you can try to find an apartment for daily rent on Sutochno.ru, the owner of which does not give in to the New Year's hype.
Restaurants in St. Petersburg for the New Year – where to go?
One of the important attributes of the New Year is festive table! And here one of the main questions arises: where to go on New Year's Eve in St. Petersburg? Need to be delicious and beautiful to straight ah! Write:
— Restaurant on the Water Aquarelle– a place repeatedly tested by us and our friends! A large floating banquet hall near the Birzhevoy Bridge overlooking the Palace Embankment. The program has everything you need: from Olivier and the president to fireworks and gifts. The cost of the New Year's table for one person is 8000 rubles.
— Sails on the roof is a themed holiday for the whole family. This year's theme is Nautical New Year! The cost of the holiday for adults is 5000 rubles, for children 3-18 – 3000 rubles, up to 3 years free.
— Balkan– New Year in the Balkans. The menu includes Serbian and Greek cuisine and a bright, sunny mood. The cost of New Year's Eve is 5,000 rubles per person.
But the holidays, as I already wrote, are not just one New Year's Eve. And you always want to eat! What are the best restaurants to go to while walking around New Year's St. Petersburg?
- Georgian restaurants of Chito Gvrito is a large network, points of which can be found in any part of the city, from small khinkal and khachapur restaurants to serious restaurants. There is always a Caucasian hospitable, warm and satisfying. My husband and I have had a tradition for several years: on December 31, we have lunch in one of the small cafes. I advise you to try it too! The average price tag per person (with a glass of wine) is 800 rubles.
- Eurasia and Tokyo City – I already wrote about these large networks in an article about walking around St. Petersburg. Let me remind you that the first is sushi and oriental cuisine, the second is also sushi and European dishes. Both networks are attractive in that there are constantly promotions, discounts and offers of the day. And there is a great kids menu.
New Year in St. Petersburg with children
And yet you must agree: New Year is a holiday for children! :) And we, parents, always want it to be magical and memorable for them.
As a mother with experience in entertaining the younger generation, I will write for you and your little ones of any age what we ourselves love to do and where we go for the New Year:
1. Christmas tree in DK – going to the Christmas tree with your child is a classic. Such events for the New Year are held in the Gorky Palace of Culture, the Lensoviet Palace of Culture, in the Big Concert Hall “Oktyabrsky”. Tickets can be bought on the websites of the venues or at any theater box office in the city (there are such stalls in the metro or shopping center). The ticket price, as a rule, includes a small sweet gift, which Santa Claus himself will give to the child at the holiday. From personal impressions: in the Big Concert Hall there is always a chic Christmas tree in the foyer, but in the Gorky Palace of Culture it is more comfortable.
2. The Ice Sculpture Festival is held annually in the open air on the beach of the Peter and Paul Fortress. It will be interesting for children of all ages and their parents. Tickets to the festival: adults 600 rubles, children 500 rubles.
3. Children's theaters – I advise the Demeny Puppet Theater on Nevsky or Carlson House on the Fontanka. This is entertainment, first of all, for kids. But older kids might like it too, depending on which production you go to. We went to both these theatres. Even dad liked it in the puppet theater. Tickets for the first from 600 rubles, for the second from 1600 rubles.
4. Museum Factory of Christmas toys – the only St. Petersburg museum of this kind, it works only in winter. So you need to succeed! Opens in mid-December on the Admiralty Canal embankment (opposite New Holland). Entrance to the exposition is free. Master class on painting toys – 400 rubles.
5. Museum of Lies on Sadovaya – they themselves position themselves as one of the most mysterious museums in the world! Will definitely impress teenagers and parents. Ticket price: 600 rubles.
Tourist reviews of the New Year in St. Petersburg
Wandering through various sites and forums, I came across this problem: many people think that it makes no sense to go to St. Petersburg for the New Year.
It is believed that only tourists celebrate this holiday here, there are huge crowds everywhere and you can’t get anywhere. I will say as a local resident – this is not so … You just need to know when and where to go. I hope my article will guide you in this. And the other one (about where to go in St. Petersburg, link above) will add.
The second misconception is the St. Petersburg weather. More precisely, BAD St. Petersburg weather. It is partly true, but only partly. The city is so good and beautiful in festive decoration that even the dullness of bad weather suits it. And you can wait out the bad weather in a cozy cafe or go to a performance.
And, finally, the third misconception that there is nothing to do with children here. Responsibly I answer – very even there. You just need to make a plan of action for the whole trip in advance, based on the age of your child. He may not be able to take long walks.
I will be glad if my advice will be useful to you, and you will appreciate winter St. Petersburg!