After covering Yakutsk in Russia a few months ago, I’m so excited to tell you all that today we’ll be back to Russia for this week’s $10 series. And of course, we’re gonna talk about another city in this big ol’ country. What is it?
Thanks to Anna of Travel Cultura, on this week’s series we’ll see what you could get in Pavlovsk for $10 USD. How far could you get within the budget in the town that you could visit for a day trip from St. Petersburg? Let’s check this out! 😉
Aristocrat on the Budget
$10 USD is not a big sum for Russia. It’s equivalent to 650 Rubles. How can you spend them? For example, within the budget, you can buy around 15 rides on local transport such as metro and buses, OR 2 movie tickets. You might as well get a pan of pizza too for the amount of money.
However, even having only $10 USD, you can still spend a splendid day in Russia. At the end of the day, you’ll have hundreds of photos of imperial palaces, ancient monuments and sumptuous park landscapes.
Ready? So let’s head to Pavlovsk!
A bit of Pavlovsk’s History and Geography
Pavlovsk is a town in the Leningrad region of Russia. It’s situated 30 kilometers from St. Petersburg, and thus is easily accessible by suburban train.
The main attraction of Pavlovsk is the former residence of the Russian Imperial family. In fact, it’s a whole complex of museums including the Great Imperial Palace, a number of smaller museums and exhibitions, and a huge park. This is where we’re going within the budget!
Feeding Birds and Squirrels at Pavlovsk’s Park
There’s one thing you should do before entering the Pavlovsk’s park. Go to a local grocery shop and buy a small pack of sunflower seeds for 50 rubles as you’ll need them very soon!
A ticket to the park costs 100 rubles, and the entrance is even free if you arrive before 9 AM. From the first step, you’ll realize that the park in Pavlovsk is not just a chaotic mix of trees, shrubs and paths. This is a delightfully organized natural reserve.
Don’t forget the fact that it’s a former imperial residence, and Russian emperors knew some senses in beauty.
Walk up and down the multiple paths. Pay attention to small pavilions hidden here and there: Pil-Tower Pavilion, Temple to Friendship, Rose Pavilion, Music Vauxhall.
You’ll also discover Centaur Bridge, Triple Lime Avenue, Stone Stairway, Open-air theatre, Turkish Tend, and other natural compositions.
And for the sunflower seeds… Feed the local birds and squirrels as you’ll meet them everywhere in the park. Put some seeds on the palm and extend your arms. Chickadees will eat right from your hand!
Visiting the Great Pavlovsk Palace
While wandering around the park, you might have already noticed the palace. The palace is light-yellow building topped with a dome.
Before you go inside, take a tour around the palace and examine it from outside. The palace stands on the high bank of the river. This is a nice viewpoint for great photos.
Besides, pay attention to the open gallery of the palace – the “Gonzago Gallery”. It is a terrace decorated by brilliant landscape designer Pietro Gonzaga. The gallery is known due to its amazing 3D frescoes.
The entry ticket to the Great Palace will cost you 500 rubles. The Grat Palace was built for Russian Emperor Paul I and his family at the end of the XVIII century. Nowadays, the palace houses the richest collections of authentic furniture, porcelain, clocks and personal belongings of the Imperial family.
Despite all the luxury and opulence, the Great Palace looks cozy and intimate, as if the Romanovs were still living there.
As you see, even if you have only $10 USD in your pocket, you can still spend a day like an aristocrat. That is why I’d highly recommend you to include Pavlovsk to the list of your must-sees in Russia.
Contributor: Anna de Nord from Travel Cultura
Anna is a travel blogger who is fond of architecture, history, and photography. She writes about traveling to Russia: must-see places, hidden gems and travel tips on her blog.