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“Very impressive” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Nicholas Naval Cathedral of The Epiphany

Nicholas Naval Cathedral of The Epiphany
Nikolskaya Sq., 1/3, St. Petersburg 190068, Russia
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Grand Tour of St Petersburg
Ranked #28 of 976 Attractions in St. Petersburg
Type: Architectural Buildings, Religious Sites, Historic Sites, Cultural
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Owner description: One of the best examples of Baroque-style architecture, this splendid blue and white "Sailors' Church" topped with five glistening golden cupolas contains many 18th-century icons, ten magnificent paintings and walls that convey the history of the Russian navy.
Top Contributor
70 reviews 70 reviews
28 attraction reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
69 helpful votes 69 helpful votes
“Very impressive”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 6, 2014

After marching our three kids around the hot streets, over bridges and under the blazing sun, I learned that the island is accessible by some of the tour boats. Worth the hike, but your kids will love you for the boat ride!

Visited July 2014
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178 reviews from our community

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Top Contributor
223 reviews 223 reviews
123 attraction reviews
Reviews in 64 cities Reviews in 64 cities
387 helpful votes 387 helpful votes
“Gorgeous Blue”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 20, 2014

We only saw this from the outside, but the parking lot was packed with tourists looking for a good photo op. It definitely provides a photo op and more. A beautiful quick stop.

Visited July 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St. Petersburg, Russia
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
13 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
“Go to other working churches”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2014

WHY WORTH SEEING: It's the oldest working church in St Pete (more than 250 years old). Moreover, it never stopped working, even during the Soviet times, when the country was oficially atheist and lots of churches were turnes into swimming pools, storages etc.

- I personally believe that the church looks better on the outside that inside (see below for explanation). The best way to look at it is from the water. So try to include this church in your canal cruise. For example, check out this link for schedule. You need the tour called "Back to Olg Petersburg" http://translate.google.com/translate?client=tmpg&hl=en&langpair=ru|en&u=http%3A//www.water-ticket.ru/excursions/water-tours/water-tour-of-st-petersburg
In my opinion, the best pier is located by the Admiralty, but you can also just ask people on the strees who advertise river cruises (they are everywhere) and ask if the church is included in the route, or ask you con sierge at the hotel.
Of course it's in Russian, but that's the only option if you travel on your own. The main thing about a canal cruise is to SEE all the sights from water.

- If you do go inside, the best time is 8:45 AM and 6PM, the mass time.

If don't go there with a canal cruise, you can either walk or take a bus. If you go there from Nevsky prospect (the main street) you can take buses #3 or 27 or trolleybus #22. Get off by the Mariinsky theatre (a huse green building with white details). Further down the street you will see guilded domes on top of blue towers. That's the church you need!

- As it is a working church, be respectful. Don't talk too loud and don't take pictures inside. It's preferable that ladies cover their heads and gents take their hats off. Try not to wear really short skirts or shorts.

- The church has some space closer to the altar, which is separated with a rope and a sign "no tourists allowed" (or something like that). It means that it's for the people who actually want to listen to the servise and pray. It doesn't mean that tourists are not allowed in. If you really want to participate, just prepare for it. If you are a female visitor, cover your head with a scarf or something and wear pants or a long skirt. Male visitors should take off their hats. You will see that the priest sings a prayer and from time to time everybody makes some gestures with their hands. Try to repeat after them.

- You don't have to stay during the mass. Everybody is always free to leave whenever they want. Try to wander around and discover all sorts of little icons hidden in the corners. If you have some rubles, you can buy candles, light them and place them in front of icons as you pray.

- There are better working churches in our city, for example, the Church of St Vladimir, and they don't have those very unfriendly "no tourists" signs. Though the facade of the chrch if worth seeing. Try to walk around the church along the canal and look at it from the side of the bell tower. It's the best view of the church. That area is called "7 bridges", so try to find all of the seven bridges.

- If you are in urgent need to use the WC, you can find it close to the entrance to the church grounds. If go go further from the entrance gate towards the canal, you will see a little house "WC". However, it's chargeable, so prepare some rubles.

Looking at the church from the bell tower side (see above).

Visited July 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
16 reviews 16 reviews
11 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“The blue is stunning”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2014

Not high on the list, but it is located close to Maarinsky theatre. A functioning church, the interior is very peaceful but tourists cannot explore beyond the atrium. Russian idea of Baroque is far more colourful than European Baroque. Check it out if you have time - will only take about 20 minutes tops, but it takes time to get there.

Visited June 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
39 attraction reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
“Peaceful church”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 25, 2014

Just like other churches in St. Petersburg, once you go inside you got to keep quiet. Many people pray inside the church, so no photos allows inside the church. Personally I think the beauty of the church is at the outside. To me, inside of the church looks very much the same as other churches.

Visited June 2014
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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