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Solo Trip end of April

Atlanta, Georgia
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Solo Trip end of April

This will be my first time traveling to SPb. I have purchased a trip for the last weekend in April.

I assume the weather will be cool but wanted to avoid the tourist rush in Summer and rate increases that happen in May.

I will be in SPb for 4 days staying at the Helvetia Hotel.

Is Peterhof open this time of year? Also, would not mind suggestions on places to visit for fun in the evenings for a single American male with limited Russian. Don' t mind the nightclub scene but not the best dancer in the world. :)

During the day planning on hitting the important landmarks and museums. Is it worth buying a package tour with guide or venturing out on my own?

Any tips, tricks, suggestions would be welcome.

Also open to meeting any other travelers who may be there the same time.

Thanks in advance. :)

Moscow, Russia
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1. Re: Solo Trip end of April

> Any tips

Don't forget to get your visa in time.

St.Petersburg...
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for St. Petersburg
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2. Re: Solo Trip end of April

Last year fountains in Peterhof were switched on on April 29 - it is not yet clear for this year as they have got huge preparations for G20 summit to take place in early September and the Grand palace in Peterhof is closed for repairs till late February...

Emeryville...
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3. Re: Solo Trip end of April

Crembor: i am going to St P. in Sept, solo as well (femaile). I plan on learning from your trip!

vast

St Petersburg Russia
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4. Re: Solo Trip end of April

If this next April is like the recent past, expect unexpected weather...could be cool, wet and windy, or not. So bring layers and at least some outer shell that is rain resistant. This winter has been another mild one so hopefully spring will be early.

Tour or alone? That depends on your travel style, and if you have taken tours of other cities and enjoyed them. The city is not hard to visit on your own and if that fits your sense of adventure. The city rewards people who are a little outgoing and not following western guide books directly. Read up a bit on the city, get a map to get an idea of the layout of the city center, where the main rivers and canals are, then you are read to explore on your own. It is hard to get lost in the city center because there are so many distinctive visual landmarks visible from just about any place you happen to be.

Learning the Cyrillic alphabet while flying over really helps in being able to sound out the letters on signs and menus to discover a lot of words have a common Latin base.

There are a lot of options at night, it is a very social city so you will see a lot of people out and about at night filling coffee shops, sushi cafes, English pubs, art cafes, concerts, ballet, drama and comedy theater, and clubs. Most of the people seen in the city center at night are from 18-25 or maybe a little older who seem to have a lot of disposable money because none of the places that are popular are cheap. A good general method of meeting people who can let you know what is happening that fits your interests would be to stop by one of the more popular English style pubs and just strike up conversations with locals. Many will speak English and are there for the conversation and social atmosphere. There are close to 200 in the area and one will be close to your hotel. Don't hang out in hotel bars, you only meet tourists or foreign business people who will be a lot less fun to hang out with.

If you go to a club, be aware that many popular ones have face control and a single male unless known and dressed well likely is not going to get in. That is another reason to find locals, they can get you in. Dance is just one reason to go to clubs, most have decent food, a few have excellent food, and they are very social places. There are more young woman who go out than men, so most places will have 60-70 women because their boyfriends are hanging out at home on the computer or watching DVD movies or whatever, but not out in the clubs or pubs as much as their GF or female friends. If you choose to go to a place that will be packed and has strict face control, you can be sure of getting in by going early and having dinner, around 9:30-10:30 before anyone shows up. Clubs usually are in full swing my 12:30-1am and start winding down around 5am. There is a strange phenomena of around 3:30 or 4, there will be an influx of young men, who have been drinking, who come and in most cases the atmosphere changes because they are usually more aggressive towards the girls who hate that time, so either they leave or stick closer to their friends or any new friends that met that night. The best clubs do not tolerate the late arrivals. Even with a bunch of drunk younger guys showing up, clubs are rather safe places which is one reason girls like them so much.

I go out a lot and find that the social night life is really fun, easy going, safe and a great way meet new people. With few exceptions the club scene is not a subculture as it is in many parts of the world, who you meet are a cross section of the young population with students, lawyers, medical professionals, engineers, etc, almost all either in the university or have graduated. Just about anyone you meet will have a college or university degree if they are over 20 years of age.

Moscow, Russia
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5. Re: Solo Trip end of April

> This winter has been another mild one

You gotta be kidding.

Atlanta, Georgia
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6. Re: Solo Trip end of April

Thank you for the replies.

This gives me some things to think about.

This is really my first solo trip but I have been traveling internationally since a little boy. Part of growing up with a military family.

I would love to meet some fellow visitors or residents for drink somewhere as well.

I just really am looking for an adventure and hope this will be a relatively safe and unique one since I have always wanted to visit Russia since I was a little boy.

7. Re: Solo Trip end of April

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Removed on: 11:35 am, January 31, 2013
Atlanta, Georgia
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8. Re: Solo Trip end of April

Just bumping this thread as my trip is coming up end of April.

Cheers,

Brian

9. Re: Solo Trip end of April

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