We’d seen the intriguing looking golden steeple from across the river a couple of times, so we were all very interested to take a trip to the Peter and Paul Fortress so we could have a closer look.

Bridge to the Peter and Paul Fortress, St Petersburg

The fortress was the first structure to be built upon the founding of St Petersburg. It was originally built to provide protection against the Swedes, but by the time it was built they’d already been defeated, so it served a few different purposes over the years. At one point it was a prison for political dissenters, including Leon Trotsky.

Guards in the Fortress Museum

We spent a leisurely half day exploring the fortress. The church was being refurbished during our trip, so we were unable to go inside, but the grounds were very nice to walk around. We found the Trubetskoy Bastion prison complex particularly moving.

View of the mosque from the Peter and Paul Fortress

Visitors flock to the beach outside the fortress in the summer, and in the winter it’s a popular spot for the Walruses (people who cut through the ice to go for a swim, not the animals). On our visit there were only a few people feeding the birds.

Statue of Peter the Great, Peter and Paul Fortress
Coat of arms at the Peter and Paul Fortress
Feeding ducks at the Peter and Paul Fortress
Statue located close to the Peter and Paul Fortress

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A visit to the Peter and Paul Fortress in St Petersburg
A visit to the Peter and Paul Fortress in St Petersburg