Continuing our posts about our Baltic cruise from Stockholm to St Petersburg, we will finally tell you our true story about our sightseeing time in the Baltic cruise port of St Petersburg – which did include a real Idiot (or maybe more) and Russian Vodka!
We had a tour bus booked for 3,5 hours starting at 8.30 in the morning, which was an unusual thing for us – we don’t like tourist buses – and especially not at that time in the morning when not sleeping well, but also since we can’t photograph properly on buses. This day though it suited well to get a fast glimpse over the city without walking.
When you haven’t got enough sleep for 9 nights (very bad sleep before we went on the cruise too!), you don’t exactly have the brightest brain activity, so even though it was easy to understand our guide, I didn’t get a thing of what he said… At least I succeeded to have my eyes open and actually see everything!
We were told that after the bus tour that we could either go back with the bus to the ship or stay in the city by ourselves. We did choose to go back to the ship since we wanted to enter the Spa before dinner. (I know, we’re idiots that not wanted to see more of such a rare city!)
We were dropped off at the terminal and after a long waiting, we were told that we could board the cruise ship, but everything would be closed and we were not allowed to leave the ship again! This was not the first time we had got the wrong information at this trip or the first time something had gone wrong with it, so we were not surprised. We now had to take a shuttle bus (with a very rally-inspired driver!) BACK into the city center again.
We decided together with another nice couple to go somewhere to sit down, have a light meal and relax. We had a quick look around, but didn’t find anything local to eat. They had gotten a tip about the restaurant "The Idiot" – (yes, it’s really named that!) and an address. It should be nearby. We started to look for the street, not finding it. We asked people on the street and actually got totally opposite directions from everyone we asked!
I was joking saying that: "Maybe there is no restaurant that is named The Idiot, it’s we that are the idiots being fooled to think there is one… Maybe it’s something they’re fooling dumb tourists with?!! Ha ha…"
We even got some young girls to look up the street on the GPS in their phones and they still pointed us in the opposite direction of the street than we should take! I thought it looked like we should go in the opposite directions than they said, but I was tired and hey, they should know, they live there!
We were actually going back and forward all the way through the same long streets looking like complete idiots! What a long sightseeing walk to end up in almost the same spot all the time! Ha ha… At that time though I was determent to find the place, I’m that stubborn, I refused to give up and viola! there we found it – in the opposite direction!
If you don’t want to look like an idiot, but would want to eat at one, be sure to look up the address: Moika 82 by yourself at a GPS navigator in advance… And if you want to eat with a real idiot: just call me!
It sure is a very special place, it’s feels like coming home to someone – in an old home with books – and we got a complimentary Russian vodka on the house as a welcome drink. Very clever of them, getting guests (the idiots) in a good mood. They’re stating that "Dostoevsky loved this place", but I think we’re idiots that buys that, since they haven’t been open that long. You can read more about them at idiot-spb.com.
We did order the Idiot Lunch Special, with Borsch soup / Sauercraut soup with sour cream as starters and pel’meni – with potato / plov, since we wanted to test different dishes as usual. Then we ordered a Russian vodka for the other leg too… Ha ha…
So what did we think about the Russian vodka? It was surprisingly good. Lets put it like this: suddenly it was VERY easy to walk around until it was time to take the shuttle bus back to the ship!
The Historic Center of Saint Petersburg is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and you can truly understand why when seeing all those golden domes, statues and gorgeous architecture as well as passing bridges and canals. Stockholm has a rival there for the name of "The Northern Venice".
The top attractions we did see was: Saint Isaac’s Cathedral, Peter and Paul Fortress and Cathedral, Church of the Savior on Blood, The Palace Square, The Alexander Column, The Winter Palace, The Hermitage art museum, The Bronze Horseman, Old Stock Exchange, Rostral Columns and the summer palace of Peter The Great.
You can see all Lifecruiser photos of St Petersburg at Flickr. Our photos did not turn out as excellent as we hoped for, maybe we should blame the Russian vodka! Ha ha!
©Lifecruiser Love World Heritage Sites
Related Baltic cruise posts by Lifecruiser:
How we escaped from a cruise and ended up in jail… Part 1
How we escaped from a cruise and ended up in jail… Part 2
Our night in Katajanokka Jail
Baltic Cruise Stop Tallinn – UNESCO Cultural Heritage
Saint Petersburg Souvenirs