13 Aug 2018
NORTHERN TOUR - FROM HELISINKI TO ST. PETERSBURG RUSSIA
From Helsinki to St. Petersburg it was a boring trip only interrupted by the Russian border control, which went rather smooth. First the Asian nationalities, then we two Europeans, South Africans, New Zealand, Australians, Canadians, and at the last the Americans ! With my German passport I got a big smile and a "Gute Reise" which means have a nice trip ! No photos allowed of course
First stop in Russia after the border
We then had lunch, I took something which looked like a mixture of potato and fish made as a thick pancake. It tasted very good.
After the extreme high prices of the Scandinavian countries, we now had unbelievable low prices ! I payed (an ice cream included) not even 6 € (nearly the same in Dollars) which was the price of a coffee in Sweden !!
When we finally arrived in St. Petersburg, my feet were so swollen that I could hardly walk We checked into the Matisow hotel, a nice modernized hotel which reminded me some hotels in the UK ! I mean the decoration. We had a huge room with all comfort.
I noticed that the city was very busy, lots of cars and completely different as I imagined. There were the same stores and shops as in Western countries, even Mac Donald and Starbuck everything very modern and all new cars. Didn't look like a poor town at all !!
Of course we had to stop in a souvenir shop ! Most of us bought something except me, I found the prices very expensive and I was right, later in the city you found the same items but half price cheaper !
Our sightseeing tour was very nice and interesting. The city is very expanded, I still don't know where the city center is, probably there are several. Unfortunately I have to stay in the hotel today, most of my companions went to Moscow, but I have troubles with my feet they are swollen and look like elephant feet. As we stay here for 3 days I decided not to move and take care of my feet !
It's also difficult to walk around by myself because I feel like an illiterate I can't read at all! Only a few important things were written in our writing. Only very very few speak English or another language. Tomorrow we will go to the Hermitage Museum.