- Palace Square
Palace Square was and still continues to be the main square of St. Petersburg. The square was the site of the events of Bloody Sunday in 1905 and the storming of the Winter Palace to start the October Revolution. Nowadays, the square is still used for demonstrations, but you’ll be more likely to find a festival or concert taking place here.
The Square is surrounded on three sides by breath-taking architectural designs. On the North side is the spectacular Winter Palace, now home to the State Hermitage Museum. To the eastern side stands the Guards Corps Headquarters which leads round to the southern side and the stunning semi-circular General Staff Building. In the centre of this curved building is the double triumphal arch which connects the square with Nevsky Prospekt. The western side of the square opens up to the Admiralty. There are some incredible views of St. Isaac’s Cathedral and the spire of the Admiralty building from this side of the square.
The centrepiece of the square is the Alexander Column, although ironically it doesn’t actually stand directly in the centre of the square. It was officially revealed in 1824 as a commemoration to Alexander I’s defeat over Napoleon. The column is 47.5m high and weighs 500 tons. An interesting fact is that the column isn’t attached to the pedestal in any way, merely gravity is stopping it from falling over! The sculpture of the angel at the top trampling on a serpent is said to represent Alexander I defeating Napoleon.