Petersburg

Saint Petersburg is a cultural center of Russia with a total population of around 5 million people. It was a political center for ages before the capital was moved to Moscow. It has 221 museums, more than 80 theaters, 45 galleries and exhibition halls and approximately 80 other cultural establishments.

SAFETY INDEX

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St. Petersburg is an important Russian port on the Baltic sea. The outstanding neoclassical and Empire-style architecture of the St. Petersburg are prominent all over the world. It’s worth to take an excursion to such architectural pearls like the Winter Palace and the Kazan Cathedral. Discover the world-famous collection of paintings in the Hermitage. St. Petersburg is full of tourist attractions, hidden routes and has a spirit of the very aristocratic city. It’s the spot in which you want to come back again and again. Although the city is generally safe, some areas attract a lot of pickpockets and crooks who take advantage of the overcrowded city streets. One far grimmer problem is the rise of the skinhead and neo-Nazi movement in St Petersburg. You are unlikely to encounter these thugs, but you will undoubtedly read about some acts of violence that have been committed. Foreigners and minority travelers should, therefore, exercise caution when wandering around the city after dark and at any time of day in the suburbs. While this violence peaked around 2005 and has since declined, it’s still a very real, if unlikely, threat. SafeAround will allow you to check on a map the city’s safest and most dangerous neighborhoods and areas, details on scams and other risks, as well as different useful travel advice.

Warnings & Dangers

Mid Priority-96 OVERALL RISK : MEDIUM

St. Petersburg is an overall safe city with a rating of 54.7, it is ranked 81 out of 162 on the ranking of the safest and most dangerous cities.

Mid Priority-96 PICKPOCKETS RISK : HIGH

Being one of the most visited cities in Russia, Saint Petersburg attracts numerous pickpockets, thus don’t flash your money, exercise caution while observing the street performers and be ready to block your card immediately after your card has been stolen.

Mid Priority-96 MUGGING RISK : MEDIUM

Avoid suspicious looking men, as most often such crimes were executed by them. Use only taxi applications like Uber, if you need to take a taxi.

Mid Priority-96 SCAMS RISK : HIGH

As in any other big city the risk of scam is high. Be aware of street gambling games and never allow anybody to look after your belongings.

Mid Priority-96 TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : LOW

Beware of pickpockets in the public transport, especially while getting on and off. If you decided to travel overnight by train to Moscow in a sleeping compartment, keep all your valuables in the special container under the bed. Don’t accept any food or beverages from strangers, who travelling within the same compartment with you.

Mid Priority-96 NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : HIGH

There are no natural risks in Saint Petersburg.

Mid Priority-96 TERRORISM RISK : MEDIUM

Due to recent terrorist attack in the subway in February, the risk of the new attacks are extremely high.

Mid Priority-96 WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : LOW

Generally, the situation is calm. Try to avoid being alone out in the city at night and communicate with Kurdish looking people. Use only official taxi services.

Carte

WHAT TO DO?

Historic heart

This part of St Petersburg epitomizes the city, with its over-the-top architecture, dazzling museums, graceful canals and always-vibrant Nevsky prospect. Besides its vast cultural wealth, the Historic Heart is still a thriving residential neighborhood, where locals carry on their daily business without so much at glance on the visitors who flock here. Pickpockets are an issue near State Hermitage and Russian Museum. They usually operate on the Nevsky Prospect and Nevsky Prospect metro.  At night there is nothing to worry about in the historic center.  

Sennaya

More infamous than famous, this neighborhood is named for the once derelict Haymarket, which was the center of Dostoevskian St. Petersburg. Sennaya was home to the poor workers who were new arrivals in the city, living in rat-infested basements and sleeping 10-to-a-room in shifts. Pickpockets are known to operate in this area.  

Mariinsky

Named after the celebrated Mariinsky Theatre, this neighborhood is just off the beaten tourist track (assuming you wander away from the theatre itself). The Historic Heart is just next door, but Mariinsky feels far from those crowded streets. As it’s not a tourist place, the probability of being pickpocketed is quite low, but SafeAround recommends to be cautious anyway.  

Vladimirskaya & Vostaniya

As Nevsky Prospect heads east from the Fontanka River, it continues to attract crowds to its shopping centers and street cafes, although the architecture is urbaner – less extravagant – than in the Historic Heart (with a few notable exceptions). On the south side of Nevsky, Vladimirsky Prospect leads south to Vladimirskaya Square, which is dominated by the grand, gold-domed cathedral of the same name. In the surrounding streets, there is the Vladimirskaya metro station (m. Vladimirskaya) and the shopping center of Vladimirsky. Numerous pickpockets operate in the Vladimirskaya metro station and in the shopping center of Vladimirsky. Don’t flash your money and any other valuables like phones, cameras, and laptops. You can disregard the dated horror stories you may have heard about the mafia in Russia. A far bigger threat is petty theft, especially pickpocketing in the city center. Take care in the crowds on Nevsky Prospect and in the metro. Be cautious about taking taxis late at night, especially near bars and clubs that are in isolated areas. It’s always best to call a taxi rather than get one on the street if you’re alone and don’t speak Russian. Never get into a car that already has two or more people in it. Foreigners and minorities travellers should exercise caution when wandering around the city after dark and at any time of day in the suburbs.

Useful Information

For entering the Russian Federation, you need a visa. The cost of the visa varies of the trip purpose and starts from 50$. No visa is required for the residents of the following countries: Argentina, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Brunei, Chile, Colombia, Cuba, Croatia, Dominican Republic, Hong Kong, Iceland, Israel, Kazakhstan, Kirghiz Republic, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Mozambique, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Serbia, The Republic of South Africa, Thailand, Tajikistan, Ukraine, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela. There are some possible restrictions, please check out the more precise information concerning visa application process on the following website
We advise echanging currency only at the banks. The most convenient exchange rates can be found here. Don’t exchange money on the streets or in the bank line. While withdrawing money, don’t forget to properly hide your pin while entering your code. When you pay in public places, don’t leave your card out of the sight and demand to execute the payment process in front of your eyes in the restaurants.
Severe weather conditions happen normally during winter time. Some blizzards possible. Before your trip, be sure, that you have warm enough winter clothes.
There are modern, responding to the international quality standards and safety regulations airports.
As in any country, we advise travellers to get a travel insurance that covers not only medical issues but also theft and loss of personal items. Learn more on our travel insurance page.