Once considered God's Waiting Room with an aging population, the new generation of millenials is sticking around and there's a flood of young professionals moving to St.Petersburg. With an average of 361 days of Sunshine each year, St.Petersburg is nicknamed the Sunshine City. The city is surrounded by water on three sides making it a great vacation for sailing, fishing or relaxing on the beach.
Most people can be found walking around this beautiful city, touring the historic city center, the river Neva, and the numerous small canals on foot even after midnight. This is the perfect time to travel to Russia, as you literally have more hours in the day to fit in sightseeing, tours and enjoy the many restaurants late into the night.
I have to admit that along with other non-race fans, it was more of an annoyance than a great day out. But St. Pete's changed all that. I was on holiday with my kids, and in a gorgeous place for a car race. And to top it all off, a Canadian racer we hadn't known at the time, James Hinchcliffe, ended up the winner.
Russians are obsessed with size. If something is big, it's good. If it's oversized, it's better. Buildings in St. Petersburg and Moscow are huge and tend to the baroque. Visually impressive, albeit much the same. One finds oneself longing for something small and private.
To those familiar with "Soviet" Russia, it's startling to see the billboards advertising Western cars, Samsung electronics, Subway fast food, Italian clothes, Paris fashions. Quite a change from the Moscow I remember where billboards advertised "Glory to Soviet cement."