Explore This! Saint Petersburg, Russia

Filed in Explore This , The Quirky Lover Posted on March 7, 2011 @ 3:00 pm 9 comments

Today, our travels take us to a place that has always fascinated me. Thanks to Joy Preble’s new novel, Haunted, the second book in her Dreaming Anastasia series, I was inspired to revisit Russia during the time of Tsar Nicholas II. Though the Joy’s novel takes place in modern times and in New York, the story of the Tsar and his doomed family is one that is very sad and still fairly recent in history.

With elements like the suspicious character of Rasputin, the illness of the young son, the deep affections of the Tsar and Tsarina, and of course, the mystery surrounding Anastasia, it has all the workings of an amazing work of fiction.

But, the story of the Romanovs and their ultimate tragedy is all too real. So, we’ll put away the sadness and focus on the happy times. The following images reflect the splendour and romance of the last royal family in Russia.

The Romanovs had several palaces in which they lived.
You can just imagine sitting here, socializing and having afternoon tea.
A stunning display of wealth…unfortunately, it was their downfall,
A family portrait.
The Winter Palace…in winter
More winter in Saint Petersburg. I always imagine Russia with a wintery backdrop…
The stunning canal.
This church was built on the site of the family’s execution.
The winding spires fill the skyline and are popular images associated with Saint Petersburg.
This is just a very cool pic.
Lovely steps and fountains outside the palace.
You can’t mention Tsar Nicholas without the Faberge eggs that he often gifted to his wife.

I romanticize about this time, with horse drawn carriages, splendid balls, huge fur coats to stave off the sharp Russian winter. I wasn’t able to post this without further mention of the end of the reign of the Tsar and his family, but it is as much a part of their story as the finery is. Bitter cold and tragic reality aside, this is definitely one place at the top of my must visit list. What do you think?

About Jackie

Jackie is a quirky mom, living in Ontario, Canada. She's a bookkeeper by day and a book lover by night. She also blogs at The Novel Nation and writes occasionally for Heroes and Heartbreakers.

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  • heidenkind March 7, 2011 at 4:51 pm

    Who WOULDN'T romanticize living in palaces, with lavish balls and jewels??? I definitely have a fascination with this time period and can't wait to read Dreaming Anastasia.

  • Chelsea B. March 7, 2011 at 5:01 pm

    Stunning. Truly, truly stunning 🙂

  • Jenny N. March 7, 2011 at 7:37 pm

    I'd love to visit and tour the different palaces.

  • Kaetrin March 8, 2011 at 1:29 am

    I once "played" Tsar Nicholas during a Modern History class learning about the Russian revolution so I have a soft spot for him and for the place 🙂

  • marybelle March 8, 2011 at 3:00 am

    The history of Russia is fascinating. They can keep their winters to themselves though.


  • tori.winchester24 March 8, 2011 at 3:39 am

    Those pictures are just breathtaking. I always imagine Russia with a wintery backdrop also. The place I desire to visit the most is India but Russia is also on my list.


  • Jackie March 8, 2011 at 9:17 am

    @heidenkind – I enjoyed Haunted but have to go back and read Dreaming Anastasia myself. I hope you like it!

    @Chelsea – Definitely! So lavish…*sigh

    @Jenny – Ah, castles, palaces, what a life!

    @Kaetrin – As much as I understand the reasoning behind the revolution, the murder has never made sense to me…they could have been exiled, right? Yeah, I have a soft spot too.

    @marybelle – Living in Canada, I can't imagine their winters are worse then here but there's something about the imagery that makes it seem colder, lol.

    @tori – I never really had a desire to see India before but I've seen more recently that has changed my mind…oh, to be rich and famous and able to travel the world 😉

  • Stella (Ex Libris) March 9, 2011 at 10:48 am

    Oh Jackie breathtaking pictures, St Petersburg looks beautiful! I will have to go there one day and see these palaces in person! So beautioful!

    I don't think I've read that many novels set in Russia, but recently I read a historical romance set there: Scoundrel's Honor by Rosemerai Rogers which was fantastic, I would definitely recommend it!

  • Jackie March 9, 2011 at 10:54 am

    @Stella – I don't think there are a lot of popular fiction books set in Russia. I remember reading…Zoya?…by Danielle Steele a million years ago, but still it was just a Russian character, I think. I'll have to check out Scoundrel's Honor. Thanks!

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