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The Drawing Bridges

St. Petersburg’s drawbridges are a major tourist attraction. The Drawbridges Boat Tour is a great opportunity to watch bridges rise their wings very close. Like Venice, St. Petersburg is situated on several big and small islands, and thus one can hardly walk more than a few hundred meters without crossing a bridge. The night river atmosphere with perfect sight of the Peter & Paul Fortress, Vasilievskiy Island and the most romantic time of the year, the period of white nights, will make this trip unforgettable!

Today, there are 342 bridges in Saint Petersburg over canals and rivers of various sizes, styles and constructions, built at different periods. Some of them are small pedestrian bridges, such as Bank and Lion bridges; others are huge transport arteries such as almost one kilometer long Alexander Nevsky Bridge. There are bridges designed in various styles with such decorations as statues, lamplights, lions, horses, sphinxes and griffins, and there are modern styles lacking any decor. Thanks to the intricate web of canals, Saint Petersburg is often called the "Venice of the North" which is a popular poetic name for the northern capital. A familiar view of Saint Petersburg is a drawbridge across the Neva. Every night during the navigation period from April to November, 22 bridges across Neva and main canals are drawn to let ships pass in and out of the Baltic Sea into the Volga-Baltic waterway system.

White Night season

Palace Bridge between Palace Square and Vasilievsky Island was opened in 1916.

Trinity Bridge connects Kamennoostrovsky Prospect with Suvorovskaya Square. It was the third permanent bridge across the Neva, built between 1897 and 1903.

The Alexander Nevsky Bridge connects Alexander Nevsky Square and Zanevsky prospect thus linking the southern and the northern parts of the city. Its length is 905.7 meters, and it is 35 meters wide. The bridge was built from 1960 to 1965.

The Big Obukhovsky Bridge is the newest bridge across the Neva River in Saint Petersburg. It is the only bridge across the Neva which is not a drawbridge. It is a cable-stayed bridge; the steel wire ropes are the key element of supporting construction. The first part of the bridge was opened in 2004; a "twin bridge" was opened in 2007. It is an important part of Saint Petersburg Ring Road. The Big Obukhovsky Bridge is also the longest bridge across Neva River (2824 meters).

The Blue Bridge is a 97.3 meter wide bridge that spans the Moika River. It is the widest bridge in Saint Petersburg. It is located at Saint Isaac's Square.

Bank Bridge is a pedestrian bridge crossing the Griboedov Canal. It was built in 1826. The special popularity of the bridge was gained through angular sculptures of four griffins. They were designed by sculptor Pavel Sokolov (1764-1835), who also contributed lions for Bridge of Lions and sphinxes for Egyptian Bridge. The bridge is in front of the former Assignation Bank building (now housing the Saint Petersburg State University of Economics and Finance). As griffins in mythology are the guards of treasure, the lions with eagle wings in front of the Assignation Bank were to watch the gold reserves of the Russian state.

The Anichkov Bridge is the first and most famous bridge across the Fontanka River. The current bridge, built in 1841-42 and reconstructed in 1906-08, combines a simple form with some spectacular decorations. As well as its four famous horse sculptures (1849-50), the bridge has some of the most celebrated ornate cast-iron railings in Saint Petersburg.

The draw-bridges have got their own Drawing Schedule. But it can be changed in some special occasions. Once it happened when “Aurora” (or maybe its replica) was coming back after the capital restoration works in 1984 to stay here forever.