Episode 10: St Petersburg’s Soviet Era

Last Updated on February 22, 2023 by Hannah Henderson

History from Lenin to Gorbachev, plus where to enjoy Stalin-era doughnuts

What happened in St Petersburg after the 1917 Revolution and where can you find traces of the Soviet era in the city today? After a little history, we visit three sites with much to tell: the terrifying Trubetskoy Bastion Prison, the State Museum of Political History and the former home of the dissident poet Anna Akhmatova. After a tour of metro stations designed in the 1950s as ‘Palaces of the People’, find out where you can experience Soviet culture today, whether you wish to play 1970s arcade games like Morskoi Boi (battleships!), dine in a Soviet-style restaurant on, say, borscht or draniki (beetroot soup or potato pancakes) or seek out the Donut Café where the atmosphere today still feels like ‘Stalin-era Russia’.


More information about St Petersburg coming soon.

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Links & Reading

Useful websites for tourists
St Petersburg City Tourist Information Bureau
St Petersburg.Com (Tourist Information)

2 guidebooks to St Petersburg
Eyewitness Travel Guide to St Petersburg
Lonely Planet Guide to St Petersburg

Travel Book
Among the Russians by Colin Thubron

Russian History, a Very Short Introduction by Geoffrey Hosking
The Romanovs by Simon Sebag Montefiore
Caught in the Revolution by Helen Rappaport

Peter the Great by Lindsey Hughes
Peter the Great by Derek Wilson
Catherine the Great by Simon Dixon
Catherine the Great by Robert K Massie
Rasputin by Frances Welch
Four Sisters by Helen Rappaport (the 4 daughters of Czar Nicholas II)
The Diary of Lena Mukhina (A diary of the Siege of Leningrad)

Art and Culture
A Short Life of Pushkin by Robert Chandler
Nijinsky by Lucy Moore
Rudolf Nuryev The Life by Julie Kavanagh
Anna of all the Russias The Life of Anna Akhmatova by Elaine Feinstein

St Petersburg A Traveller’s Companion by Laurence Kelly
City Pick St Petersburg edited by Heather Reyes
Literary St Petersburg by Elaine Blair

Novels set in St Petersburg
Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
The Siege by Helen Dunmore
The Betrayal by Helen Dunmore
The Suitcase by Sergei Dovlatov