13.08.2019 21:56

Being a vegetarian while living abroad can be difficult. Sometimes, it can feel like the only thing on the menu for you is a plate of Овощи гриль (grilled vegetables). But you need not worry if you’re living in Saint-Petersburg – the city is full of fantastic vegetarian (and even vegan) restaurants and cafes. All you have to do is find them!

13.08.2019 21:50

This weekend, the International Festival of Coffee and Tea will come to St. Petersburg! In preparation for this event, read this article to learn more about Russia’s tea and coffee traditions! You can also find a copy of the festival’s programme in English at the bottom of this post.

13.08.2019 21:41

Peter the Great brought about many radical changes during his reign. But why exactly did he want his people to stop having beards? Read this post to find out the answer to this question!

13.08.2019 21:38

Next week, a festival will take place at Peterhof to celebrate the closing of its fountains. This annual event is always a hit amongst tourists and tickets are limited. This is why we have written this post – to give you plenty of time to plan your trip!

13.08.2019 21:33

On this day in 1941, the Germans began their 872-day Siege on the city of Leningrad, as part of their effort to bring down the Eastern Front in World War II.

13.08.2019 16:05

Unity Day – What is it and how will Saint Petersburg celebrate?

13.08.2019 15:50
Not only is music the international language, it’s also a great way to learn a foreign language! Listening to music in Russian can help improve your listening, your vocabulary and even your grammar – the lyrics will get stuck in your head in the correct cases and conjugations. 
In this post, we’ll look at three popular Russian artists who all have concerts in Saint Petersburg this month (Градусы, Ленинград and Баста). Get a taste of their music, read some of their lyrics in Russian with their translation, and find out where to buy tickets if you want to see them live. 
13.08.2019 15:47
Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoyevsky is considered one of the greatest and most significant writers, not only of Russia, but of the world. Find out what’s on in Saint Petersburg to  celebrate the 196th anniversary of his birth (November 11), learn about his life and read ten of his most famous quotes, in Russian with their translations. Crime and Punishment might still above your Russian level, but see if you can understand something from these quotes! 
13.08.2019 15:45
Among the most important attractions (or, everyone’s favorite Russian word, достопримечательности) in Saint Petersburg are its cathedrals and churches, each with a different style and story. Read more about five of the most important cathedrals in the city.
13.08.2019 15:36
Between Russian classes, homework, new friends, and sightseeing, you’ll have plenty to do in Saint Petersburg, but don’t forget to exercise! Besides helping you stay healthy, exercise is a great way to meet people, make local friends, practice your Russian no matter what your level is, and relieve stress. In this post, we’ll introduce you to some possibilities of where you can exercise in Saint Petersburg, and where you can look to find the club or activity that most appeals to you. 
13.08.2019 15:33
Hockey (хоккей) is without question one of the most popular sports in Russia, and Saint Petersburg’s team, SKA, is the defending champion and top-ranked team in the league. If you are in Russia between late August and mid-April, be sure to try to catch a match! Whether you’re an avid fan or can’t tell a puck from a stick, it’s an exciting, memorable and inexpensive Russian experience. The next home game is December 19th. Read on to find out more about the team and where you can buy tickets, and learn some Russian hockey cheers.
13.08.2019 15:31
In a previous post, we looked at some great online resources for reading in Russian, but since you’ve come all the way to one of the most literary cities in the world, it would be a shame not to take advantage of Saint Petersburg’s ubiquitous bookstores and pick up some books to take home with you. In this post, we suggest a few books or series of books that might be of interest to Russian learners, as well as introduce some of the bookstores in the city. 
13.08.2019 15:28
In a previous post, we looked at some great online resources for reading in Russian, but since you’ve come all the way to one of the most literary cities in the world, it would be a shame not to take advantage of Saint Petersburg’s ubiquitous bookstores and pick up some books to take home with you. In this post, we suggest a few books or series of books that might be of interest to Russian learners, as well as introduce some of the bookstores in the city. 
13.08.2019 15:26

The World Travel Awards – or the “Oscars of tourism” – recently announced this year’s winners in a wide range of categories, and Saint Petersburg was awarded three of the ceremony’s most coveted prizes, including World’s Leading City Destination 2017!

13.08.2019 15:20
If you’re a prospective student wondering what options to expect, or a current student looking for some more lunchtime inspiration, read this post to learn more about where you can eat around Derzhavin Institute.
13.08.2019 15:14

Considered to be one the greatest of Russia’s poets, Anna Akhmatova, is a symbol of Russia and guardian of its culture and language. Born in 1889 in Odessa, her family quickly took up residence in Tsarskoye Selo outside Saint Petersburg, the city in which she would later reside for the greater part of her life. As a daughter of Russia, impacted by the time period in which she lived, her works reflected the changing tides of Russia by critically and poignantly confronting Stalinist Terror, World War II, and the subsequent Russian Thaw. 

13.08.2019 15:08

Wherever you go on March 8, you will be sure to see an abundance of flowers. Flowers in the hands of women, children and grandmothers. Flowers lining the streets. Flowers being passed out in cafes and shops. Bouquets wrapped and on delivery. Flowers, gifts and beauty are on every corner, and it is quite possible you will come across special events being held in honor of women and femininity. Around the streets you will hear congratulations, and, if you are a woman, may even receive congratulations or flowers of your own from strangers and business alike.

13.08.2019 15:05

Similar to other countries with such long histories, the Russian government has undergone various complete transformations. From early Rus, to the time of the Tsars, to a revolution that birthed the Soviet Union and finally the restructuring into a democratic Russian Federation. The mark of any democracy is the establishment of a free and competitive election process. That is what makes 18 March 2018 a day of significance, the Russian Federation Presidential elections.

13.08.2019 14:54

There’s no denying it – the weather in St. Petersburg is….challenging (to put it lightly). If you’ve come (or are planning to come) to Derzhavin Institute in Saint Petersburg to study, you’ll need to start thinking about how to survive the cold winter months in the city. The temperatures can drop to as low as minus 30 degrees celsius, and snow can start to fall as early as October (in 2016, the first snowfall happened on October 26th). Therefore, we recommend getting acquainted with some winter vocabulary and stocking up on winter clothing in advance!

13.08.2019 14:47

Forget your 300 rouble lattes or mochas – a time café can offer you much more for your money! Read on to find what exactly a ‘time café’ is, where the idea came from, and where to find such places in Saint Petersburg!

12.08.2019 22:01

Founded by Catherine the Great and boasting over 4 million paintings, sculptures, documents, artifacts, and other items, the Hermitage Museum is the largest collection of art in Russia and one of the largest in the world. It is well worth a visit any time, but if you don’t have plans, consider going this Thursday – the first Thursday of every month is free to all visitors.

12.08.2019 21:58
With its wide streets and flat terrain, Saint Petersburg is a great place to get around on bicycle. It’s already starting to get colder, but winter isn’t here yet! So hurry up and take advantage of the fall weather to explore the sights and see the city from a different perspective. Learn where and how to go biking in Saint Petersburg.
12.08.2019 21:52
With more than 150 spectacular fountains, 32 museums, and over 400 hectares of parks and gardens, Peterhof Palace Complex is one of the most popular attractions around Saint Petersburg, and for good reason! This past Saturday, our students got to see the splendor of this UNESCO World Heritage Site for themselves on an unforgetable excursion organized by Derzhavin Institute.
If you missed it, don’t worry – there’s still another week before the fountains turn off for the winter, and after that, the entrance to the Lower Gardens is free of charge. Learn more about Peterhof and what you can see there.
12.08.2019 21:50
Students frequently ask about cell phones (моби́льный телефо́н) and SIM cards (сим-ка́рта) in Russia: How do they get one? How much do they cost? Is it worth it? Read on to find out.
12.08.2019 21:43
Public transportation in Saint Petersburg is well developed and easy to use. It includes the metro (метро or метрополитен), buses (автобус), trams (трамвай), trolleys (троллейбус), route taxis (маршрутка), and electric local trains (электричка). There are also trains (поезд) to other cities. In this post, we’ll discuss important things to know about the metro system and how to use it. Other methods of transportation will be covered in a future post.
12.08.2019 21:41

With over 200 museums to be found in Saint Petersburg, the most well known is the Hermitage. While the Hermitage, Russian Museum, and The Peter and Paul Fortress deserve a visit or two from anyone who spends time in the city, these museums are certainly not the only ones that should spark your interest. Here are my personal top five less visited museums in Saint Petersburg, with a few honorable mentions!

12.08.2019 21:38

When you think of theater in Russia, most likely the Russian Ballet performing Swan Lake comes into your mind. With images of the elaborate beauty of the classic Mariinsky Theatre, you can be transported back into a time of unparalleled elegance. As the cultural capital of Russia, Saint Petersburg is home to both classical and modern theatre companies known and respected throughout Russia and the world. Music theatres, ballet and opera theatres, puppet theatres and drama theatres all have something unique to offer. 

12.08.2019 21:36

Nikolai Gogol, born 31 March 1809, would go on to become one of the most renowned and influential Russian writers. Gogol can be claimed as the founder of realist literature, laying the groundwork for Russian prose that would influence great writers after him. However, it was in his surrealist writings that Gogol produced some of his most original and celebrated works that delved deep into the darker side of society by comically combing the fantastic with the grotesque.

21.08.2018 15:58

When people first think about Russia, chances are their minds are first filled with images of Red Square, the Kremlin and the colorful tops of St. Basil`s Cathedral. Moscow, the heart and capital of Russia, can be recognized throughout the world. However, only in recent history has Moscow held the title of “capital,” and even then, one of Russia`s other great and well-known cities took its place.

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