Located just outside St Petersburg is Vyborg: a little town with a lot to offer!
You can get to Vyborg by electrichka or train: the electrichka is just 120 roubles each way for students, but the train is quicker although more expensive. The electrichka takes just over two hours but it’s worth the journey!
It may be a small town but Vyborg has plenty of history, having been originally Swedish, then Finnish, then Russian, then Finnish again and finally Russian! There is an excellent museum in the castle in Vyborg that explains all of this history really well, and is only 50 roubles entry for students!
You can also go up to the top of the castle tower for a panoramic view over Vyborg, and on a clear day you can even see Finland! You have to climb 239 steps and pay 30 roubles, but the view is definitely worth it!
The castle is the most prominent landmark but there are plenty of other things to see, including the Viipuri Library, lots of statues (including a moose and an octopus!), and the largest English park in Eastern Europe, called Mon Repos.
The Viipuri Library was designed by the Finnish architecture Alvar Aalto, and was the most modern building of its time. You can find the library in the park in the centre along with a statue of a moose and a boy with his dog!
Other statues include one of Peter the Great, and an octopus near the castle! You can also visit the house where Vladimir Lenin prepared the Bolshevik Revolution during his stay in Vyborg in 1917.
Don’t forget to touch the statues where they’re shiny for some good luck!
Jade Mitchell-Ross is an English student, currently on an internship while studying Russian at Liden & Denz