Guide to St. Petersburg


This ancient garden is a favorite place, not only for the indigenous inhabitants of St. Petersburg, but also for guests of the northern capital. It is located in the city center, next to the Admiralty building. Its area is 9 ha. In this historical place, as if, there is a parallel between the present and the past of the city. Architectural monuments are located nearby: the Admiralty building, the Winter Palace, Palace Square, the City Administration / Cheka, the Lobanov-Rostovsky house, the General Staff Building, St. Isaac's Cathedral, the Senate and Synod building. The garden is crowned by the Bronze Horseman - a monument to Peter I. Alexander Garden - the pearl of St. Petersburg is a World Heritage Site.

In the 18th century there was a boulevard on the site of the Alexander Garden, then there were already benches and trees. Admiral S.A. Greig proposed setting up a garden here, botanist E.L. Regel developed a landscaping project. The beginning of the work was timed to coincide with the 200th anniversary of the birth of the founder of the city, Peter I. Great work was done over 2 years: the territory was expanded, new shrubs and trees were planted, and wrought iron benches were set up. In 1874, the garden was inaugurated, named in honor of Emperor Alexander II, who was personally present at the ceremony.

After 6 years, the center of the garden was decorated with a unique fountain, which is one of the most striking sights of St. Petersburg. The construction of the architect L. Geshwend is called “dancing”: the height of the stream changes to the beat of the music.

At the end of the 19th century, monuments to M. Lermontov, N. Gogol, M. Glinka, V. Zhukovsky and N. Przhevalsky were erected in the Alexander Garden.

The reconstruction of the Alexander Garden, which was later made under the direction of the architect I. Fomin, slightly changed the appearance of the garden: overgrown trees were cut down, and flower beds and rose gardens gave the garden a unique charm and color.

During the Great Patriotic War, Petersburgers retained all the trees, but attacks by enemy aircraft caused significant damage to the garden. But after the lifting of the siege of Leningrad, landscaping began here.

Unfortunately, during the years of Soviet power, the garden was renamed more than once. In 1920, it was called the Garden of Workers. In 1936, the workers' garden began to bear the name of Maxim Gorky. Later, the name “Sashkin Garden” was attached to the garden. The older generation so christened this place. In the era of perestroika in 1989, the garden became the Admiralty, and only in 1997 it was returned to its former name - Alexandrovsky.

In 1998, on the anniversary of the famous Russian diplomat, Prince Alexander Mikhailovich Gorchakov (200 years since his birth), his bust was installed in the Alexander Garden. The sculptor is the sculptor A.S. Charkin.

In 2001, restoration began in the garden. The fact is that the original Petrovsky fence required urgent restoration measures, many trees required filing. But not only these works were carried out, according to a single plan, the Alexander Garden was transformed. The green decoration of the garden was supplemented by trees and shrubs, flower beds and lawns appeared, new paths, a sewer was laid. Thoughtful landscaping has made the garden a single ensemble.

The modern Alexander Garden is a place where various festivals and competitions are held, including world-class ones. In 2007, as part of the I International Flower Festival, it was as if carpets of floral arrangements were laid out here. As part of this large-scale event, master classes, the “Ball of Flowers", exhibitions of decorative plants, flowers, garden accessories, and children's contests were held.

At any time of the year this historic attraction is beautiful, and all the guests of the northern capital try to visit here.

Short description

Alexander Garden - a green massif in front of the southern and western facades of the Admiralty, which occupied most of the space of the previous three areas: Petrovskaya, Isaakievskaya and Admiralteyskaya. The park occupies a space of 9 hectares, combines the Senate and Palace Squares. Alexander Garden is included in the list of cultural objects of Russia and is under the protection of UNESCO.

The beginning of the Alexander Garden was laid by the Admiralty Fortress, to the project of which King Peter himself had a hand. The strategic structure was surrounded by a moat with water and a special embankment, cleared of plantings, allowing you to control the enemy’s approach.

After 1740, the fortress-shipyard ceased to be relevant, and the glacis site was turned into a lawn. They began to use free space as a platform for military training, and on holidays for folk entertainment.

At the direction of Empress Elizabeth, daughter of Peter I, a proper view of the canal was provided, and under Catherine II the meadow was completely paved.

Paul I reacted to the Admiralty Fortress in his own way. With him, the fortifications were put in order, the protective embankment was built up and strengthened.

Important territorial changes have occurred under Alexander I. During his reign the fortress was converted into the Admiralty building, and along the facade a boulevard was created, which became a favorite route for walking city nobles. The defensive moat and rampart were abolished. The green zone under the guidance of the English gardener William Gould was ennobled by trees, shrubs and flowers. Along the paths, the master Luigi Rusca installed a series of comfortable benches and gas lamps. Tea and coffee pavilions have become an additional decoration. The place for rest was surrounded by a fence and put up security. In 1833, at the corners of the central alleys put copies of ancient heroesstatues of the Farnesian Heracles and Flora.

The capital renewal of the territory beloved by Petersburgers took place under Alexander II. They decided to plant the greenery on the occasion of the bicentenary of the birth of Tsar Peter and instructed the gardener Eduard Regel. In July 1874, the grand opening of the garden took place, named after the emperor and with the consent of the Alexander.

In 1880 Alexander Garden replenished with a unique structure - a fountain-musician. The fountain was designed by the talented architect Alexander Geshvend.

At the end of the 19th century, monuments were installed in the park area:

  • Vasily Zhukovsky
  • Nikolai Gogol
  • Mikhail Lermontov
  • Mikhail Glinka
  • Nikolai Przhevalsky

From time to time, gardening continued: cutting down and updating trees and shrubs, planting new flowers.

At the end of the 19th century, due to the excessive growth of green spaces, the park was reduced from the Palace and Senate Squares.

Post-revolutionary hard times made adjustments to the life of a famous place. It was first renamed the Workers' Garden, and later the name of A. M. Gorky was added to the name. but the city dubbed him in his own way Sashkin.

In the harsh years of the war, anti-aircraft guns stood in the garden. Along with the besieged Leningrad, he accepted the hardships of bombing German aircraft. Many trees died, the alpine hill did not become.

In 1943, in Leningrad, near a park, a direct tram of an enemy bomb destroyed a tram transporting people. The dead civilians were buried in garden land near Nevsky Prospekt.

In peacetime, the recreation area was restored, but for some reason was called the Admiralty Garden. The present the name of the park complex was returned only by the end of the 20th century. In the 90s, a bust of one of the most worthy representatives of Russian diplomacy, Alexander Gorchakov, was added to the gallery of monuments to famous people.

Interesting places and features

  • On the opening day of the Alexander Garden, Emperor Alexander II deigned to plant with his own hands a young oak tree, which can still be seen today near St. Isaac's Cathedral. The gaze of today's contemporaries reveals a magnificent and huge oak, a witness to many extraordinary events.
  • According to the architectural concept, it was planned to place three fountains in the recreation area, but due to technical difficulties and the impressive cost of the work, it was decided to dwell on one.
  • Surprisingly, the public toilet of the times of Alexander III has survived to this day.
  • In the early autumn of 1907, the tram first received passengers from the Alexander Garden. This event is reminiscent of a section of a railroad with a commemorative plaque.

Events, events and festivals

  • Annual flower festivals, to the opening of which florists and gardeners plant a huge number of flowers in the park and create unusual landscape compositions.
  • On an improvised stage opposite the Admiralty, surrounded by spectators sitting on benches, jazz concerts are traditionally held.
  • Musical picnics for youth are traditionally held in the garden.
  • In winter, a ski slide opens in the garden.
  • On City Day and on major holidays, townspeople and tourists rush to the Alexander II Garden. Something interesting is always planned here.

Attendance and opening hours 2019

Alexander Garden is one of the most visited areas of the city. After exploring the park, curious travelers can easily go to other famous attractions - Senate Square, St. Isaac's Cathedral, Palace Square, the buildings of the Senate and the Synod.

Entrance to the green zone is free and around the clock without restrictions

Interesting Facts

Like any place with an extraordinary and rich past, the Alexander Garden has its own secrets. For example, a bronze statue of a camel lying at the monument to the scientist Przhevalsky. There is a belief if you make a wish and stroke the nose of the animal, the plan will certainly come true. Therefore, the camel's nose shines in the sun.

The magical properties are attributed to the famous fountain-musician. After visiting the garden, the guests of St. Petersburg and the native people try to ask the fountain to help fulfill their plan. To do this, you need to turn your back to the water jets, make your dream, throw a coin over your shoulder and leave without turning around.

Alexander Garden

Alexander Garden in St. Petersburg. The central city garden and park complex with a fountain, walking paths and sculptures, created in 1872-1874 according to the project of A.V. Kvasov, with the participation of the botanist E. L. Regel.

Photos / author - Razumov A.B.Opening hours:
round the clock


Tourist note:

A visit to the Alexander Garden will be interesting to tourists interested in park architecture of the second half of the 19th century, and can also become one of the points of the excursion program while exploring the neighboring attractions - Palace Square, the Winter Palace (where the Hermitage Museum is located), the Winter Palace garden, the Alexander Column, the General Staff building, the Admiralty, the Senate and Synod building, the house of Lobanov-Rostovsky, the Senate Square, the Columns of Glory, the monuments The Bronze Horseman and Tsar the Carpenter, Isaakievsky m Cathedral, Admiralteyskaya embankment, Nevsky Prospect.

Garden opening

The backstory of the garden is associated with the laying of the Admiralty Fortress-shipyard on November 5, 1704. According to the requirements of wartime, the Admiralty was surrounded by ramparts and a moat. A vast open space stretched before him - the glacis necessary for the actions of the fortress artillery in the event of an enemy attack from land. Shortly after its founding, the Admiralty lost the function of a military fortress and with it gradually disappeared into the past and the fortification value of glacis. At first, its territory was used for warehousing and storage of shipbuilding timber, large anchors and other admiralty supplies. From about 1712 to 1717, the Maritime Market was located on a part of the former glacis, and the territory was overgrown with grass and turned into the Admiralty meadow.

In 1721, at the initiative of Peter the Great, the main planning scheme of St. Petersburg was laid in the form of a trelichka coming from the Admiralty. Two rays (the present Nevsky and Voznesensky avenues) were planned under Peter I, and the third ray (modern Gorokhovaya Street) appeared in 1736-1737. The rays of these three highways divided the huge Admiralty meadow into several parts. In 1721, an alley of birch trees was planted in the meadow by the captive Swedes in the meadow, leading from the main gate of the Admiralty to Nevsky Prospect.

Since the reign of Anna Ioannovna, festivities with fireworks and festivities have been held in this place at public expense. Amazing pavilions, palaces were erected in the meadow during the celebrations by the highest orders, wine fountains were set up, giant carcasses of bulls were fried, which were then fed to the people. Until the 1760s, the Admiralty Meadow served as an auxiliary construction site for the Imperial Winter Palace. In the intervals between the restructuring of the palace, the meadow was used for drill exercises of military units and grazing of court animals. Until the middle of the 18th century, the meadow received garden decoration elements: alleys, palisades, and trellis fences. Cattle grazing was carried out until the 1750s, when the paving of the meadow began, which was completed only in the mid 1790s.

Under Catherine II, the transformation of the territory around the Admiralty continued. In the western part of the meadow, the construction of St. Isaac's Cathedral began according to the project of architect A. Rinaldi. The construction of the third cathedral was completed by the architect V. Brenna in 1802. In 1782, a monument to Peter I was erected in the western part of the former Admiralty Glacier (sculptor E. M. Falconet, architect Yu. M. Felten). This event marked the beginning of the transformation of the once gigantic meadow into a system of three squares in St. Petersburg: Admiralteyskaya, Isaakievskaya and Petrovskaya.

Until 1806, the Admiralty Fortress was located on the site of the garden. Later, due to the loss of defense significance, the space previously occupied by the glacis was added to the Admiralty meadow. Along the facade of the Admiralty began the construction of the Admiralty Boulevard. The author of the project was the architect L. Ruska, the gardener W. Gould was responsible for the work on the project. Green benches and 50 oil lamps on wooden poles were installed. Access to the boulevard was streamlined and landscaped: turnstiles-turnstiles were installed at the entrance, next to which were three sentries, and the territory was fenced with wooden railings. For walkers, wooden coffee and tea houses were opened, given to the maintenance of the French - Francois Villot and Marseille. Lilacs, viburnum, mallow, large mountain ash and young oak trees were planted in the alleys. Each tree had supports, a plate with the year of planting and was watered daily. Flowers for decorating the alley were brought from Tsarskoye Selo Garden.

The canal along the Admiralty was finally bombarded in 1817, and in its place in 1819, according to the project of engineer A. D. Gotman, an alley-boulevard lined with lindens was rebuilt again. In 1824, the eastern part of the boulevard was extended to a granite descent to the Neva (Palace Marina, designed by Carl Rossi). In 1833, according to the project of the architect L.I. Charlemagne, the construction was completed by the installation of marble sculptures "Hercules Farnese" and "Flora Farnese". These sculptures are copies of ancient sculptures, made at the end of the 18th century by the sculptor P. Tricorni. They were transferred to the garden from the Tauride Palace.

In 1822, the Admiralty Square was built on the site of the Admiralteysky Meadow, which included today's Admiralteysky Prospekt.

Until 1851, Admiralteysky Boulevard was under the jurisdiction of the Gof-quartermaster's office, and then under the supervision of the Board of the 1st district of communications, then in 1865 it was under the jurisdiction of the city.

Garden opening edit |

Walk in the Alexander Park: 11 amazing places

Alexandrovsky Park is a picturesque and cozy corner of the Petrograd side, an arc hugging the Peter and Paul Fortress, the Gorky Fortress, the Planetarium and the Leningrad Zoo. They compiled an interesting route through the sights of the park: majestic monuments, sculptural compositions, fountains, floral clocks and not only.

For a long time, the green Alexander Park was a glacis around Petropavlovka, left vacant specifically so as not to interfere with the fire from the mortars standing on the bastions of the fortress. After the Princedom of Finland joined Russia, the border of the empire moved so far away from Petersburg that the fortress lost its defense significance. Therefore, on the eve of the 600th anniversary of the Battle of Ice, it was decided to set up a park on this site, and name it in honor of the winner Alexander Nevsky.

Sculptures of Alexander Park

Pond, duct and humpbacked bridges

Grotto Pavilion

Another interesting composition, this time made of flowers, is located in the center of the park opposite the Music Hall. This is a flower bed gift presented to St. Petersburg by Switzerland on the eve of its 300th anniversary. It is said that lovers often make an appointment at this watch.

  • June 15, 2017 8,614

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