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Bike ride in St.Petersburg

Rotterdam, The...
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Bike ride in St.Petersburg

Hi everyone,

This forum has already helped me a lot in planning my trip to Russia this summer, but I have a few questions about cycling in St.Petersburg:

Since we'll be staying in St.Petersburg for 5 days, I thought it would be nice to make a day trip to Tsarskoe Selo by bike. My plan is to rent a bike in the city center, take it on a suburban train to Tsarskoe Selo (I heard that's allowed, right?!), explore the gardens and palaces in that area and then cycle back to the city.

But

- Is it really allowed to take bikes on the suburban train?

- Is it safe to park our bike outside of the palace grounds (since I don't think they will allow us to take the bikes into the park)?

- What would be the best, most scenic route back to St.Petersburg?

- When looking at google maps, it seems that we have to either cross or drive on highways. Is there a way to avoid this? And is it even allowed to bike on highways/emergency lanes?

I consider myself an experienced biker (go to school by bike everyday and have biked around London, Paris, Berlin, Copenhagen, New York etc as well), but I just want to be sure whether this plan is feasible or not. Any suggestions are much appreciated!

Russia
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1. Re: Bike ride in St.Petersburg

You seem to be very brave person if want to bike in Saint Petersburg and around it. Please, think about is once more. Russians do not have culture of transportation by bicycle. There are no bicycle paths in the city centre and be sure - you won't see them on the highway between Saint Petersburg and Tsarskoe Selo. Russian drivers don't have habit to let bikes go past, sometimes they break speed limits and so on... I don't whant to frighten you, but moving from Tsarskoe selo to Saint Petersburg by bike may be VERY DANGEROUS!

The first part of your idea to take bike to the suburban train is better! Bikes are allowed in trains. I think there will be no problems with parking places, but you will need good lock.

St. Andrews, UK...
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2. Re: Bike ride in St.Petersburg

To be honest, it is not completely impossible.

You can't rent a bike in the city centre. It's true.

You can get to Tsarskoye Selo on a bike though, and you might even find some ways to park your bike there (might be a good idea to chain it to something in a grocery store or to ask a security guard near the park entrance or something like that).

But to make things easier I would recommend taking it with you on a suburban train.

St. Petersburg...
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3. Re: Bike ride in St.Petersburg

Hello Waezk,

Look here http://www.biketours.spb.ru/eng/

St Petersburg Russia
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4. Re: Bike ride in St.Petersburg

There are several companies renting bikes in parks but I don't know of one allowing them to be taken away from the park. I would guess that there are but I never looked. This year I am getting a bike for the first time here, traffic has gotten much more civilized and a real biking culture has developed with thousands of riders out on the street(and mostly sidewalks) every day in the summer. Even 5 years ago it would have been a risky notion to ride anywhere except in a park.

If the rental can be found, or with a large enough deposit, one of the companies operating in the parks such Krestovsky Island (which is a great place to ride and VERY easy to get to from the city center, 3 metro stops) would allow a bike taken out of the area.

The train has no problem with bikes.

Rotterdam, The...
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5. Re: Bike ride in St.Petersburg

Thanks for your suggestions so far!

I already found a rental company in the center of St. Petersburg: Skat prokat, located at the eastern end of Nevsky Prospekt. http://www.skatprokat.ru/en/

And thank you Irina for the link, those guided tours look interesting as well. We might also join their tour if they have one available during weekdays.

St Petersburg Russia
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6. Re: Bike ride in St.Petersburg

It is not very often that I learn something new from the forum but this is good information. I walk by that location often and never saw it since it is into the courtyard. Their rates and terms are reasonable and I might go by on the next sunny weekend myself. I live just 3 blocks away.

Until you become accustomed to dodging cars that might not see or pay attention to a bike, in the city center, it is common to ride on the sidewalks with pedestrians. The side streets are much better to ride on than the main thoroughfares.

St. Petersburg
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7. Re: Bike ride in St.Petersburg

Hello

If anyone is coming our neck of woods this summer or autumn, I would be happy to arrange a bike tour for you, either around the city center or outside the metropolis.

Cheers,

Viktor

Edited: 11 July 2010, 15:20
St Petersburg Russia
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8. Re: Bike ride in St.Petersburg

Is this your business or just a offer to go ride with visitors for the fun of it?

St. Petersburg
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9. Re: Bike ride in St.Petersburg

why?

10. Re: Bike ride in St.Petersburg

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