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Scarlett Sails in Saint Peterburg

We will be taking a group tour and am looking at dates. Dad and I love fireworks and am wondering if we should schedule the tour ( if possible) to be in St PBg for this . OR is St Petersberg alone enough and planning to be there on a major festival making touring too difficult.

Any opinions? Thanks

Posted by
8 posts

Scarlet Sails (Aliye Parusa) is a festival celebrating kids' graduation from high school, and while there are fireworks on the river at night, a concert with all the famous Russian pop stars you've never heard of, a tall ship with scarlet sails on the river and a general feeling of "celebration" throughout the day/evening, my experience was that it's pretty much just lots and lots of high school kids walking around the center getting drunk. If you don't mind crowds and over-excited teens, then it could be interesting to see.

It also depends on what kind of tour you're looking at though - many people love experiencing authentic local life when they visit, rather than just seeing the main tourist spots (in many ways this describes me, in fact). If that's you - then Aliye Parusa might be cool and shouldn't interfere with your sightseeing plans other than the one day it lasts. If, on the other hand, you've got a serious schedule planned, you might find walking around the center on that one day problematic as the day moves on towards evening. This too is easily solved, however, by planning to be somewhere else that day, if you choose not to experience the festival - for example Peterhoff, Oranienbaum, Pushkin or Pavlovsk.

Posted by
542 posts

Hi- I did go and it was great! My only regret is that Dad and I don't have the stamina or bladder capacity to get to the site early enough to grab a front row spot.
Our hotel was on the Valisyevsky island so we sat by the Rostrum, about 2 rows of people back. It got very crowded but mostly families. We were able to see all of the higher fireworks but had minimal views of the ones set closer to the water. We did see the Scarlet Sails ship in the distance, as well as the spectacular display during the fireworks of the fireworks cascading from the bridge.
We were very pleased to be there during the festival - it added a nice level of excitement and we felt like we were participating in Russian life. I mad a best friend for life when i let a little boy stand on my stool to get a better view.
Coincidentally, the Confederation cup soccer tournament was taking place in Moscow and St Petersburg that week. That was fun - lots of photo ops with the World Cup signs, friendly volunteer students anxious to practice their English. Only obstacle was the enhanced security which made getting into our St Petersburg hotel and tour bus close to sites difficult
have to say - I still rate Macy's 4th of July fireworks as one of the best , but I may be biased as a NYer who lives nearby the viewing site.