Meet your guide in central St Petersburg, and then set off on your communist walking tour. The country became a communist regime during the October Revolution of 1917 when the radical Bolshevik party staged a coup and seized power of Petrograd – the city now known as St Petersburg. Under the leadership of Lenin, the party was re-branded as the communists – a political force that went on to rule for more than 70 years.
Learn about this fascinating era of Russian history as you explore the city, hearing tales of Lenin who re-christened Petrograd as Leningrad, and then of his successor, Stalin. Much of the country’s well-documented repression took place under Stalin’s leadership, but your guide will introduce you to the sites linked to both leaders’ reigns.
See the building known locally as ‘big house’ – an old facility of the KGB – where thousands of citizens were shot or deported to concentration camps, and then stop for photos by the Russian cruiser Aurora, hearing of her crucial role during the October Revolution.
Walk through the Field of Mars, an expanse of parkland that served as a vegetable garden when food in the city was scarce, and listen to tales of daily life in the Soviet-era city. Visit a communist-themed café plus intriguing sites such as Crosses Prison and Solovetsky Stone – a memorial to the victims of political repression.
Visit Zayachy Island to see Peter and Paul Fortress – one of the few St Petersburg sites left relatively unscathed by the communists – and then stop outside the Museum of Political History of Russia to see the balcony where Lenin delivered his rousing speeches.
After two hours exploring the communist sites of St Petersburg, make your way back to the start point where your tour finishes.