Trips by hydrofoils (meteors) will be seriously limited starting from 15th of July in St. Petersburg due to the preparations to the Naval parade to be held on July 28. In the period from 15th of July to 30th, water connection via the Neva river will be partly disrupted during nine days. On these days, flights to Peterhof as well as other destinations will be possible only after 15:00.
The Russian Navy traditionally conducts its Main Naval Parade on the Navy Day (falls on the last Sunday of July) in St. Petersburg:
• near the island of Kronstadt;
• in the aquatorium of the Neva river, just in the place where river tourist boats go and where meteors to Peterhof start from.
Before formidable frigates, cruisers, submarines and powerful missile boats start solemn marching in front of the Chief Commander of the Russian military forces, President Vladimir Putin, a lot of preparations must be done relating to equipment installment and rehearsals. By the way, the rehearsals, both night-time and day-time ones, are also spectacular shows themselves attracting great amount of onlookers.
So, on some days the Neva areas concerned will be completely closed for any ships, be it yachts, tourist boats, fishery vessels or even waverunners, besides military ones from 03:00 till 15:00.
These days in 2019 are: 15, 16, 19, 21, 25, 26, 28, 29 and 30.
To put it briefly:
• you will be able to go to Peterhof by hydrofoil on the days listed abovte only after 15:00, and we don’t think that’s a good idea as Peterhof is the best for visiting in the morning or soon after noon so that there would be enough time to watch fountains, wander around the Lower Park and, possibly, visit the Peterhof Grand Palace. Even with the extended working hours of the palace and the park for the season 2019, we would still recommend to go as early as possible unless you’re limited by your schedule.
• all the river and canal boat tours will have to quit entering the Neva till 15:00 on the days concerned. This doesn’t mean that the boat trips will be stopped, absolutely not as there are a lot of other rivers and canals besides Neva. You will just miss the classical view of the Peter and Paul fortress, the Hermitage and the Spit of the Vassilievsky island from water. Is it possible to live without it? We think yes. In any case, after 15:00 you will have it.
• The parade-caused limitations will generally not affect the work of drawbridges at night and boat tours under the bridges as most bridges are raised till 03:00.
What do we recommend?
1. On the nine problem days, choose the land ways to get to the fountains of the Peterhof, preferably, minu-buses (marshrutkas) К-300, К-424, К-424А from Avtovo subway station. After your visit there you can board a hydrofoil at a Peterhof’s berth after about 16 hours to go to the center of St. Petersburg.
2. You would better have a boat tour along city’s rivers and canals after 15:00 if your schedule allows it.
3. On some on these days (we think it will be 16, 19, 21, 25 and/or 26), rehearsals of the Naval parade will be held, on 16th and 19th being allegedly overnight ones. If you happen to be in the city, don’t miss the opportunity to see it. The parade itself on July 28 is also naturally a spectacular show.
Ask us questions in the comments if you need more information on the traffic restrictions or the parade.