Saint-petersburg is often called a northern capital of russia. and it is recognized as a city of special importance by the russian constitution. there are only two cities of special importance in russia – saint-petersburg and of course moscow. no doubt saint-petersburg deserves such a status. the name of the city changed several times. at first the city was called saint-petersburg but it was renamed to petrograd in 1914. then in 1924 just after the death of lenin the city was given the name leningrad. in 1991 the old name saint-petersburg was given back to the city. the city was founded by peter i in 1703. its foundation started with building of the fortress of peter and pavel which is now called petropavlovskaya fortress. but the fortress was never used in military aims. it is more famous as the main prison of peter’s times. they guide some excursions inside the fortress now and you have an opportunity to see the prison cells of the eighteenth century. the history of the city's foundation is connected with lots of victims. thousands of people gave their lives building saint-petersburg. the city was built very quickly and the building was complicated with local area peculiarities. in fact petersburg is situated on water. some people even compare it with venice but such a comparison is not very right. the city consists of forty four islands connected to each other with beautiful bridges. multiple channels give saint-petersburg its own charm. if you are walking in petersburg at night be accurate. about two o’clock at night bridges start opening. it’s necessary for big ships to have the opportunity to cross saint-petersburg. so you’d better get some information about the regime of bridge opening in advance and look at this exciting show. in the cultural capital saint-petersburg you’ll find a lot of museums, monuments and cathedrals. the most famous museum of world importance is of course the hermitage. the works of arts collection of the hermitage was started with ekaterina’s (cathrine) purchase of 225 pictures made by masters from western europe. today the museum has about three million exhibits. just imagine! you’ll need 15 years to see all the exhibits of the hermitage having a minute looking at each of them and spending 8 hours a day on that. besides each hall itself is a work of art. malachite, george and peter halls are very popular among tourists. in front of the winter palace – the hermitage building there’s a palace square. you can have a nice walk on it. but don’t stay here for long because there are lots of other places which are worth visiting in saint-petersburg. but i think that each tourist must leave some time just for walking on the streets of the cultural capital, feeling the city atmosphere, diving to its rich history. you can also walk in beautiful gardens and parks, for example to go to the quiet and mysterious summer garden. furthermore, pay attention to the churches and cathedrals which decorate petersburg. the kazan cathedral, the isaac cathedral, the spas-na-krovi cathedral they are completely different. you can relax on the benches or even on the grass if you want near the kazan cathedral. you have an opportunity to get to the top of the isaac cathedral and to enjoy the view from the height of a bird’s flight. by the way the isaac cathedral is the biggest temple in russia. the spas-na-krovi cathedral excites with the beauty of its domes. and you must go inside to any of these cathedrals. here you can feel the difference between a catholic and an orthodox temple. the theatres of saint-petersburg are also very famous all over the world. you’d better book the tickets because there are always lots of people interested in theatre. the maryynsky theatre is magnificent. here you can take in the pleasure of wonderful opera and unforgettable ballet. lots of really great people worked and still work in the maryynsky theatre. and magnificent furniture will take you back to the times of peter i and ekaterina ii. the interesting sightseeing to visit are cruiser aurora and the monument cooper horseman. cruiser aurora is situated near the building of nahimov naval school. the volley signing the start of bolshevist’s revolution was given here. cooper horseman is a monument erected by the order of ekaterina ii in glory of peter i.now you can read on the monument “to peter i. ekaterina ii” in russian from one side of it and in latin from the other. its uniqueness is caused by the fact that the monument has only two points of support. ii had been kept locked up in tzarskoye selo before the start of the revolution.