Russia’s White Nights: Open Bridges, Open Hearts

Russia’s White Nights: Open Bridges, Open Hearts

MIR’s Katya Boyarskaya lives in St. Petersburg, Russia and serves up great tips for navigating her hometown and all it has to offer. Here, Katya navigates the waters of love, when bridges and hearts open up. 

A native of St. Petersburg, Katya Boyarskaya has grown up with the city's magical "White Nights" <br>Photo credit: Katya Boyarskaya

A native of St. Petersburg, Katya Boyarskaya has grown up with the city’s magical “White Nights”
Photo credit: Michele Rice

Once my friend invited me to his birthday party; a friend of his was also at the celebration. The birthday gathering was far away from where we lived, so when the party was over we shared a taxi to the city center where I lived. He lived there, too.


Bridges of White Nights You know, you’ve probably seen the photos of the bridges going up across the wide Neva River – and so beautiful during June’s White Nights when the sun never sets. The bridges open up only in summer, during navigation. And they stay up for hours; once they are raised, you’re stuck where you are.

The Neva River's Palace Bridge (<i>Дворцо́вый Mост</i>) is one of St. Petersburg's most photographed bridges <br>Photo credit: Lindsay Fincher

The Neva River’s Palace Bridge (Дворцо́вый Mост) is one of St. Petersburg’s most photographed bridges
Photo credit: Lindsay Fincher

The view's not too shabby if you're stuck on Palace Bridge: it's the Peter and Paul Fortress <br>Photo credit: Lindsay Fincher

The view’s not too shabby if you’re stuck on Palace Bridge: it’s the Peter and Paul Fortress
Photo credit: Lindsay Fincher

So for three or four hours in the middle of the night there are no bridge connections between different parts of the city, when those bridges rise up. Don’t forget: the metro is also shut down at night.

 
Open Bridges, Open HeartsSo there we were, this friend-of-a-friend and I, stuck at the bridge – for hours! What to do? We talked.

And talked.

And talked.

And he finally talked me into a date with him for the next day. I said “yes.” A month later I said “yes” again – I married him!

atya Boyarskaya on her honeymoon in 1987, thanks to a White Nights bridge adventure <br>Photo credit: Katya Boyarskaya

Katya Boyarskaya on her honeymoon in 1987, thanks to a White Nights bridge adventure
Photo credit: Katya Boyarskaya

I’m sure that wouldn’t have happened if our summertime bridges hadn’t been open, and during White Nights no less. Sad to say, the marriage didn’t last long, but it makes for a good story.


Travel to Russia with MIRWho knows, when you travel to Russia during White Nights maybe – like Katya – you’ll find love at an open bridge. MIR offers scheduled tours to Russia, and you can also book a custom private journey.


(Top photo credit: Boris Tylevich, Creative Commons)

PUBLISHED: June 27, 2014

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