Saint-Petersburg - Peterhof - Oranienbaum

Saint Petersburg, Northwestern Federal District, Russia
Est. 39.3km / 50 mins / Map

Saint-Petersburg - Peterhof - Oranienbaum - Cya On The Road

We are about to embark on a railroad journey to the most outstanding suburbs of Saint Petersburg, Strelna, Peterhof and Oranienbaum. The trip will take about an hour. Our audio guide is intended for trains departing from Saint Petersburg, 'left' and 'right' corresponds with the direction of the train.Baltiysky (Baltic) railway station and adjacent railways trace their history back to 1853, when the idea of the construction of a Peterhof railway line emerged. As its name suggests, it was meant to connect Saint Petersburg and Peterhof, where the residence of the Russian emperors had been situated since the times of Peter the Great. In passing, the railroad was also accounting for the manors and dachas that sprouted along the historical Peterhof road.The construction began at the height of the Crimean War that ended with the fall of Sevastopol in 1855, which was disastrous for the Russian army.  The treasury was running out of money, and there wasn't enough to continue the construction. However, Baron Alexander von Stieglitz, an entrepreneur and philanthropist, decided to complete the railroad at his own expense and invested 2 million roubles into it.Baron's estimations proved true, the line going to Peterhof was in high demand. Most dwellers of Saint Petersburg, from students to the royal family, had their dachas there and preferred to spend summers out of the city. The railroad was bringing profit despite being private!On July 21, 1857, after the death of Emperor Nicholas I, who blessed the construction of the railroad, a 14-car train solemnly departed for Peterhof. It arrived safely to its destination in 1 hour 10 minutes. The cars were no longer foreign-made, as it was for the first railroad in Russia, the Tsarskoye Selo (Tsar's Village) Railway. Instead, they were manufactured at the Alexandrov plant in Russia.In 7 years, trains started going even further, to Oranienbaum, yet another residence belonging to the tsar's family. The 10-kilometer line of land between Peterhof and Oranienbaum was especially popular among dacha-dwellers. The railway was becoming 'mature'. In 1872, long-distance trains started departing from Peterhof to Reval (present-day Tallinn, the capital of Estonia). The train station was given a modern name, Baltiysky.After the revolution of 1917, the flow of suburban trains increased, and it became evident that it was reasonable to convert them to electric traction. In January 1933, the first suburban electric trains departed for Peterhof from Leningrad – that's how Saint Petersburg was renamed after the revolution. At the same time, to increase the passenger capacity of the railway station, it was modernized. Railways were removed from under the train shed, side exits were closed, and arched windows were rebuilt to form a central entrance.During the Second World War, Baltiysky railway station was dramatically damaged, like all other stations, but it was soon reconstructed.Nowadays, Baltiysky railway station only services suburban trains. Despite that, it is still a very busy location.

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