Peter and Paul Fortress is the place where St. Petersburg begun its story. Peter the Great founded the city right on the Rabbit  island on the Neva river. That’s where the first cathedral was built, at that time it was made of wood. The island is called the Rabbit Island because according to folk stories only rabbits used to live there.  Rabbit statues are everywhere! There’s even a rabbit under the oldest bridge, he even has a name, Arseni. Everyone throws him coins and if one of them ends in between his hind legs it means that it will bring good luck!  Where one must definitely go for a visit is Peter and Paul Cathedral, burial place of the Romanov family. Everyone starting from Peter the Great and finishing with Nicholas II are buried there.

Even Peter II whom his spouse the empress Catherine the Great could not stand even a moment. He was burried there already by the order of their son, the emperor Paul I who hated his mother and worshiped his father.

There are a lot of misteries, also who is buried in the tomb of Alexander I, the emperor who won the war with Napoleon Bonapart in 1812. They say that the tomb is empty and that the emperor simulated his death and retired to Western Siberia’s monastery as a monk. The’s a legend about Siberian old man Fiodor Kuzmich…

In front of the cathedral there are set up benches. One can sit and listen to the bells. They were presented to the cathedral by a Belgian city Mechelen. Russians say «Malinovi zvon». It means «Raspberry ringing». They have changed the name of the city Mechelen because «raspberry» sounded in a nicer way.

There are a lot of tales about the Cathedral, the Fortress and even the prison because the fortress has had a prison since the moment it was founded in 1703.

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