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Re-live 20th C Russian history, from Soviet times through Glasnost to Putin
A fascinating and brilliantly presented collection, spanning Lenin & Stalin through Khrushchev and Gorbachev, right up to Yeltsin and Putin. What an amazing country, and what an incredible political history - all brought to life in this awe inspiring museum!
Definitely worth a visit for anyone interested in Russian and Soviet political history. Get a map with your ticket to understand the layout but there are useful guides in English if your Russian isn't great. It's an amazing and well presented collection. The staff were all helpful and there is also a small cafe on the lower floor as well.
This place should be voted way higher on trip advisor/ in every guide book. It was excellent. All English signage, super helpful staff. It is so well laid out- the exhibits are thoughtful and creative. It follows a very logical path through the history of the revolution and Soviet times. After having spent 2 days in palaces and the hermitage it was a welcome change of pace. Entry is cheap, it’s in a lovely non tourist part of town. Highly recommend!
Perfect for the history lover in your group
This was the least crowded place we visited and it really deserves more attention. So interesting to be able to stand in Lenin's office and see the balcony that we have seen in photos before.
We did have an English speaking guide who did a good job of telling us the high points. There are paper guides in each area that have information about the different displays in multiple languages if you just want to go on your own. I did a bit of both. The displays were well laid out and told the history well.
History from a different perspective
This was our third visit to St Petersburg so we were looking for something other than the usual tourist attractions. This was one . I don’t think a lot of western tourists visit here. We and another couple from our cruise ship were the only ones we saw on that day. The museum was located in what had been Lenin’s HQ during the October Revolution, the former mansion of a prima ballerina. Some of the signage was in English. The young lady who was our guide spoke excellent English and was quite enthusiastic in her descriptions of the many good things ( in her view) that the revolution accomplished, including the murder of the Tsar and his family. She was highly critical of Perestroika and the subsequent dissolution of the USSR. It was very interesting to hear about this phase of Russian history from a younger Russian’s point of view even though we disagreed with most of it. She spent over an hour and a half with us. It was a very interesting afternoon.
What a Pleasant, Unexpected Surprise !
We had a couple of hours to spare, and came across this externally very unassuming museum. The reception area is spacious, bright and very clean. The museum is made up of several, well-organised, exhibition rooms, each illustrating and describing events which in one way or another influenced Russian political history. The very-well presented exhibits are all described in Russian, but little English-language plastified cards are available in each room.
This is a Museum for the student of politics as well as for the casual visitor to St Petersburg - Oh, and I didn't notice any particular apology nor excuse for political events. Everything was very matter-of-fact. This is what happened, so there! I would certainly return, to appreciate the excellent layout, and to re-visit some of the exhibits which fascinated me. Strongly recommended.
Great Museum especially the Kshesinskaya exhibition (great ballerina)
This is a great museum and it is housed in a very historical and beautiful art nouveau building. It was the home of the famous ballerina Matilda Kshesinskaya, and the new exhibition on the top floor of her former mansion "Fouettes of Fate" is devoted to her story and famous life in Russia and the west. She was a superb dancer and artiste and daughter of a dancer father. She was also very beautiful. She was the mistress of the last Tsar before he married, and it is rumoured that she had his treasure buried under her house - though people have never found this in the museum grounds. But the story adds to the mystery. The exhibition, though small is simply wonderful. Several of her rooms are now decorated in the style she had it and there are wonderful photographs fro her career, including her Paris studio masterclasses for famous dancers such as Fonteyn. There is a lovely film about her with English subtitles.
The rest of the museum is devoted to the more usual political history of Russia. This also is excellent as it is curated exceptionally well and stylishly. For example there is a very interesting replica of a 1950's shared kitchen in an apartment and information about how acute the housing shortage was at that time. In all, this is a great museum where you can spend an hour or two.
Very interesting for history-lovers
The State Museum of Political History is located in Saint Petersburg, near the St. Paul and Peter Fortress. It is located in an old palace reconverted in museum. It is very interesting, if you are interested in the history of the country. In fact, here you can learn a lot about some revolutions, the 2nd WW and the different governments in the country. Very interesting, especially for history-lovers.