The White Nights of St. Petersburg are famous! Night hardly exists for several weeks, around summer solstices. This period highlights the city and is ideal for a romantic week in love.
Here is an example of a one-week stay in St. Petersburg during the White Nights from Friday, June 30 to Friday, July 7, 2018.
We will divide the budget into several categories: visas, airline tickets, accommodation, as well as on-site visits.
White Nights in St. Petersburg 2019
Dates. There are no official dates. The shortest night is the night of the summer solstice, from June 21 to 22. The sun will then set at 10:25 pm and rise at 3:35 am. You’re going to tell me it’s still been five hours at night. That’s right, the sun is disappearing but remains very close to the horizon. From 10:25 pm to 3:35 am, it is therefore a light twilight that will quickly make way for dawn.
Shortest nights. To fully enjoy the sleepless nights, we recommend going between June 7 and July 6. That is to say, 2 weeks before and 2 weeks after the solstice. During this period, the night (or at least the twilight) lasts less than 5h30.
End of July. It’s not sleepless nights, but it always impresses me a little bit to be woken up by a bright sun before 5am.
The White Nights in St Petersburg on video
Here is a great montage so all the sequences were shot during the sleepless nights. The drones provide a splendid aerial view. We can clearly see the Admiralty’s perspective with the 3 avenues leading to it.
The White Nights of St. Petersburg: before departure
High prices. This is the period when prices are highest. If you want to see St. Petersburg without necessarily exploding your budget, you can choose other periods.
Planning in advance. The ideal is to prepare your trip during the White Nights as soon as possible. For example, 6 months in advance you will have a better choice of accommodation, but above all better offers for airline tickets.
Visa ~70 pounds per person
By yourself, through a visa centre or intermediaries. If you do all the procedures yourself, the costs for getting a visa can get as low as 40 pounds. But as you will certainly need an invitation (~12 pounds per invitation) and you will certainly have to go through a visa centre, it will come close to 60 pounds. However, by going through intermediaries, you can easily multiply it by two.
More about visa procedures. To learn more about obtaining a Russian visa, you can read our article: How to obtain a tourist visa for Russia? You will discover the necessary actions and the procedure you’ll need to follow step by step, as well as the different possibilities available for you.
Airfare: 150-400 pounds per person
British Airways is offering flights to St. Petersburg from London that can start from 70 pounds in one direction, depending on how early you book your ticket.
Accommodation: ~400 pounds for two persons
Some prefer hotels, others prefer accommodation with local residents. Both options have their own advantages.
In our example, we will take a private apartment on the AirBnB platform. The price here depends on your living standards. If you don’t mind staying in an old apartment in the outskirts of the city the prices can get very low.
We chose a studio located in a street adjacent to Nevsky Avenue.
The White Nights in St. Petersburg: once there
Here, we will talk about other items of expenditure: meals and guided tours.
Meals: 150 pounds per person
This is the most difficult part to evaluate, as it depends greatly on individual habits.
- In the morning, you can have breakfast in the rented apartment or at your hotel. In town, there are breakfasts at 300 rubles / ~3 pounds per person.
- Restaurants and cafés offer a lunch formula during the week. For 300 rubles / 3 pounds per person you can eat a full meal.
- In the evening, a meal can cost 1000 rubles / 11 pounds per person; a borscht costs about 250 rubles / 2.5 pounds. Some canteens offer them for 50 rubles / 0.5 pounds. Wine glasses or cocktails will raise your meal costs, as they are not that cheap, especially in good restaurants or bars. And in general, anything that is not produced in Russia will cost a bit more than indigenous foods and drinks.
Total meal budget: We estimate this part of the budget at 150 pounds per person. However, as said before, it greatly depends on your eating habits. If you are willing to cook at home and buy cheap supermarket food, you can cut this budget in half.
Touristic attractions: 100 pounds per person
Here is my TOP 6 places to visit during the White Nights in Saint-Petersburg:
- Night stroll on the canals
- Saint-Isaac Cathedral and its panorama
- Summer Garden
- Peter and Paul Fortress
- Peterhof Palace
- Catherine’s Palace
Total budget for visits, without guide. We estimate this budget at 100 pounds per person if you do not hire a guide on spot.
Guided tours in English. You can also hire an English-speaking guide. During the white nights of St. Petersburg, they are very busy. It is better to contact them a few weeks or even months in advance.
City Pass card. If you plan to visit a lot of places (museums, palaces), you should buy a city pass card for the public transportation, it is way cheaper than buying particular tickets for each ride.
The extras: 145 pounds
We have added 145 pounds for extras: gifts, souvenirs, unforeseen events or anything else that always increases the initial budget.
Total budget for 7 days: 665 pounds per person
- Visa – 70 pounds
- Accommodation – 200 pounds
- Flight tickets – 150 pounds
- Meals – 150 pounds
- Visits – 100 pounds
- Extras – 145 pounds
P.S. This is just an approximation based on my trip to Saint Petersburg’s White Nights. You should plan your trip according to your needs and lifestyle. My blog has many more articles that will help you thoroughly plan your trip to St. Petersburg and Russia.