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Vyborg

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Not to be confused with the Danish city Viborg.

Vyborg (Russian: Вы́борг; Finnish: Viipuri; Swedish: Viborg) is a city in Leningrad Oblast, Russia. Located near the Finnish border, it was in fact Finland's second-largest city until World War II, when it was handed to the Soviets as war reparations.

Get in[edit]

Vyborg is good day trip destination from St. Petersburg, or as a stopover on the Helsinki-St. Petersburg train line.

By train[edit]

The major international trains [4] to Helsinki stop in Vyborg, although they are relatively expensive. Eg. since late 2010, the high-speed Allegro train travels between St. Petersburg and Helsinki, stopping in Vyborg [5].

By coach[edit]

International coach lines connect Vyborg to Helsinki, Turku, Lappeenranta and Jyväskylä in Finland. More information from Matkahuolto and Savonlinja.

Saimaa Express connects Vyborg to Lappeenranta and Imatra. More information from Kymen Charterline [6] and Saimaa Express [7].

Russian minibuses depart daily (2-3 times a day) from behind Tennispalatsi (Helsinki) for 20€ single, but the price might depend on how fully booked the bus is, how soon it is to depart and your fluency in Russian from the perspective of the driver demanding the fare.

From Russia[edit]

Vyborg skyline

Bus excursions depart St. Petersburg's Gostinyy Dvor on weekend mornings and cost about 700 Rubles, returning to St. Petersburg in the evening, a total of about 10-11 hours.

By train from St. Petersburg, express trains "Lastochka" and local "elektrichka" trains depart from the Finlandskiy station. Express train tickets can be purchased in advance or at windows 27-30 at the Finland station (not in the main hall) on the day of departure. Beware of long lines if attempting to purchase tickets shortly before the train departs. The one way ticket for Express train would cost around 330 rub (2017) and the ticket for a suburb train (Elektrichka) will be slightly cheaper, those can be bought in the main hall at Finlandskiy station on the day of travel only. Express train between St. Petersburg and Vyborg runs five times a day, and the journey takes about 1,5 hours. It has a cafeteria on board. The cheaper suburb service will take about 2,5 hours, it is equipped with hard wooden seats. It is advised to use the ticket vending machines in the main hall, however, one can only buy a ticket for the next departure. For timetables, check the website of the Russian Railways [8].

If you visit Vyborg as a stop-over between e.g. St. Petersburg and Helsinki, then you can make use of the luggage lockers at the railway station. You have to purchase the chipcard for the lockers at the station information desk. As of June 2014, it costs 200 Rubles for three hours.

Get around[edit]

Vyborg is compact and walkable. Those in a hurry can take local bus #12 from the train station to the castle. City maps of Vyborg can be purchased at bookstores in St. Petersburg, at news kiosks at the Vyborg train station, and are sometimes sold at the Vyborg market ("Rynok").

See[edit][add listing]

Vyborg Round Tower

A walking tour of the major sights of the city can be done in about three to four hours, with Vyborg Castle being the highlight of the tour. Plus two-three hours if you want to see some beautiful nature in Monrepo park.

From the train station, walk down Leningradskiy Prospekt and turn right along the embankment of the Salakka-Lakhti Inlet. See the Market Square on the left at the end of the quay, where one can see the Market Hall or "Rynok" and the 16th-century Round Tower. Walk past the Round Tower to the Lutheran Peter and Paul Cathedral in the park. Cross the street to see the blue-painted Transfiguration Cathedral, then walk up Vyborgskaya Ulitsa past the Council House Tower along the remnants of the old city wall, then head up the street (this is the least picturesque part of the walk through the Stone City) to see the Clock Tower tucked in among the apartment buildings. Before the Castle Bridge, see the Statue of Torgils Knutsson, the Swedish knight who founded the city in the 13th Century. Look across the gulf to the Statue of Peter the Great in the park opposite.

Vyborg Castle

Cross the bridge to Vyborg Castle which was originally built in 1293 by Swedes, captured by Peter the Great in the 18th Century, served as a Finnish prison in the 19th Century, and passed between the hands of the Soviets and Finns multiple times during World War II. The castle has several different exhibits, each with its own entry fee, and one can climb to the top of the tower for a nice view of the city. (Tickets for the tower cost 80 Rubles from the museum cashier.)

Cross back over the bridge and walk up Krepostnaya Ulitsa through the town, turn left on Suvorovskiy Prospekt, see the Alvar Aalto Library and the Statue of a Moose in the park, then proceed to Red Square and the Statue of Lenin before heading up Vokzalnaya Ulitsa back to the train station.

If you have more time, from the Vyborg castle you can continue to the park Monrepo (from French 'Mon repos' - 'my rest') - beautiful English landscape park on the Finnish bay. It is about 2km walk from the Vyborg castle and can be reachable by foot, otherwise you can take a taxi, the taxi price is from 100 rubles, but shouldn't be much higher, ask the driver in advance about the price or make sure he has a meter. Admission fee is 100 rubles for Russians and 200 rubles for foreign citizens (prices from 2017).

Do[edit][add listing]

Buy[edit][add listing]

Vyborg Central Market

Visit the market hall ("Rynok") and the market square outside, where one can find Karelian knits and woolen clothing, as well as tablecloths and lace among the fruits, vegetables, shoes, and other sundry items. There is a public toilet available in the market, but it is very basic indeed.

Eat[edit][add listing]

Slavyanskaya Trapeza in the basement of Ul. Yuzhniy Val 4, just across the bridge from Vyborg Castle, serves moderately-priced Russian food, including excellent Chicken Kiev for about 200 Rubles.

Restaurant NiKa at the Hotel Atlantik (Ul. Podgornaya 9). Prices are moderate to high.

Y Borharda [9] right across the street from Hotel Atlantik (Ul. Podgornaya 10). Quite an extensive menu, including an excellent solyanka. Moderate to high prices in this rustic restaurant with kitsch decorations.

Kruglaya Bashnya, a Russian restaurant inside the Round Tower. Not as expensive as one might expect for its prime location, but service is slow.

Espilä (Ravintola Espilä) Restaurant and Bistro. A copy of the destroyed during the second WW2 famous Finnish restaurant with the same name built on the ruins. The menu offers European dishes with a touch of a Russian cuisine. The prices are about the same or slightly higher than in other dining places.

Drink[edit][add listing]

Bar Champion on Lenina st. 16 A modern English style sport bar with a good choice of beer. Good quality local brewed beers are sold here. The food is also served here.

Sleep[edit][add listing]

  • Hotel Atlantik, Ul. Podgornaya 9 (close to the castle off a main street), (81378) 2-47-76, [1]. checkin: 2 PM; checkout: noon. a quiet, clean mid-range hotel with friendly, and ( basic ) English speaking young staff. Breakfast included.  edit
  • Bat Hotel, Ul. Nikolaeva 3 (between Park Lenina and the Salakka-Lakhti Inlet), (81378) 3-45-37, [2]. known as "Letuchaya Mysh" in Russian is a mid-range hotel in the same class as the Atlantik.  edit
  • Druzhba Hotel, Ul. Zheleznodorozhnaya 5, [3]. the imposing pyramid structure on the inlet.  edit

Contact[edit]

Get out[edit]

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