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31 May 2019

Kronstadt. Land of forts. The city will become the world’s largest museum island

The City of Military Glory and UNESCO World Heritage Site Kronstadt will become northwestern Russia’s calling card. Vladimir Putin has ordered the development of a tourism and recreational cluster in ‘The Cradle of the Russian Fleet.’ This is expected to increase the number of guests to the city to five million per year and create hundreds of new jobs. The project will be presented at SPIEF 2019 and will get underway this summer.

In future Kronstadt will be the world’s largest island-museum dedicated to naval history: its great battles, outstanding leaders, and unique ships. The 80-hectare area will feature a historical park with museum, educational, and tourism zones. It will recreate the atmosphere of entire epochs and describe important events in detail.

The Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation and the City of St. Petersburg are expected to serve as the founders of the Autonomous Noncommercial Organization (ANO) for the Transformation of Kronstadt. The Governor’s Office of the ‘Northern Capital’ formed a working group on the tourism and recreational cluster. The project will be included in the Federal Targeted Programme ‘Developing Domestic and Inbound Tourism in Russia,’ developed by the Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation. The majority of the project is expected to be funded through private investment.

The Kronstadt’s famous forts will become part of the open-air portion of the island-museum. Peter I will feature a historical reconstruction of an old 18th-century city. It will include taverns with period-appropriate Russian cuisine, fairs, and souvenir booths. Alexander I, which will be accessible to guests at any time by way of a funicular railway, will house a theatrical stage. Interested guests will be welcome to take an active part in the plays. Constructed in 1704, Kronstadt’s first fort, Kronshlot, will feature a reconstructed marina, where yachts and motorboats will be able to dock. The main exhibition will be located on the coastal side of Kotlin Island.

Kronstadt will also be home to the largest oceanarium in Russia, a whole complex with a huge aquarium, research laboratories, a children’s technopark, and show areas. Next door will be a diving centre with an open-air pool.

But that’s not all. There will be plenty of opportunities to soak up the salty sea air: guests will have the opportunity to see a bird’s-eye view of the park and the Gulf of Finland from an airship. On the ground, guests will be able to take their meals at a variety of cafés and restaurants offering naval food from around the world. Guests will be able to stay the night at a hotel complex that meets their taste and budget. True romantics will have the chance to spend the night in the world’s only naval ship hotel and greet the sunrise at Fort Kronshlot in a hotel room named after a Russian admiral.


The park’s coastal zone will include a Memorial to Fallen Sailors. The public is encouraged to submit their ideas for the monument. In order to do so, they should publish a sketch or any graphic representation of the memorial on Instagram, VKontakte, or Facebook with the hashtag #мемориалкронштадт (#kronstadtmemorial) along with a short author bio at any time during the period of 1 June to 1 September 2019. The winner will receive a private tour of the Kronstadt’s forts accompanied by a famous resident of St. Petersburg and the memorial project will be brought to life in the city itself!

Lighthouses are the symbol of the Kronstadt sea fortress. One of them is depicted on the city’s coat of arms

Travel to Kronstadt will become significantly easier and faster. Passenger riverboats will be able to take you there from the centre of St. Petersburg in just half an hour. Meteor (hydrofoil) boats will connect the city on the Neva with Kronstadt and Peterhof in a single tour circuit. It’s possible that a high-speed passenger ferry route from Helsinki may also become available. Kronstadt will very soon become Russia’s new ‘window to Europe’!

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