February is usually the coldest month of the year and if there will be any snow and ice at all this year it should arrive this month. When the temperatures drop down below minus 15, you may feel that it’s time to stay home, watch some TV and drink hot chocolate. However you are in Russia and that is exactly the last thing you should be doing in February! Wrap up warm in some fur and get out into the hills for some skiing, skating or if you don’t feel so active, a simple hot drink in a cosy mountain lodge.
By Louise Whitworth
A day at the resorts is a great way to escape from the city, get some exercise and relax. Most resorts offer usual services like lockers, cafes, restaurants, bars, clothing and equipment stores, equipment rentals. Anyone interested in renting skis or snowboards should bring their passport, which is usually left as a deposit. Most parks have baby hills to practice on and can organize lessons or private instructors. The slopes don’t have offer a huge vertical drop or long runs, so if you are an experienced skier you might be best off using your time to try something new, like snowboarding.
Opened in 2006 Igora is currently the most popular ski resort in the St. Petersburg region. The area itself has 8 lifts and 9 trails and for those who aren’t so interested in zooming down the slopes, plenty of other recreational activities. There’s an outdoor skating rink, indoor swimming pool, spa and French restaurant Le Chalet, as well as a hotel and chalets for rent. Some even have their own banyas! For details about upcoming events go to www.igora.biz. For information on prices and getting there click here.
Sneznhy or snow resort, reportedly has the best slopes in the area, with its slopes holding the international mountain skiing federation certificate. The longest slope is 900 metres long, there’s also a special snowboard park with pipes and jumps and a special kiddies park for the early starters. Kids can also be left in the kids club while you spend the day in the restaurant or take a romantic skate around the lakeside rink.For details about upcoming events go to www.snegny.ru.For information on prices and getting there click here
Being close to the city Ohta park is a very popular destination for amateur skiers and snowboarders. They often have special season ticket deals and meals are not hideously expensive. Possibly the best thing about Ohta though is the ice-skating facilities. In the park they’ve got special skaters trails for you to speed along between the trees.For details about upcoming events go to www.ohtapark.ru.For information on prices and getting there click here
This area was once one of Peter the Great’s favourite hunting places. Now it’s a ski park with children’s and adults slopes. They also have special slopes for sledging and riding rubber rings, a large cross-country skiing area, restaurant, kids clubs and the chance to get out on a ski-mobile or horse pulled sleigh. There's a mini-zoo with reindeer, ponies and somewhat out of place, a camel.For details about upcoming events go to www.tyytari.spb.ru. For information on prices and getting there click here.