Do you like giving and receiving Christmas gifts? Want to learn more about this lovely tradition? Starting this Friday, December 14, the State Museum of the History of St. Petersburg, which is located in the Peter and Paul Fortress, hosts the Christmas and New Year Gifts Exhibition. Explore old Christmas-tree decorations, ornaments, candies, cards, sleds, skis, and children’s toys, as well as kids’ most wished-for presents under the Christmas tree in the Russian Empire and in the Soviet Union. The exhibition is open every day except Wednesday from 11am till 6pm. Entrance tickets cost 60-140 rubles.

In wintertime, it’s easy to miss the greenery, especially in St. Petersburg where it’s all so grey and kinda gloomy. But worry not! There is a place where you can immerse yourself in a tropical paradise even in the middle of winter. Every weekend from December 15 till December 30, the St. Petersburg Botanical Garden organizes a series of tours through the subtropical route, during which you will get a chance to admire the winter-blooming Japanese camellia, walk under the branches of citrus trees bowing under the weight of their tangy fruit, and learn about winter plants from all over the world. Tickets cost 300 rubles and can be purchased here.

Great news for music lovers! Starting this weekend, the Northern Capital will host one of the most exciting musical events of the year, the Arts Square International Music Festival, which will bring together symphony orchestras, opera singers and musicians from all over the globe. Performances are held almost every day in different venues around the city, such as St. Petersburg Philharmonia, Mikhailovsky Theater, the Savior on Spilled Blood Cathedral, and St. Petersburg Theater of Musical Comedy, to name just a few. Tickets cost from 300 to 7000 rubles and can be bought here. Don’t miss your chance to listen to the best of world classics performed by world-class musicians.

Do yoga, dance, draw elaborate mehndi designs, visit a tea ceremony, master the art of calligraphy, create your own perfume, and learn to make nice handmade Christmas cards and tree decorations! If you’re already feeling excited, check out the New Year Workshops Festival that will be held on December 15-16 from midday till 8pm at the Vnutri Art Gallery. Tickets start at 500 rubles and can be purchased here.

Click here to learn about other fantastic winter fairs in St. Petersburg.

Enjoy your weekend!