Program 368: London Update; Village Turkey; Cruising into St. Petersburg

Release Date: 06-21-2014


Hear what Londoners have nicknamed the latest skyscrapers popping up around their city, and get tips for exploring the lesser-known parts of Turkey, where the main attraction just might be you. Then learn about what options cruise-ship passengers have for seeing the impressive sights of St. Petersburg.


  • Gillian Chadwick, tour guide based in London  
  • Tom Hooper, tour guide based in London  
  • Roy Nicholls, British tour guide based in Dorset
  • Lale Surmen Aran, Turkish tour guide and proprietor of SRM Travel in Istanbul
  • Etelka Parine Berecz, tour guide based in Hungary
  • Cameron Hewitt, lead editor at Rick Steves' Europe and co-author of multiple Rick Steves guidebooks to Eastern Europe

Related Links

  • Sunlight reflected from the concave curve of the new 20 Fenchurch Street building was reported in September 2013 to have caused extensive damage to a Londoner's car parked on the street below.  Public access to the building's rooftop "sky garden" is scheduled to commence soon. 
  • The new skyscraper at 123 Leadenhall Street is being called "The Cheese Grater."
  • Reviewers at Trip Advisor agree with our guests that the One New Change shopping mall's best feature is its views of the city of London from the sixth floor, and they include some of their photos of the view online. 
  • A detailed travel guide to the Docklands development in London's East End.
  • Excavations in London on the site of the River Walbrook are unearthing Roman artefacts.
  • The website for visiting the famous clipper ship Cutty Sark at the Royal Museums Greenwich.
  • Lale Surmen Aran runs SRM Travel in Istanbul, which specializes in guided tours of Turkey.
  • Pointers for playing "tavla," the variety of backgammon played in Turkey.
  • Cameron Hewitt co-authors Rick's "Northern European Cruise Ports" guidebook and the new Rick Steves "Snapshot Guide to St. Petersburg, Helsinki and Tallinn." 
  • The Metro system of St. Petersburg provides an English-language guide to using their transportation system.  Etelka says the Avtovo Metro stop is her favorite. 
  • Cameron recommends Cruise Critic for user reviews of local guide excursions in St. Petersburg. 
  • The official English-language website for the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg.
  • To see Russian art, the Russian Museum is a ten-minute walk from the Hermitage. 
  • Teremok is a popular and inexpensive fast food  chain recommended by Etelka in St. Petersburg.   She adds that Stolle is a good café chain for cakes and pirogis.

Haiku Awards

Saint Petersburg June
Endless daylight glistens off
Endless golden domes
— Tracy Lynn,  Charlottesville, Virginia


Neon Tokyo rain
Blurs footage of their blind date –
Wave / kiss, flirt / debate.
— Chantale Reve, Jersey City, New Jersey


Tufts of creamy wool
Caught on splintery fence rails
Far from Irish looms
— Patricia Cassel, Waikoloa, Hawaii

Program Extras

More with Etelka - Hungarian tour guide Etelka Parine-Barecz shares memories of studying in Leningrad in the 1970s. She and Cameron Hewitt offer advice for navigating the crowds at the Hermitage, safeguarding your belongings, and enjoying one of Russia's favorite "ethnic" cuisines from the republic of Georgia. (runs 5:38)