New Holland – Territory for Kids

 

August 29, 2016

 

Just a couple of days ago – on August 27 – New Holland opened its doors for families to visit after a long period of closure.

 

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New Holland back in the early days of St. Petersburg was used as warehouses for timber. This territory was closely connected with shipbuilding. Besides, it’s located on water and it comprises two islands shaped with the help of canals. In Peter the Great’s times foreign speech  was frequently heard here, as many of Russia’s shipbuilders and naval specialists were foreigners. All these reminded Peter the Great of Holland, the country he admired, so the area got the name of New Holland.

Today major part of New Holland is still under reconstruction after many years of disrepair, but part of the territory has already been refined and opened up as a leisure area. This Saturday and Sunday many activities for kids were available. All the contests had a distinct touch of maritime topic. Each weekend new festivals, activities and concerts are planned here.
 

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While kids are climbing the playground in the shape of an ancient ship’s frame, their parents are offered a coffee and a bite, some can sit or lie on the grass or one of the few garden arm-chairs available and enjoy the music (the walking brass band is great!)

For those who plan to visit New Holland in the nearest future I need to make important remarks:

  • Most important: comfort

They are arranging a number of underground washrooms for the convenience of visitors, but so far none is finished. People either  queue up to temporary bathrooms or go to the nearest coffee-shops or even the Central Naval Museum, located next door.

  • Safety

We came here with a friend’s family, 3 young kids all in all. Of course, all of them wanted to get to the ancient ship playground. However, to my mind, the structure is a bit dangerous for young kids to climb. Besides, the remark that kids under 12 y.o. should be accompanied by a parent, make this “climb zone” quite crowded.

  • Fun

We participated in a couple of contests and the kids really enjoyed those. But they all are conducted in Russian. Not a problem for us, but foreign visitors might find a bit too complicated to participate in something they don’t understand.

The plans for developing this territory are very ambitious. In winter a skating rink is planned on the ice of the pond. The shopping area is to be opened in one of the buildings (former prison), an open-air movie-theatre is to be arranged, and so on. Come and check it out in a year or so.

 

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