Sosnovy Bor (Сосновый Бор) is a small city on the Gulf of Finland west of Saint Petersburg in Leningrad Oblast, home to the Leningrad nuclear power plant and, with it, the world's largest nuclear waste disposal facility.
The town is in somewhat restricted area, and that means that to enter one have to have valid permission to do so. If your trip is job-related then most probably your partner company will arrange the papers. Another way is to have some town citizen prepare approved formal invitation for you. Anyway it is important to have these papers ready when entering/leaving town.
From the Baltiisky (Балтийский) train station in St. Petersburg, destination station name is Kalische (Калище). Trains are infrequent and sometimes you have to hop to another on Oranienbaum (Ораниенбаум) station. Bus route 5 connects train station with town center.
Route 401 connects Sosnovy Bor and St. Petersburg. Bus shuttle is quite frequent, reliable and usually faster than train. It takes 1½-2 hr. to get to St.Petersburg, near Avtovo (Автово) metro station. Typically shuttle would go end-to-end, but on-demand stops are OK. That could be handy as bus goes through towns Petergof (Петергоф) and Lomonosov (Ломоносов) with their parks and other tourist attractions.
Town is rather small, almost everything is within walking distance. Local bus service is infrequent and most bus routes are actually the same inside a town. Taxi: there are lots of them, the fare is flat inside a town (as of 2010 it is 80 руб)
There is a bike rental in Perekrestok mall, but local roads are not very suitable for biking.
Andersengrad (Town of Andersen) is a children playground shaped as small medieval castle. Inside there is a small cafe, an open summer theatre and a small park. Very nice place to visit.
There is an orthodox church in the town center, built in 2005.
It is also usually possible to arrange a tour inside Leningrad Power plant.
Town has two beaches, rather large and uncrowded, bordered with pine forest. Unfortunately, local weather makes swimming and sun bathing possible only few weeks a year. Forests around are nice for hiking any time of the year.
There is a very good track on the sandy dunes next to the beach, inside pine forest. Originally made for biathlons, but often used for cycling during summer time and skiing during winter.
Near the town (about 20 min by car) there is medieval Koporye Fortress, definitely worth a visit.
Night life is centered around Jupiter club, but this place is not considered very safe.
Next to the church there is a mall Perekrestok (Перекресток, road cross in Russian) with many local shops and several chain stores. Near Sosnovy Bor hotel there is large Karoussel supermarket where you can buy food, etc.
- There is fast food chain Chaynaya Lozhka (Чайная Ложка, teaspoon in Russian). Outlet in Karoussel supermarket, also often found in St. Petersburg. It features bliny pancakes with various fillings along with typical set of salads and beverages. A typical meal would cost you 100-200 руб.
- Restaurant Amarone, Solnechnaya Ulitsa, 57а, ☏ . Soup and a schnitzel type of thing and some other appetizing items.
- Grand Café "Bagrationi", Prospekt Geroyev, 65а, ☏ . daily 11:00-23:00. Here you'll have a chance to try some large portions of Georgian cuisine like soup/fondue in a bread bowl.
- Limon, Leningradskaya Ulitsa, 70, ☏ . daily Noon-23:00. Italian/Mediterranean cuisine, sort of formal environment.
The only hotel in town is Sosnovy Bor.