Yelagin Island
Yelagin Island is an island
An island or isle is any piece of sub-continental land that is surrounded by water. Very small islands such as emergent land features on atolls can be called islets, cays or keys. An island in a river or lake may be called an eyot , or holm...

 at the mouth of the Neva River
Neva River
The Neva is a river in northwestern Russia flowing from Lake Ladoga through the western part of Leningrad Oblast to the Neva Bay of the Gulf of Finland. Despite its modest length , it is the third largest river in Europe in terms of average discharge .The Neva is the only river flowing from Lake...

 which is part of St. Petersburg, Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

. Yelagin Island is home to the Yelagin Palace
Yelagin Palace
Yelagin Palace completed in 1822 is a palace in Saint Petersburg which is situated on Yelagin Island in the Neva River and served as a royal summer palace during the reign of Tsar Alexander I...

 but has few other buildings; the island initially served as a wooded retreat for the ruling class. Originally known as Melgunov Island, the island takes its present name from its former owner, Ivan Yelagin
Ivan Yelagin
Ivan Perfilievich Yelagin was an amateur poet and translator who acted as unofficial secretary to Catherine the Great in the early years of her reign....

 (1725-93), best known as a founding father of the Russian Freemasonry
Freemasonry is a fraternal organisation that arose from obscure origins in the late 16th to early 17th century. Freemasonry now exists in various forms all over the world, with a membership estimated at around six million, including approximately 150,000 under the jurisdictions of the Grand Lodge...

. After the Russian Revolution, the isle was opened to the public as an urban park which still bears the name of Sergei Kirov.

The island is a popular weekend destination for Petersburgers. Visitors can rent boats to navigate the island's several ponds and canals. There are also rollerblade and bicycle rentals, as well as several attractions for children including pony rides, miniature trains and playgrounds. The island also features several kilometers of paved pathways.
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