The Hermitage museum is one of the largest art museums in the world. Overall there are almost 3,000,000 pieces of art and monuments of world culture, from the Stone Age to the present day, stored in more than 350 halls. The gala halls preserved ceremonial interiors of the Winter Palace, the former residence of the Russian emperors. The museum has a rich collection of old masters – Rembrandt, Leonardo Da Vinci, Rubens, Rafael, Van Dyck, Titian and many others. Special attention deserves Impressionists exhibition, which is located in the eastern wing of the General Staff Building, where the works of such masters as Claude Monet, August Renoir, Vincent Van Gogh, Henri Mathis, Pablo Picasso and others are presented.
The museum is located in recently restored beautiful Shuvalov Palace on Fontanka river embankment. The museum's collection contains more than 4,000 works of decorative applied and fine arts, including gold and silver items, paintings, porcelain and bronze. A highlight of the museum's collection is the group of nine Imperial Easter eggs created by Fabergé for the last two Russian Tsars.
St. Isaac's Cathedral
St. Isaac's Cathedral is the largest Orthodox Church in St. Petersburg and one of the highest domed buildings in the world, designed by architect Auguste de Montferrand. The marble structure of the cathedral is decorated with statues and bas-reliefs. The cathedral's main dome rises over 100 meters and surrounded by granite columns. Its exterior is gilded. The interior was painted by famous artist Karl Bryullov. The Colonnade of St. Isaac's Cathedral is the most famous observation deck in St. Petersburg. A bird's eye view offers breathtaking panorama of the entire central part of the city. Be ready to climb up 200 stairs to reach the top.
Catherine's Palace in Tsarskoye Selo
Catherine’s Palace is a magnificent example of Russian baroque and compositional center of the Imperial summer residence Tsarskoe Selo, located in the suburb of St. Petersburg. Decoration of the Large Hall and the Golden Enfilade of the ceremonial premises are delighting in luxury. Among them the world-famous amber room that was reborn to a new life. Visitors can feel the spirit of the Elizabethan and Catherine eras and get acquainted with the unique works of fine and applied arts, when they enter into the Palace.
Peter and Paul Fortress
Founded by Peter the Great, Peter and Paul Fortress is considered to be a unique fortification monument of XVIII-XIX centuries. The fortress laying on 17th of May 1703 is considered to be the date of the city foundation. The architectural ensemble of the Peter and Paul fortress is focused around St. Peter and Paul Cathedral served as a tomb of reigning House of Russian emperors Romanovs. The fort also served as a base for the city garrison and also as a prison for high-ranking or political prisoners. The Trubetskoy Bastion became the main prison block, where among others Fyodor Dostoevsky, Maxim Gorky, Nikolai Chernyshevsky and Leon Trotsky was imprisoned.
One of St. Petersburg's most unusual historic landmarks, New Holland is a triangular man-made island edged by canals, and covering an area of 7.6 hectares. New Holland Island was created in the time of Peter the Great as shipbuilding facilities. During the following centuries, it has served as a naval prison, been a timber storage and during Soviet times accommodated high-security naval and military facilities. The island was closed for visiting for a long time. Today this is the place dedicated to the pursuit of fun, art and outdoor activities. During the summer months visitors lie on the grass, walk around the green zone, play frisbee, petanque and badminton. When it’s cold outside, you can warm up by hitting one of the biggest open ice skating rinks in the city.
The Spit of the Basil Island
Architectural complex “Spit of Vasilyevsky Island” is one of those charming places that attract people regardless of the season. Here is one of the best view points, which provide an amazing panorama on the Neva River, Peter and Paul fortress and Winter palace. The Spit represents a small cape in the southeastern part of Vasilievsky Island, washed by the Big and Little Neva. The enormous Rostral Columns dominate this part of Vasilievsky Island erected in 1805-10in honor of The Russian naval fleet.
St. Petersburg Ballet
The history of St. Petersburg ballet has more than 3 centuries. This is one of the phenomena of Russian culture – the French-Italian court invention not just caught on in Russia, but also reached a new level. St. Petersburg ballet dancers and choreographers surpasses their European teachers. Just a few people know that ballet masterpieces such as the Nutcracker", "Sleeping beauty", "La Bayadere", "Romeo and Juliet were created in St. Petersburg; graduates of Petersburg ballet schools gained fame and recognition around the world. The essence of St. Petersburg ballet opens before the audience as soon as the curtain rises and the stage action begins, and it seems that it will be possible to comprehend the sense of what is happening, but as soon as the curtain falls, the audience will feel that the main thing eluded again. You can touch the secrets of St. Petersburg ballet in the leading Imperial theaters of our city – the Mariinsky and Mikhailovsky - throughout the theatrical season.