St. Petersburg is universally recognized as one of the most beautiful cities not only in Russia but in the World. Many people come to see it without even knowing that just a few steps away there are hidden jams rarely visited by foreigners. We designed this programme to introduce you to this places making a great combination of a must and relatively unknown sights.
Day 1. st. Petersburg Arrival to St. Petersburg. Transfer to the hotel. Free time at leisure.
Day 2. st. Petersburg Get to know the Venice of the North in all its glory. During the bus tour of the former capital of the Russian Empire you will enjoy the unforgettable ensembles of the city: the Arts Square formed by three museums and four theatres, the Palace Square and the impressing baroque Winter Palace, the elegant Spit of the Vasilievsky Island, we will drive along the main street of the city – Nevsky prospect. You will appreciate the tranquillity of numerous rivers and canals with their marvellous bridges, the cupolas of orthodox churches and cathedrals, among them are St. Isaac’s Cathedral, St. Peter and Paul Cathedral, the Church of the Saviour on Spilled Blood. Free time for lunch Peter and Paul fortress can be called the cradle of the city. Peter the Great ordered to build it to protect the land during the Northern War with Sweden that lasted for XXI years 1700–1721. St. Peter and Paul Fortress was founded on May, 27 1703. This day is considered to be the birthday of the St. Petersburg. The architectural centre of the city is the first cathedral of the city: St. Peter and Paul Cathedral. It is also the burial place of all Russian Emperors starting with Peter the Great. But we will not only see this, if we step out from the tourist route and walk outside the walls of the fortress to the beach we will see the life of the locals who love to come here and enjoy the stunning view on the Neva and leisurely stroll along the walls of the fortress, some brave people even swim. From here we will take the boat and cruise the Neva, Fontanka, and Moika rivers, which in fact are the real main streets of the city, as the most beautiful façade of nearly all palaces built in town are facing rivers.
Day 3. st. Petersburg – tsar’s Village Today we will bring you to Tsar’s Village. It is a fascinating monument of architecture and garden art. In 1710 Peter the Great presented this land to his wife Catherine I and in a few years’ time a marvellous ensemble of parks and palaces was built here around the architectural centre of Catherine Palace. The combination of gold, celestial walls, niveous columns and silvery roof create an impressive sight. Visitors were amazed with the magnificence of interior decoration: golden decorations of the doors were gently shining, the suite of rooms impressed with the glittering wood carvings. The jewel of the palace is the Amber room which is considered to be the 8th wonder of the world. The romantic alleys around the Catherine Palace invite visitors for a pleasant walk to the favourite pavilions and ponds of the Russian emperors. Lunch in Podvorie. Traditional Russian Restaurant famous for hosting the dinner for Russian President Vladimir Putin. We continue on to Pavlovsk — a summer residence of the tsar Paul I and his family. It is one of the few palaces that retain the cozy and private atmosphere of the royal family. The beautiful park of the palace that covers the area of 600 hectares is one of the largest parks in Europe. It is considered to be a perfect example of romantic landscape parks of the beginning of the XIX century. By all means it deserves to be called «music for the eyes».
Day 4. st. Petersburg – Kronstadt Located on a narrow isle of Kotlin in the Gulf of Finland, the city of Kronstadt has been watching over the approaches to St. Petersburg since its founding in 1703. Peter the Great ordered the construction of a fort to protect the approaches to St. Petersburg from the Swedish navy. Kronstadt is strikingly different from other suburbs of St. Petersburg. Peterhof, Pushkin, Pavlovsk, and Gatchina were built as places of recreation and entertainment for the royal family. Kronstadt, on the contrary, was built «for serious business». For a long time, the city was the main military base of the Baltic Fleet, and sailors and their families still make up a significant part of the population of Kronstadt. Warships continue to moor at the city’s wharves, and the city is still dominated by the spirit of a military camp. We will tour the city and visit the Naval Cathedral to find out of the glories past and present of the Russian Navy. Free time for lunch. On the way back will stop at the dam protecting St. Petersburg from the regular floods and see how it works.
Day 5. st. Petersburg – Novgorod We will depart early today to visit Veliky Novgorod or simply Novgorod. It is a small but proud and beautiful city, billed as the «Birthplace of Russia’» It was here, in 862, that Prince Rurik proclaimed the modern Russian state — the Rurik dynasty went on to rule Russia for more than 750 years. The ancient settlement was a major centre for trade, literacy, democracy and the spread of Orthodoxy; its glorious Cathedral of St Sophia is the oldest church in Russia. We will visit not only the old Kremlin and St Sofia, but also Yuriev Monastery, and take a cruise of Volkhov river. Lunch in a local restaurant. Return to St. Petersburg.
Day 6 st. Petersburg The tour to St. Petersburg is incomplete without the Hermitage. Today we will visit this world famous museum. And again, we will not simply take a regular tourist rout, but add-in a visit to one of the Treasury rooms. Treasure Galleries of the Hermitage. Hermitage Museum keeps many secrets; one of them is the Treasure Gallery. It is quite difficult to get the entrance tickets there because of a great number of those interested to visit it and the limited opening hours. Treasure Gallery has one of the most remarkable collections of the museum which received its name back in the days of Catherine the Great in XVIII century. Treasury Gallery consists of two separate exhibitions. The first exposition called «Gold Rooms» (Eurasia, ancient states of the Black Sea coast, Asia) features about 1500 gold objects which show us the development of the jeweller’s art in ancient world. It is here where the grand collection of the Scythian gold, including the first gold collection of Peter the Great is kept alongside with the famous Greek Gold Collection with the famous earrings of such a fine work that no goldsmith could have ever replicated it up to the present days. The main idea of the second exposition, «Diamond Rooms», is to show the development of the jeweller’s art since the 3rd millenium AC till the XX century. This exposition possesses the well-known Fabergé works, diplomatic gifts etc. Free time at leisure in the Hermitage or in town.
Day 7. st. Petersburg Transfer to the airport to take the homebound flight.
Prices include guide and transportation services, entrance fees to indicated museums. Price doesn’t include accommodation.