Peter and Paul Cathedral is justly regarded one of the main attractions of Peter and Paul Fortress. It was built in 1712–1733 as the main cathedral of St Petersburg, new capital of the Russian Empire. Designed in Baroque style by Dominico Trezzini, it combines typical features of West-European and Italian church architecture. It is rectangular in shape, with the dome on the eastern end and a belfry with a 402 feet high spire on the western entrance.
The interior decoration of the Cathedral is foreign for the Russian religious architecture tradition as well. Peter and Paul Cathedral is a hall church, with nave and side aisles of approximately equal height, united under a single immense roof. The space of the cathedral is divided in three parts by pillars, painted to imitate marble. The vaults of the cathedral are decorated with multicolored fresco paintings and gilded moldings. The cathedral is lit though twelve large windows. It became one of the first cathedrals in Russia, decorated with paintings, along with the icons. It was by no means the influence of the European tradition.
Artists will appreciate the wooden gilded Baroque iconostasis, designed by Ivan Zarudny and carved by Moscow craftsmen in the 1720s. The iconostasis contains 43 original icons of the eighteenth century. The central part of the iconostasis is designed in the form of the triumphal arch that spans the Royal Doors and rises into the space beneath the dome to a height of almost twenty meters. Near the iconostasis are a pulpit to the left, and the Tsar’s Place to the right, a special spot where the emperor stood when there was a service.
Peter and Paul Cathedral is the symbolic center of Russia because it is the burial place of many of the imperial family. For two hundred years all Russian rulers from Peter I to Nicolas II (except Peter II and Ivan VI) and their families were buried here. The locations of the graves are marked by sarcophagi made of white Carrara marble. The lids of the tombs are decorated with large bronze cross coated in pure gold, tombs of the rulers have four bronze emblems of the Russian Empire at four corners. Sarcophagi of Emperor Alexander II and his wife Maria Alexandrovna were replaced by those made of green Altai jasper and pink Urals rhodonite in 1906. The remains of the last Russian Emperor Nicolas II and members of his family, who were shot under the town of Ekaterinburg by local Bolsheviks on 17 July 1918, were buried in the Catherine’s Chapel of Peter and Paul Cathedral on 17 July 1998.
In 1908 Grand Ducal Burial Chapel, designed by David Grimm, Anton Tomishko and Leonty Benois, was added to the cathedral as a burial place for Grand Dukes and Duchesses. From 1908 to 1915 thirteen persons were interred there, eight burials were transferred from Peter and Paul Cathedral. In 1992 great-grandson of Alexander II Vladimir Kirillovich Romanov was buried in the Chapel, which opened a new page in the history of the burials in the Peter and Paul Fortress. In 1995 the remains of his parents were transferred here. On June 3, 2010 his wife Leonida Georgievna Romanova, nee Bagration-Mukhranskaya, was laid to rest here.
The State Hermitage Museum — In the center of St. Petersburg on the Neva River, opposite the Peter and Paul Fortress, the museum is the largest in Russia. Take a tour of the Hermitage — should anyone visiting St. Petersburg.
The State Hermitage Museum — is the calling card of St. Petersburg, as well as one of the largest and most significant art and historical museums in Russia and abroad.
Modern Hermitage is a complex museum complex. The main exposition of the museum occupies five buildings situated along the embankment of the Neva River, the main of which is considered to be the Winter Palace and the Eastern Wing of the General Staff on Palace Square. The museum’s collection consists of about three million works of art and monuments of world culture, from the Stone Age to the present century.
Visit the Hermitage , which is considered one of the largest art museums in the world. A place of honor is occupied ceremonial palace interiors. The museum collected millions of monuments of world culture and art. It is based on drawing and painting, sculpture, applied art, as well as archaeological finds.
Reservation guided tours for groups by calling (812) 575-56-39, ext. # 203
The State Hermitage Museum is part of the twenty most visited museums in the world. Although until the middle of the XIX century to visit the Hermitage could only be elected, which is fully consistent with its name (French Ermitage -. Lonely place, hermit shelter). His collection contains about three million exhibits — paintings, sculptures, drawings, works of applied art, coins, medals and signs, types of weapons, archaeological sites and other values created by many nations of the world from ancient times to the present day. The scale and importance of collections in a row with the Hermitage can be supplied only the British Museum in London and the Louvre in Paris. Big counterpoint different materials that are concentrated in the Hermitage.
Hermitage — it’s an amazing world full of wonders. The museum’s collection has always attracted and continues to attract thousands of people of different ages and professions, from different countries and peoples of different generations and different worldviews. And everyone can find there what is needed is his soul. Truly a rare unity: the collection of such a high level, the beauty of the architectural frame, the significance of historical associations — all this attracts people, making a bright and unique feature of today’s Hermitage.
Hermitage systematically expanding their holdings, will increase the new branches, and most important of them are very close to the Winter Palace, the building of the General Staff, which draws Palace Square grand 600-meter façade in the Empire style. The museum has got only the east wing of the building, but it’s a lot. The huge space is interesting, first of all, the architecture: a suite of rooms, stretching along the perimeter, added five indoor courts with top light and spectacular staircases. Secondly, it is in the General Staff now be assigned a first-class Hermitage collection of French art of the late XIX-early XX century: Monet, Renoir, Cezanne, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Matisse, Picasso, and others of their contemporaries given the entire fourth floor. And among the exhibits there is always something worthwhile.
Departments and the Hermitage exhibition
There is no need to prove that the Hermitage is great value. However, you need to consider what exactly is its significance. First of all, it is — the wealth of the Hermitage collections. The Hermitage are concentrated works of various origins. This one in the new measurements are made museum is born the need to think in terms of world art. See a number of works of different countries and times — it is meant to be a witness, both competed at the Olympics Art of the peoples of the world. Therefore, we recommend that you be sure to visit the Hermitage with our professional, licensed guides that will leave your heart an indelible mark.
Peterhof Fountain park and Grand Palace
After 200 years of serving as a grand summer residence of the emperors, Peterhof is inextricably connected with the Russian history. The seaside paradise was built, as a grandiose triumphal memorial glorifying the grandeur of Russia, in conquering the much needed and desired access to the Baltic Sea, during the Great Northern War.
Peterhof is legitimately considered to be the creature of Peter the Great — more than ten of his handmade drawings in reference to Peterhof, and even more sketches with his rectifications and notes, were preserved. Even after the emperor’s death, during the next century and a half, the architects were not only maintaining but also, continuing to implement the chief plan of the Tsar-Reformer.
The first documented record of Peterhof refers to the year 1705, when it was called in the Dutch manner as «Piterhof» — «Peter’s courtyard».
The construction of the residence, that was as beautiful and splendid as the best residences of European monarchy, including the French Versailles, commenced in 1714.
The grand opening of Peterhof took place on the 15th of August 1723. By that time, all the principal elements of the ensemble composition were formed: the Lower park had been already laid out, the Sea Channel had been excavated and some of the fountains had been in progress. The Upper Chamber as well as the Monplaisir and Marly palaces had been erected.
The architecture and decor of Peterhof reflects all the artistic styles of the past and the personal tastes and preferences of every Russian monarch.
In 1917 after the Russian revolution, Peterhof became a large educational center. During World War II, the German occupiers barbarously destroyed the palaces and the park. The reconstruction began from the first days of the liberation. And today, this nature and man-made masterpiece welcomes the guests, impressing and surprising them, just like before.
In 1990, the architecture and park ensemble «Peterhof» was included in the world’s list of intangible cultural heritage of UNESCO, and was recognized in 2008, as one of the seven wonders of Russia.