"Bus tour & Hermitage"

Professional Russian-speaking guides. 3 fixed stops. You will enter the museum without any queue. Ends at the Hermitage

A sightseeing combo tour around the historical part of Saint-Petersburg with a visit to the Hermitage museum, accompanied by professional Russian-speaking guide.

Enjoy the major city attractions: St. Isaac's and Palace squires, Nevsky Prospect, St. Isaac’s and Kazan Cathedrals, the Arrow of Vasilievsky island, Church of the Savior On Blood, Kunstkamera museum, Peter and Paul fortress, Hermitage, Palace bridge, The Bronze Horseman, beautiful Summer garden and others. 3 fixed stops in order to observe architectural ensembles and take pictures & video. You will enter the museum without any queue. Ends at the Hermitage.

A route for disabled persons who move independently

  • temples and cathedrals 1 ,
  • points of interest 2 ,
  • squares 3 ,
  • palaces 1 ,
  • museums 2 ,
  • parks 1 ,
  • monuments 1 ,
  • bridges 3
14 km, 317 m
Bolshoy Gostiny Dvor

Bolshoy Gostiny Dvor

St.Petersburg, Nevsky pr., 35

Bolshoy Gostiny Dvor is a vast department store on Nevsky prospekt

This Gostiny Dvor is not only the city's oldest shopping centre, but also one of the first shopping arcades in the world. Sprawling at the intersection of Nevsky prospekt and Sadovaya street for over one kilometer and embracing the area of 53,000 m2 (570,000 sq ft), the indoor complex of more than 100 shops took twenty-eight years to construct. Building works commenced in 1757 to an elaborate design by Bartolomeo Rastrelli, but that subsequently was discarded in favour of a less expensive and more functional Neoclassical design submitted by Jean-Baptiste Vallin de la Mothe (1729–1800).

Throughout the following century, Gostiny Dvor was continuously augmented, resulting in ten indoor streets and as many as 178 shops by the 20th century. By that time, the Gostiny Dvor had lost its popularity to the more fashionable Passage and New Passage, situated on the Nevsky prospekt nearby. During the post-World War II reconstructions, its inner walls were demolished and a huge shopping mall came into being. This massive 18th-century structure got a face-lift recently and entered the 21st century as one of the most fashionable shopping centres in Eastern Europe. A nearby station of Saint Petersburg metro takes its name from Gostiny Dvor.

1
Palace Square

Palace Square

St. Petersburg, Dvortsovaya ploshchad

Palace Square, the main square of Saint Petersburg 

Palace Square in Saint Petersburg is a place loved by the guests and the inhabitants of the city, the heart of the northern capital of Russia. It is one of the most beautiful architectural ensemble. It is created by the best Russian architects and named after the Winter Palace on it, the latter being built under the project of F.B. Rastrelli in the middle of XVIII century.

In 1819 by Emperor’s commitment architect K.I. Rossi carried out the design of the single architectural ensemble glorifying the Russian victory in the Patriotic War of 1812. The architect’s conception was combining the existing original interiors and new constructions.

Along the southern border of the square constructed the extensive facade of the General Staff Building  was constructed. Its length is 580 meters (the longest facade in the world). In the middle of the building there is the prominent arch decorated with the reliefs depicting the flying geniuses of glory, the architectural composition Cart of Glory with the shapes of warriors nearby, and the winged goddess of victory – Nike (the sculptors - N. Pimenov and V. Demuth-Malinvsky). The height of the sculpture is 10 meters, the height of the arch is 28 meters and the width is 17 meters.

 Alexander Column was built in the square in honor of the victory of the Russian armies over Napoleon. It was built under the project of Auguste de Montferrand in 1834. The column was named after Emperor Alexander I. Weighing 600 tons and being 47,5 meters high, it is crowned with the statue of an angel defeating a snake with a cross which is the symbol of the good defeating the bad. The angel’s head is bent to the ground so his face is seen from below (the architect - B. Orlovsky). The bas-reliefs on the pedestal of the column glorify the Russian victory (the sculptors - I. Lepee and P. Svintsov). The connecting link of all the buildings was the construction of the Guard Headquarters Building on the eastern side of the square completed in 1843 (the architect - A.P. Brullov). The facade of the Guard Headquarters Building is decorated with a portico of twenty ionic columns. The most beautiful building on the Palace Square is the Winter Palace.

This prominent building occupies 9 hectares and has about 1500 rooms. There was the time when the Winter Palace was the highest building in Saint Petersburg and in the central part of the city it was not allowed to put up houses any higher.

1 km, 341 m
2
Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood

Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood

St. Petersburg, nab. kanala Griboedova, 2, lit. B

One of the most beautiful, majestic and colorful cathedrals in the Russian Revival (Pseudo-Russian) style, it was built on the place where Emperor Alexander II was assassinated

The temple was built from 1883 till 1907 in the place of the tragic events that happened on the 1st of March 1881 – lethally wounding Emperor Alexander II who was heading to the place of the parade in the Field of Mars that moment. His son Alexander III ordered to build there a church for regular services for the repose of the killed father. That is why the name of the Church on Spilled Blood stuck to the temple, although it is officially called the Cathedral of the Resurrection of Christ.

The money was donated to the construction of the temple not only by Russians but also by the habitants of Slavic countries. On the walls of the bell tower there are more than a hundred of mosaic coats of arms of the cities, towns, governorates and uyezds who funded the building of the church. There is also the coat of arms of House of Romanov.

The cross of the bell tower is topped with a gold-plated kingly crown in recognition that the biggest contribution to the creation of the church was made by the august family. 4,6 millions of rubles were invested into the construction in total.

Architecturally, the Cathedral differs from St. Petersburg's other structures. The Church contains over 7500 square meters of mosaics—according to its restorers, more than any other church in the world. The walls and ceilings inside the Church are completely covered in intricately detailed mosaics — the main pictures being biblical scenes or figures — but with very fine patterned borders setting off each picture. This mosaic ensemble was worked at by artists V.M. Vasnetsov, M.V. Nesterov and  A.P. Ryabushkin.

For decoration of the heads there were used copper pieces covered with freeze-proof colored enamel (having the area of 1000 square meters). The height of the highest dome is 81 meter. All along the perimeter of the temple building there are set 20 granite plaques with gilded writings describing Alexander II’s deeds. From the side of the Mikhailovsky Garden the temple is surrounded with a cast-iron fence having a with floral made to a sketch by Parland.

After the revolution the Church on Spilled Blood was closed and not restored for a long time. It was even heard to be going to get built-down. In 1970 it was taken under the patronage of Saint Isaac’s Cathedral which invested 80% of money into its restoration. In 1997 the Church on the Spilled Blood threw open its doors for visitors as a museum housing a large collection of mosaic icons (having the area of more than 7 thousand square meters).

2 km, 433 m
3
Saint Michael's (Engineer's) Castle

Saint Michael's (Engineer's) Castle

St. Petersburg, ul. Sadovaya, 2

The largest architectural monument, completing the history of St. Petersburg architecture of the XVIII century

Mikhailovsky Castle is the only palace constructed in Russia in the style of romantic classicism. It is a unique building with which many stories and legends are connected, often of a mystical character. It combines the features of a medieval knight's castle and a secular European palace of the XVIII century.

The palace was designed by the architect V. I. Bazhenov on behalf of Emperor Paul I, who wanted to make it his main front residence. The construction was led by architect V. Brenna. He revised the original design of the palace and created the artistic decoration of its interiors.

In addition to Bazhenov and Brenn, the emperor himself took part in the creation of the project, having composed several drawings for him. Brenn's assistants were also included Fedor Svinin and Karl Rossi. 

Built in the shortest possible time, the castle became the place of the mysterious death of its owner.

At the beginning of the XIX century. the castle “a deserted monument of a tyrant, an abandoned palace forgotten” took military and cultural figures into its walls, and later the Engineering School was located here, and the luxurious interiors of the former imperial residence were rebuilt and adapted to its needs. For many years, the castle was named Inzhenerny. In Soviet times, various military organizations were located here.

Now in the restored halls of the castle there is a permanent interactive exposition "The Romanov Saga" and open sculpture funds of the late XIX - early XXI centuries. The authentic marble sculpture of the Summer Garden is also stored here, as well as temporary exhibitions.

 

627 m
4
The Field of Mars

The Field of Mars

St. Petersburg, Marsovo pole

That is the place where the first eternal flame in Russia was ignited

At the beginning of the 18th century, on the site of the Field of Mars, there was an overgrown swamp grove. Subsequently, it was turned into a venue for military reviews and was called "Bolshoi Lug" (eng. Big Meadow). There were celebrations and festivities in honor of the victories in the Northern War. Carnivals, performances and fireworks were held at this place, in honor of which the Big Meadow was renamed "Poteshnoye Pole" (eng. Amusement Field). But this name wasn't fixed for a long time either: the palace of the wife of Peter the Great, Catherine I, was erected near the field, and the territories adjacent to it became known as "Tsaritsyn  Lug " (eng. Tsarina’s Meadow). Only in 1805 the field was named in honor of the ancient god of war - Mars.

In 1917, the victims of the February Revolution were solemnly buried in the center of the Field of Mars, and later the victims of the Civil War were buried there. In the years 1917-19 according to the project of architect L. V. Rudnev, a memorial was built for the victims of the revolution with the epitaphs of A. V. Lunacharsky. In the 1920's a square was laid out around the memorial. In 1957, the memorial was reconstructed under the direction of architect S. G. Mayofis, as a result of which the Field of Mars became the first place in the country where the Eternal Flame was lit.

In the years 1918-1920 Finnish communists were buried on  the Field of Mars.

454 m
5
Summer Garden

Summer Garden

Saint Petersburg, nab. Kutuzova, 2

The Summer Garden is one of the places where one can feel the atmosphere of Peter's times

The garden with a collection of sculptures and the Summer Palace that was the first Emperor's residence constitute a single museum complex. 

The Summer Garden is a pearl in the garden necklace of Petersburg. Peter I really liked this garden. It was laid out in 1704. Time has changed the garden a lot. However, its original planning still remains. 

Peter I wanted the garden of his residence to be as beautiful as the famous gardens of European monarchs. To decorate the Summer Garden he commissioned marble busts and statues from Italy. This purchase laid the foundation of the collection of sculpture of European level.

The fence on the Neva side of the Summer Garden is an architectural masterpiece of universal fame. The impressive monumentality merges miraculously with lightness, simplicity, and grace.

194 m
6
Trinity Bridge

Trinity Bridge

St. Petersburg, Troitsky most

Trinity Bridge connects Kamennoostrovsky Prospect with Suvorovskaya Square

The Trinity Bridge was opened in 1903 as part of the celebrations of St. Petersburg's 200th anniversary. It was the third permanent bridge, after Blagoveshchensky Bridge and Liteiny Bridge, to be laid across the River Neva, running form just north of the Field of Mars on the left bank of the river to the Petrograd Side next to the Peter and Paul Fortress. Measuring 582 meters, it is the second longest bridge in the city, one of the busiest, and also one of the most beautiful thanks to its spectacularly ornate Art Nouveau design.

The bridge's name refers to the Trinity Cathedral, which once stood by the river on the Petrograd Side. The name was changed to Bridge of Equality in 1918, and the Cathedral was destroyed soon after. In 1934, the bridge was renamed to honor Sergei Kirov, revolutionary and Bolshevik leader of Petrograd. The original name was only restored in 1999.

783 m
7
The Central Naval Museum, Cruiser "Aurora"

The Central Naval Museum, Cruiser "Aurora"

St. Petersburg, Petrogradskaya embankment

21.09.2014 the ship was transferred to the Kronstadt shipyard`s dockage facility till 2016

The ship is a 1900 Russian protected cruiser, currently preserved as a museum ship. In the same time Aurora stands today as the oldest commissioned ship of the Russian Navy. The Cruiser  Aurora is a legendary 1st rank Cruiser. The Aurora's keel was laid down at the "New Admiralty" shipyard in St.Petersburg on 23 May 1897. The cruiser was launched on 11 May 1900 and joined the Navy of Russia in July1903.
During the Russian-Japanese War the cruiser, being included in the second Pacific Ocean squadron, sailed to the Far East (October 1904 - May 1905). The cruiser Aurora had her baptism of fire in the Tsushima battle on 14-15 May 1905. When she returned to the Baltic sea, the Aurora for a long time was used as a ship for training naval cadets of the Naval College. In 1917 the Aurora's crew took an active part in the February and October revolutionary activities and the Civil War repulsing international intervention. On 25 October 1917 a blank shot from her forecastle gun signaled the start of the assault on the Winter Palace, which was to be the beginning of the October Revolution. For the whole period of the Leningrad siege from 1941 to 1944 the Aurora was moored at a pier in the Oranienbaum port (the town of Lomonosov) and was constantly shelled and bombed. The hull was holed, got many leakages and sank aground, but the small crew courageously fought for the life of their ship. In July 1944 the ship was raised and taken into a dock for repair.
In 1948 the cruiser Aurora was moored at the Petrogradskaya embankment of Leningrad and till 1956 was used as a naval training ship by the Leningrad Nakhimov College. In 1956 the cruiser Aurora was made a museum (a branch of the Central Naval Museum). 
The Cruiser Aurora is often mentioned in various art works - songs, poems and movies. So in 1945 was made a film about the legendary cruiser Varyag. The role of the Variag fell to Aurora's lot. 
1 km, 96 m
8
Birzhevoy Bridge

Birzhevoy Bridge

St. Petersburg, Birzhevoi most

Birzhevoy Bridge across Malaya Neva river is connecting Vasilievskiy Island and Petrogradskaya Storona 

Crossing the mouth of the Malaya Neva River between Vasilevsky Island and Mytninskaya Embankment on the Petrograd Side, the Birzhevoy Bridge (Exchange Bridge), which takes its name from the nearby Stock Exchange Building - "birzha" in Russian - was built between 1957 and 1960, but designed to match the much older Palace Bridge on the other side of the Vasilevsky Island Spit. The five-span steel bridge rests on granite-faced piers of reinforced concrete, and the bridges simple but elegant decorations include cast iron railings featuring nautical decorations.

2 km, 675 m
9
Spit of Vasilievsky Island

Spit of Vasilievsky Island

Saint Petersburg, Birzhevaya ploshchad

Architectural complex “Spit of Vasilyevsky Island” is one of the most beautiful places in St. Petersburg

Rostral Columns (the height of each one reaches 32 meters) and the Exchange building constitute the center of architectural composition. 

The Spit represents a small cape in the southeastern part of Vasilievsky Island, washed by the Big and Little Neva.

A huge water space allows  to see the whole ensemble of the Spit in all it's splendor. For two decades, the Twelve Collegia (1722 - 1742), the Kunstkammer (1718 - 1734), the Novobirzhevoy Gostiny Dvor (1722 - 1735) and the palace of the Tsaritsa Praskovia Fedorovna (the wife of Peter the Great's brother Ivan) and other structures appeared on the Spit of Vasilievsky Island.
 

The seaport firmly established itself on the spit: dozens of ships and boats transported people and cargo in the water area. In 1781 at the Spit of Vasilievsky Island began the construction of the Exchange building under the leadership of J. Quarenghi. However, with its main facade, it faced the Winter Palace, and thus did not fit fully into the ensemble of the square. Therefore, four years later the building was dismantled. The project of the new Exchange building was developed by the French architect J.F. Tom de Tomon. The building, made by the type of temples of Ancient Greece, was built in 1804 -1816. The attic of the facade is decorated with the sculptural group "Neptune with two rivers", and on the opposite side of the Stock Exchange building – the sculptural group "Navigation with Mercury and two rivers". Since 1940, the Central Naval Museum is located here – one of the oldest in St. Petersburg.
 
In 1826 - 1832, according to the project of the architect I.F. Lukini on both sides of the Stock Exchange building were built southern and northern warehouses – closed storage facilities. Now the Zoological Museum is located in the southern warehouse. Behind the northern exchange warehouse, symmetricallly to the building of the Kunstkammer (in relation to the ensemble of spit) there is a building of the Customs, built also by the architect IF. Lukini in the classical style. Since 1927 the Institute of Russian Literature – Pushkin House is located here. The ensemble of spit also includes the main building of the Academy of Sciences, which is located between the Kunstkammer and the building of the Twelve Colleges.

320 m
10
Palace Bridge

Palace Bridge

St. Petersburg, Dvortsovy most

Palace Bridge took its name after the Palace (Dvortsovay) embankment, Palace (Dvortsovay) square and Winter Palace.

The first pontoon bridge connected Admiralteysky and Vasilievsky islands in 1856 directly in front of the Winter Palace, but in 1896-1897 it was relocated to the place where today the Palace Bridge is situated. The permanent iron drawbridge was constructed in 1912-1916 by engineers A.Pshenitzkiy and R.Meltzer.

Interesting fact: some wooden elements of bridge’s construction remained unchanged till 1978. Palace Bridge is technically the most perfect one of all Neva’s bridges. Unique mechanism of the drawbridge, consisted of engines, colossal cogwheels (some full metal cast in block details remain from the opening of the bridge) and floating bridge counterbalances weighting thousands of tons, allows lifting 700 tons of bridge spans.

In 1997 the Palace Bridge got it’s colorful illumination.

During fests the open spans of the bridge become the screen for imaged films.  

259 m
11
Monument to Peter I on Senate Square (Bronze Horseman)

Monument to Peter I on Senate Square (Bronze Horseman)

Saint Petersburg, Senatskaya ploshchad

Monument to Peter the Great, the founder of St.Petersburg

Commissioned by Catherine the Great, the monument was created by the French sculptor Étienne Maurice Falconet in 1782. The second name (the Bronze Horseman) comes from the same name poem written by Aleksander Pushkin (1833). The monument symbolizes the Russian victory over Sweden in the Northern War (1700-1721): the snake symbolizes a defeated enemy, the horse symbolizes Russia. The pedestal of this monument is a huge so-called "thunder-stone", which was delivered to Senate Square from a borough Lakhta.

There is a legend that one can find the name of Étienne Falconet on a fold of Peter the Great's cloak.

You can see the ballet “Bronze Horseman” in Mariinsky theater.

614 m
12
Saint Isaac's Square

Saint Isaac's Square

St. Petersburg, Isaakievskaya ploshad

St. Isaac's Square is one of the most beautiful squares of the Northern capital. The ensemble of the square includes several buildings, but the central place belongs to St. Isaac's Cathedral 

The architectural appearance of St. Isaac's Square, which the south facade of the cathedral faces, had been forming for a long time, up to the beginning of the 20th century.

In 1839-1844 on the banks of the Moika River, opposite the cathedral, the building of the Mariinsky Palace was constructed according to the project of A. I. Stackenschneider. The center of the facade is highlighted by a portico with a massive attic and a protruding arcade of the main entrance. The flag of the Russian Federation flies over the building: The Legislative Assembly of St. Petersburg is located here.

The rectangular part adjacent to the Moika river was framed by two symmetrical buildings intended for the Ministry of State Property (architect N.E. Efimov) in 1844-1853. The facades of both buildings are decorated with Renaissance architecture motifs. Buildings compositionally balance each other. Now they host the N. I. Vavilov All-Russian Institute of Plant Genetic Resources.

In the central part of St. Isaac's Square in 1856-1859 a monument to the emperor Nicholas I was erected. The architectural solution of the monument belongs to O. Montferrand. The equestrian sculpture sculpted by P.K. Klodt has only two points of support. It is mounted on a high figured pedestal with allegorical sculptures and reliefs on historical themes.

The square garden between the monument and the cathedral was created in 1860.

House 11 on the square was designed by a prominent German architect P. Behrens in 1911-1912. The building was intended for the German embassy. Nowadays it houses the Office of the Ministry of Justice and the Main Technical Commission under the President of the Russian Federation for the North-West Federal District.

The Astoria Hotel, faced with gray granite (1911-1912, architect F. I. Lidval) is located on the opposite corner of the square. It was considered the best in Russia at a time. The hotel complex now includes a neighboring house - hotel Angleterre. It was in one of its rooms where the life of a famous Russian poet, S. A. Yesenin tragically ended on December 27, 1925.

House 9 is the oldest building on the square. This three-story mansion was built in the 1760s and hosted such guests as D. Didro, J. de Stael and A. Schlegel, when they visited Saint Petersburg.

House on the corner of St. Isaac's Square and Malaya Morskaya Street is associated with the name of F. M. Dostoevsky. The writer lived here in 1848-1849. In this house he wrote the "White Nights" novel.

House 7 on the corner of St. Isaac's Square and Pochtamtskaya Street belonged to the family of the Decembrist A. M. Bulatov at the beginning of the XIX century. In 1825, it was one of the centers of the Decembrist movement. The Decembrists K. F. Ryleev, A. A. Bestuzhev, I. I. Pushchin, P. G. Kakhovsky gathered here at the poet A. I. Odoevsky’s rented apartment

541 m
13
The State Hermitage Museum

The State Hermitage Museum

Saint Petersburg, Dvortsovaya ploshchad, 2

The collection of the State Hermitage includes more than three million works of art and artefacts of the world culture

The State Hermitage Museum is one of the largest artistic and cultural and historical museums in Russia and one of the largest in the world.The museum starts its history from collections of works of art which were gained by Russian empress Catherine II in private capacity.

The main expositions of the State Hermitage are placed in the Main Museum Complex, which is situated in the historical centre of Saint Petersburg. It is represented by  the Winter Palace, which is a former emperor's residence, Small Hermitage, Old Hermitage and New Hermitage, and also Hermitage Theatre.

In the Main Museum Complex of the State Hermitage are presented the monuments of culture and arts of the ancient world, Europe, Russia, the East, archaeological and numismatic collections. In the  Hermitage collection there are two paintings by Leonardo da Vinci and sculpture by Michelangelo, which can be found nowhere else in Russia, as well as the  largest collection of Rembrandt's paintings outside Netherlands.

The expositions of the State Hermitage Museum are also located in the General Staff, the Winter Palace of Peter I, Menshikov Palace, the Museum of the Imperial Porcelain Factory, Staraya Derevnya Restoration and Storage Centre.

Ticket price — 600 roubles

300  roubles – entry ticket to one of the Hermitage branches (Winter Palace of Peter the Great, Menshikov Palace, the Museum of the Imperial Porcelain Factory, Staraya Derevnya Restoration and Storage Centre)

The third Thursday of each month is a day of free entrance to the museum for all individual visitors (with free tickets).

Free entrance: preschool children, school children, students.

1 km, 310 m
14

Useful information

The route is provided by the company "ZAO Turservis". Official website: https://www.tourtransservice.ru/