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City Tour - You'll either see, or visit the major sites and historical attractions of St. Petersburg old center, including statues, monuments, riversand canals, beautiful bridges, cathedrals and palaces, memorial squares andparks. You shall also enjoy photo opportunities in selected locations.
Metro (the city's underground subway system) - Visit the magnificent "palaces of the People" as the St. Petersburg Metro used to be called during the Soviet Union years. The construction was started after the II World War, and its expansion continues endlessly, new stations opening periodically A ride is arranged between the Technological Institute and the Moscow Arch of Triumph stations. All the stations are totally different and individually designed. Some are luxurious with art work, statues, sculptures, mosaic walls, and chandeliers, some are simpler looking. A ride is included.
Cottage Palace - Peterhof
The Cottage, located outside St. Petersburg on the way to Peterhof, is the real gem among them all. In 1825, Tsar Nikolai I commissioned a Scottish architect,Alexander Menelaws, to create an English country style house and landscape for his family. This incredibly beautiful house with unbelievable decorative details is perfectly preserved and will remain in the memory of every visitor.
Tsarina's Pavilion in Peterhof – This is the popular name used for two miniature hideaways called Tsaritsin Pavilion and Olga’s Pavilion, which are also located in the town of Peterhof. Extremely beautiful and delicate.
Peterhof Fountains & Grounds – Built to rival Versailles in France, the palace sits atop of a high hill overlooking the Gulf of Finland. Peter the Great drafted the layout for the 300-hundred acre park and supervised the design of the palace fountains. The Grand Cascade, the most famous fountain group, features gilded Samson prying open lion's jaws as water cascades down the terraced steps, and small spouting fountains anoint smaller sculptures. We shall stroll through the lower parks and gardens, and view and “experience” (be careful!) some of the Peters surprise creations among the many decorative fountains. – No inside visit, only the parks and gardens.
Monplaisir Palace of Peterhof Monplaisir was originally one of the favorite hideaways of Peter the Great. Later, Catherine the Great lived there when she learned about the coupe against her husband, Peter III, and she departed from this palace to ascend the throne in St. Petersburg. The Bath House and Kitchen, located next to Monplaisir Palace and housing the steam baths, dressing rooms, and kitchen, show the intimate side of royal life.
Lunch - will be in is the elegant Summer Palace Restaurant on the day you visit Peterhof and the Fountain Parks.
Catherine Palace in Pushkin – typical of Baroque style, was built for the wife of Peter The Great , Catherine I, in the village of Tsarskoe Selo, or today’s Pushkin, and it became known as the Catherine Palace.
Tsarskoe Selo (in English: “The Tsar’s Village”) is located about 27 kilometers (17 miles) south of St. Petersburg and it has a long history connected with generations of Romanov Tsars. Catherine Palace exceeds all the other palaces with its gigantic size and unique decorations. The stunning façade of the palace extends for almost 300 meters (1000 feet), and gives the first impression what to expect inside. Our tour will visit all the major halls and rooms, including the Great Hall, the Blue Room, the Picture Gallery, many of the private studies and bed rooms.
One of the many highlights will be the Amber Room with its walls decorated with real amber of different hues. The palace was practically destroyed during the Second World War, and all the amber from the walls of the Amber Room was taken away from the country by the invaders. After the tour you will also view parts of the surrounding park’s and gardens consisting of almost 600 hectares (1.500 acres) and filled with marble statues
Church of the Savior on the Spilled Blood - This recently restored church sports a fantastic ornate "Russian-style" exterior with the traditional colorful onion domes. The church was built on the exact site of the March 1, 1881 assassination of Tsar Alexander II, while riding in his carriage along the canal embankment. That is also the reason why the church is called "spilled blood". The church is distinguished by its picturesque silhouette and rich colorful decoration. The facade is lined with ceramic tiles and colored glazed bricks. Inside you shall view large size works of colorful mosaic of different religious themes. During the Soviet Union the church served as a warehouse and a storage space, and it took more than a decade to restore it to its current condition. This is unquestionably one of the most popular photo spots in St. Petersburg. – A photo stop.
The St. Isaac's Cathedral: Designed by Auguste de Monferrand in 1818 the church was named in tribute to Peter the great who was born on the day of St. Isaac of Dalmatia. The Cathedral is 101,5 m (333 ft) high and the dome (for the making of which 100 kg (220,5 lb) of gold was used) is 26,5 m (87 ft) in diameter, making it one of the largest in the world after St. Peter 's Cathedral in Rome and St. Paul's Cathedral in London.
The interior is “a symphony of gold, marble, lapis lazuli, malachite and porphyry”. The walls and vaults are decorated with paintings and mosaics by the leading artists of the day, and the walls and floors are lined with marble from Russia, France and Italy.
The Cathedral can accommodate 14,000 people. Inside visit.
Hermitage - plus Gold Room The former residential palace of the Romanov rulers, called the Winter Palace, and four other buildings together house today one of the world's most prestigious museums, called The Hermitage and one of the premier art collections. Your guided tour includes both the Winter Palace and the Hermitage display rooms, which contain over three million art works, including paintings by DaVinci, Rafael, Monet, Rembrandt, Renoir, Picasso, Van Gogh - to name a few. The Baroque style Winter Palace was designed by Italian architect Rastrelli, and boasts huge ceremonial reception rooms, throne rooms, private theatre, gold and marble, irreplaceable state gifts and collections, patterned parquet floors, ornate staircases, molded and decorated ceilings, and gilded appointments. If nothing else, this is the “must” place in St. Petersburg. – An inside visit.
Lunch - in the famous Astoria Angleterre Hotel, one of the most elegant of the city's 5-Star hotels, pictured to the right of the monument to Tsar Nikolas I
Yusupov Palace - Though it matches, if not exceeds, any of the tsarist family palaces of the same era, the Yusupov Palace was never a royal residence, but instead the private home of the richest Russian family before the Russian Revolution. A tour of the Yusupov Palace will open the eyes of a modern person to realize and see the luxury in which the Russian "rich and famous" used to live 200 years ago. The aristocratic Yusupov family comes from the nation of Tatars. During the ages, they became very close to the ruling tsars of the Romanov Dynasty and held different governmental positions for several generations. They also became immeasurably wealthy. In St. Petersburg alone they had five different palaces, located on the embankment of the Moika Canal, was their main family residence. Five generations lived in this building between the years 1830 to 1917.
The Palace Square – This historical square was once the site of the Russian imperial power, having on one side the Winter Palace, and on the opposite side the huge curved building of General Headquarters, and across the street the Admiralty, Russian military navy headquarters. In the center of the square there stands a high granite obelisk, called the Alexander Column, depicting an angel leaning against a cross. During this centuries the square has witnessed many Russian historical events. The Bloody Sunday, in the 1917 bolshevik revolution the storming of the Winter Palace, and most recently in 1992 the mass celebration for changing the city’s name from Leningrad back to the original St. Petersburg, and many, many others. Also during the Soviet Union years it was the site for the annual May Day military parades. – A photo stop.
The Cruiser Aurora – Currently a museum ship on the west bank of the Neva River, this armored cruiser Aurora fired her gun to signal the beginning of the Bolshevik Revolution in 1917, which brought Vladimir Lenin to power, and later changed the entire country from Russia to Soviet Union. Before the Aurora became a tool for the Bolsheviks, she had served the last Russian Tsar loyally for a long time. – A photo opportunity
The Monument for Peter the Great – Empress Catherine the Great ordered this magnificent equestrian statue for the honor of the founder of the city. The artist was Etienne Falconet and the monument was dedicated in 1782. It took a total of twelve years to design and sculpt and cast. Falconet wanted to have a natural stone pedestal for his work, and a suitable red granite bolder was found in Finland, just about 6-7 miles from the city , – A photo opportunity
Rostral Columns - These two attractive city monuments are detailed parts in one of the most elegant architectural ensembles in St. Petersburg, called the “strelka”, or in English “the tip of an arrow”. The columns imitate the ancient Roman practice of displaying the prows of captured enemy ships on a victory column. Also a most unforgettable and beautiful, panoramic view of the Neva River embankment, and the Winter Palace opens in front of our eyes from this location. – A photo stop.
Browse for Russian souvenirs and gifts and bargain with local vendors at the various stops during your excursion. Your tour includes a stop at one of St. Petersburg's souvenir shops where you can barter for such traditional Russian goods as lacquered boxes, jewelry, pins, hand painted nesting dolls, usually called “Matryoshka dolls”, handicrafts, china and porcelain, Russian delicacies like Caviar, military memorabilia of the Soviet Union, beautiful coffee table books about Russian topics, and many others.
Photo Stops: Rostral Columns on the Spit of Vasilevsky Island, Cruiser "Aurora", Church on Spilled Blood
Please Note: Minimum age to participate in this tour is 12 years of age. This tour has intensive, extended distances to walk and many steps.
Cost Per Person (Adult)
Tour Cost: $396.00
Tax/Other Fees: $99.00
Total Cost: $495.00
Remember to bring your camera. Minimum age to participate in this tour is 12 years old. This tour has intensive, extended distances to walk and many steps. You do not need a Russian visa to take this tour from your ship. Our tour operator is authorized by the city government to arrange services for cruise passengers who do not have Russian visas. In order to guarantee visa-free participation in this tour, we need to receive a Tour Authorization Certificate for you and each person in your traveling party. We must request this Tour Authorization Certificate from our operator no later than two (2) weeks prior to your sail date. After we receive your excursion order, you will receive an email from Shore Excursions by PortPromotions.com asking for your passport and other information. You must provide us with your passport and other information at least two (2) weeks prior to your sail date or we may not have time to receive your Tour Authorization Certificate. Please respond promptly to this request. We will email you your excursion tour voucher for your traveling party, and one tour authorization certificate for each member of your traveling party. It will be your responsibility to print and carry with you 1) the tour voucher, 2) the Tour Authorization Certificate, one for each person traveling with you, and 3) a valid passport for each person in your party. These documents will be required to participate in your St. Petersburg excursion. Failure to have these documents to present to Russian immigration officials and your excursion leader may result in you not being allowed off the ship in St. Petersburg, and may not entitle you to a refund. Please refer to the full terms and conditions listed on our website. On the first day the tour’s return time back to the ship is at 5:30 PM (17:30). Thus is sufficient time to have a dinner and to prepare for the later Russian Folkloric Show or classical ballet performance. On the day of your departure the tour returns to the port one hour prior to your ship’s scheduled departure time.
The specific meeting location at the pier will be listed in your confirmation email and voucher for this shore excursion. See the 'Redemption and Voucher Details' section below.