Named after Catherine I, Peter the Great’s wife. Originally it was a humble residence but in mid-1700’s their daughter, Empress Elizabeth, redesigned and reconstructed the palace to compete with Versailles.
This is us standing in The Grand Hall (or Great Hall or Bright Gallery) used for banquets, balls, and masquerades. They designed it so the mix of mirrors and windows are supposed to result in the illusion that the large room goes on forever.
The Grotto Pavilion, located across from the palace, has a moat, and inside was a custom lift built for the dining table so guests could speak in private away from all staff. The entire table, chairs, and guests would be hoisted up high on a platform so they couldn’t be overheard.
Residence at Tsarskoe Selo
Hermitage Museum, second largest in the world. Founded by Catherine the Great to display her impressive collection of paintings.
The Hermitage complex also includes six other buildings, most importantly, the Winter Palace (former residence of Russian Emperors).
The Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood – named because Tsar Alexander was killed by a bomb as his carriage as passed the church in 1881.
The eternal flame at The Field of Mars commemorating victims of revolutions and wars that have befallen St. Petersburg.
St. Isaac’s Cathedral – the largest Russian Orthodox cathedral in the city.
This is us at the historical Mariinskiy Theatre to see La Boheme (in Italian with Russian Subtitles…thanks to Google we could quickly read about the scenes!)
Wouldn’t be a vacation to Russia without some amazing caviar! One of the oldest delicacies, caviar was harvested in the Caspian Sea by Russian and Persian fishermen.
Sampling Russian vodka and a variety of traditional Russian foods. Yummmm!