VISA-FREE DAY-TOUR 1
An Excellent Introduction to the City with entrance to the Peter-and-Paul Fortress, the St. Isaac"s Cathedral,the Church of Our Savior on the Spilled Blood and Guided Tour to the Hermitage Museum
Visitors to St. Petersburg have wonderful opportunity to enjoy and absorb as much as possible and see the best of the best of the city in one day of the sightseeing.
Leaded by a certified and experienced English-speaking guide this Tour is an excellent introduction to the one of the largest city of Russia and one of the most beautiful city of the World.
From the comfort of a car, mini-van or a bus you’ll observe all the main highlights of St. Petersburg: the Mariinsky Theater, , the Winter Palace, the Palace Square, the Spit of Vasilievsky Island, the Bronze Horseman Statue, the Peter's Log Cabin, the Cruiser Aurora, the Smolny Convent, the Nevsky Prospect, the Square of Arts and more.
The Tour also takes you inside Peter-and-Paul Fortress, St. Isaac's Cathedral and Church of Our Savior on the Blood.
The Peter-and-Paul Fortress marks the founding of the city by Peter the Great in 1703. Inside stands the Cathedral of Peter-and-Paul (1714) where the Romanovs from Peter the Great onwards are buried. In July 1998 the last Tsar, Nickolas II, with most of his family, were finally laid to rest here. Started as a citadel to defend the city from sea invasions, the Fortress has served many other roles as well. It was later converted into a prison for political dissidents before being harnessed by the Bolsheviks as a museum.
The majestic St. Isaac's is one of the World's largest and most opulent domed cathedrals. It took 40 years to construct, under French-born architect Auguste de Montferrand's direction, from 1818 to 1858. The neoclassical exterior of St. Isaac's barely hints at the riotously rich interior, decorated with various sorts of marble, semiprecious stones and mosaics. The iconostasis is framed by ten malachite and two lapis lazuli columns. The Cathedral's doors are covered in reliefs, patterned after the celebrated doors of the Battistero di San Giovanni in Florence. Visitors willing to climb 300 steps will get a spectacular view of St. Petersburg.
The marvelous Russian-style Church of Our Savior on the Spilled Blood was built on the spot where Emperor Alexander II was assassinated in March 1881. The church was built between 1883 and 1907 and was officially called the Resurrection of Christ Church (a.k.a. The Church of Our Savior on Spilled Blood). The church was closed for services in the 1930s, when the Bolsheviks went on an offensive against religion and destroyed churches all over the country. It remained closed and under restoration for over 30 years and was finally re-opened in 1997 in all its dazzling former glory.
At the afternoon you'll visit the Hermitage Museum which contains the largest art collection in the world. It takes years to see the whole of it, but under the direction of your experienced private guide you will see the best of the collection in 2 - 2.5 hours. (When the tour is finished, it is possible to stay longer on your own; however you must make your own arrangements back to your hotel). You'll enter the Winter Palace (1762) – a gem of Russian baroque and the main residence of the Romanovs. The tour takes you to see the State rooms and art galleries of the palace, as well as other buildings of the Museum: Small Hermitage, Old Hermitage, New Hermitage and the Hermitage Theatre. Our tour will include works from some of the great masters, such as Leonardo da Vinci, Titian, Rafael, Rembrandt, Van Dyck and others.
The Tour includes an elegant lunch in the restaurant serving traditional Russian cuisine.