St Petersburg cruises

Russia’s great imperial city, St. Petersburg cannot fail to leave a lasting impression on all who visit. A wonderful opportunity to discover this jewel in the Tsarist crown which still sparkles as brightly as ever. From the magnificent Winter Palace to the Hermitage and the Peter and Paul Museum, a visit to St. Petersburg is a truly classic experience.

Excursions

Please note: Russian visas are not necessary when joining an organised shore excursion or booking private arrangements online through the Voyage Personaliser or the Shore Excursion Office on board. The full programme of shore excursions available for your cruise will be displayed on the Voyage Personaliser at least 12 weeks prior to departure. It is a requirement that all guests stay in their excursion group to ensure they comply with visa regulations. Should you choose to visit St Petersburg independently, a visa must be obtained, prior to arrival.

  • Evening River Cruise

    Marvel at St Petersburg’s ornate architecture and sip chilled Russian bubbly on an evening cruise along the River Neva.

    Evening River Cruise

    Steeped in history, the River Neva runs through the centre of this magnificent city.

    After a coach journey of around 35 minutes, board your boat and glide along the River Neva for an entrancing perspective on many of the city’s famous landmarks. Look out for the Bronze Horseman with St Isaac Cathedral in the background, the gilded spire of the Admiralty building and the oldest university in Russia, founded by Peter the Great in 1724.

    It really is a wonderful way to experience one of Russia’s most famous and historical cities.

    You’ll also catch glimpses of the mysterious Michael’s Castle and the ornate Church of the Saviour on the Spilled Blood, amongst many other well-known local places of interest.

    Popular classical music will be performed during the cruise, accompanied by a glass of Russian champagne and an assortment of canapés.


    This excursion will operate by coach and boat. The boat cruise lasts approximately 1½ hours. There is minimal walking required on this tour; however guests must be able to negotiate 14 steps at the boat pier. Access to the boat is via a wooden gangplank. It may also be necessary to cross other boats to reach your specific vessel. The boat route is subject to change depending on the water level and weather conditions. Whilst there are sufficient seats for everyone on the boat, we cannot guarantee that you’ll be able to sit in the area of your choice (either inside or on the open deck). The Church of the Spilled Blood is currently undergoing restoration; some of the domes are surrounded by scaffolding.

    Tour code

    LED_081

    Features

    • Activity medium

      Activity Level: Medium

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    Duration

    2½ hours

  • Hidden Scenes

    Glimpse everyday life in the city of St Petersburg including a ride on the Metro and visit to a local market.

    Hidden Scenes

    Enjoy a short panoramic drive of St Petersburg before stopping at Our Lady of Vladimir Cathedral. Completed in 1769, the Cathedral is a fine example of transitional style from Baroque to Neoclassicism. The detached belfry is a fine work of mature Neoclassicism while the interior of the church features and elaborate Baroque iconostasis, transferred from the Anichkov Palace chapel in 1808. The Cathedral also had a famous parishioner in Fyodor Dostoevsky – the author of Crime and Punishment.

    The construction of St Petersburg’s Metro was started in 1940, interrupted by World War II, and completed in 1955. It features elegant stations and the subways lie deep underground due to the soft upper strata. Take the escalator down to the platform for a 20-minute ride, travelling between several modern and old stations.

    The vibrant fresh food market of Kuznechniy provides the perfect opportunity to experience everyday life of the local people selling a variety of goods. Afterwards, enjoy refreshments at a local café with some pastries.


    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. This tour involves up to 90 minutes walking and comfortable, non-slip shoes are recommended. Modest dress should be worn when entering Our lady of Vladmir Cathedral, covering knees and shoulders, women are also required to wear a head covering and men must remove hats. Smoking is strictly forbidden in the Cathedral premises. If the Kuznechniy Food Market is closed, the visit will be replaced by an alternative fresh food market, Russia roubles are the only accepted currency at the markets. Please keep with your guide at all times. There are 97 steps and steep escalators to access the metro. The order of sites may vary.

    Tour code

    LED_022

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    Duration

    3½ hours

  • Emperors & Assassinations

    Visit some of St Petersburg’s most historical sights on a walking tour of the city.

    Emperors & Assassinations

    Your walking tour of St Petersburg uses the cities canals and elegant bridges to guide you to the Summer Garden. Located on a man-made island, the garden dates back to 1704 and were designed by Peter the Great. Take a walk through what remains to be, one of the most romantic and evocative places in St Petersburg.

    St Michael’s Castle is an extraordinary red-brick structure built by a paranoid Paul I to be a safer alternative to the Winter Palace. Ironically it was only a royal residence for 41 days as the Emperor was assassinated in his own bedroom. Continue through the grounds and St Michael’s Park before arriving at the distinctive onion shaped domes of the Church on Spilled Blood. You’ll have the opportunity to go inside this former church which was built on the spot where Alexander II was assassinated.

    As you continue to walk, you will find yourself in the cultural heart of the city, Arts Square. The square and its surrounding museums, theatres and concert halls were designed by Italian neo-classical architect Carlo Rossi. You’ll have some free time here for a photo opportunity and a chance to purchase local souvenirs from a nearby gift shop before returning to your ship.



    This tour will operate by coach and on foot.There is approximately 2½ hours of walking on this tour over flat paved surfaces. Flat comfortable walking shoes are recommended. This tour will operate in all weather conditions. The Church of the Spilled Blood is currently undergoing restoration; during your visit some of the domes will be surrounded by scaffolding. The order of sites may vary.

    Tour code

    LED_073

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    • Shopping

      Shopping

    Duration

    4 hours

  • Private Tour - Catherine Palace, Shopping

    The magnificence of Imperial Russian court life in the 18th century awaits you in the setting of one of Russia’s most famous palaces – Catherine Palace.

    Private Tour - Catherine Palace, Shopping

    An air-conditioned car with an English-speaking guide and local driver is offered on this tour. This is a private vehicle; those accompanying you are family or friends with whom you agree to share costs. We do not match groups of guests to form a private group for the vehicle. Vehicles and guides are extremely limited and so early reservation is recommended to avoid disappointment. No deviations to duration, venues if included or departure and return times can be made.

    Cars will take up to two guests.
    Situated in the town of Tsarskoye Selo, the grand blue Catherine Palace was named in honour of Peter the Great’s wife, Catherine. The Palace was built in the mid 18th century during the reigns of Elizabeth and Catherine II, the Baroque façade is nearly 1,000 feet long with decorative white and gold ornaments, and the grounds comprise of some 1,482 acres of manicured gardens and parklands. You’ll visit various rooms of the Palace’s sumptuous interior and glimpse part of the vast gardens.

    One of the many highlights will be the Amber Room with its walls decorated with real amber of different hues. The long classical gallery of heroic Roman and Greek busts that run alongside the exterior of the Palace was designed as a covered walkway for Catherine the Great by the Scottish architect, Charles Cameron.

    Private tours are non-refundable once confirmed. Actual vehicle type varies depending on availability and the number of guests in your party. Only ticket per party should be booked and the full cost will be charged to that person’s credit card. Once on board, you’ll receive a request for the names of each individual in your party. This information is required to allow your party to disembark the ship for the tour. You may be expected to queue to gain entrance to Palaces in all weather.

    Catherine Palace - The Palace is expected to be crowded. Protective overshoes are provided for inside Catherine Palace, which can make the floors slippery and care should be taken. Flash photos are not permitted inside and photography is prohibited in the Amber Room. It is forbidden to take long overcoats, large bags, umbrellas or bottles inside.

    Tour code

    LED_702

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    • Shopping

      Shopping

    Duration

    4 hours

  • Peterhof Palace and Fountain Park

    The Csars often retreated to the cool countryside to escape the summer, building palaces that could compete with Europe’s best.

    Peterhof Palace and Fountain Park

    Peterhof Palace is a study in regal splendour. Peter the Great personally drafted the layout of the 300-acre park and prepared instructions on the design of its spectacular system of fountains. Most famous is the Grand Cascade, with its gold statue of Samson prying open the jaws of a lion. Water flows down terraced steps leading from the Palace to the Lower Gardens and spouting fountains spray streams of water over marble statues, culminating in a man-made canal leading out to the Gulf of Finland.

    During your guided visit you’ll have the opportunity to tour the interior and marvel at the opulence of the Throne Room, the Portrait Room, White Dining Room and Chinese Rooms.


    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. Total time inside the Palace is up to one hour, plus some time in the gardens. The Palace is expected to be crowded and you may be expected to queue outside in all weathers. There is approximately 2½ hours’ of walking involved including steps. Peterhof fountains are subject to maintenance work without notification. Photography and videography are prohibited in the Palace. Protective overshoes are provided which can make the floor slippery in the Palace. It is forbidden to take long overcoats, large bags or bottles inside.

    Tour code

    LED_015

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    Duration

    5¼ hours

  • Fabulous Fabergé

    Explore the newly restored Shuvalovsky Palace to see the largest private collection of Imperial Fabergé eggs.

    Fabulous Fabergé

    Sit back and enjoy the sights of the imperial city of St Petersburg as you drive to the impressively restored Shuvalovsky Palace. Located on the banks of the Fontanka River its Neoclassical design makes it one of the most beautiful palaces in St Petersburg. At the heart of the Palace lies the world’s largest collection of works by Carl Fabergé, including 9 of the famous Imperial Easter Eggs. The story of Fabergé and the Imperial Easter Eggs are intertwined with the lives and loves of the last Romanov, Tsar Nicholas II and his Empress, Alexandra. The eggs were personal gifts between the Tsar and his wife and the series charted the tragic story that led to the end of the Romanov dynasty. Only 42 of the 50 eggs made for the imperial family have survived.

    Walls adorned with fine art line your route around the exquisitely restored rooms of the Palace and each one is home to equally impressive exhibits of Fabergé’s contemporaries, including famous Russian jewellers and silversmiths.

    Afterwards, there will be a visit made at the Pushkin Art Gallery Shop, where you will have some free time to browse for souvenirs and maybe even pick up your own replica decorative Fabergé egg.


    This tour involves approximately 1½ hours’ walking at a moderate pace, including many steps. Flash photography is not permitted inside the Palace. Russian Roubles, US Dollars, Euro’s and credit cards are accepted in the Pushkin Art Gallery. It is forbidden to take long overcoats, large bags, umbrellas or bottles inside the Palace.

    Tour code

    LED_076

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    Duration

    4 hours

  • St Petersburg Explorer

    Join this unique tour which will open your eyes to a different view of the city of St Petersburg.

    St Petersburg Explorer

    Sit back and enjoy your first glimpses of the beautiful city of St Petersburg as you transfer by coach to St Isaac’s Square. While onboard the coach you will be given a map to help you plan your sightseeing for the day and once at St Isaac’s Square you’ll have free time to take photographs of the local sights including St Isaac’s Cathedral (exterior view), The Bronze Horseman - an icon of St Petersburg or the beautiful panorama of the Neva River.

    Rejoin your guide to continue towards the Field of Mars where you’ll have around 1½ hours of free time. Once a parade ground for the Imperial Guards, this public park is now dotted with lilac trees and pretty, manicured gardens. A short walk from the Field of Mars will bring you to the Summer Garden. Located on a man-made island it is the site of the earliest park in the city dating back to 1704. Also within walking distance you can visit the site of one of the city’s most striking monuments – The Church Over Spilled Blood.

    Your final stop will be in the heart of the city, Nevsky Prospect. Your guide will help you decide the best way to spend three hours exploring the many sights of this central area. Visit the famous Yeliseev’s Food Hall where the delights on offer look more like works of art than edible treats, head down to the Fontanka River and take an independent boat cruise or simply take a walk along the Prospect experiencing the daily life of any St Petersburg resident by visiting the local shops and cafés.

    To further enhance your exploration in St Petersburg, why not reserve the Interactive Audiopen, with its pre-recorded commentary, to compliment this tour.


    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. This excursion is exclusive of entrance fees, meals or refreshments. Your guide will be present throughout the day for any queries, questions or advice. There is approximately 6 hours of walking at your own leisure on this excursion. Please note that there is a charge for the use of public toilets, and only Russian Rubles are accepted as payment. (approximately $1 worth). The Church of the Spilled Blood is currently undergoing restoration; some of the domes will be surrounded by scaffolding.

    Tour code

    LED_065

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    • Shopping

      Shopping

    Duration

    7¾ hours

  • An Evening at The Hermitage

    A special opportunity to enjoy the Museum’s collections - without the crowds - further enhanced by an exclusive classical concert.

    An Evening at The Hermitage



    Your unique evening visit will start after the Hermitage Museum has been closed to the general public. Explore the Winter Palace, wander through its hallways, stairways and rooms, view a selection of art and treasures, and learn about its history and residents; the Romanovs, rulers of Russia for over 300 years. (Routes around the Hermitage are determined by museum curators therefore we cannot guarantee which works of art will be seen on the day.) Today the Hermitage is considered to be one of the three leading museums in the entire world and a highlight of anyone’s visit to St Petersburg.

    After the Hermitage tour, in one of the Ceremonial Halls, the full symphonic orchestra of the Hermitage Academy of Music will perform for your pleasure. Enjoy a short concert of classical music by world famous composers and refreshments of Russian ‘champagne’ on the landing of the Gala staircase.


    The tour involves approximately two hours’ walking, including many steps. Camera and video fees for the Museum are included in the tour cost. Flash photography is not permitted. It is forbidden to take long overcoats, large bags, umbrellas or bottles inside the Museum. The concert and ‘champagne’ reception are exclusive to Cunard; however the Hermitage reserves the right to allow other small groups into the Museum.

    Tour code

    LED_020

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    Duration

    3½ hours

  • Grand St Petersburg & The Hermitage

    Combine city sightseeing and a traditional luncheon, with an interior visit of Peter-and-Paul Fortress , and the celebrated Hermitage Museum.

    Grand St Petersburg & The Hermitage

    An unforgettable highlight of any visit to St Petersburg is the Hermitage Museum. Walk, with your guide, through various display rooms to see a selection of the 2 million objects housed here. Routes around the Hermitage are determined on the day by museum curators, so we cannot guarantee which works of art will be seen during your tour.

    This fascinating day will include several photo opportunities as you pass many of the city highlights. With its ornate and brightly coloured exterior, the Church of the Saviour on the Spilled Blood is a photographer's delight. View the main street, Nevsky Prospect, the University Embankment, the Admiralty, the Bronze Horseman, Rostral Columns cruiser Aurora and Peter and Paul Fortress.

    The original citadel of St Petersburg, the fortress was founded by Peter the Great in 1703 and built to Domenico Trezini's designs, taking over thirty years to complete. The date that the foundations of the fortress were laid, May 27, 1703, is considered to be the birthday of this fascinating city.

    Bargain with local vendors near the various venues and enjoy a traditional Russian luncheon with a folkloric show, at a city restaurant.


    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. The tour has around three hours’ walking including cobblestones and many steps, particularly at the Hermitage. Camera and video fees for the Hermitage and Peter-and-Paul Fortress are included in the tour cost. Flash photography is not permitted. Early reservation is recommended due to limited places. During peak season, the Hermitage can be crowded and you may be expected to queue outside in all weathers. It is forbidden to take long overcoats, large bags, bottles or umbrellas inside the Museum. The Church of the Spilled Blood is currently undergoing restoration; some of the domes are surrounded by scaffolding.

    Tour code

    LED_001

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    • Meal included

      Meal Included

    • Shopping

      Shopping

    Duration

    8¾ hours

  • Neva River Cruise

    Take in some of the city’s landmarks during a leisurely cruise along the River Neva.

    Neva River Cruise

    Flowing through the city of St Petersburg, the River Neva is an essential part of its charm, and has played an important part in numerous historical events. The width of the river ranges from an impressive 1,300 to 2,000 feet, however near the Peter and Paul Fortress and the Hermitage it exceeds 2,600 feet wide.

    After a coach journey of around 45 minutes, board your boat and sit back, relax and soak up the scenery as your leisurely cruise takes you along the Neva, River. Have your camera ready to capture photographs of some of the city’s famous landmarks, including the Bronze Horseman with St Isaac Cathedral in the background, the former shipyard; the city Admiralty, the oldest University in Russia which was founded by Peter the Great in 1724 and the Academy of Sciences, to name a few

    You’ll also see the former Stock Exchange, the four buildings of the state Hermitage, the Peter and Paul Fortress and the famous cruiser Aurora, before entering the Fontanka river where you’ll catch a glimpse of the mysterious Michael’s Castle and the Church of the Saviour on the Spilled Blood.

    During your tour, your knowledgeable guide will provide you with interesting information about the city’s rich history.

    Afterwards, a short stop will be made at a gift shop where coffee, tea or water will be offered.


    This excursion will operate by coach and boat. The boat cruise lasts approximately one hour. There is minimal walking required on this tour; however guests must be able to negotiate 14 steps at the boat pier. Access to the boat is via a wooden gangplank. A bottle of water will be provided on board the boat. It may also be necessary to cross other boats to reach your specific vessel. The boat route is subject to change depending on the water level and weather conditions. Whilst there are sufficient seats for everyone on the boat, we cannot guarantee that you’ll be able to sit in the area of your choice (either inside or on the open deck). The Church of the Spilled Blood is currently undergoing restoration; some of the domes are surrounded by scaffolding.

    Tour code

    LED_078

    Features

    • Activity low

      Activity Level: Low

    Duration

    2½ hours

  • Picturesque St Petersburg

    Visit the spectacular Church of the Saviour on the Spilled Blood and take a scenic cruise by some of the city’s landmarks.

    Picturesque St Petersburg

    This tour is filled with memorable sights, one of which will be Palace Square. You’ll be able to take pictures as you pass by before moving on to one of the city’s most famous landmarks.

    The incredible, colourful building of the Church of the Resurrection, also known as The Church of the Saviour on The Spilled Blood was directly inspired by St Basil’s Cathedral in Moscow. Its main features include a variety of spectacular onion domes, central tower with a pyramidal roof, decorated arches and columns. Built between 1883 and 1907 by Alfred Parland on the site of Alexander II’s assassination, this church was intended as a celebration of Russian art’s enduring values.

    You’ll have a short time for some souvenir shopping before embarking on a leisurely boat cruise along the River Neva to take in the city sights. Pass by the cruiser Aurora, Michael's Castle, the State Hermitage Complex, Spit of Basil Island, Admiralty shipyard and Troitsky Bridge.


    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. There will be around 1½ hours’ walking during this tour and there are 14 steps to negotiate at the boat pier. Local currency is the Rouble, however the local vendors may unofficially accept US dollars and Euros. The order of this tour may vary. The boat route is subject to change depending on the water level and weather conditions. It may also be necessary to cross other boats to reach your specific vessel. Whilst there are sufficient seats for everyone on the boat, we cannot guarantee that you’ll be able to sit in the area of your choice (either inside or on the open deck). The Church of the Spilled Blood is currently undergoing restoration; during your visit some of the domes will be surrounded by scaffolding.

    Tour code

    LED_035

    Features

    • Activity medium

      Activity Level: Medium

    • Shopping

      Shopping

    Duration

    3½ hours

  • St Petersburg Introductory Package

    Save 10% on three of St Petersburg’s most popular tours by pre-booking this introductory package, only available to book pre-cruise.

    St Petersburg Introductory Package

    If you are a first time visitor to St Petersburg, you’ll be wondering, how can I make the most of my time and see the best of this Baltic jewel? Within this package we have included the hugely Panoramic St Petersburg and an evening’s entertainment at the Russian Folkloric Show during day one, with the full day Palaces of Catherine & Peterhof on day two.

    Panoramic St Petersburg, 3¾ hours: Begin your two day adventure with a scenic drive around the city and admire the highlights, including St Isaac’s Cathedral, The Hermitage, Cruiser Aurora and the Church of the Saviour on the Spilled Blood.

    Russian Folkloric Show, 4 hours: Spend the evening being captivated by the flamboyant dances and uplifting songs performed by a local Russian folk ensemble in their traditional costumes. Enjoy a glass of Russian ‘champagne’ during the intermission.

    Palaces of Catherine & Peterhof, 9¼ hours: Leave St Petersburg behind for a day surrounded by opulence, elegance and extravagance, whilst visiting the splendid palaces and parks of the former summer residences of the Russian Tsars. Luncheon will be served in a leading restaurant including a glass of Russian ‘champagne’.

    Full details of each, individual excursion can be found on your Voyage Personaliser.



    This tour will operate by coach and on foot. This tour package is only available to book pre-cruise and it will not be possible to book on board. Partial refunds cannot be given for any element of the tour package that is not taken. We recommend that you read the essential information for each tour in Voyage Personaliser to ensure that it is suitable. Guests will return to the ship between each tour.

    Tour code

    LED_071

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    • Meal included

      Meal Included

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    Duration

    2 days

  • Private Tour - Hermitage and City Tour

    A private vehicle is the perfect solution for guests who wish to tour together around this wonderful city. Here in what was once the splendid home of the Czars and Czarinas, view one of the world’s greatest art collections.

    Private Tour - Hermitage and City Tour

    An air-conditioned minivan with an English-speaking guide and local driver is offered on this tour. This is a private vehicle; those accompanying you are family or friends with whom you agree to share costs. We do not match groups of guests to form a private group for the vehicle. Vehicles and guides are extremely limited and so early reservation is recommended to avoid disappointment. No deviations to duration, venues if included or departure and return times can be made.

    Minivans will take up to four guests.

    Your drive to the Hermitage will take you through a section of the city of St Petersburg and past the impressive buildings of a bygone imperialist era. You will see Palace Square in front of the Hermitage, the Alexander Column and the Headquarters of the Central Staff Building.

    The Hermitage Museum was built during the reigns of Elizabeth and Catherine the Great, the grandiose Baroque ‘Winter Palace’ and its four adjacent buildings house works such as those of Da Vinci, Raphael, Titian and Rembrandt, among others (Routes around the Hermitage are determined on the day by museum curators therefore we cannot guarantee which works of art will be seen during your tour). As you walk across patterned parquet floors and up ornate staircases you can admire moulded and painting ceilings, gilded furniture, decorative malachite, lapis lazuli and jasper appointments of the Palace itself. Your guide will lead you through the many display rooms relaying fascinating facts about the Museum’s history, art and architecture.

    This excursion will operate by private minivan. Private tours are non-refundable once confirmed. Actual vehicle type varies depending on availability and number of passengers in your party. Request only 1 ticket per group and not the number in your party. Vehicles are air-conditioned and come with an English-speaking guide and local driver. No deviations to tour content, duration, departure or return time can be made. You may be expected to queue to gain entrance to palaces in all weathers.

    The Hermitage - Flash photos are not permitted. You are advised that during peak season, the Hermitage can be very crowded. It is forbidden to take long overcoats, large bags, umbrellas or bottles inside the Museum.

    Tour code

    LED_705

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    • Shopping

      Shopping

    Duration

    4 hours

  • An Evening at the Ballet

    Spend a delightful evening at the theatre and see for yourself why Russia is so famed for its ballet.

    An Evening at the Ballet

    St. Petersburg has long been regarded as one of the world’s most famous ballet centres, and the second half of the 19th century was a golden age for ballet, thanks to the musical genius of the Russian composer Tchaikovsky.

    Within the grandeur of a traditional Russian theatre located in the heart of the city of St. Petersburg, you will have the opportunity to enjoy a classical ballet performance of Tchaikovsky’s world famous Swan Lake.

    During the intermission, you will be offered refreshments of Russian ‘champagne’, juice or water.


    The venue is non-exclusive to Cunard. Seating cannot be reserved in advance and tickets with seat numbers will be given on the coach transfer. Photography and video are not permitted during the performance. Casual dress is acceptable. Depending on the theatre used for your tour, there may be up to a ten minute walk to reach the theatre and up to 70 steps to negotiate. Some of the theatres have a lift within them however its capacity is limited which may result in queuing.

    Tour code

    LED_036

    Features

    • Activity medium

      Activity Level: Medium

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    Duration

    3¾ hours

  • Complete St Petersburg

    A deluxe 2 day small group tour to see the best that this historical city has to offer.

    Complete St Petersburg

    Peterhof Palace was built to rival Versailles and is situated on a hill overlooking the Gulf of Finland. Peter the Great personally drafted the layout of the 300-acre park, giving detailed instructions on the design of its spectacular system of fountains. Most famous is the Grand Cascade, with its gold statue of Samson prying open the jaws of a lion. The Cascade is aptly named; water flows down terraced steps leading from the Palace down to the Lower Gardens. Spouting fountains spray streams of water over marble statues, culminating in a man-made canal leading out to the Gulf of Finland. In addition to exploring the Palace grounds, you will have the opportunity to tour the sumptuous interior and marvel at the opulence of the Throne Room, Portrait Room and the White Dining Room.

    What the Louvre is to Paris, The Hermitage is to St Petersburg. Here, in what was once the splendid home of the Czars and Czarinas, you will find one of the world’s greatest art collections. The Hermitage is so vast it would take a lifetime to experience all of its treasures. Built during the reigns of Elizabeth and Catherine the Great, the grandiose Baroque ‘Winter Palace’ and its four adjacent buildings house works of Da Vinci, Raphael, Titian and Rembrandt, among others. Just as dazzling are the patterned parquet floors, ornate staircases, moulded and painting ceilings, gilded furniture, decorative malachite, lapis lazuli and jasper appointments of the Palace itself. Walk through a selection of display rooms with your guide who will relate fascinating facts about the Museum’s history, art and architecture. (Routes around the Hermitage are determined on the day by museum curators therefore we cannot guarantee which works of art will be seen during your tour.)

    Visit the home of one of Russia's most wealthy families -Yusupov Palace. Built in 1770, the Yusupovs acquired the Palace in 1830 to house their collection of paintings. The unique collections of art assembled by the Yusupovs and their reputation as well-educated hosts attracted the most outstanding representatives of Russian cultural life to the Palace. The Palace was also the site of the infamous murder of Rasputin, whom Prince Felix Yusupov feared was a bad influence on Czar Nicholas II.

    Originally built to protect the city from Swedish attack, the Peter and Paul Fortress and Cathedral became Russia’s ‘Tower of London’, a place for imprisoning political prisoners, including Peter the Great’s own son. Visit the Cathedral, one of the tallest structures in the city.

    Join a cruise boat, and cruise the North bank of the Neva River passing the cruiser Aurora before entering the Fontanka River. Continue as far as Michael's Castle, residence of the most mysterious Russian Czar – Paul I. Enter the Moyka River and pass by the Church of the Saviour on the Spilled Blood and the Winter Canal as you sip Russian ‘champagne’.

    Luncheon is included on each day at a leading city restaurant.

    During your two days of touring St Petersburg your coach will pass through the city’s residential suburbs en route to Peterhof.

    On one of the days a stop will be made at a local gift shop for the opportunity to purchase souvenirs.


    This tour will operate by minibus, boat and on foot. The maximum group size for this tour will be 14 guests. Each of the sites included in the tour description will be visited at some point during the two days. The tour order may vary to avoid crowding at venues and traffic. The touring on the first day will return to the ship at approximately 5.30pm, which allows you to choose from any of the evening tours available on your voyage. Camera and video fees are included in the cost of the tour. Flash photography restrictions may apply in certain rooms at the venues. At the Grand Palace of Peterhof, photography and videography are prohibited in the Palace. The Palaces and Hermitage can be crowded and you may be expected to queue outside in all weathers. There is extensive walking on this tour including many steps and gravel pathways. Comfortable, non-slip shoes are recommended. Peterhof fountains are subject to maintenance work without notification. Protective overshoes are provided, which can make the floor slippery in the Palaces. Special overshoes have to be worn in Yusupov Palace during wet weather conditions to protect the floors. These will be available on entering the Palace. It is forbidden to take long overcoats, large bags, umbrellas or bottles inside. There is limited opportunity for shopping. Credit cards are accepted, and US Dollars and Euros may be accepted, unofficially. The boat route is subject to change depending on the water level and weather conditions. There are 14 steps at the embarkation/disembarkation of the canal boat. It may also be necessary to cross other boats to reach your specific vessel. Whilst there are sufficient seats for everyone on the boat, we cannot guarantee that you’ll be able to sit in the area of your choice (either inside or on the open deck). The Church of the Spilled Blood is currently undergoing restoration; during your visit some of the domes will be surrounded by scaffolding.

    Tour code

    LED_069

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    • Meal included

      Meal Included

    • Shopping

      Shopping

    Duration

    2 days