Reviews St Petersburg
The Hermitage is one of the greatest art collections of the world. At its heart is one of the world’s most luxurious royal palaces, the ornate Baroque Winter Palace, designed by Italian Architect, Bartolomei Rastrolli. The art collection was started by Catherine the Great, in 1764. It now includes around three million exhibits with works by Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael, Titian, Rembrandt, Rubens, Renoir, Cezanne, Manet, Monet, Pissarro, Van Gogh, Matisse, Gaugin and Rodin.
Isaakievsky sobor (St Isaac’s Cathedral)
... More St Isaac's Cathedral was built in 1818-58, by French-born architect Auguste Montferrand. It was commissioned by Tsar Alexander I, but the plan was so ambitious, especially because the foundations had to rest on the marshy ground, that Alexander and his successor were all dead before it was completed. During the Communist years, the church became a museum of atheism. It is still a museum but church services are held here on special occasions.
Petropavlovskaya krepost (Peter & Paul Fortress)
Peter the Great laid out the plans for the Peter & Paul Fortress on Zayachy Island, in 1703, to defend the area from the Swedes. The fortress soon became a high-security political jail, where various important figures such as Dostoyevsky, Gorky and Trotsky, were imprisoned. Next to the Commandant’s House in the fortress lies the Cathedral of St Peter and St Paul where the Tsars still rest.
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