The Lower Park of Peterhof

city
Saint Petersburg / Russia

Peter I intended to have a Versailles of his own built near St.Petersburg but he got to create something totally unique.


When he examined the site, the Emperor found there an elevation difference of 16 meters and numerous natural groundwater springs nearby. It became clear that fountains could be operated without any pumps, and the height of water jets could be controlled by pipe diameter. Up to the present day, 150 fountains and 4 cascades of the Lower park of Peterhof, which occupies a territory of 102 hectares, are engineered as described above. The hydraulic system is the special pride of Peterhof fountains.


The Grand Cascade is the best known landmark of the Lower park. Peter I himself is responsible for the concept but it was only 100 years later that the cascade took its present form. The central fountain has a statue of Samson tearing open a lion’s jaws and was designed when the 25th anniversary of Peter I’s victory over the Swedes at Poltava was celebrated. Two years later in 1736 it was unveiled. Samson personifies Russia – the decisive battle at Poltava occurred on the day of St.Sampson, who was a patron of the Russian army. The lion – Sweden’s heraldic beast – is a personification of defeated Sweden. The height of the water jet is 20 meters. The cascade has 64 fountains altogether and a lot of gilded statues. If you visit artificial grottoes built under the Grand Palace, you’ll find yourself in the “heart” of the cascade and see exhibits about the engineering and hydraulic system of the fountains.


The Marine canal divides the Lower park into two parts – the Eastern part and the Western part which have symmetrical avenues. Some fountains are paired (Adam Fountain in the Eastern part and Eve Fountain in the Western part) but either of the two parts has something unique. The Eastern part has Peter I’s favourite palace Monplaisir, the Triton Fountain, the Chessboard Hill Cascade, Roman Fountains, the Sun Fountain, and trick fountains, while the Western part has the Marly Palace, the Hermitage pavilion, the Lion Cascade and the Golden Hill Cascade, the Menazherny fountains and many other sights.


Peter I enjoyed coming to Peterhof by sea. 21st century travelers arriving at Peterhof by hydrofoil get a breathtaking experience viewing the astounding ensemble of the Lower Park with its Cascades and Palaces.

city
Saint Petersburg / Russia

Suitable tours

Popular
Peterhof, tour of parks and fountain
Attractions
Lesser Palaces of Peterhof Monplaisir Peterhof The Lower Park of Peterhof The Upper Garden of Peterhof
4 hours
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from 3800₽ (
At the central Bank of Russia exchange rate, reference info
$42.32)
/ person
Popular
Tour of the Catherine Palace & Peterhof parks
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from 6000₽ (
At the central Bank of Russia exchange rate, reference info
$66.82)
/ person
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Tour of the Peterhof’s Grand Palace
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from 4000₽ (
At the central Bank of Russia exchange rate, reference info
$44.55)
/ person
Popular
Tour of Peterhof with one of the small palaces
Attractions
Monplaisir Peterhof The Lower Park of Peterhof The Upper Garden of Peterhof
4 hours
Walking, Transport
from 4500₽ (
At the central Bank of Russia exchange rate, reference info
$50.12)
/ person