Catherine Palace is situated in the town of Pushkin - a little suburb of St. Petersburg. The other name of the place is Tsarskoye Selo, which is translated into English like Tsar's village. The palace was constructed in the 18th century for the Russian Empress Elisabeth I, the daughter of Peter the Great, as her Summer residence. Elisabeth liked luxury more than anyone, and the palace indeed answers her taste. It is constructed in the style of Russian baroque, richly decorated with gilded carvings. 30 kilos of gold was used for the interior decoration only.
During the tour of the Palace you will walk through a magnificent gallery of gala rooms where balls, receptions, and official dinners took place, see a very interesting collection of furniture and peaces of applied art, which belonged to the Royal family. But the main point of interest is of course the world famous Amber Room. A room, where the whole surface of the walls is covered with natural amber. This interior is unique. Nowhere in the world one can see anything like that. After visiting the Palace we can also have a walk around the beautiful gardens.
Usually the tour to Catherine Palace takes about 4 hours, as it is 24 kilometers from St. Petersburg. If you have a possibility to spend the whole day in the country, we recommend you to take a combined tour of Catherine Palace and Pavlovsk. Pavlovsk is a former residence of Emperor Paul I, the son of Catherine the Great. It is located 10 minutes drive from Catherine Palace. In this case the tour will take 5-6 hours.
More detailed information about Catherin Palace you can find on the official cite of the museum.
We also recommend you to see:
- Alexander's Palace - a palace which was used by the last Russian Tsar Nickolas II and his family as their private home. You can see a number of exquisite Modern style interiors designed for the last Royal family and a very interesting exhibition devoted to the story of their life and martyrdom. It is located in Pushkin, 5 minutes walk from Catherine Palace. The tour will take about an hour.
- The monument to the defenders of Leningrad - a monument which is devoted to the siege of St. Petersburg (at that time Leningrad) during the World War II. It also has a small but very impressive museum of the siege telling the story of the most tragic page of the history of the city. The monument is situated on the way from Pushkin to St. Petersburg. The stop will take about 40 minutes.