After the very late and wet arrival into St Petersburg we were all up for the guided tour that had been arranged for the Saturday. The weather was fine but overcast, which is good for here due to their only being 90 days with sun a year.
The fist stop for the day was the Katherine’s Palace, which has been totally restored after WW2. It was decorated in an abundance of gold leaf covered ornate timber-work. We were told so much information on the history of the residence that it was impossible to keep up with it.
After lunch the second visit was to the Summer Palace of Peter the 1st. Here most of us spent the time looking at the gardens and all the water fountains and features including some, which only operate when you walk across the rock path. Of course I had to try these out which meant that I was going to get wet, but no problem it was still fun and not wet enough to get cold
The day was finished off with a fast boat trip across the bay and up the river to finish near our hotel.
Today started with a driving tour of all the historic sites around the city before stoping for lunch.
After lunch we headed for “The State Hermitage Museum”. The art buffs on this blog probably have an idea about what we saw.
“OMG” even someone like my self who is not the greatest art lover was totally blown away be the collection in this place.
We started of in the area with works of Monet, Renoir, Gauguin and Cezanne to name a few, and not just 1 or 2 from each but 5+ from each artist of name that I knew.
Then we moved to a room with and incredible clock and the most intricate mosaics.
Then onto a room with a 2 works from Leonardo da Vinci before turning the corner tom a Michel Angelo sculpture.
The room with the works of Anthony Van dyke had about 40 of his works hanging, then into the room with about 30 Rubens hanging.
We Travelled through rooms with works from many artist of that era, but the last room we looked at had not a couple of Rembrandt’s but 22 in a one large room.
All of these works where purchased long ago them hidden before the Germans occupied the city during the war.
A most humbling day, too be in the same room as these great artists with works that seem almost alive. And a great finish to our tour of Saint Petersburg and the second last day of our journey. A city that is one my whish list to come back too if possible one day.