The Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia

The Winter Palace is a fabulously large green, white, and gold building on the side of the Neva River, houses the world-famous Hermitage Museum that epitomizes Russia’s love affair with art and culture. It is the home to the largest collection of paintings in the world. The total number of pieces kept by the museum tallies to somewhere around 3 million.

The Hermitage was created in 1764 as the private collection of Empress Catherine the Great. She commanded Russian ambassadors around the world to purchase the best pieces of art they could find. Through their work, she grew her collection, which went on public display (to the “respectable set”) in 1852. Today, the Hermitage is one of world's most important collections of art.

Naturally, only a small portion of the collection can be displayed at any given time. Today, tours of the Hermitage are usually longer than 3 hours and incredibly popular. Visitors might see exhibitions in any of several buildings that are mostly lined up along the Palace Embankment of the Neva River. Firstly the Small Hermitage, the original home of the collection; the Great or Old Hermitage, its first great extension; the New Hermitage, opened along with the Old one in 1852; and the many exhibition halls in the Winter Palace, including the Malachite and Great Nicholas rooms (the latter a former ballroom).



The Renaissance collection with its Raphaels, the Impressionists (including works by Cezanne and Monet), and the 20th century painters (such as Picasso, Matisse, and Kandinsky) are among the highlights of the collection.

The adjacent Palace Square is just as rich in history. The Alexander Column - a great monolithic red granite monument to Tsar Alexander’s role in crushing Napoleon Bonaparte’s army during its invasion of Russia, overlooks the square.
The Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia
The Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia

See it on following tours

Rating:
4.91
4.910610413970134
Revolutionary Capitals

Revolutionary Capitals

9 days / Private tour
Moscow Saint Petersburg

COMPLIMENTARY VISAS Follow the traces of the Russian Revolution while exploring Moscow and St. Petersburg sights in 9 days. Find out many secrets of the revolution leader, Lenin, and get an insight of the life of the Russian royal Romanov family.

Rating: 4.92
From
$3,317
Revolutionary Capitals Short

Revolutionary Capitals Short

7 days / Private tour
Moscow Saint Petersburg

COMPLIMENTARY VISAS Step back in time to learn about Lenin and the Russian Imperial Romanovs family with our thematic Revolution Tour, in one week explore major revolutionary attractions in Moscow & St. Petersburg.

Rating: 4.88
From
$2,817
MS Chernishevsky Moscow - St. Petersburg

MS Chernishevsky Moscow - St. Petersburg

12 days / 4-star cruise
Moscow Uglich Yaroslavl Goritsy Kizhi Island Mandrogi Saint Petersburg
Immerse yourself in the beauty of Volga nature, authentic Russian towns, as well as the two mighty capitals.
Rating: 4.79
From
$3,196
St. Petersburg Shore Excursion

St. Petersburg Shore Excursion

2 days / Extension
Saint Petersburg
Coming to St. Petersburg with a cruise? Shore excursion is a great way to explore St. Petersburg heritage without ever needing a Russian visa.
Rating: 4.82
From
$1,048
Golden Eagle Arctic Explorer Journey

Golden Eagle Arctic Explorer Journey

Saint Petersburg Kirkenes Murmansk Petrozavodsk Vladimir Suzdal Moscow
COMPLIMENTARY VISAS Immerse yourself in a winter fairytale as you set off on a journey on board the luxurious Golden Eagle train to explore the Arctic and Northern Lights.
Rating: 4.88
From
$11,995
Venice of the North (5-star)

Venice of the North (5-star)

7 days / Private tour
Saint Petersburg
Our 5-star private tour to St. Petersburg is a dream come true: the best accommodation at centrally located landmark hotels, private drivers, and tours around the main highlights with hand-picked professional local guides.
Rating: 5.00
From
$2,298