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St Petersburg itinerary for 4 full days private guided tour

If you have 4 or more full days in St. Petersburg, there are different options ☺

First of all, you could take 2 days or 3 days tour and spend the rest on your own.

But if you are willing to learn more, we can offer some of the following itineraries ☺

Below we offer two options for the 4 days tour, but of course we can assemble for you the 5, 6 o more days tour expanding the program with visits to the Russan Museum, Faberge Museum, the Treasure Gallery of Hermitage, the residence of Catherine II in Oranienbaum, the residence of Paul I in Gatchina, the Modern Art Erarta Museum, excursion to Kronstadt Fortress and Naval Cathedral and many other sights…

For Sample prices please click here

St. Petersburg itinerary for 4 full days - Option 1

DAY 1 ->>> Panoramic + cathedrals + Peter and Paul Fortress + metro tour.

9.30Panoramic Tour (with photo stops) with visits to:
-Peter and Paul Fortress and its cathedral (Pantheon of Russian Emperors)
-Spilled Blood Church (museum)
-St. Isaac’s Cathedral (museum)
-The Cathedral of Our Lady of Kazan (a functioning Russian Orthodox Church)
-The Church of St Nicholas (a functioning Russian Orthodox Church)
-Metro Tour
15.30Back to the hotel

DAY 2 ->>> The Hermitage + The Yusupov Palace

10.00 - 13.30Excursion to the Hermitage (the most luxurious rooms of the Winter Palace and the most famous works of art)
14.00 - 15.00Lunch break or lunch included
15.30 - 17.30Visit to the Yusupov Palace (where Rasputin was murdered)
17.30 - 18.00Back to the hotel

DAY 3 ->>> Summer residence Tsarskoye Selo (Catherine’s Place with the Amber Room) and Pavlosk (Paul’s Palace).

9.30 - 12.00Catherine’s Palace with the Amber Room and the gardens
12.00 - 13.00Lunch break in the famous wooden restaurant Podvorie
14.00 – 16.00Pavlovsk (Paul’s Palace and gardens)
17.00Back to the hotel

DAY 4 ->>> Summer residences of Peter I and Nicholas I in Peterhof.

9.00Departure from the hotel
10.00 - 14.00Visit the Grand Palace of Peter I, parks with fountains and the Cottage Palace of Nicholas I
15.00Back to the hotel

NOTE. Upon request the itinerary can be completed by the excursion to Kronstadt Fortress which is on the island in the Baltic, a former naval base of the Russian Navy. There is the famous Naval Cathedral there.
Another option is to visit the residence of Catherine II in Oranienbaum

For Sample prices please click here

St. Petersburg itinerary for 4 full days - Option 2
3 days tour in St. Petersburg + 1 day trip to Novgorod

DAY 1 ->>> Panoramic + cathedrals + Peter and Paul Fortress + Hermitage

9.00 - 13.00Panoramic Tour (with photo stops) with visits to:
-Peter and Paul Fortress and its cathedral (Pantheon of Russian Emperors)
-Spilled Blood Church (museum)
-St. Isaac’s Cathedral (museum)
-The Church of St Nicholas (a functioning Russian Orthodox Church)
13.00 - 14.00Lunch break or lunch included
14.30 - 18.00The Hermitage tour
18.30Return to the hotel

DAY 2 ->>> The summer residence of Peter I in Peterhof + The Yusupov Palace

8.30Meeting in the hotel and departure to the summer residence of Peter I in Peterhof, visit the Grand Palace of Peter I and spectacular parks with fountains
13.30Back to the city
13.30-14.30Lunch break or lunch included
15.00-17.00A tour of the Yusupov Palace with the exhibition of the murder of Grigorii Rasputin
17.30Back to the hotel

DAY 3 ->>> The summer residence of Catherine II in Pushkin and Pavlovsk

9.00Meeting in the hotel and departure to the Catherine’s Palace in Pushkin
10.00 – 12.00Visiting the Catherine’s Palace with the Amber Room and walking in the gardens Moving to the residence of Paul in Pavlovsk (10 minutes drive)
13.00 - 14.00Visiting the Paul’s Palace
14.30 - 15.30If you wish, you can have lunch at the famous restaurant Podvorie (traditional Russian cuisine)
16.30 - 17.00Back to the hotel

DAY 4 ->>> Full day trip to Novgorod

7.00Meeting in the hotel and departure to the Catherine’s Palace in Pushkin
10.00 – 17.00Panoramic tour of Novgorod, a visit to the Novgorodian Kremlin (an old fortress), St. Sophia Cathedral and other churches, a couple of monasteries (all of XI century - XIV), the Museum of Wooden architecture where you can get acquainted with the authentic daily life of Russian peasants of the 17-19th centuries
Lunch in a local restaurant is included
20.30 - 21.00Back to hotel

For Sample prices please click here

More information on Sightseeing

The best way to do sightseeing is by car or by bus as the city is spread out. The size of the city center protected by UNESCO where the main architectural ensembles are is 4000 hectares (For comparison, in Rome, the protected territory is 1485 hectares; Prague has 866, Paris - 365)

During the sightseeing tour you will get acquainted with the center of the city, its wide streets, spacious squares, famous bridges, majestic palaces, domed churches, grand theaters and numerous monuments.

The tour gives a comprehensive view of the historic city center and acquaints you with the city. Our tour has many photo stops

More information on the Hermitage

In the afternoon visit the Hermitage museum. This is a must see site when visiting St Petersburg.

For sheer grandeur, no other museum can touch it. Wandering around the glittering, gilded, frescoed rooms of the great Winter Palace gives a stunning insight into the astonishing wealth and extravagance of the Romanovs. Some, such as the Throne Room, The Pavilion Hall and The Golden Drawing Room, are simply dazzling - with walls covered in gold leaf, floors inlaid with exotic marble or timber and ceilings corniced, coffered or vaulted and dripping with crystal chandeliers.

But these rooms are just a side show to one of the world's greatest art collections, which ranges from little-known masterpieces from antiquity, such as Scythian gold to some of the most famous works of modern art, including Picasso's great Blue Period paintings. So if you are planning a trip to St Petersburg, you need to make sure that you don't miss out on its greatest sight. The museum is housed in 5 buildings; the most famous of them is the Winter Palace where the Romanovs lived.

The museum has an outstanding collection of 19th- and early 20-century painting with Renoir, Monet, Van Gogh, Gaugin, Cezanne, Matisse and Picasso. There are also many great works from the Italian Renaissance, and a particularly wide and high quality collection of Dutch and Flemish paintings, most notably by Rembrandt. Just to look at the place is stunning but when you know the history of some of the art, your experience becomes way richer. The museum is huge so the best way to see it is with the guide.

The experts say that if you were to spend a minute looking at each exhibit on display in the Hermitage, you would need 5 years before you’d seen them all. That is why during our visit we show the best of the best. We call our tour of the Hermitage – a tour through time and epochs. Even if you are not an art lover you will find this place fantastic as the collections are set in spectacular buildings, four of which were built as palaces. This year the Impressionists collection will be displayed in a newly restored building of the General Staff opposite the Winter Palace.

More information on the Treasure Gallery of the Hermitage

The Treasure Gallery contains an amazing collection of archeological finds, including Scythian and Greek gold of the 7th – 4th century B.C., numerous diplomatic gifts, and a fabulous collection of Western European jewelry made by the most prominent jewelers of the time, and a famous Faberge collection.

With the possible exception of the Louvre, there is no museum in the world that rivals the Hermitage in size and quality. Its collection is so large that it would take years to view it in its entirety. The collection is displayed in 4 buildings built in the 18th-19th centuries. The Treasure Gallery is in one of these buildings of the Hermitage.

At all times, Russian tsars lived in wealth and luxury. Today some of the most famous royal jewelry is displayed in the Treasure Gallery.

Probably, the most striking object in the collection is the horse attire presented to Nicolas I by The Sultan of the Ottoman Empire. The saddle cloth is encrusted with more than 16,000 diamonds.

Another striking object is a 46 piece gold toilet set for Empress Anna Ioanovna. It includes gold teapots, coffee-cups, wash-stands, candlesticks, trays and caskets. After her death the gold setting was used only for dressing royal brides before wedding ceremonies.

More information on Peter and Paul Fortress

The Fortress was the first building constructed in the city. The fortress was founded on a small island in the Neva delta on May 27, 1703 and that day became the birthday of the city of St Petersburg. The Fortress houses the Cathedral of Peter and Paul where all the tsars are buried from Peter the Great to the last Tsar Nicholas II. The bell tower of the cathedral makes it the tallest building in St. Petersburg. On top of the cathedrals’ gilded spire stands a magnificent golden angel holding a cross. This weathervane is one of the most prominent symbols of St Petersburg.

More information on the Church on the Spilled Blood

The magnificent Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood is one of St. Petersburg's most memorable landmarks. The church, built at the end of the nineteenth century, is constructed in a classical Russian style decorated with colorful domes and glazed tiles. It was built to honor Tsar Alexander II of Russia, who was assassinated at the site where the church now sits, hence the reference to "spilled blood". The church contains over 7,000 square meters of mosaics (more than any other church in the world) each representing a biblical scene. It is truly stunning to see both from the outside and inside, and it's located in the center of the city so there's basically no excuse to not fit it into whatever itinerary you have!

More information on St. Isaac’s Cathedral

St Isaac's Cathedral is one of the most impressive landmarks of the Russian Imperial capital and dominating the skyline of Saint Petersburg. It is the third largest in the world. St. Isaac's was designed by a French architect Auguste Montferrand as the city's main church and the largest cathedral in Russia. The cathedral is surrounded by 100 massive red granite columns. The interior is adorned with incredibly detailed mosaics, icons, paintings, and a stunning iconostasis decorated with 8 malachite and 2 lapis lazuli columns. St. Isaac's was closed in the early 1930s and reopened as a museum. Today, church services are held here only on major church holidays.

More information on Yusupov Palace

This is a very mysterious palace. It was the scene of one of the most dramatic episodes in the Russian history - the murder of Grigory Rasputin. The story of this historic event will enfold before your eyes when you visit the Rasputin exhibition, included in your tour of this fascinating palace.

The Yusupov Palace is one of the few aristocratic homes in the city to have retained many of its original interiors. The private theater inside the palace is a real jewel. This is the only palace that is in the catalogues of UNESCO as one of the best preserved private houses in Europe.

More information on Catherine’s Palace

30 kilometers south of St. Petersburg lies the town of Pushkin known as Tsarskoye Selo. It was the summer residence of the tsars from the beginning of the 18th century to the end of the monarchy. Catherine’s Palace is one of the best examples of Russian Baroque architecture. Sparkling above the palace at the northern end are the golden cupolas of the Palace Church.

The famous Amber Room which is considered the eighth wonder of the world plundered during the World War II, has now been restored and should not be missed. The former country residence of the Russian emperors is now the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Saint Petersburg.

More information on Peterhof

Peterhof is called the “Russian Versailles” and is a jewel of the Russian art, a town of parks, palaces and fountains. The residence started by Peter the Great is more than 300 years old. This summer residence of the Romanov’s is right on the Baltic Sea, some 30 kilometers west of St. Petersburg.

During the tour we visit the Grand Palace and the spectacular park with fountains.

Peterhof is the kingdom of fountains. There are 144 fountains, all operating without the use of pumps by a combination of naturally generated water pressure and magic. Each fountain is unique and once you step in the area of the kingdom of fountains you will be surprised by this splendid oasis, a reminder of the beauty that man can create.

More information on Nicholas I private Palace Cottedge in Petergoff

This cozy palace is located in Alexandria Park. It was a private residence of Tsar Nicholas I and his family.

The cottage palace was created by a Scottish architect who made it look like an English-style estate with a "cottage" palace and a farmhouse. The Cottage Palace was completed in 1829, and became the permanent summer residence of the Tsar's family.

It is extremely elegant, with a number of charming decorative details. The palace's interiors bear witness to the private tastes not only of Nicholas and Alexandra, but of their children and grandchildren.

This former residence of Emperor Nicholas I (who ruled Russia between 1825-1855) is a carefully preserved 19th century house. For Tsar Nicholas and his family it was a refuge from tiring court life in the nearby splendid palaces and parks of Peterhof. Only the closest courtiers were invited here, and the Emperor spent his free time watching ships sailing on the Baltic Sea and drinking tea.

During the tour you will find out why it was difficult to get an invitation to this place, how Empress Alexandra spent her days and what she wrote in her diary. You will see many authentic things which were used by this happy family and learn about the tragedy that happened to them. The Cottage palace houses a first-class collection of painting and sculpture by the leading Russian masters.

More information on Pavlovsk

During the tour you will visit the Emperor Paul’s Palace with its classical interiors and afterwards you will have a nice walk in the picturesque landscape park with small classical pavilions and marble statues. This park ensemble, which is considered to be one of the largest in Europe, gives an impression of a wonderful combination of nature, architecture and art.If you are tired of luxury of the Catherine’s Palace and pomposity of Peterhof, or just from the city rush, Pavlovsk is the best place where you can forget everything and immerse into the world of beauty, harmony, good taste and grace. This palace has a mysterious power as it has survived for more than 2 centuries through fire, war, and almost total ruin. Its story began in 1777 when Catherine the Great gave her son a present – a piece of land (977 acres) to build his own summer residence. This place makes you believe the famous phrase of Dostoevsky ‘Beauty will save the world’.

More information on the Russian Museum

Together with the Tretyakov Art Gallery in Moscow the Russian Museum is the biggest museum of Russian art in the world. This museum will be interesting for those who want to learn more about the Russian history. The museum was opened by Tsar Nicholas II in honor of his father Tsar Alexander III who was known for his love of Russian Art and culture. The collections of the museum number more than 400,000 exhibits. The main collections are housed in the Royal Palace called Michael’s Palace which belonged to the family of Grand Prince Michael, the youngest son of Emperor Paul. The palace is one of the best works of an Italian architect Carlo Rossi who worked in St. Petersburg in the first half of the 19th century and is the author of 13 squares. The collections of the museum cover the period from the 10th to the 20th centuries. Apart from Michael’s Palace, the collections are also housed in the Stroganov Palace, Michael’s Castle and the Marble Palace.

More information on Oranienbaum

About 25 miles from St. Petersburg, not far from Peterhof is the Oranienbaum estate.

It is the oldest of the suburban palaces founded by Prince Menshikov, Peter the Great's companion-in-arms and political advisor. After Menshikov's death, Oranienbaum was presented by Empress Elizabeth to her nephew, the future Emperor Peter III. The place got its name after orange trees in the lower park. Is the only one from Imperial palaces around St. Petersburg not to be captured by the Nazis during the World War II.

The most spectacular building of Oranienbaum is definitely the Chinese palace. Built by Antonio Rinaldi between 1762 and 1768, it was the first major building project to be ordered by Catherine the Great to serve as her private dacha.

Another famous palace of the summer residence in Oranienbaum is the magestic Menshikov’s Palace with it’s 300 meters long baroque fasade and refined interiors

Now the Oranienbaum museum is included in the UNESCO list of the cultural monuments of the world.

More information on Kronstadt

One of the places to escape the hustle of the city is the town of Kronstadt. It was founded just a year after St. Petersburg on the island in the Gulf of Finland.

In 1704, on the southern part of the island, Peter the Great ordered the construction of a fort to protect the approaches to St. Petersburg from the Swedish navy.

Historically Kronstadt is closely connected with the defence of St.Petersburg from the sea- the town has the Kronstadt Fortress and several smaller defensive forts.

Kronstadt is strikingly different from other suburbs of St. Petersburg. Peterhof, Pushkin, Pavlovsk, and Gatchina were built as places of recreation and entertainment for the royal family. Kronstadt, on the contrary, was built “for serious business”. For a long time, the city was the main military base of the Baltic Fleet, and sailors and their families still make up a significant part of the population of Kronstadt. Warships continue to moor at the city’s wharves.

A trip to Kronstadt is a perfect getaway for those who have had their fill of Petersburg’s most celebrated landmarks. The fresh sea air, classical architecture and romantic forts are a world away from the brightness of the Peterhof fountains, the colorful mosaics of the Church of the Savior on Blood and the shine of the mysterious Amber Room.

The quickest way to Kronstadt is bay Dam of St.Petersburg, a unique hydrotecnical construction which was built for protect the city from the floods.

A stroll around the city

When strolling in the city, it makes sense to divide the city into two parts. The first walk will be devoted directly to the city, while the second will include its surroundings and visits to the city’s sea forts. The best place to start exploring the city is the Kronstadt Naval Cathedral. Built in 1913 by architect Vasily Kosyakov in the neo-Byzantine style, the cathedral explicitly represents the greatness of the Baltic Fleet. The golden dome of this temple can be seen from almost anywhere in Kronstadt. This recently restored cathedral has essentially become the primary tourist attraction of Kronstadt.

The town has a lot of monuments from during centuries that are connected with the Russian science and Navy – the famous Naval Cathedral, the glory of Russian Navy, is one of the landmarks of the town. Another famous cathedral, St/ Vladimir Cathedral, is associated with the name of St/John of Kronstadt. Kronstadt tidegauge is the place where all depths and heights of Russia are measured. In Kronstadt you can also find Peter’s dock, as well monuments to outstanding admirals and naval commanders.

The tour of the forts wil be a good addition to your excursion to Kronstadt. It is possible to have a boat ride visiting the Fort Kronshlot, Alexander I, Count Milutin and others.

More information on the Faberge Museum

The Faberge museum is the newest museum in St Petersburg. It holds a fabulous collection of jewelry, including the largest collection of Faberge eggs to be found anywhere in the world. Besides that, you can see many other jewelry pieces made by Faberge Company or by the contemporaries of Carl Faberge.

The museum was opened for general public at the end of March 2014 in the newly restored 18th century Shuvalov palace.

The collection brings us back to the Royal days. Tsar Alexander III and later, his son, Nicholas II, each year would give their wives jewelled Fabergé Easter eggs, totaling 50 imperial eggs. The most famous of these are now exhibited in the museum.

The collection includes over 200 objects formerly owned by the Forbes family in New York, in particular their nine Imperial and half a dozen non-Imperial eggs, all acquired by a Russian businessman Mr. Vekselberg in 2004 for over $100 million. The collection has been vastly increased to cover all areas of Fabergé’s activity—monumental silver, colorful Muscovite enamels, and a multitude of cigarette cases, bell-pushes, frames, clocks and belt buckles in elegant transparent guilloché enamels.