In 1703, Tsar Peter the Great founded St. Petersburg in the swampy delta mouth of the River Newa and today it is a living monument to the lives and times of Russia’s Imperial Tsars.
The Winter Palace contains Russia’s largest museum, the Hermitage, which houses more than two and a half million exhibits. Since Peter the Great, Russian rulers purchased many major works of art, but it was Catherine the Great who acquired complete collections from the auction houses of Europe.
In Admiralty, one of five boroughs, with its needle-shaped, gold-plated tower, is one of the city’s most famous landmarks, its grand architecture depicting the emergence of Russia as a naval power and the marvelous Saint Isaac's Cathedral has the third largest dome in the world. Twenty-four thousand tree stumps were used for its foundations and it can accommodate a congregation of 14,000.
At the widest part of the Neva River is the regal and dominant, Peter And Paul Fortress that Peter the First had built to protect his capital city from Sweden and to guard Russia’s passage to the East Sea. The focal point of the fortress is the Peter And Paul Cathedral, that served as the burial place of the Tsars and contains the marble coffin of Peter the Great.
Russian Baroque and Russian Classicism were established in St. Petersburg - city of monumental events, outstanding architecture and an Imperial metropolis on the grand scale.
Global Treasures - History's Most Protected Monuments - Heritage is our legacy from the past, what we live today, and what we pass on to future generations. Our cultural and natural heritage are both irreplaceable sources of life and inspiration. Places as unique and diverse as the wilds of East Africa's Serengeti, the Pyramids of Egypt, the Great Barrier Reef in Australia and the Baroque cathedrals of Latin America make up our world's heritage. Join us as we explore one of these protected monuments.