St.Peter and St.Paul's Fortress, Saint Petersburg
The fortress was built in 1703 and was the first building to be erected in St Petersburg. This was a former prison with a beach in front. Its first prisoner was actually Peter the Great's own son Alexei and in later life housed political prisoners.
From here there is the daily 12 noon wake up call which is actually a cannon shot. Having heard similar sounds when up in Edinburgh it didn't make me jump as my friend expected me to.
You can sunbathe on the beach by the banks of the Neva on a sunny day. There is a museum of the city within which has very exhibits of the life of citizens of the city over the years.
Open: Thursday to Monday 11am to 6 pm, Tuesday - 11 am to 5 pm.
Entry into the fort is actually free but to visit the other attractions inside attract a charge - see more in the separate descriptions.
Construction on the Baroque cathedral commenced in 1712. From the outside the cathedral is very plain in appearance, but the amazing architecure inside more than makes up for it. The spire is its most notable exterior feature and it is second in height only to the TV tower in the city.
Inside you will also find the tombs of all of Russia's pre-revolutionary rulers from Peter the Great onwards (except Peter II and Ivan VI).There is also the recently reburied Tsar Nicholas and his family.
As well as the tombs there are also some beautiful icons that are well worth seeing.
Containing one of the oldest buildings in Petersburg, the Peter and Paul complex is a day out in itself. There are several museums, plus the walls to walk along and the main cathedral to visit. It is possible to buy a ticket to visit most of the places for 350 roubles (in January 2011 it was discounted to 250r as some parts of the complex were being renovated). The walls are not included in this price and nor is the waxwork museum. The main cathedral contains the bodies of most of the Tzars since Peter the Great including Nicolas II and his family in a side chapel just to the right of the entrance. The Prison is also not to be missed. You can see the cell where both Trotsky and Gorky were kept prisoner plus listen to recordings (in Russian) of memoirs of prisoners and see how the cells changed over time and how political prisoners where kept in different conditions to other prisoners. There is lots of information in English. The Commandant's House is a museum about the history of Petersburg which starts of rather unpromisingly but go up to the second floor and it becomes really interesting with lots of interactive exhibits and information about the history and the way that people used to live.
The whole fortress is a museum complex with quite a few different museums housed in its different structures, of which Sts Peter & Paul’s Cathedral is definitely the most important one. You can get to the fortress by either one of the two bridges connecting it to the mainland, and tickets can be booked in the booking office inside the small yellow and white structure in the cathedral square.
The 18th-century gilded wood carved iconostasis is the most impressive part of the cathedral. Make sure you bring your camera to photograph it (picture-taking is free). Generally, you do not need longer than 15 or 20 minutes to see the inside
If you are interested in seeing the tombs of the Russian tsars, the Peter and Paul Fortress is the place to visit. It is the city’s historical center, located on a small island within walking distance from Gorkovskaya metro station.
Inside, it looks much more spectacular compared to its rather plain outside appearance. The marble tombs of the Tsars and members of the royal family are all alike. Nicholas and Alexandra, the last Russian emperors, are in a small chapel right of the entrance (their remains were buried in the same grave with their children’s remains). Peter the Great and Catherine the Great are at the opposite side of the cathedral, right of the iconostasis.
The Peter and Paul Cathedral, located inside the fortress, is the burial place of the tsars and the tallest historical building (122 m/400 ft) in the city. The headquarters of Saint Petersburg’s municipal government are located in the Mariinsky Palace, which was built in 1844 on Saint Isaac's Square in the Admiralty district for Emperor Nicholas I’s daughter Maria. Also on Saint Isaac’s Square is the Cathedral of Saint Isaac, which was built between 1768 and 1858. Far to the east of the Admiralty district is the Smolny Institute, founded by Catherine the Great in the 1700s to serve as a boarding school for upper-class girls. The current building—built to replace the original structure in the early 1800s—housed the first Soviet government from the time it took power in October (or November, in the Western, or New Style, calendar) 1917 until March 1918.
One of the first things we did after getting settled on our ship (Viking Cruises) was view and then visit the Peter and Paul Fortress---not really what it sounds but really cool---see photo of the lovers out front! Beautiful monument on the river---great start to our St Petersburg visit!
closed on tuesdays
The Peter And Paul Fortress is on an island across the river Neva from The Hermitage. A combined ticket for all entries is best only if you intend to see all attractions, which could take all day. I was only really interested in St Peter and Paul cathedral so single entry ticket was best.80 years after their execution by the bolshevicks the last Czar and his family were buried in St Petersburgs Peter and Paul Cathedral in 1998.
This was the first building in Peter's new capitol. Peter built a fort on a small island in the Neva delta to protect the area from possible attack by the Sweden. The day that it was started - May 27, 1703 (May 16 according to the old calendar) became the birthday of the city of St Petersburg.
Ironically, although it was originally built for defense (hence the name Fortress), from 1721 onwards the fortress housed part of the city's garrison and rather notoriously served as a high security political jail. Among the first inmates was Peter's own rebellious son Alexei. Later, the list of famous residents included Dostoyevsky, Gorkiy, Trotsky and Lenin's older brother, Alexander. No prisoner ever escaped.
Our driver had a pass to drive into the fort and park inside, which put us much nearer the scene of action, but we still had to walk some. We walked in the Sally Port and across to the Peter and Paul Cathedral, where the Tsars are buried.
The Cathedral was the first church in the city to be built of stone. On top of the cathedrals’ gilded spire stands a magnificent golden angel holding a cross (photo 3). This weathervane is one of the most prominent symbols of St Petersburg, and at 404 feet tall, the cathedral is the highest building in the city.
Open: 10:00 - 18:00 Closed on WED and on the last TUE of every month.
An admission fee is charged for the cathedral and the museum which our guide paid
The construction of the Peter and Paul Fortress on 27. May 1703 marks the birthday of St. Petersburg.
It is the city's oldest structure and was built by Peter the Great to protect the area from possible attacks. Instead of being used as a defensive fortress it finally became a prison for political enemies of the Tsars and the Soviets.
The Peter and Paul Fortress is situated on a small island in the Neva Delta (Metro: Gorkovskaya).
The oldest church in St. Petersburg, history of the city and to the Romanov dynasty. Bell tower is the tallest structure, if you exclude the TV tower. Construced inside the fortress. The cathedral is dedicated to Saints Peter and Paul, the patron saints of the fortress.
During a city highlight tour, I was brought to the Peter and Paul Fortress to go into the cathedral and visit the cathedral were ALL the emperors were entombed, including Peter the Great himself who chose a spot close to the altar on the far right side if you're facing altar(with a small bust of him). But if time allows, I suggest you walk to the fortress yourself. If coming from Nevsky prospect, just go towards the Moyki River and walk along it's banks to the direction of the Neva river...just follow the river. This would take maybe about 45minutes and over an hour because you will be stopping to take pictures along the bank...when you reach the big Trinity bridge, go on it and that will lead you to the fortress. We drove past that big bridge and I wanted to walk on it and it was a great walk. At the Fortress, get a ticket (100 rubles or 4 USD) to go up onto the walks at the periphery - these walks are well above ground and give a stunning view of the Neva River and you can see the churches, the Hermitage and other buildings of course the powerful fountain on the river itself. People sunbathe and swim but I do not advise this because water pollution has been a problem here from what I hear. And there is a small sandy beach at the side of the fortress. I also video-ed a helicopter landing on a boat to release its passengers --- you hold your breath and wonder if it is going to land safely and on-target...
Beautiful! Peter the Great had this fortress built at the beginning of the 18th century against possible attacks by Sweden. However, it has not been needed for that. Instead, there are the last resting places of some of the Romanov family members.
The outer rim of the fortress is the place where the townspeople of St. Peterburg come to sunbathe where the thick walls give shelter against the wind. I even saw someone go for a swim in the river Neva.
This Cathedral is situaded on the Petrograd side across the river Neva. It is build in a Baroque style and will be crowded as all the main objectives from St.Petersburg
From this area, a cannon is fired at noon, every day.
Admission in the fortress will be free, but all the objectives inside will have an entrance fee.
The Peter and Paul Fortress is the original citadel of St. Petersburg, Russia, designed by Domenico Trezzini and founded in 1703. The fortress contains a number of buildings including the Peter and Paul Cathedral, where all Russian tsars from Peter I to Alexander III are interred; the remains of the Imperial martyrs, Nicholas II and his family and entourage, were also interred there, in the side St.Catherine's Chapel, on the 80th anniversary of their deaths, July 17, 1998. Towards the end of 2006, the remains of Dowager Empress Maria Feodorovna, mother of the murdered Nicholas II, who died in 1928 were brought from Roskilde Cathedral outside Copenhagen, Denmark to finally rest next to her husband, Alexander III. The newer Grand Ducal Mausoleum is connected to the cathedral by a corridor. The latest burial there was of Nicholas II's first cousin once removed, Grand Duke Vladimir Cyrilovich, son of Grand Duke Cyril Vladimirovitch. Other structures inside the fortress include the still functioning Mint building, the Trubetskoy bastion and the City Museum.