St. Petersburg Catherine Palace Excursion Reviews
On the one hand, Catherine's Palace is quite extraordinary. On the other hand, it is a complete fabrication of a burned out shell left to them by the occupying army. Everything is a re-creation, very well done and quite extraordinary considering much of what they had to work with were photos.
Took us right thru, no waiting
Gardens were particularly lovely. Palace outshines Versailles
Absolutely unbelievable! Gorgeous!
We toured the palace and could take pictures. Gold is very where and it is very very beautiful. We then had a tour of the garden and outer buildings and lake. We had about l/2 hr for souvenirs and then had lunch at restaurant at Catherines Palace. Wonderful lunch - water, sparkling wine, vodka, bread, salad, cabbage soup, chicken stroganoff and vanilla ice cream with cherry ribbon, and tea/coffee. Russian singers entertained us.
This was the first stop of the day, so not too crowded, the sun shone, the palace and the grounds were beautiful. For us it was the highlight of the tour. It was incredible to compare the palace to photographs of what the German army had done to it.
Beautiful, but wall to wall people.
Very knowledgeable and friendly tour guide, Olga. Being just the six of us on tour was fantastic, we went at our own pace.
The palaces were beautiful to see. Every bit as awe inspiring as any photo. Also the gardens and the railway station underground. The boat trip was also great, just the six of us again at our own pace. I would highly recommend booking individual tours instead of traipsing along with a buss load during which you spend most time at a souvenir shop or sitting down to lunch.
A must visit. Very crowded very rushed. Heard from other passengers that Independent Tours was the way to go. Better arrangements and better value. Cunard very expensive.
Definitely a must see, especially the Amber Room. It's amazing to look at the photos of how this palace was so badly damaged during WWII and the restoration.
Outstanding restoration - wonderful parquet floors
The wealth of these early despots was staggering... little wonder the Bolsheviks got fed-up with seeing horses drinking from solid silver buckets whilst all they had was indigestion from not eating properly. Here was a woman who knew what she wanted and was utterly ruthless in going about getting it. Mostly money and power of course - nothing new then or since. A must see.
Absolutely beautiful, worth seeing as long as you can do it quickly!
A beautiful rebuilt palace and a real mystery about the amber room. It still seems extravagant to rebuild all these palaces when the people of Russia still have such needs.
A disappointment. The palace was so damaged in WWII that most of what you see if fairly new. The "gold leaf" is just paint and most all furnishings were reproductions or purchased/donated fairly recently.
Another Wow factor. The interior was amazing to see. Again I was given lift access.
Very ornate and well organised. Lovely gardens.
On the first day we did the morning tour of Tsarkoe Selo with lunch included. This is a must and the restoration work is magnificent.
Impressive, rich, had to keep moving which was ok. Crowded but we didn't wait in lines. One recurrent thought for all of the St. P sites: the royalty had all the money, the peasants had next to nothing, and the royalty didn't seem to care. That's just the way it was. Reading later about the wives of the tsars and the Romanovs it appears that some of them did make an effort to encourage women's education and welfare. But prob. only for their class.
Truly amazing. I thought it was better than Versailles.