Monday, July 30, 2012

State Hermitage Museum

I don't think you can visit Saint Petersburg, Russia, without visiting the State Hermitage Museum. The State Hermitage is a museum of art and culture in Saint Petersburg, Russia. One of the largest and oldest museums of the world, it was founded in 1764 by Catherine the Great and has been open to the public since 1852. Its collections, of which only a small part is on permanent display, comprise nearly 3 million items, including the largest collection of paintings in the world.

 The amount of paintings within the museum is staggering, displaying priceless works by Rembrandt, Da Vinci, Michealangelo, Reubens and more. I could really spend the whole day within just looking at the paintings, at least the ones in the first and second floor. Anyway, the entrance fee to the State Hermitage Museum only costs 350 roubles. You need to pay additional 200 roubles to bring your camera in, and also to visit other places like the winter palaces.

The museum is within walking distance from the Admiralteyskaya metro. If you're going in by Nevsky prospect, you should see the Narva Triumphal Arch, erected as a memorial to the war of 1812. The Narva Triumphal Arch was specially constructed on the Narva highway to greet the soldiers who were returning from abroad after their victory over Napoleon. The arch is topped off with an impressive triumphal chariot pulled by six ponies, also known the chariot of glory. Below is the picture of the Triumphal Arch.

Triumphal Arch
Note the unique engravings around the arch as shown below.

Engravings on the Triumphal Arch
After crossing the arch, you will see the Alexander Column as shown in the picture below. Yes, I saw a horse carriage in front of it so I thought I might as well pose the horse in front of the Alexander Column. :)

Alexander Column with a horse carriage in front
The Alexander Column was also erected as a memorial to the war of 1812. The monument — the tallest of its kind in the world — is 47.5 m (155 ft 8 in) tall and is topped with a statue of an angel holding a cross. You can take a look at the angel in the picture below.

Statue of an angel on top of the Alexander Column
After crossing the Alexander Column, you will see the State Hermitage Museum, also known as the Winter Palace, as shown in the picture below.

State Hermitage Museum
There are a couple of statues outside the main entrance of the museum as shown in a couple of pictures below. I do not know their names though.

If you happen to look up, you'll see a number of statues adorning the roof of the state hermitage museum. If you have the chance to go up the colannade in St Issac's Cathedral, you will see a large number of statues all on the roof top of the museum. Below are some of the statues that I can see from the entrance.

The staff will only allow a small group to go in to the museum at intervals. If you're in a tour group, you'll  be able to go in anytime. Upon entering, you'll see a number of ticket counters which will show you the different prices which I've briefly explained earlier. I need to warn you that I took 5 hours just walking around the main museum, and I queued for more than an hour outside before I managed to get in. They are a total of 3 levels in the museum and each level is very very large.

Below are some pictures of some of the things you'll see in the museum.

You can find out more information on the museum here. For some reason I am unable to access the website but I believe that is the official website. Do not miss this museum if you happen to be in Saint Petersburg.


Anonymous said...

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chantc said...

Thanks! Glad that you like the post.

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