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Peterhof:
Grand Palace and Fountain Park
Pushkin:
Catherine Palace and Park
Peterhof, Upper Park Pushkin, Catherine's Palace
Being found at the very beginning of the 18th century by the Russian emperor Peter the Great not far away from the northern capital - Saint-Petersburg, Peterhof was meant to become one of the greatest summer residences.
Created for two centuries by many prominent architects, the unique architectural ensemble of Pushkin is world famed.
   
Pavlovsk:
Paul's Palace and Park
Gatchina:
Palace and Park
Pavlovsk, Paul's Palace Gatchina Palace
Among the great historico-cultural complexes in the environs of Leningrad the latest to be created was Pavlovsk. Its fame rests on the splendour of the palace with its classical architecture, its sumptuous interiors and great art collections, and on the beauty of the spacious park, which covers around 1,500 acres and is one of the country's largest and most picturesque.
Khotchino (old name of Gatchina) was first documented in 1499, a village in possession of Novgorod the Great, Russia. In the 17th century, in a series of wars, it passed to Livonia, then to Sweden, and finally was returned to Russia during the Northern War.
   

When you are in St. Petersburg, Russia, include visits to its famous suburbs in your plans. The Peterhof palace and park are nice to spend a whole day. Founded by Peter I, Peterhof became the most favourite residence for many Russian Emperors. The Lower Park of Peterhof possesses the largest in the world Fountain complex, which consists of 4 cascades and many other fountains around the park. Also there are Monplaisir palace where Peter I liked to stay so much, the Hermitage and Marli pavilions, the Bath House which shows the lifestyle of Russian court. Don’t forget to visit the Grand Palace of Peterhof built by famous architecture Rastrelli in the times of Elizabeth I.

After the Peterhof it is time to visit Pushkin (Tsarskoe Selo) which lies about 30 km out of St. Petersburg and is no less wonderful. There, in Catherine’s park, stands the Catherine’s Palace, one more masterpiece of Rastrelli. The most impressive room of the palace is the Grand Ballroom, or the Hall of Lights, which square is about 850m2. Besides that you’ll see the Amber room, tragically lost during the World war II it was finally renewed in 2003.

But if you want to hide from the crowds, visit Pavlovsk or Gatchina. Pavlovsk is located not far from Pushkin, but it’s much quieter in the summer time. It possesses the best landscape park in Russia and the palace with the nice collection of furniture, porcelain and art preserved from the times when the Russian princes lived in the palace.

Almost unknown among the guests of St. Petersburg, Gatchina was formerly a magnificent residence thanks to Paul I. Alexander III was the next Emperor who spent his summer days here. The beautiful Palace of Gatchina was grievously damaged during World War II, and it was opened for visitors in 1985 only, after the long reconstruction. Besides, there are four parks in Gatchina with picturesque landscapes, four lakes, artificial waterfalls, and pavilion ruins.

 

 
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