Amber Room St Petersburg – In August I visited St. Petersburg. I have always wanted to see Russia and tick that off my “To-See” list. The first stop was the Catherine Palace which is located in Pushkin which is about a half an hour drive from central St. Petersburg. This used to be the summer residence of the Russian tsars and known around the world for it famous “Amber Room” which was once dubbed the eight world wonder. Here is the ballroom. I was so lucky that there weren’t as many people visiting this particular day. I have heard that you queue for ages to get in and I literally walked in, put on my stylish brown plastic covers over my shoes and walked into the ballroom as if it was all mine.
A mannequin was showcasing a dress worn by Catherine I of Russia in the 1700’s. If you look at the painting on the wall behind on the right, it is a replica of the exact same dress. We were all surprised to hear that this dress is made entirely out of paper!
Above is one of the many festive dining rooms dripping in gold.
Above is a little sneak peak of the “Amber Room” which is breathtaking. I am one those people who believes in a lot of conspiracy theories. That’s why I was so excited to be in this exact same room because I have read a lot of theories about this room which apparently disappeared after World War II. When the castle was destroyed in the war, it is believed that either the room was destroyed or that it survived the fire and was pillaged by the Germans and hidden somewhere. In 1997 one Italian stone mosaic that allegedly was part of a set of four which had decorated the Amber Room turned up in western Germany. It was in the possession of the family of a soldier who claimed he had helped pack up the Amber Room. The mosaic now rests in the hands of Russian authorities and was used in the reconstruction effort to rebuild the Amber Room in 2003.
In front of the palace there is a huge formal garden. Above is the Hermitage Pavilion near the lake.
The beautiful garden of the Catherine Palace.
Afterwards we drove to the Peterhof Palace which is sometimes referred to as the “Russian Versailles” because it consists of a series of palaces and gardens. These place was packed with a lot of newlyweds taking photos in this picturesque scenery. I will post about that beautiful place this next week.