Tailor-Made Holiday

A Short Break to St Petersburg

A perfect cultural break including all the highlights of this spectacular city

5 days

from £1,595pp (excluding flights)

Over five days explore Russia’s beautiful imperial capital and some of the wonderful palaces and museums spread throughout the city

  • Marvel at the impressive decor and fabulous art collection in the Hermitage
  • Explore the gardens and the Summer Palace of Peterhof
  • If travelling in May or June, take advantage of the White Nights Festival of events at the Mariinsky Theatre
  • Sample Russian vodka accompanied by a selection of pickles and Russian snacks

The Hermitage

State Hermitage features one of the largest art collections in the world. It numbers about 3 million items, including masterpieces by outstanding artists.

Palaces aPlenty

Boasting some of Europe’s grandest palaces and residences, full of fascinating history and some of the world’s richest treasures, this holiday to St Petersburg includes visits to a handful of our favourites.

The Seasons of St Petersburg

Brave the cold but witness the magic of a snow covered St Petersburg during the winter months when the arts and culture scene really comes to life. 

March marks the arrival of spring and although still chilly until around May, a wonderful climate for sightseeing. This season is also the time of a number of festivals including the Musical Spring festival and of course Easter which although not an official holiday sees some beautiful candlelit services.

 From late May to mid-July the nights shine brightly in St Petersburg. Walk along the banks of the Neva in almost constant daylight, stop at one of the pop up restaurants, which feature only at this time of year and enjoy one of the internationally acclaimed operas and ballets being hosted at the Mariinsky Theatre. At Peter the Great’s summer Palace of Peterhof the fountains are at their best and the rococo gardens shimmer in the sun.

In September the cruise ships depart and the city becomes a much quieter place with the parks, gardens and museums at their peaceful best. Temperatures are pleasant and visitors are treated to a spectacle of autumnal colours.  

How can we make your holiday even more special?

  • In the winter, take a snowy troika ride around Catherine Palace with a blanket and a flask of hot chocolate
  • During the summer months, cruise along the canals that crisscross the city with a bottle of champagne (or vodka)
  • Include a visit to the stunning gold and diamond collections at The Hermitage

For a more detailed itinerary with great ideas on what to do and where to stay, please get in touch with our experts.

Price Excluding Flights £Flight cost from 
£ 1595 £ 325
  Click here to see what is included/excluded

what is included

  • All accommodation
  • Internal flights
  • International flights as detailed
  • Sightseeing with private guide as per the itinerary
  • Transfers as detailed

what is excluded

  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Visas


Itinerary at a glance

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Day 1

Fly London to St Petersburg

Extolled by many great Russian poets and artists, St Petersburg was the capital of Russia before the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution and is today regarded as one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Cosmopolitan and cultured, Russia's former capital city boasts an architectural identity and Bohemian ambience unique to the city. It is a dazzling place, and it is easy to see why it is known to some as 'Northern Venice'.

You will be staying at Hotel Astoria, bed and breakfast

Day 2

Half Day at The Hermitage
The Hermitage was originally commissioned by Catherine the Great in the 1760s as a small building to house her growing art collection. Today it occupies four buildings adjacent to the Winter Palace and the extraordinary collection of European art numbers over two million exhibits. The Imperial Family State Rooms are exquisitely decorated in neo-classical style with the most impressively decorated rooms.

Visit Peter and Paul Fortress, St Isaac’s Cathedral
Visit Peter and Paul Fortress which stands on a small island in the Neva River and is the original citadel of St Petersburg having been founded by Peter the Great in 1703 and built according to Domenico Trezzini's designs from 1706 -40. At the centre of the fortress, with its tall gold spire, is the cathedral of St Peter and St Paul, burial place of all but one of the Tsars. It is also the burial place of Tsar Nicholas II and his family, recently exhumed from their unmarked grave in Siberia.

Visit St Isaac's Cathedral, the largest orthodox cathedral in St Petersburg and the fourth largest cathedral in the world. Commissioned by Tsar Alexander I, the scale of the cathedral, with its huge dome covered with 100 kg of gold, is befitting of an Emperor. So too the magnificent interior which has beautiful columns of malachite and lazurite, a unique array of mosaic icons and wonderfully sculpted pediments.

You will be staying at Hotel Astoria, bed and breakfast

Day 3

Catherine Palace at Tsarskoe Selo
Given by Peter the Great to his wife Catherine, this summer palace was rebuilt by Rastrelli in 1752-6 for Empress Elizabeth and altered by Charles Cameron in 1780 by order of Catherine the Great. About an hour from the city, it is a dazzling display of gilt and glorious parquet. Among some of the more beautiful rooms are the Great Hall, the Knight's dining room, the State dining room, the Picture Gallery, the Blue Drawing room, the bedroom of Alexander I's wife Elizabeth and the Palace Church.

The finest of all the rooms is the restored Amber Room. Gifted by Frederick the Great of Prussia, the original panels disappeared during WWII never to be found, creating an enduring mystery. The modern restoration has been painstakingly undertaken by hand from old photographs.

The palace is set in a beautiful park with elaborate gardens, canals and pavilions.

You will be staying at Hotel Astoria, bed and breakfast

Day 4

Peterhof Palace
Peterhof, or Peter’s Court, dates back to 1715, and is a former summer residence of the Russian Tsars. It consists of an extensive formal 18th century garden and number of palaces. Situated on the Gulf of Finland, Peterhof is accessible by both road and hydrofoil. As at Versailles, the parks are geometrically laid out with 144 fountains and three cascades (these only work during the summer). The complex consists of the Grand Palace, the Monplaisir Palace, the Marly Palace and the Alexandria Park as well as a number of other small palaces in the grounds.

You will be staying at Hotel Astoria, bed and breakfast

Day 5

Fly St Petersburg to London


Below you can see some of the wonderful places we recommend you stay on your journey.

Hotel Astoria

Hotel Astoria

Part of the Rocco Forte portfolio, the Hotel Astoria is a glorious five-star hotel....

View Accommodation

For a more detailed itinerary with great ideas on what to do and where to stay, please get in touch with our experts.

Destination Experts

Our experts have unrivalled firsthand knowledge of Russia

Katie Benden, Travel Expert

"Katie was brilliant and very helpful. Helped to put together the itinerary I was dreaming of for my honeymoon and she was excellent with communication."

"Very happy with Katie Benden. Great service – always prompt reply to queries and always polite, attentive and informative. A wonderful holiday."

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Kate Hitchen, Travel Expert

"Kate was calm and bent over backwards to accommodate my jitters about going to Kashmir in the light of tighter FCO guidelines just a few days before our departure. She was absolutely correct in advising against what I thought we should do. Several times during the holiday we said that, 'Kate was dead right about that!'."

"We asked for a rather particular kind of Indian holiday. You delivered it in full. Highlights? Honestly, each day was a highlight in itself. "

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Thomas Frost, Travel Expert

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For a more detailed itinerary with great ideas on what to do and where to stay, please get in touch with our experts.

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