Hermitage night to remember

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throneroom.jpgEvery visitor to St Petersburg will have The Hermitage museum at or near the top of their list of must-see places. Quite rightly, because with its three million exhibits, including some of the most famous and familiar Old Masters and Impressionist paintings in the world, it is well worth seeing time and again.
Even the most carefully-planned visit usually involves queues and the crush of thousands of others all trying to see the same things at the same time.
Last night I was privileged to view everything I wanted with hardly another soul in sight. The journey took me and my colleagues from the baroque grand staircase, through the imposing portraits in the Field Marshall’s Hall, the gold pillars and mirrored walls of the Armorial Hall, the dozens of portraits in the Gallery of 1812 and the grandeur of Throne Room (above).
On we went to to the Hanging Gardens, the breathtaking Rembrandts and the precious Leonardo da Vincis. We still went round at a gallop, but, unhindered by crowds, we really felt as if we had the place to ourselves.
To top it off, when we reached the Large Italian Skylight Hall, we were greeted by the State Symphony Orchestra of St Petersburg who then enthralled us with an hour of familiar favourites such as the Overture from Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro, the Intermezzo from Cavalliera Rusticana, and Faure’s Pavane while we admired the Canalettos and other masterpieces.
It was a priceless evening – but one which was available to all of my fellow-passengers on Saga Sapphire for £119. Not the cheapest excursion in the brochure by a long chalk, but worth every penny as a memory that will live on as the highlight of the two-week Baltic cruise.

By | 2017-06-15T15:59:45+00:00 25 July 2012|Cruise destinations|0 Comments

About the Author:

John Honeywell is a travel writer specialising in cruise ships and cruise travel. Winner of CLIA UK's Contribution to Cruise award 2017.

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