Peter the Great's Peterhof Palace near St. Petersburg
The magnificence of Peterhof, Peter the Great's summer imperial palace on the Gulf of Finland on Baltic Sea, is somewhat reminiscent of Versailles near Paris. Peter the Great visited Versailles in 1717 and he returned to Saint Petersburg with many ideas for enhancing his own summer palace and grounds, which were already under construction. Peterhof Palace sits in 1500-acres of formal gardens and park 18 miles from Saint Petersburg, and its 173 glorious fountains are fed by underground springs that are 14 miles away. Like the Catherine summer palace, Peterhof was almost in ruins following World War II. However, many photos of Peterhof allowed reconstruction of the magnificent palace and park.Most visitors to Peterhof come with an organized group or guide for a half-day tour, riding a hydrofoil for 45 minutes along the Neva River one way and a tour bus the other. As shown in these photos, Peterhof and its park are well worth the visit.
Most visitors to Peterhof travel the 18 miles to the Grand Palace and Park with an organized group. The groups use a hydrofoil such as this one to zip down the Neva River to Peterhof's setting on the Gulf of Finland on the Baltic Sea. The hydrofoil trip takes about 30-45 minutes. Seeing the Peterhof Grand Palace, fountains, and park from the water is breathtaking.
Peterhof Park and Formal Gardens at Peterhof Palace
The grounds of Peterhof are filled with statuary and fountains.
Peterhof Grand Palace
Much of Peterhof was designed by Rastrelli, the architect of the Winter Palace (Hermitage Museum) in St. Petersburg, so the style is similar.
Main Staircase at Peterhof
Walking up the staircase in Peterhof's Grand Palace brings thoughts to mind of the thousands of imperial guests and royals who also entered the same palace.
Imperial Dining Room at Peterhof
One of the many elaborate dining rooms in the Grand Palace at Peterhof.
Peterhof - Drawing Room with Ornate Wallcovering in the Grand Palace at Peterhof
Can you imagine what this wall covering might cost today?
Entryway and Main Staircase of Peterhof
Every grand palace must have a grand entry, and Peterhof certainly has its share of gold leaf.
Peterhof Breakfront Cabinet and Ceramic Stove in the Peterhof Grand Palace
These ceramic stoves were very popular in imperial Russia and are seen in many grand palaces such as Peterhof, the Catherine Palace, and even in Uglich.
Peterhof Portrait Hall
The walls of this room are covered with paintings of famous Russians and friends and relatives of Peter the Great.
View of the Marine Canal at Peterhof
The Grand Palace at Peterhof is connected to the Gulf of Finland on the Baltic Sea by the Marine Canal.
The Grand Cascade Fountains at Peterhof
A view from the Peterhof Grand Palace, looking down the Main Canal over the Grand Cascade to the Gulf of Finland
The Grand Cascade Fountain at Peterhof
The Grand Cascade has 37 bronze sculptures, 64 fountains, and 142 water jets.
View of Peter the Great's Grand Palace and the Grand Cascade at Peterhof
Peterhof's design is much like Catherine's Palace and the Winter Palace in St. Petersburg.
Peterhof Fountain in Peterhof Park
One of the 173 fountains at Peterhof, most of which are located in the Lower Park between the Grand Palace and the Gulf of Finland.
Peterhof Formal Gardens
Peterhof Park features both traditional English and French formal gardens.
Peterhof Fountains Along the Marine Canal
Fountains line the Marine Canal connecting the Peterhof Grand Palace to the Gulf of Finland.
Peterhof Swimming Beach
Summer is short in northern Russia, and swimmers and sun bathers flock to the beaches and parks to enjoy the long sunny days.
This beach is near Peterhof Park and the hydrofoil dock.