A short drive will take you to St. Isaac's Cathedral, one of the focal points and landmarks of St. Petersburg. St. Isaac's is one of the world largest cathedrals. The Cathedral is named for St. Isaac of Dalmatia whose Saint's Day (May 30) coincides with Peter the Great's birthday. The church functioned until 1928 and was converted into a museum in 1931. You will be impressed by the vast and opulent interior which covers 43,000 sq ft and filled with hundreds of imposing 19th century works of art. You will see the iconostasis with mosaic icons. While walking through the doors pay attention to the high relieves depicting scenes from the life of Christ and events from Old Russian history. During World War II the interior suffered extensive frost and moisture damage, it was restored from 1947 - 1963.
After the tour of the cathedral you will board your coach for a short drive to the Cathedral of Resurrection on Spilled Blood. For many years this splendid cathedral was closed to the public and opened again in the late 90s as a museum after a 25 year renovation. The Church has a remarkable history. The Church of Spilled Blood was built on the spot where Tsar Alexander II was assassinated on March 1, 1881 when a bomb was thrown at his feet. Inside the church you will see the original part of the sidewalk where the Alexander II's blood spilled on the cobblestone. The temple is one of the finest examples of the Russian Revival Style. With its golden domes, colored spirals, textured cupolas, it is a structure, which bewilders and enchants the eye.
Following the visit to the church your tour will drive through the center of the city to the St. Nicholas Naval Cathedral. This masterpiece combines baroque style with elements of traditional Russian architecture. The golden crosses on five sparkling domes of the church rise among the trees at the bottom of Glinka Street, sheltering many revered 18th century icons and a fine carved wooden iconostasis. Its beautiful bell tower overlooks the Kryukov Canal. The area was originally settled by Russian sailors in the time of Peter the Great and St. Nicholas is the patron saint of sailors. The walls of the upper church reflect the sad pages of the history of the Russian Navy. They are embellished with memorial marble plaques bearing the names of the sailors who perished on different battleships and submarines in the course of the 20th century.
In the lower church you can find the St. Nicholas icon. It was given to the church by Greek sailors. The lower church also shelters many other revered icons, including the icon of Our Lady of Kazan and the icon of Our Lady of Vladimir. The St. Nicholas Naval Cathedral is one of a few St. Petersburg churches that was not closed by the Bolsheviks after the 1917 revolution.
Note: Guests must be able to walk approximately 0.5 mile over even surfaces with 20 steps. Conservative dress is required to enter the monastery. No shorts, short skirts or halter-tops. Tour price includes photo and video charges at St. Isaac's Cathedral and the Church of Our Savior on Spilled Blood. Photography is not permitted in the functioning church. Tour order may vary but all listed sites will be covered.