Tuesday, August 21, 2012

How I Met Catherine the Great

Entering the port of St. Petersburg.
This is why a cruise is an ideal way to travel:
  • Of utmost importance is that you do not have to cook any meals for 10 days.
  • Also, you can get a taste of different cultures without re-packing your suitcase every night.
  • And, you travel to places you would never go to if you weren't cruising.
Ceiling of St. Isaac's Cathedral, St. Petersburg.
Our stop in St. Petersburg, Russia is a good example of a place I would never have an opportunity to travel to if I hadn't been aboard this quilt seminar at sea. It is a city of the old from the time of Catherine the Great. And the new, from the Soviet Union era.
Within this stacking doll are 25 of my fellow tourists.
 And everywhere you look are bus loads of tourists. They were always in my way.
Memory of the Garden at Etten (Ladies of Arles) by Vincent Van Gogh.
My favorite destination in St. Petersburg is the Hermitage founded by Catherine the Great in the 18th century.  It is huge! The museum is packed with over 3 million items and 3 million tourists. The paintings in the Impressionist wing were so wonderful it made me want to weep! There were works by my favorites like Monet, Bonnard, Renoir, and of course Van Gogh. So much treasure in one spot! How could I see it all?
Another view of the Neva river.
I didn't. We were hustled back on the bus for another quick tour of the city and lunch. Tomorrow I'll show you what we discovered during our lunch break as we escaped our tour guide and ventured out on our own around St. Petersburg.


WoolenSails said...

What an amazing city to visit.


Anonymous said...

Stunning photo of that cathedral ceiling!! So, did they ever let everyone out of the stacking doll? roflol Looking forward to seeing and hearing about your escape during lunch...

Amanda said...

We went on our first cruise this year, up the Elbe river from Prague to Berlin and I agree with what you say about cruising. You've certainly whetted my appetite for a visit to Russia