Russian Museum picture
Dezidor/Wikimedia Commons

Key Info

4 Inzhenernaya ulitsa / Mickhailovsky Palace


Museums Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
  • 3.5Value
  • 0.0Food Scene
  • 4.0Atmosphere

The Russian Museum boasts the biggest collection of Russian fine art in the city. Its main part has been housed in the neoclassical Mikhailovsky Palace since 1895. The Russian Museum also consists of the Marble Palace, the Mikhailovsky Castle, the Stroganov Palace and the Benois Wing.                                                                  

The complex is massive, so be prepared to spend a good chunk of time here. It's a good idea to figure out what you want to see beforehand, so you can better plan your tour of this fascinating museum.  Frommer's says, "The most popular rooms are in the Benois Wing, where works by … Malevich and Kandinsky attract international crowds. Chronologically, they're at the end of the exhibit, so save time and energy if you want to see them."

The museum is open every day but Tuesdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. You can reach it from the Gostiny Dvor and Nevsky Prospekt metro stations. Admission to the Mikhailovsky Palace and the Benois Wing is roughly $12 USD (350 rubles) for adults and roughly $5 USD (150 rubles) for students. It costs extra to tour the other buildings here, so be prepared to spend a substantial amount of rubles if you want to see the entire Russian Museum. For more information, visit the museum's website.

  • The museum usually has at least one excellent special exhibit in place, and there's a treasure gallery here as well (guided tours only; you need a special ticket that you can get before noon)." -- Fodor's
  • Housing 32,000 artworks from the 12th to the 20th century, the museum is best viewed with a tour guide or by using the English-language audioguide to ensure that you get the most out of its collection before you drop from exhaustion." -- Frommer's
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Hermitage Museum and the Winter Palace
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#1 Hermitage Museum and the Winter Palace

Catherine the Great founded the Hermitage Museum in 1764 as a place to house her private art collection. The massive complex has six buildings, including the Winter Palace, which was the home of the Tsars for almost 200 years. It finally opened to the public in 1852, and since then has been one of the largest and most interesting museums on the globe. It draws more than two million visitors each year -- in fact, this museum is the main reason some travelers visit St. Petersburg in the first place. Recent travelers are full of praise, with one TripAdvisor user claiming, "This place makes other museums look unimportant."

Bursting at the seams with art from masters like Da Vinci and Picasso, the Hermitage is "virtually wallpapered with celebrated paintings," says Fodor's, who goes on to suggest you budget a substantial amount of time to explore. "It has been estimated that in order to spend one minute on each object on display, you would have to devote several years to the museum," they write.

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