The Catherine's Palace in Pushkin was Catherine the Great's favorite summer residence and is home to the world-renowned Amber Room which was masterfully restored several years ago.
Peter the Great built the first wooden palace on this territory for his wife, Catherine I. His daughter Elizabeth later converted the modest wooden palace into a magnificent stone palace reminiscent of fairy-tale chambers. The palace is unique among other summer palaces surrounding St. Petersburg thanks to an exquisite luxury of its baroque forms.
During the reign of Catherine the Great, Elizabeth's daughter-in-law, a number of Classical interiors and monuments were added to the complex. The palace soon became the official summer residence of Catherine the Great whose name is associated with the palace nowadays.
Following the Revolution of 1917, Catherine's palace was converted into a museum. The Nazis destroyed the palace and looted the area, cut thousands of century-old trees in the parks, and left nothing but charcoaled remains of the palace. As the devastation was indeed profound, the reconstruction works are still going on and more interiors are set to be open to the public in the future.
The Amber Room is no doubt the star sight of the palace. The original amber slabs were given to Peter the Great by the Prussian King Friedrich I as a royal gift. Looted by the Nazis and faithfully restored using original designs, the Amber Room is decorated with thousands of pieces of real amber which were found on the shores of the Baltic Sea over the last 50 years. To learn more about the Amber Room visit eng.tzar.ru/eamber.
Other places of interest include the Cameron Gallery, the Small Hermitage, the Chinese Village in the Alexander Park, and the Tsar Lyceum where the famous Russian poet Alexander Pushkin studied in the early 19th century.