Imposing, magnificent, monumental. This is how the current St. Isaac Church, the fourth, built by the French architect Montferrand at the behest of Tsar Alexander and, further magnified under Tsar Nicholas I, I between 1818 and 1858.
However, the history of the cathedral dates back to 1710 when Peter the Great, born on the day dedicated to St. Isaac’s (May 30), built a wooden church in honor of the Byzantine monk.
The cathedral is a gigantic work, which measures 111.2 meters long and 97.6 wide. 112 monolithic columns of red granite weighing approximately 100 tonnes each hold up the four porches, 350 statues populate the roof, 100 kg of gold foil covers the glittering dome 21.8 m height the pride of the city.
The sumptuous interior with gold, marble (there are 14 types), bronzes, malachite and lapis lazuli, occupies an area of 4,000 square meters and can accommodate 14,000 people. The fresco under the central vault representing the Virgin with Angels and Saints, work of painters Brjullov and Bruni, has a size of 816 square meters.
Extraordinary is the iconostasis covered with mosaics. The Church, still classified as a museum, is one of the city’s most visited attractions. Climbing the 262 steps of the colonnade, you can admire a splendid view of St. Petersburg from 43 m height.
Opening hours: Mon-Sun (10.30 AM – 06.00 PM/ 10.00 PM (May-Sep))
Admission: 250 RUB (adults), 50 RUB (children under 18) to the Cathedral; 10 RUB (adults) to the walkway; online ticket
How to reach: Metro Admiralteyskaya (M5)
Address: St Isaac’s Square, 4, Sankt-Peterburg