Nikolaevsky Palace is one of St. Petersburg’s lesser-known palaces, but its striking neoclassical facade and unique architectural features make it well worth a visit. The historic palace also plays host to the popularFeel Yourself Russian! show—a showcase of traditional Russian music and folk ballet.
Although visits to the interior are limited to those attending the show, it’s possible to admire the Nikolaevsky Palace from the outside, and walking tours of St. Petersburg often pass by en route to the nearby Saint Isaac’s Cathedral.
Feel Yourself Russian! presents a number of musical and traditional folk dance numbers, including performances by the quartet Classique, Peter’s Quartet, the Cossack group Maiden, and folk dance collective Petersburg Stars. Guests are seated in one of the palace’s luxury halls, and a selection of typical Russian drinks and canapés are provided during the interval (included in the ticket price). For a hassle-free experience, book advance tickets with round-trip transfers from your St. Petersburg hotel.
Things to Know Before You Go
Feel Yourself Russian! runs for just under two hours, including an interval.
Performances are in Russian only, although understanding the language is not essential to enjoying the show.
The dress code is smart-casual, and large bags and backpacks are not permitted inside.
The palace is not wheelchair-accessible.
How to Get There
The palace is located along the south bank of the River Neva in central St. Petersburg. The closest subway station is Admiralteyskaya (line 5), about a 10-minute walk from the palace. A taxi will drop you right outside.
When to Get There
Shows run all year, with performances typically held at 7pm and 9pm. Book ahead in the busiest months of July and August to avoid disappointment, and arrive early (doors open an hour before showtime) as seating is not allocated, and the best seats fill up quickly.
History and Architecture of Nikolaevsky Palace
Commissioned by Emperor Nicholas I as a gift for his son, Grand Duke Nikolai Nikolaevich, Nikolaevsky Palace was designed by architect Andreas Stackenschneider and completed in 1861. Occupied by the duke until his death in 1891, the palace was nationalized after the revolution and renamed the Labor Palace. The structure is notable for its mix of architectural styles, with elements of baroque, Renaissance, and neoclassical, and its grand centerpiece is the marble gala staircase that dominates the entry hall.
- Central Naval Museum
- Russian Vodka Museum (Muzey Russkogo Natsional'nogo Napitka)
- The Republic of Cats Museum and Café
- Bronze Horseman
- St. Isaac’s Cathedral (Isaakievskiy Sobor)
- Menshikov Palace
- The Menshikov Palace
- Mariinsky Theatre
- C-189 Submarine Museum
- Admiralty Building
- St. Nicholas Naval Cathedral (St. Nicholas Cathedral of the Epiphany)
- Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera)
- St. Petersburg Palace Square (Dvortsovaya Ploshchad)
- Museum of Optics
- Stroganov Palace (Stroganovsky Dvorets)