Hermitage Museum

Opening Hours of the Hermitage Museum.

Tuesdays - Saturdays: 10.30-18.00
Sundays: 10.30 - 17.00
Closed Mondays
Ticket windows shut one hour before the museum closes.
The Main Museum Complex' address: 2, Palace Square
Entrance from Palace Square
Official web site:


Historical Note on the Hermitage Museum.

A Mecca for art lovers, the State Hermitage Museum, thanks to its extraordinary variety and the richness of its art collection, is the largest museum in the world and like the Louvre in Paris, the Prado in Madrid and the National Gallery in London is one of the most interesting and famous. The museum, spread over several buildings, was created by Catherine II, who in 1764-65 ordered the building of a palace on the Neva called the Small Hermitage to house a collection of paintings by Flemish and Dutch artists with which a German merchant had paid his debt to the Russian state. In following  years the acquisitions of the royal court necessitated the construction of additional exhibition space and, for that reason, in 1787 the Old Hermitage - identical to the first - was built before the larger New Hermitage in 1852. 

With the formation of the Soviet Union and the subsequent confiscation of private collections by the regime many works were transferred to the Hermitage, which quadrupled its artistic heritage. During the Second World War , to protect this treasure, most of the works were transported to the Ural Mountains and the furniture and furnishings were stored in the cellars of the museum.

 Currently, the Hermitage boasts about 3 million exhibits, including 16,000 paintings, 12,000 sculptures, 700,000 archaeological pieces and 1,000,000 coins and medals located  in approximately 400 rooms. It is estimated that it would take seven years to  admire all the masterpieces which are divided into nine sections ranging from primitive cultures to contemporary Russian art and from the arts and cultures of countries in Western and Eastern nations, Central Asia and the Middle East. Among the most famous works on show are paintings by Italian masters of the likes of Leonardo, Raphael and Caravaggio and French artists such as the masters Van Gogh, Picasso and Matisse as well as the most famous Dutch and Spanish painters, Goya, Van Dyck and Rembrandt. The Hermitage is not only unique simply  for the treasures on display but also for the beauty of its interior. Among these it is worth mentioning the Malachite Room where the walls and furniture are covered with a green stone whose color is enhanced by decorations of gold and the Great Throne Hall which is very special thanks to 48 white Italian marble columns.