The Menshikov Palace
With an elegant Baroque façade that stretches along the Neva riverfront, the 18th-century Menshikov Palace is a striking sight. The building—which is one of the oldest in St. Petersburg and was once home to Prince Menshikov—houses part of the world-renowned State Hermitage Museum art collection.
The Menshikov Palace originally belonged to Alexander Menshikov, a statesman who was St. Petersburg’s first governor and one of Peter the Great’s closest friends. (Menshikov later became the de facto ruler of Russia before being exiled for treason). The interiors of the baroque-style building have been preserved with their original decorations and now house part of the art collection of the State Hermitage Museum, including 18th-century art and a number of personal items that belonged to Peter the Great.
General entry tickets to the Hermitage Museum include the Menshikov Palace, but it’s also possible to purchase tickets to see the palace on its own. Many visitors book a guided tour of the complex; you can also opt for a private tour and customize your itinerary.
Things to Know Before You Go
Ticket lines for the Hermitage Museums can be very long, with waits of well over an hour. Save time by purchasing entrance tickets online in advance.
If you sign up for a general tour of the Hermitage complex, make sure that the Menshikov Palace is included.
Visits to the palace usually take about an hour.
Admission is free on the first Thursday of every month, but this is also one of the busiest times to visit.
Free Wi-Fi is available on-site and there is a museum café and gift shop.
The Menshikov Palace is wheelchair accessible.
How to Get There
The palace is located on University Boulevard, on Vasilyevsky Island, across the river from the Hermitage Museum. The closest subway station, Vasileostrovskaya (Line 3), is roughly a 15-minute walk from the palace. It is also possible to walk from the Hermitage Museum in about twenty minutes.
When to Get There
Menshikov Palace is open from 10:30am to 6pm Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday; and from 10:30am to 9pm Wednesday and Friday. (The museum is closed Monday and on some major holidays.) The palace is generally less crowded than other areas of the Hermitage Museum complex, so you might want to prioritize the main collections and arrive at the palace later in the day.
Exploring the Hermitage Complex
The Menshikov Palace is part of the State Hermitage Museum, one of the world’s largest art museums. Most visitors start their visit to this complex at the main museum inside the Winter Palace and also visit the General Staff Building (which houses a sizable collection of impressionist and post-impressionist art) and the Museum of the Imperial Porcelain Factory.
- Menshikov Palace
- Bronze Horseman
- Museum of Optics
- Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera)
- The Republic of Cats Museum and Café
- Admiralty Building
- Russian Vodka Museum (Muzey Russkogo Natsional'nogo Napitka)
- Nikolaevsky Palace
- St. Isaac’s Cathedral (Isaakievskiy Sobor)
- St. Petersburg Palace Square (Dvortsovaya Ploshchad)
- Central Naval Museum
- State Hermitage Museum
- The General Staff Building
- Winter Palace of Peter the Great at the Hermitage
- Stroganov Palace (Stroganovsky Dvorets)