Russia: Saint Petersburg – Tsarskoe Selo

Tsarskoye Selo was another summer imperial residence of the Russian tsars, Peter the Great gave it as a present to his wife and future tsarina Catherine I. Beautifully landscaped gardens and fountains mingle with carious structures. But of course the main attraction here is the gold and blue Catherine Palace. Inside (no photography) is the world-famous amber room decorated with insane amount of gold, mirrors, and naturally, amber. The original room contained over 6 tonnes (13,000 lb) of amber, but unfortunately was looted by Nazis during World War II and disappeared without a trace. The room was restored at a cost of $500 million and 450 kg (990 lb) of new amber panels and re-opened in 2003.