Even on summer weekends, the rambling and overgrown Park Alexandria is peaceful and practically empty. Built for Tsar Nicholas I (and named for his tsarina), these grounds offer a sweet retreat from the crowds. Originally named for Alexander Nevsky, the Gothic chapel was completed in 1834 as the private chapel of Nicholas I. Nearby is the cottage that was built around the same time as his summer residence.
Also part of this ensemble is the beautifully restored Farmer’s Palace, built here in 1831 as a pavilion in the park and designed to inspire pastoral fantasies of rural life for the royal family; it became the home of the teenage tsarevitch Alexander (later Alexander II), who loved it throughout his life.