I guess like most people, I tend to think of Russia as somewhere ‘over near Europe’ and in many ways, it is. However, Vladivostok is actually closer to Darwin than it is to Moscow! Point yourself due north from Darwin and keep going for about 3,330 nautical miles (roughly 6,200 kilometres) and there you’ll find Vladivostok. Russia is a BIG place.
Now, not a lot of people know this (as Michael Caine says) but actor Yul Brynner was born in Vladivostok in 1920. Brynner became famous for his roles in films like The Magnificent Seven, Westworld, The 10 Commandments and The King and I.
Otherwise, Vladivostok is a relatively small (population circa 570,000) industrial and fishing city close to the North Korean border.
Lonely Planet describes it thus: “At first look, Vladivostok is something like Russia’s San Francisco – a real stunner, with pointed mountains springing up above a network of bays, most strikingly the crooked dock-lined Golden Horn Bay (named for its likeness to Istanbul’s). Closer up, it can be a little grey, with Soviet housing blocks squeezed between new condos and century-old mansions. But it’s a great place to kick off or finish a trans-Siberian trip – however, be warned: leg muscles not used to the ups and downs of hilly streets will get more sore than a butt on the Trans-Siberian.
Big changes arrived in Vladivostok thanks to the 2012 Asian Pacific Economic Conference (APEC), with billions spent on infrastructure. Timing wise, June can often be grey and wet, while September and October are the nicest, sunniest months (another thing Vladivostok has in common with San Francisco). Vladivostok’s City Day is 2 July, or the closest Saturday to it.”
I bet you didn’t expect a geography and entertainment lesson!
You can see the video either by clicking the photo above or via this link: Foxbat Flight of Vladivostok.