Vladivostok Far East largest city
One of the largest cities in the Far East of Russia, Vladivostok is the capital of Primorsky Krai. Rising from the sea coast and spreading on surrounding hills, Vladivostok seaport is situated in the southern part of picturesque Muravyov-Amursky Peninsula. There are about 620,000 people living in Vladivostok today.
There are a great variety of architectural styles in downtown Numerous museums reflect Russian culture. Culture of the modern Russian family can be learned during home visits and home stays in local families arranged by tourist agencies. It is also a good opportunity to try home-made Russian food. Visits to dachas (a kind of summer cottage that many Russians own) is another possibility to get acquainted with Russian life style.
Far Eastern nature is only a step away. Tourist agencies organize bus rides for groups that have a unique opportunity to visit the coastline, waterfalls, lakes and virgin forests. Meanwhile, Vladivostok’s night life is attractive and diverse. Eleven night clubs, numerous restaurants, casinos, and discos are open all year round. Pop and rock bands frequently play at the night.
Travellers interested in nature have many choices in Vladivostok and its surburbs. There are six wildlife reserves throughout Primorsky Krai. They range from ones protecting the endangered Amur tiger to Khanka Nature Reserve, which has rare lotus flowers blooming in August.t clubs and restaurants, which serve Russian, Oriental and European cuisine.
Many citizens grow fruits, vegetables and flowers at dachas. Dacha is an integral part of Russia’s older generation life style and culture. Families and friends gather at dachas on the weekends to share food and drink, to tell stories and sometimes to dance and to have impromtu plays. Some tourist agencies arrange visits to dachas.
Vladivostok also has a monument commemorating Russian vessels that saved two whales stuck in a small opening surrounded by ice near Barrow, Alaska.
There are six wildlife reserves throughout Primorsky Krai. They range from ones protecting the endangered Amur tiger to Khanka Nature Reserve, which has rare lotus flowers blooming in August.
Tourists have an opportunity to go on a sea voyage in the clear waters of Amur Bay. During such a voyage they can see spectacular views of azure waters, emerald islands, rocky cliffs, and unforgettable Vladivostok skyline while tanning, fishing, or taking pictures.
Tourists interested in camping may take an overnight trip to one of the uninhabited islands of Rimsky-Korsakov Archipelago in Peter the Great Bay. Comfortable boat voyages are organized to these
The Far Eastern State Marine Reserve is situated not far from Vladivostok. It includes several islands, which are more than 8,000 years old and have a unique environment with 3,300 plants and animals species and more than 360 birds species. The reserve offeres six different boat voyages around Peter the Great Bay.
Hunting and Fishing
Hunting and fishing fans have an opportunity to enjoy their hobby in Primorye. Hunters may purchase a licence to hunt for elk, bear, deer, and wild boar. The rivers are full of salmon, trout and char.
Students and teachers interested in scientific, educational and cultural exchanges have an opportunity to share their ideas, opinions and achievements. A number of regional scientific conferences and symposia are regularly held in Vladivostok.
International airport “Vladivostok” has a wide network of both international and Russian airlines and can accept almost all types of planes.
Based in airport “Vladivostok” the Far Eastern airline “Vladivostok Avia” conducts regular international flights to Japan (Osaka, Toyama and Niigata), Republic of Korea (Seoul and Pusan) and China (Harbin, Dalian and Changchun); regular domestic flights to Moscow, Abakan, Kemerovo, Barnaul, Tomsk, Irkutsk, Yakutsk, Novosibirsk, Ekaterinburg, Krasnodar and cities of the Far Eastern region as well as charter flights abroad.
Foreign airlines like Korean Air, Shanghaiskye Avialinii and Air Korea as well as Russian airlines Aeroflot, Domodedovskye Avialinii, etc., have regularly scheduled flights to airport “Vladivostok”.
International airport “Vladivostok” has fine VIP waiting room, customs and immigration offices.
Taxis are available for tourists. It is also possible to use public transportation, which is very well developed in Vladivostok. Trolley buses, trams and buses can take you from downtown to almost any place in Vladivostok and its suburbs. Cable railway not far from the center of Vladivostok can take you to an observation point from which you may see a splendid view of harbor and city. Hitch-hiking is not recommended. Many drivers will offer rides, but they will expect to be paid.
Health Advice to Tourists
Visitors should not drink unboiled tap water. Bottled carbonated mineral water and pure water can be found in almost every shop.
Restrooms are available at the hotels, restaurants and public buildings. There are public biotoilets in the downtown area. They are easy to spot because of their distinctive blue color.
Many restaurants organize shows on Christmas, New Year’s Eve and other holidays. They also take orders for banquets, business negotiations, presentations and advertising campaigns. As a rule, restaurants have karaoke bars, live music and dance floors.
Because of its status as the capital of Primosky Krai, Vladivostok has plenty of fine hotels to satisfy any guests’ preferences and budget. Some visitors prefer home stays because this way they can learn more about Russian people and culture.
The rooms in the international class hotels are equipped with air conditioning, telephones, mini-bars, TV sets and VCRs as well as tea and coffee-machines. These hotels have bars, restaurants, business centers, currency exchange offices, video rental services, barber shops and hairdresser parlors, saunas, airplane tickets booking offices, luggage rooms, souvenir shops, etc.
Hotels rates range from $20-$50 to $90 per night. A room in first-class hotel can cost $170-$250 per night. The most luxurious rooms can cost up to $ 1,000.
Military engineers, who showed their talent for constructing Vladivostok Fortress, contributed to the cultural hevitade of Vladivostok too. It existed formally for 34 years from 1889 till 1923. From the 1880s until 1917, over 60 million gold rubles were spent on developing it, with the defensive constructions located in the area larger in size than today’s urban constructions area.
All new fortifications had a lot of casemated and underground constructions. The concrete coating placed in steel channels and T-shaped beams on bituminous concrete surfaces was as thick as 2.4 -3.6 meters, which provided defense even at 420-mm gun fire. The fort configuration matched natural features; landforms were not broken up, and the weapon emplacements were dispersed around a large area, which impeded the enemy artillery ranging.
Vladivostok turned to be a peculiar test ground for both Russian and, after 1918, world fortification science The engineer decisions in planning its fortifications were based on Port Arthur defense experience, summed up by an outstanding Russian military engineer A. von Swartz. These decisions proved to be a decade or two ahead of time.
The fortress was under construction for quite a long period of time, employing more and more new land sites for its constructions. Today the fortress fortifications occupy a great pan of Vladivostok city territory (about 100 km in perimeter, covering 37 km from the northern most to the southernmost points), with the fortifications being nonhomogenious- ranging from small dug batteries and redoubts up to 10-30 hectare concrete forts, each costing from two eight million gold rubles.