We arrived into Vladivostok by plane via Beijing and met a security guard who helped us get a bus into the city (about 90 minutes). He saw my guitar and when I told him I was from Canada he said he loved Nickelback....I smiled and said “right on.” At least it wasn't Celine Dion?
We checked into the Primorye Hotel around 5pm and then checked out the city. We were staying around the corner and up the hill from the train station. It's a nice area and there's always a scattering of people selling fresh fruit and veggies - the smell of dill filled the air as we passed cups overflowing with blueberries, grapes and gooseberries.
We walked up the hill, passing Yul Brynner's childhood home, towards Vladivostok's "Arbat", a pedestrian street called Fukina. Lots of people were strolling around amid shops and restaurants. We followed it to the waterfront where there was a carnival with lots of cotton candy, popcorn and game stalls. The weather was warm, but windy and cloudy. It made for a beautiful scene with the gun metal grey sky bearing down on the harbour.
This being Russia there's no shortage of Lenin statues and squares, Karl Marx boulevards and proletarian reminders of glory days gone by...