Vladivostok is today home of more than 600.000 people and located at the Pacific Ocean. Surrounded by Amursky Gulf from the west, Ussuriysky Gulf from the east, and Golden Horn Bay along the south, Vladivostok is the home of the Russian Pacific Fleet. The city is separated from its souternmost part, Russkiy Island, by Eastern Bosphorous strait; there are a couple of smaller sparsely populated islands – Reineke and Popov. From its foundation in 1860, as a military post, the city received the status of porto-franco that boosted international commerce and development. The city centre, at the edge of the water, has sweeping boulevards of ornate, century-old buildings; magnificent, decaying, and in dire need of a scrub. Further out, on the steep hills overlooking the bay, similarly decaying Soviet blocks dotted with new high-rise buildings provide accommodations for most of the city’s residents.
The beautiful oak woods are surrounding the city which along with Nakhodka could be a starting point for weekend bus-tours to the winter ski-slopes or water-falls in summer. A few lotus lakes are attraction for campers and forest lodgers when the flowers are blossoming in August.
Since 1992 Vladivostok is he twin city of Dalian in China.