It is impossible to walk downtown Vladivostok without catching a glimpse of the Zolotoy bridge, which spans the Golden Horn - it is also called the Golden Horn bridge. The V-shaped pylons are clearly visible from the quays of Vladivostok, but for a better view, I head up the hills north of the bridge, walking right next to the funicular. After crossing a roundabout and walking up stairs, I come to a balcony. The city now lies at my feet, and the Golden Horn Bridge is prominent in the skyline of this Russian Pacific city. This is one of the two bridges that were planned, and constructed, in a relatively short time period, for the 2012 APEC summit which was held on Russky island further south. A major construction feat, as these are bridges that were never built before in Russia, and they are operating in a climate with extremes.
Just by taking a bus to Russky island, I first cross Zolotoy bridge, and then Russky bridge to take me to the largest island of the Eugenie archipelago to the south of Vladivostok. My plan is to walk Russky bridge, but I soon find out this is not possible. There is no space on the bridge to walk, and access is strictly for vehicles, with fences preventing anyone to climb on the bridge. So I stay at the southernmost point of the bridge, near the Novosiltsevskaya battery, to look at the mighty bridge from below. The cables are painted in the colours of the Russian flag. While Zolotoy bridge is impressive, Russky is enormous: this is the longest cable-stayed bridge in the world. It is hard to judge its size from a distance - until a big container ship passes underneath, dwarfed by the over 300m tall pylons.
The next day, I walk with a new-found friend in the harbour of Vladivostok, and our goal is to walk the Zolotoy bridge. I have read a report on the internet that this should be possible. But alas - when we arrive at the beginning of the bridge, there is a clear sign saying that crossing on foot is prohibited; there is even a uniformed guard gesturing that we should leave. We later take bus 15 again, cross the bridge, and get off at Petropavlovskaya battery on the north side. Following trails here, we get great views of Russky bridge, until we see two Russians asking us to come. They have found a good viewpoint, but have been drinking a lot. We end the day by walking to the S-56 submarine in the city. The pylons of Zolotoy bridge now get a much warmer colour thanks to the setting sun. Such beautiful bridges - and such a pity you are not allowed to walk over them!
Around the World in 80 Clicks
Personal travel impressions both in words and images from Vladivostok bridges (Russia). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to Vladivostok bridges. Read more about this site.