Nakhodka, a city about four hours north of Vladivostok, is best known for its active port – but the most spectacular part of this area of Primorsky Krai is the small, nearby coves on the Sea of Japan. They are easily accessible by car, yet feel a world away. The beaches are naturally sandy and the water is warm enough to swim in during July and August.
Dirt trails often link these coves together, which wind through green forests and provide brilliant views of the coast. It is not difficult to find beaches that are nearly or completely empty. At beaches such as Bukhta Otrada, the “bay of joy”, one can rent paddle boats during the summer months and explore the flora and fauna of the cove.
It is also possible to walk along the rocks of the edges of each cove, where starfish and sea anemones live in abundance. In the early summer, evening fog lightly blankets the coastal area, rendering the sea and sky in soft gray light. The constant awareness of being at the very edge of Russia – and of the world – is expressed in the serenity and expanse of the sea.