Thursday, January 10, 2013

The Russian ship Sedov is docked in Manila. Go see it tomorrow, 12 noon to 4 PM.

The Russian sailing ship Sedov has left Manila.
of the send-off and sail out to Manila Bay.

Scroll down to read more about a cocktail party on board the Sedov...

Tonight was a pretty special evening in Manila, living a Travelife.

It was a beautiful and cool night, with the twinkling lights of Roxas Boulevard in the background, and I spent it at an intimate cocktail party on board the Sedov, which is a famous Russian training ship.

Actually, this is an understatement, as the Sedov is really the most famous sailing ship in the world, as well as the largest one, and the oldest still in operation.

The Russian ambassador and his staff, together with the captain of the Sedov and his crew, were our hosts, and the guests included the Ambassador of China, the Travelife team, some officials from the Department of Foreign Affairs and just a couple of other people.

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When we drove through the port area tonight, we suddenly spied the Sedov in the distance.

At night, all lighted up, what a sight it made, indeed. It's a beautiful 91-year-old sailing ship -- the largest of its kind in the world, and the oldest still in operation.


It reminded us of a ship from the Pirates of the Carribbean, with all its ropes and masts and wooden beams. Truly old-fashioned, unique and rather romantic.

This ship is the pride and glory of Russia, and it's the world's most famous sailing ship, owned by the Murmansk State Technical University. And right now docked right in Manila Bay, living a Travelife.


The Sedov sailed into Manila Bay this morning, at sunrise. One of the Russian diplomats who was waiting for the ship at the pier told me tonight that the sight of the Sedov in all its glory, sailing into Manila, was just spectacular.

Tonight was a private welcome party and the boat leaves on Saturday for a two-week trip to Khabarovsk, in the Pacific Ocean side of Russia. But tomorrow, Friday, the ship will be open to the public from 12 noon to 4 PM and entry is complimentary.

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If you have kids, or if you are at all interested in boats, in sailing or in a piece of history, you should head for Pier 15 next to Luneta tomorrow between 12 noon and 4 PM, and walk up this beautiful boat.

The Russian Embassy has made arrangements with the port authorities to allow anyone who wants to visit the Sedov between 12 noon and 4 PM tomorrow to be abe to enter the port without problems. Just look for Pier 15 behind Manila Hotel and tell the guards at the gate that you're there to visit the Russian ship "Sedov."

It takes 4 to 6 sailing cadets to turn this massive wheel...


There truly is nothing like it in the world anymore because most sailing ships of its kind were destroyed by natural disasters or perhaps left to ruin.

This one is immaculately preserved. We got the grand tour and I felt I was back in the 1920s, about to embark on a voyage.

One of the Russian diplomats told me: "You can actually just stay on the ship and sail with it to Khabarovsk."

The ship captain was nearby and he nodded his head and said: "For Travelife, of course."

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I would so have loved to do this as I just love being on boats -- if only I didn't have a fantastic Travelife Magazine February-March 2013 issue to close and about a dozen trips to finally sit down and plan out for the year.

And of course our wonderful Sri Lanka trip in February which I am finally getting so excited about. How nice it will be to travel with so many of my friends.


But back to the Sedov. You must be wondering what it's doing in Manila.

On May 20, 2012, it sailed from St. Petersburg on an epic trip that is so long in terms of kilometers that, at the end of it all, they will practically have circumnavigated the globe twice.

From St. Petersburg, the Sedov passed through Europe and then stopped in Casablanca, Morocco. From there it went to South America, passing places like Montevideo, Ushuaia and Valparaiso, before going on to Tahiti.

From Tahiti, it found its way to Manila where it's docked for only two nights.

And from here it's on to Vladivistok, China, Singapore, India, Port Louis, and my favorite Cape Town before it sails back to St. Petersburg in a few months. It's basically tracing the original route of the first Russian sailing ship.


But now it's in Manila, living a Travelife of its own. Go and see it. This is history, culture and beauty of design all in one. And a world we won't see again.

And just another day in our never-ending, and never-endingly eventful Travelife.


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