Discover the Rare Vostok Buran Watch: A Tribute to Soviet Polar Aviation

Three Penguins and a Polar Bear on the Dial of a Vostok Buran


Today, I am wearing an intriguing watch from the USSR, which I believe is often overlooked, particularly in Italy, due to a lack of understanding of its historical significance. While many theories about this watch can be found online, few are based on solid evidence. The watch in question is the Vostok Buran, dedicated to Soviet Polar Aviation.

You can view some fascinating images from the historical archive of Russian Aeroflot here.

The Dial of the Polar Aviation Watch

The dial of this watch is divided into two distinct areas:

soviet watch Vostok Polar aviation

Vostok Polar Aviation

At the top, there is a blue semicircle with the Cyrillic inscription “БУРАН” (Buran, meaning blizzard). Inside this semicircle, there is a depiction of a polar bear, an animal native to the northern hemisphere and the North Pole.

Three Penguins

At the bottom, there are three penguins, which are typical of the southern hemisphere and the South Pole. Alongside the penguins is the logo that currently represents Aeroflot.

Today, Polar Aviation is considered a subsidiary of Aeroflot, and its services are carried out under a unified brand.

Photographic Evidence of Polar Aviation

Historical Context

Established in 1934, Soviet Polar Aviation remained active until 1970. It serviced all polar routes to and from the most remote countries and scientific stations located in the Arctic regions of the planet.

Many intriguing details about this period can be found here. Unfortunately, the history of Polar Aviation is marked by numerous accidents and disasters.

Service to Arctic Islands

Polar Aviation also served many Arctic islands, providing crucial services such as mail, medicines, and food supplies to the island inhabitants.

A particularly interesting website, albeit in Russian, provides insights into the life on Dickson Island. Thanks to Google Translate, you can explore the historical photos showing Soviet Polar Aviation planes and helicopters here.

The Watch Itself

The Vostok Buran watch is well-crafted and comfortable to wear. It was primarily released for the Italian market, identifiable by the typical case back and the high-quality leather strap marked in several places. This watch deserves a prominent place in any Russian watch enthusiast’s collection.

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