May 24, 2024

Image for article titled Check out the inside of this abandoned Soviet aircraft carrier

Urban exploration is one of the coolest hobbies out there. It gives folks a new perspective on the cities where they live, and uncovers secrets long buried. But what do you do when you run out of urban environments to explore? When your city holds no more secrets to reveal? Well, you sneak onto an abandoned Soviet aircraft carrier kept under guard in China. Obviously.

At least, that’s what Bob from Exploring the Unbeaten Path did. He flew to China and swam under cover of darkness to the aircraft carrier Minsk, where he stayed for 24 hours to film the ship’s interior. The Minsk, which previously served as a sort of Communist Intrepid, is still loaded up with guns, ammo, and MiGs for display.

Crazy solo mission to an abandoned Soviet aircraft carrier

The Minsk was retired after an accident, which left the ship unrepairable outside of its original port of construction in Ukraine — a Ukraine which had then recently become independent after the fall of the Soviet Union. It was then sold around until ending up in the hands of a Chinese theme park company, which used it as a display from 2000 up until 2016.

Companies tried and failed to start another theme park around the Minsk, leading to its current status as a (largely) abandoned hunk of metal. Compare and contrast with the Intrepid, though, which is still around. The point for “aquatic military museum on an aircraft carrier” goes to capitalism, I guess.

A version of this article originally appeared on Jalopnik.

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