Big Diomede Island is the larger of the two Diomede Islands, located in the middle of the Bering Strait between the Alaskan mainland and Siberia, its neighbouring island. It is less than 3.9 km to the west of Little Diomede Island, but is part of Russia and west of the International Date Line. Little Diomede Island is the smaller of the two Diomede Islands. Both Islands are a part of the Chukotsky District of the Chukotka Autonomous Okrug of Russia.
The island was originally inhabited by Yupik peoples. During the Cold War all local population was forcibly moved to Chukotka in order to prevent contacts with American Little Diomede Island Inupiat inhabitants.
Today it has no permanent population but it is the site of a Russian weather station and a base of Russian Border guard troops
11 species of birds have been found on Big Diomede. In 1976 a Rufous Hummingbird was identified on the island. This finding, unique so far in Russia, was very likely due to a dispersed specimen. Bowhead and Gray Whales inhabit the waters around the island.
Cruise season:late Spring (April/May) and the season ends in September.
Main ports: Cruises can depart from Baltic ports including Copenhagen, Stockholm and St Petersburg. Those departing from Europe and the UK do so from Dover, Southampton, Rotterdam, Amsterdam and Kiel
Weather: the shorter season reflects the more northerly latitude of the region, however daily temperatures through the region are generally a pleasant 20celsius through summer and can rise to the mid to high 20’s. April and September are cooler. This is a relatively low rain period with about 8 to 10 days of rain per month.