The history of Vyborg starts way back in 1293 when the Swedish founded the Castle at the crossing of important trade routes. A settlement on the rocky semi- island to the east of the Castle, engaged in trade and crafts, developed and was given the status of a town in 1403.
In 1703 Peter the Great founded the new capital of the Russian Empire - Saint-Petersburg - on the islands in the mouth of River Neva. To ensure its safety, Peter had to conquer the Isthmus of Carelia and Vyborg - the main Swedish fortress at the Northern shore of the Baltic sea and the Gulf of Finland. In the Spring of 1710, Peter performed a march to Vyborg. Between 1710 and 1811 Vyborg and surrounding lands were part of Russia. During this time Vyborg became a sea port used for trading with Western countries.
The last Russian-Swedish war in 1808-1809 decided the fate of Finland, which turned from a province of Sweden into the Autonomic Great Principality with its own constitution and parliament and became a part of Russia. In 1811 Vyborg Governorship was administratively incorporated into the Great Principality of Finland. After the Saimensky Canal was built in 1856, a huge influx of cargo went to the terminals of the Vyborg sea port. In 1870 a railroad was constructed which connected Vyborg with Helsingfors and Saint-Petersburg, and later with other cities. Vyborg started to be internationally known as a sea-port and industrial and trading centre.
From 1918 until 1940 Vyborg (Viipuri) and Vyborg province were part of independent Finland. After the liberation of Vyborg by the Leningrad Front in 1944 the city and the district were subordinated to the administrative jurisdiction of the Leningrad region.