Baikal the Pearl of Siberia – 9 days
Lake Baikal is a unique place due to its geological history and natural values. The deepest and probably the oldest freshwater reservoir on our planet. The unique and mostly endemic fauna and flora of the lake itself and the surrounding area constitute the exceptional natural value of this place.
It is difficult to describe the unique nature of Baikal's landscapes and nature. Perhaps this is best described in the description of Anton Chekhov “Baikal is amazing, and not surprisingly, Siberians call it not a lake, but a sea. Water is unusually transparent, so that one can see through it, as through air; the color is pale turquoise, pleasant to the eye. The banks are mountainous, covered with forests; total pitch-dark wilderness around. The abundance of bears, sables, wild goats, and all the wild stuff … ” Moreover, the Baikal areas of Siberia is a fascinating place where different traditions, religions and cultures from the West, the Far East and local areas interact. Contrary to popular opinion, Siberia has a very rich and interesting history which was also shaped by numerous Poles who got there with various objectives and for different reasons. The area of Siberia is also one of the last places on our planet Currently, Siberia that have changed so little under the influence of modern civilization, where the strength and beauty of the nature can be admired.
Arrival in Irkutsk in the morning. Transfer to the hotel, time for freshening up and a short rest. Whole-day sightseeing of the city, covering the most important landmarks of one of the oldest and largest towns of Siberia. We will see the Saviour Church and the Epiphany Cathedral, which are examples of the classical Siberian sacral architecture. We will take a stroll along Angara shores and on the main street of the city – the Carl Marx Street, at which there are many well-preserved buildings from the 19th century.
After breakfast, you will be invited to a whole-day trip to Listvianka. Departure at 9 am, one-hour drive to the Taltsy village, and then a half an hour drive to a museum. En route we will see the Taltsy Architectural-Ethnographic Museum and the Baikal Limnological Museum. Next we will take a walk around Listvianka – one of the most picturesque harbours on Lake Baikal. Lunch and dinner in the course of sightseeing.
After breakfast, we will set off to one of the most scenic hiking trails on Lake Baikal. The trail to Bolshiye Koty is about 20 km long. En route we will see the scenic Baikal shores and the lush Siberian taiga. Return to Listvianka on a hydrofoil. For those who will not feel like walking too much, there will be an option of an angling cruise or taking a return trip on a hydrofoil.
Breakfast at the hotel. Depending on the timetable, a cruise on a hydrofoil to Olkhon, taking about 5 hours. Olkhon island is the largest and the only inhabited island on Lake Baikal. After arrival and check-in, lunch at the hotel. Then a stroll in Khuzhir and a visit at the famous Shaman Rock (Shamanka). Dinner at a local restaurant.
After breakfast, we will start our journey to the northern ends of the island – departure about 9 am. En route we will stop at some most beautiful vantage points. We will travel on military UAZ vehicles – they are practically the only motor vehicles that are able to drive in the Siberian bumpy terrain. During our journey, we will try the famous fish soup – ukha – and we will see the Window of Spirits. We will sleep on the island. We will see the Places of Power on Cape Khoboy
In the morning, a trip to the southern part of Olkhon island. Drive to the Shara-Nur lake and a hike through a scenic canyon to the eastern shore of the island. Return towards Khuzhir. Optional bath in the small Yelga bay. In the evening, an optional meeting with a shaman or an evening cruise on Lake Baikal.
In the morning, we will leave Olkhon island and start a several-hour cruise to the town of Turka on the eastern shore of Lake Baikal. Next we will travel to the capital of the Republic of Buryatia – Ulan-Ude, for about 3.5 hours. After arrival, check-in and, optionally, an evening walk.
After breakfast, we will set off to Ivolginsk famous for its largest complex of Buddhist monasteries in the Russian Federation territory. Departure at around 9 am, and the trip will take one hour. After the return to Ulan-Ude, we will get out on the town. We will have a walk on the main promenade (the Lenin Street), and then we will see the first brick building in the town (18th century church of Hodegetria). After a brief visit at the local market, we will go to the main square of the city to see a souvenir of the past era – the world’s largest Lenin head which is one of the most characteristic symbols of Ulan-Ude.
After breakfast, transfer to the airport and outbound flight from Ulan Ude.
The tour dates are intended to ensure the best possible weather conditions at the sites included in the itinerary. Temperatures exceed +20°C during the day and +12°C at night. For detailed information
For detailed information see https://www.meteoblue.com/en.
The planned expedition is an exclusive proposal prepared on the basis of our experience and knowledge of the local peculiarities and major sightseeing attractions of the Russian Federation.
We are committed to ensure the best possible and safe and, as far as feasible, comfortable travelling through this little-frequented and extremely interesting region of the Russian Federation.
- This trip may have the form of a self-guided tour at any selected period. The itinerary can be modified for the purpose of the specific trip. The price will depend on the number of travellers, the length of the trip and the individual itinerary prepared for those interested.
- For those interested and willing, it is possible to combine tour may be combined with trips to Yakutsk, Sakhalin and Kuril Archipelago, please contact BTP Adventure