Even all the experienced travelers dream of visiting Baikal. This magical Lake attracts tourists from all around the world. And this is understandable, because in addition to the amazingly beautiful nature, there are unlimited options for fun and relaxation in this place. A travel to Baikal is good at any season of the year.
Ecotourism at Baikal is gaining an increasing popularity. This is largely the achievement of the interregional public organization “The Great Baikal Trail”. Its activists have created more than 10 eco-trails. Volunteers choose interesting and picturesque places and combine business with pleasure: they enjoy having rest in the nature and tidy up the territory. The reserves of Baikal require regular careful care. That is why it is hard to overestimate the benefit from this kind of tourism. By the way, everyone can join the participants of the BBT project.
The surroundings of Lake Baikal will enrapture the fans of adrenaline buzz. A 30-meter Vityaz rock, one of the most accessible rocks of the Olkhinskoe Plateau, will be a perfect match for climbers. Mountain skiers and snowboarders will like the trails of Olkha and Baikalsk. Freeriders will enjoy the Mountain of Mamay, the Mecca of the Siberian backcountry. And the mountains of Baikal are a real treasure for mountain climbers. Ascensions to the peaks of Khamar-Daban differ in complexity and will suit both for beginners and for serious climbers. You can explore the surroundings of the Baikal region when flying on a paraglider. And if you like the water element, try rafting on the lakes and mountain rivers. You can as well literally dive into the deepest and purest Lake of the world with a scuba.
If you like long walks, we recommend you to go hiking through the Baikal trails. This can be a one-day walk or a two-week trekking. Select the route for yourself: do you want to get away from extraneous thoughts, enjoy the peaceful quiet and swim in the mirror-like water? Then go to Teplye Lakes (“Warm Lakes”). The fans of unusual things will enjoy the Valley of Volcanoes. Indeed, you shouldn’t visit other countries to see a real volcano. A journey to Shumakskie hot springs is quite difficult and long, but the reward for the long road will be hot mineral springs with legendary healing powers. At last, of course, be sure to visit the Island of Olkhon. An extraordinary beauty and magical atmosphere of this place is associated with the atmosphere of another planet. And if you’re lucky, you’ll see the real shamanic rites there.
By visiting Lake Baikal you can not only get a lot of bright impressions of nature, but also improve your health, strengthen the immune system, regain energy. Having rest in the health resorts and holiday hotels at Lake Baikal helps people to get cured of many diseases. The resorts of Listvyanka, Zhemchug, Goryachinsk welcome their guests all year round. The mineral waters of Arshan are similar to the Caucasian Narzan in their composition. The waters enriched with micronutrients have a beneficial effect on the digestive system and the gastrointestinal tract.
If you want to get closer acquainted with the history of the Baikal region, you should definitely visit the Museum of Baikal in Listvyanka. There you will learn more about the unique flora and fauna of the Lake. The Baikal Astrophysical Laboratory, the St. Nicholas Orthodox Church of the 19th century, a monument to the writer Aleksandr Vampilov – they all are situated in the same village. An excursion to the “Taltsy” Architectural and Ethnographic Museum or a trip along the Circumbaikal railway will be equally interesting. In the vicinity of Listvyanka, in the village of Bolshie Koty you will find the Museum of Baikal Studies and the Aquarium of the Institute of Biology.
You can book a room in a good hotel or a cosy tourism centre, another option is to go to the beach with a tent and relax as a “savage”. The warmest water can be found near the beaches of the Chivyrkuisky Bay and Posolsky Sor. The temperature of water in the Bay reaches about 25 degrees Celsius above zero in simmer. The similar beauty is offered by the beaches of Goryachinsk, Maksimikha and the Barguzinsky Bay, as well as sources of Khakusy and the Bay of Maloe More. The most beautiful golden sands are located on the island of Olkhon - the most mysterious and unusual island in Siberia. Bright sun, warm water, picturesque sceneries and clean air: what else is needed for happiness? By the way, the tan obtained at Baikal is especially handsome and very long-lasting.
Baikal winters are not as severe as it may seem. At this time of year this area is breathtakingly beautiful and even more unusual. In addition to mountain skiing, tourists can engage in lots of kinds of entertainment. They include skating on the mirror ice of Lake Baikal, dog sledding trips in a company of friendly Huskies, as well as snowmobile expeditions on ice or through taiga. The fans of ice fishing will really enjoy this opportunity. It is possible to catch cisco, grayling, pike and river perch in the Lake. The most daring tourists can try winter diving. You will never forget such an adventure. Glaciers and snow-white expanses of the Lake are no less beautiful than those of Iceland. High feathery fir-trees seem fantastic. A journey to the winter Baikal will deeply impress you.
Baikal and its unique ecosystem annually attract scientists and researchers to these places. People come there to familiarize themselves this place and find new solutions that will help to save it. Expeditions to Lake Baikal have become an important part of the Lake’s life. We’ll tell you about the most interesting of them.
The season of “quiet hunt” is in full swing now: forests will make mushroom pickers happy with their treasures from early August until late autumn Siberian.
We’ll tell you an interesting story about the way how the pre-revolutionary Irkutsk became the centre of cycling of Siberia, as well as about the possibilities of the modern unique “extreme sport” of the Baikal roads.
Baikal is rich in diverse localities. Some of them seem to have been taken from other climatic zones. Such zones include the sandy beaches of Enkhaluk. Our reader Pavel made a trip through Eastern Baikal and shared his route and advice with us.