Things to Bring Home from Lake Baikal
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December, 01

Things to Bring Home from Lake Baikal

Самое главное, что вы можете привезти с Байкала это, конечно же, ваши воспоминания и то особенное чувство гармонии, которое непременно настигает всех, кто приезжает на это волшебное озеро.

But you can also take cute little things that will remind you about the trip and can be presented to your nearest and dearest. We’ll tell you what is worth to bring home from Lake Baikal and why the majority of local souvenirs are really exclusive and should definitely obtain for your collection.

When you tell friends you are going to Baikal, everyone will ask you to bring them omul from there. All aircrafts departing from Irkutsk are permeated with the aroma of this fish because travelers obstinately continue to try to take this Baikal delicacy home, in order to enjoy its taste again. Bringing omul home is always a lottery. 

There is absolutely no guarantee that you will manage to keep its original appearance and taste, because after several hours without special storage hot omul turns into a completely different fish and loses all its flavor properties. Locals are sure that you should eat this fish only sitting on the shore of Lake Baikal, gazing at the horizon and savoring every bite.

However, it is not such a bad idea to bring sun-dried or smoked omul. In order to satisfy the needs of tourists, the residents of the Baikal region began to produce salty omul in cute round barrels which are easy to put in a suitcase and are more likely to reach your home refrigerator with unchanged taste.


Pine Nuts

Cedar (nut-pine) grows in all Siberian forests, so its nuts are no wonder here, but they can be a great gift for your friends. And most importantly, they are very healthy, because pine nuts contain amino acids, many of which are unique and extremely necessary for humans. You can bring real cedar cones for children: they will happily engage in extracting nuts; and the remaining cone may be used for hand-made crafts or simply as a souvenir.

The best gift for everyone with a sweet tooth will be the Siberian delicacy number one - roasted candied nuts in chocolate. It is worth to buy candies made by local factories, they are the most delicious and, most importantly, cheap. These candies are exclusive, so feel free to buy them as a gift for yourself and your friends. Remember that the right kind of roasted candied nuts should not be too hard, so do not keep them for too long.

Siberian Herbs

Edible Baikal souvenirs are not limited to nuts and fish. Baikal is famous for its herbs, many of which can be found only here. The leader of the ranking here surely is the famous Sagan Daylya herb (more widely known as Rhododendron adamsii). Its use began in 380 BC, already then people in Japan, India, China, Tibet knew about the healing power of this plant. This herb can cure the most serious diseases, because it fights against them at the cellular level. Buryat hunters and shepherds have permanently used tea made of the Sagan Daylya herb to regain strength after long transitions and keep their stamina. The herb can be brewed with a cup of tea, but it’s not a good idea to drink such brew in large amounts, because the drink is a strong eye opener and a powerful source of energy.


An unexpected, but very rare gift you can bring from Siberia is sulfur or resin. You will probably be very surprised when you learn how it is used here, at Lake Baikal. 

Baikal sulfur is a chewing resin of the Siberian larch.  

They have chewed sulfur on the shores of Lake Baikal for several centuries, long before the bubble gum was invented. Resin is very useful for the oral cavity: it strengthens the enamel, protects teeth from decay and heals the gums. Its taste is rather specific, but it becomes a real cure for many people. Such a gift can be brought only from Baikal!

Gemstone Jewelry 

If you are willing to spend money on something a little more serious than fish and pine nuts, the perfect souvenir from Baikal will be jewelry made of local gemstones. Many deposits of precious and semiprecious stones are discovered around Baikal. They mine jade, lapis lazuli, tourmaline, turquoise, charoite, malachite (green copper), agate and many other stones.


Local craftsmen create true masterpieces of these stones, so feel free to go to a local fair and choose earrings, bracelets or pendants in order to take away a piece of Lake Baikal with you. If your collection is already full of jewelry, it is high time to look for a jewelry-box made of a natural gemstone to put them in. Hand-made crafts of natural local materials, such as birch bark and pine cones, can also be found here almost in all places.

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