From Irkutsk there are several opportunities to go hiking. One of the most popular way is to take a train south direction and find oneself on Olkhinskoye plateau, it is mountanous area in the southwest shore of lake Baikal.
During several hour walking it is possible to visit several beautiful locations and enjoy fresh air and quietness of the forest. It is fresh and clean when everything starts to be covered with snow. Siberian Winter Hiking has its own interesting characteristics. Also keep in mind, that you have to dress smart.
Picnic lunch near the fire and great stories create a friendly atmosphere.
Totally the trip can take about 7-8 hours with departure and return at the trainstation in Irkutsk.
Nature is preperaring for winter sleep. Animals try to make last preparations before the cold season starts.
The landscape is almost always flat, until you clim up a little hill where you see that there are many flat mountains covered with thick forest and river valleys between them.
Russian old style Bandy game in comming to Irkutsk soon. The first match is on 12 of November. We created a special page for you where you can see if you can make it to the match. More information on this page.
Have fun in Irkutsk and learn local culture, meet with locals and share experiences with them.
More about this sport: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bandy
Irkutsk Free Tour invites to spend a day out in the nature visiting autumn Siberian forest.
We meet in Irkutsk at the train station main entrance.
At AM 10:20 we take local train to the direction of lake Baikal. In about 1 hour and 20 minutes we get off at a station near small village.
Starting our journey into the woods, walking to our destination for about 1,5 hours. Nature views along the way. Walking along the forest river.
Beautiful wild nature locations. Great opportunity if you want to enjoy fresh air and friendly atmosphere
Picnic lunch and rest by the fire. Explore the location and walk back to the train tracks.
Return by local train back to Irkutsk train station.
Start (meeting) time: AM 9:50 / October 27, 2018
Finish time: PM 7:30 / October 27, 2018
Start and finish location: Train station in Irkutsk city
Bring your own food and drinks
Difficulty: Easy. Kids allowed
Total walking: 15 kilometers
October 2018 is extremely warm, and they say on the radio that winter is going to be very warm this year. I hope cold enough to freeze the lake, we will see. But for sure it is great news for winter outdoor activities lovers as we are!
Today we walked through the city and captured some great wooden architechture. Every building has great and interesting history. Most of them are connected to important historical figures and events.
Biggest population of local people’s name is Buryat. Their culture is unique and full of history and siberian character, different from everybody else, yet in some ways similar to the neighbors. Art is also unique and special. Experience local character in various styles of art.
Collection will present you with history of art. Also it will be possible to learn about modern Buryatiya artists and see their work. Irkutsk city also plays a great role in local people’s art.
Start: 23 August 2018 Finish: 7 October 2018 Location: Siberian Art Museum Address: Karl Marx street, 23 Price: 150 RUB Everyday: AM 10:00 — PM 6:00 Thursday: AM 12:00 — PM 6:00
Closed on Monday
Also, if not in a hurry take a look at the best collection of art in Siberian Art Museum. It is totally worth of seing. Russian iconography is a special. There you may not see many staff speak great English, but you can get around easily and they are used to see travelers, who you might meet there as well.
Discover Boris Bychkov, and his art of glass and crystal. Collection of his art will be presented to view for the public in Irkutsk downtown in Regional Museum. This man worked during Soviet times and he decorated with stained-glass windows many of the architechture in the middle of the XX century in Irkutsk and regional cities. He has a title of well known and respected artist among local people.
Start: 11 September 2018 Finish: 4 Nobember 2018 Location: Irkutsk Regional Museum Address: Lenin street, 5 Price: 150 RUB Everyday: AM 10:00 — PM 6:00 Thursday: AM 12:00 — PM 6:00
Closed on Monday
Also, if not in a hurry take a look at the best collection of art in Irkutsk Regional Museum. It is totally worth of seing. There you may not see many staff speak great English, but you can get around easily and they are used to see travelers, who you might meet there as well.
Summer high season on lake Baikal is from middle of July to the beginning of September. Warmest days. Most tourist are from Russia and China, but you can meet people from all over the world in Irkutsk and around lake Baikal. There are many locations with no tourists or very little.
Winter high season is from middle of February to the end of March. Winter’s end. This is the time when the ice on the lake is the most stable and firm, 1 meter thick on the most of the lake. It doesn’t freeze only in small area in the south, where Angara river begins (Listvyanka village).
The lake is frozen from middle of January to middle of April.
See the chart below for the temperature averages.
Weather is changing fast. It never rains more than 2 days. Usually 1 day rain, cloudy day after and sunny again. Lake Baikal area is famous for having near 300 sunny days in a year. Most of the time the weather forecast is wrong about the rain. Clouds may be all over the place, but it rains shortly in random location.
It is possible to get into heavy rain but it will be short time rain. But snow falls can last longer and sometimes give a lot of trouble on the roads. Thanks to Russsian people who are used to occasional abundance of snow and icy roads.
Visiting lake Baikal is all about getting connected to nature. We recommend to visit the lake when there is the smallest amount of travelers.
From April to the beginning of June you can see how the lake starts to wake up from the winter sleep. The ice is all gone and more than 300 streams and rivers start to fill the lake. Spring time is a struggle with winter who doesn’t want to finish. The water is the cleanest during this time.
From September to the end of January, extremely beautiful during the fall on lake Baikal. Autumn stormy skies and colors of the nature can impress anybody. Also winter magic starts when everything goes to bed under the white blanket of winter. There is snow all over the land, but the lake takes long time to freeze. Misty waters, icy shores, trees under the snow. Short winter days take you away into the fairy tale of Siberian winter.