All in one: Irkutsk, Baikal, Olkhon Island, Arshan

Ferry to Olkhon Island
Ferry to Olkhon Island
River Ehe-Uhgun' near Arshan
River Ehe-Uhgun’ near Arshan
River Ehe-Uhgun' near Arshan
River Ehe-Uhgun’ near Arshan
Bridge across the beginning of Irkut river
Bridge across the beginning of Irkut river
Travelers meet travelers in Irkutsk. Chile and Italy.
Travelers meet travelers in Irkutsk. Chile and Italy.
Fishing spot in Irkutsk city
Fishing spot in Irkutsk city

 

 

 

Nice cafe in the shadow of Courtyard by Marriott in Irkutsk.
Nice cafe in the shadow of Courtyard by Marriott in Irkutsk.

Google Maps link to Incognito cafe: https://goo.gl/maps/BnP4GiPopuw

Open libraby booth, Irkutsk.
Open libraby booth, Irkutsk.
Good old stuff.
Good old stuff.
Moments of emptiness.
Moments of emptiness.
Strong building = strong history.
Strong building = strong history.
Angels live in Irkutsk city.
Angels live in Irkutsk city.
Honey market.
Honey market.
Hidden treasures of Irkutsk downtow.
Hidden treasures of Irkutsk downtow.
Khuzhir village on Olkhon Island.
Khuzhir village on Olkhon Island.
Cape Burkhan (Shamanka) on Olkhon Island near Khuzhir.
Cape Burkhan (Shamanka) on Olkhon Island near Khuzhir.
Ship returning to Olkhon Island port.
Ship returning to Olkhon Island port.
Helicopter landing field spot on Olkhon Island.
Helicopter landing field spot on Olkhon Island.
Foggy Baikal.
Foggy Baikal.
Ferry to Olkhon Island.
Ferry to Olkhon Island.
Cape Burkhan (Shamanka) on Olkhon Island near Khuzhir.
Cape Burkhan (Shamanka) on Olkhon Island near Khuzhir.
Waterfall near Arshan village.
Waterfall near Arshan village.

 

Kayaking on Baikal 2 days

When we came back from kayak trip, my friend told me that I’m #(*&^ crazy. Well, yes, but we are crazy in a good and safe way.

My firiend let me use 2 person kayak for a little adventure on lake Baikal. We started early in the morining from Irkutsk. Picked up kayak in Bolshaya Rechka, went to Listvyanka, had breakfast, put kayak on the water loaded it with all the stuff.

After that I went to Belka Hostel and parked my car on the territory. Then walked down Chapaev street where Natasha was waiting for me reading her book.

We sailed for an hour. Meeting nerpa, Baikal seal, was unusual. It was sleeping on the water with only it’s small head on the surface. It woke up only when kayak was 2 meters away from it. Blinked it’s black eyes, sneezed at us and went under water. My camera was away, so sorry, no pictures.

After taking a nap on the shore we were trying to get back on the road, but I flipped it over. My bad. First time kayaking with no instructor, so this was expected. It is like a initiation to ‘kayaker’s club’. Camera, phone, money, documents and all important stuff was wet. But not lost. Now I understand what must be kept in dry box of kayak. All the things that got wet. But our box was full of food and there was no extra place. Ha-ha! First hand experience. Now I understand the value of instructors and guides.

I was in a hurry to get into kayak, because the water is so cold that it hurts feet when you are just few seconds in the water, the stones are slippery and I was not wearing proper footwear for this trip. Remember don’t be bear feet when kayaking. Wear at least rubber slippers.

2 hours more and we reached Bolshiye Koty village where we camped, cooked on fire and went to bed very early as we were extremetly tired.

Camping was great. We put our tent near the water stream that flows into the lake and had the source of fresh water. Also the sound of the stream was providing with calming and natural atmosphere. Bolshiye Koty village is small and has almost no cars, very quiet and relaxing.

Next day we woke up. Cooked food. Packed and started to pedal back. Now I get the idea of how to get inside the kayak and thought about my mistakes. I can teach anybody. Also we understood how to pedal properly. The weather was perfect both days. First day it was wind to the back and second day there was no wind at all and it was hot!

When we reached Listvyanka the shore was full of people. It was great hot summer days. People were greeting us from land, ships and boats. It was lovely. We felt like heroes.

40 kilometers total there and back. It is great for beginners, but it is not too easy. Thank you lake Baikal for your beauty and thanks to everybody who instructed and supported us.

 

 

We love bicycles

We love to go for a ride on Olkhon Island. The day was not sunny and not hot. Very nice for a day trip to the next small village Kharantsy from where there is a trail to the forest with nice clean water spring. It is very green in the forest and air is fullfilling you with powers of nature. You just can’t stop. But it is time to go home, we return and have great local traditional lunch in a village cafe. Dogs dictate us to go to have a nap after a great lunch.

Come visit us and we will show you something like that. With pleasure.

One day tour to Arshan

It is possible to go to Arshan and return in Irkutsk in one day. The trip takes about 12-14 hours. Yesterday, my brother and his wife took two traverlers to Arshan. Good scenery at Kultuk village, great road to Arshan. Hot summer day.

Lunch in a local cafe started Arshan adventure. Visit to sacred waterfall, stone river and buddhist datsan temple. After exploring Arshan they went to Zhemchug village, where travelers went to take a swim in a hot water pool. Suddenly there was nobody there. Swimming in hot water is more popular in winter 🙂

Then return back to Irkutsk, with dinner stop in a road cafe with great view on Kultuk village and south spot of Lake Baikal.

Bicycle trip to the top of the hill

Today we went for 1 hour bicycle ride to the top of the hill with spectacular view on Khuzhir vllage on Olkhon Island. Going up the hill is hard, but the reward is great. The funny thing is that the view was covered with thick fog. After hard work up the hill it was a little upsetting. But still, the view was amazing anyway.

Second part of the trip is the best when return downhill back to the village.

We left just when cars with other traverlers started to arrive 🙂

Olkhon Island morning ride

I went for a morning forest ride today on Olkhon Island. Picked up some pine tree cones for making health potion later. I was happy to see many snowdrops on the way, these flowers appear first in our forests. The weather was great and it is a great opportunity for one to have such a great excercise trip in the morning.

Best wishes to everybody. Welcome to Olkhon Island.

Music of Irkutsk (free music event)

On 19th of May you can visit a free music festival in the very
center of Irkusk. This event will happen on a square
in front of big shopping center in Tourist area
in downtown.
(See map below, shopping center is marked.)

You will see pop, rock and hip-hop artists from Irkutsk
performing. Also they will have a special guest from
Moscow. Band named: Brothers Grimm

Enjoy! We are sure it is going to be fun.

 

Holy waters of Arshan

Yesterday me and Natasha came back from Arshan, which is 200 Km from Irkutsk city. It is a great trip to the place of great beauty and most fresh air in the world. The nature was welcoming us. It is early spring now, but it was very warm and sunny on Saturday, when we had a great walk around the village and a little bit into the forest.

Arshan is famous for its holy healing waters that flow from underground in countless spots in and around the village. You can take some water for drinking, in some spots you can even take a swim in hot mineral waters.