BAIKAL LAKE TOUR

Lake Baikal is known as the Blue Eye of Siberia, located in southern Siberia between Irkutsk Region to the northwest and the Buryat Republic to the southeast. The lake contains more water than all of the North American Great Lakes combined. The meaning is the rich lake in Buryat language. With 1,637 meters Lake Baikal is the deepest lake in the world and the largest  freshwater lake in the world by volume. Baikal is home to more than 1,700 species of plants and animals, two thirds of which can be found nowhere else in the world. As more than 25 million years old it is the oldest lake in the world. The lake is completely surrounded by mountains. The Baikal Mountains on the north shore and the taiga are technically protected as a national park. The lake has 22 islands, the largest Olkhon is 72 kilometers long and is the fourth-largest lake-bound island in the world.

The scenic railway loop encircling Lake Baikal contains 200 bridges and 33 tunnels. It has the name of Circumbaikal Railway being the part of Trans-Siberian Railway. The lake, called the Pearl of Siberia, drew investors from the tourist industry as energy revenues sparked an economic boom. There is the popular resort of Listvyanka. Baikal was also declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1996.

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Tour Programme

Moscow, Irkutsk, Listvyanka, Bolshie Koty, Irkutsk, Sunday-Sunday, 8 days/7 nights

This 8-day group tour has 1 overnight on plane, 3 nights in Irkutsk in 4-star hotel, 2 nights in Listvyanka and 1 night in Bolshie Koty in wooden chalets. The tour is based on full day sightseeing, full board and expert English-speaking escort.

DAY ONE - Moscow

Sunday
  • Depart Moscow to Irkutsk. Duration 5 hours 30 minutes, time difference +5 hrs or GMT +8.
  • Overnight on plane.

DAY TWO - Irkutsk

Monday
  • Arrival in Irkutsk.
  • Transfer to the hotel, early check-in, time for rest. Lunch at the hotel.
  • Panoramic city tour of Irkutsk
    With a population over 1 million people, Irkutsk is one of the oldest and most attractive Siberian cities. It is situated on the banks of the powerful Angara River near its outlet from the Lake Baikal. Not much has been preserved from the 19th century wooden town because of the numerous fires. You will see stone cathedrals and typical wooden houses scattered between Soviet-era buildings.
    Optional visit to local lore museum.
  • Dinner at the hotel. Overnight.

DAY THREE - Irkutsk

Tuesday
  • Visit to the Trubetskoy house.
    Museum of Decembrists – the prisoners of the state, exiled to Siberia after the uprising in 1824. Stripped of much of their wealth, they helped bringing modern European culture. The house of Trubetskoy is still immaculately kept as a tribute to his contribution to the city’s history.
  • Transfer to Ust-Orda - a settlement of Buryat people.
    Descended from Mongolians who settled the area in the third century, the Buryat have been fairly successful in maintaining their traditions. For instance, many still speak their native Mongol dialect. They are traditionally Buddhist or Shamanist (a pagan tradition), although some have converted to Christianity under Russian influence.
  • Visit the Shamans and see the folk show followed by traditional Buryat lunch.
                    Return to Irkutsk.
  • Dinner at the hotel. Overnight.

DAY FOUR - Irkutsk, Listvyanka

Wednesday
  • Leave Irkutsk for a ten hours journey to the lake Baikal along the famous Circum-Baikal rail road.
    Built in 1899 it contains thirty-eight tunnels for a total length of 9063 m, 18 open stone and concrete galleries, 248 bridges and viaducts. The Circum-Baikal has no equal in Russia as to the richness of engineering constructions. Now it is one of the most popular tourist routes to the lake Baikal. The train has many long stops during which one can enjoy breath-taking views or visit local villages.
  • Picnic lunch on train is served by your guide.
    Taste hot soup and a shot of vodka in one of the villages.
  • The railroad experience ends in port Baikal where you board a ferry to the village of Listvyanka.
  • Check-in at the hotel Krestovaya Padj (Cross Fold). Overnight.

DAY FIVE - Listvyanka

Thursday
  • Museum of Baikal Lake (Limnology Museum).
    "Blue Pearl of Siberia," Baikal is the world's largest, deepest, and among purest freshwater lake, holding 20% of the world's surface fresh water. The water and surrounding forests are home to myriad animal and plant species including the ring seal, sturgeon, and brown bears, many found nowhere else on earth.
  • Walking tour of Listvyanka village with visits to the church, the fish and souvenir market as well as most picturesque view points of the lake.
  • Lunch at local restaurant. Free time with guide at disposal.
    Optional visit to the Nerpinatium (Nerpa is Baikal fresh-water seal).
  • Dinner at the hotel. Overnight.

DAY SIX - Listvyanka, Bolshie Koty

Friday
  • Leave Listvyanka by private boat to the village of Bolshiye Koty - a remote and isolated settlement with less than 100 dwellers.
    You will have a possibility to hike a part of the distance to the village along the steep rocky shore of the lake.
  • Check-in at Bolshie Koty Chalet. Lunch at the hotel.
  • Walking  tour of the village.
    Climb on top the highest rock to see the stunning panorama of the village and the lake from the bird view. Enjoy the beauty and serenity of this region.
  • Dinner at the hotel. Overnight.

DAY SEVEN - Bolshie Koty, Listvyanka, Irkutsk

Saturday
  • Free morning for independent exploration.
  • Return to Listvyanka by hydrofoil in time for farewell lunch with traditional Baikal fish specialties.
  • On return to Irkutsk visit the open-air museum of Wooden Architecture.
    See interiors of typical Siberian houses, partly covered yards and barns, small churches and wooden fortification walls.
  • Check-in at the hotel Victory. Dinner. Overnight.

DAY EIGHT - Irkutsk, Moscow

Sunday
  • Check-out, transfer to the airport with your guide.
  • Fly to Moscow at noon arriving in the early afternoon because of the time difference.

 

 

 

 

PACKAGE RATES 2014 PER PERSON:

 

                                   

2 persons 4 persons 6 persons 10 persons
EUR 2665 EUR 2030 EUR 1740 EUR 1650
SINGLE SUPPLEMENT IS EUR 295 PER PERSON
PRICE FOR FLIGHT MOW-IRKUTSK-MOW IS ABOUT EUR 500 IF BOOKED WELL IN ADVANCE

 

 

All package rates are per person based on double occupancy in standard room. Rates include daily breakfasts, all taxes, services of experienced licensed guide (main languages available), transportation, entrance fees and meals as per the itinerary.

 

  

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