About Irkutsk and Lake Baikal
Irkutsk region is the sixth largest region in Siberia and the fourth largest in terms of population. It is located in the South of Eastern Siberia, on the Western coast of lake Baikal. It borders the Zabaykasky territory and Yakutia republic in the east, Buryatia republic in the south, Krasnoyarsk territory in the west, and Tuva republic in the southwest.
The main wealth of the region is natural resources: starting from Lake Baikal and ending with amazing nature reserves. But there are also a lot of cultural objects in the region. For example, in terms of content museums are better in Irkutsk than any other regional sites. Here is also an incredible amount of entertainment for any type of interest — from jeep safaris, dog sledding on the Baikal ice to Shamans meeting and traveling on a retro train around the lake.
The climate of the Irkutsk region is sharply continental. The average temperature of the warm season (from May to September) range from 10°C to 35°C, and cold season from -5°C to -40°C (from November to March). However, all year round, all indoor spaces are well heated: hotels rooms and common spaces, shops, cars, buses, museums, restaurants etc. So your tourists will be comfortable to travel at any time of the year.
Visa to Russia. In order to visit Russia, Indian citizens need to get a visa. You can do this at the Embassy or Consulate of the Russian Federation located in India. To apply for a visa, you need to get an invitation from Russia — this document depends on the type of visa, and the type of visa depends on the purpose of the visit. Tourist visa to Russia for Indian citizens is valid from 1 to 30 days.
Tourist destinations in the region
Irkutsk is the capital of the region. One of the most beautiful cities in Russia, which combines the unique architectural style and cultural traditions of the Siberian city. Irkutsk is home to many monuments of wooden architecture, unique churches, architectural and engineering art, the oldest museums and theaters that are known in Russia and abroad.
Irkutsk district (Listvyanka village)
Irkutsk district (Listvyanka village) is one of the most visited places on lake Baikal. The village of Listvyanka is located 70 km from Irkutsk at the source of the Angara — the only river flowing from lake Baikal. In Listvyanka stands a sacred Shaman-stone. In ancient times the Buryats had the belief that people suspected of crime should be brought here, and if the next morning the person was not found here, then his guilt was considered proven. In Listvyanka, you can visit the Baikal Museum and make a virtual dive to the bottom of lake Baikal, visit the Nerpinarium (like dolphin aquarium) and see the performance of Baikal seals, climb the funicular railway to the viewing platform of the Chersky Stone, which offers magnificent views of the source of the Angara river, Lake Baikal and the Khamar-Daban mountains.
Olkhonsky district (Olkhon Island)
Olkhonsky district (Olkhon Island) – this is one of the most popular vacation spots on Lake Baikal. In the picturesque bays the water warms up so much that you can swim, and the sandy beaches offer a resting place. Also, local recreation centers attract outdoor enthusiasts — there are services on offer for activities like diving, fishing and hunting.
Slyudyansky district (Baikalsk city)
Slyudyansky district (Baikalsk city) - this is where the project "Gates of Baikal" is being developed, which will create an excellent tourist zone in the city! Now in Baikal, your tourists can also find a lot of entertainment and amazing things: for example, the popular ski resort "Mount sable" or the famous pomegranate beach with beautiful pink sand. From Baikal it is also convenient to make excursions to the most beautiful places of the Baikal region: the Utulik river, the relic forest, the Khamar Daban ridge, the Teploe and Sobolinoe lakes, and the Baikal Tankhoy reserve.
In total, there are 7 airports located in the Irkutsk region. 2 of them are located in the cities of Irkutsk and Bratsk — these are international airports.
Irkutsk airport is connected to 60 cities and 10 countries around the world. The route network includes more than 20 destinations-from South Korea and China to Bulgaria. The airport is one of the top twenty airports handling more than million passengers in Russia: it receives more than 2 million passengers a year.
Road transport is the most popular and convenient form of transportation in the region, both among tourists and local residents. Most often during tours, travelers travel by bus, and all buses for tourists are equipped with air conditioning and heaters, so in summer your customers will not be hot, and in winter-warm and comfortable even at low temperatures.
There are 46 railway stations on the territory of the Irkutsk region, so if, for example, your tourists want to travel on a Russian train, and not in a car or bus, it will be easy to do it!
The main water transportations are carried out for tourist purposes in the waters of lake Baikal, Irkutsk and Bratsk reservoirs. In the Irkutsk region, there is enough number of boats, crafts, cruise ships for tourists to tour around the waters of Lake Baikal.
«Must see» sights
Lake Baikal is the deepest freshwater lake in the world, which is listed as a UNESCO World heritage site. Your tourists will be able to go on cruises in summer, go diving or fishing, and in winter-ride a dog sledge, Jeep ride on transparent ice or go on a snowmobile trip! Well, and in any season-makes for a lot of amazing photos!
Shamanka rock (Cape Burhan)
Shamanka rock (Cape Burhan) is one of the most mysterious and popular places on lake Baikal. It is located on the island of Olkhon near the village of Khuzhir. The shaman ends with a two-peaked rock that is called the "Shaman-rock".
The Cape is located on the territory of the Baikal national Park and has the status of a state natural and historical monument. Shaman rock is the most famous symbol of lake Baikal: no photo album about the lake is complete without its image.
Olkhon island is the largest of the Baikal Islands. According to Buryat folk legends, Olkhon island is a reserved and mystical place: it is called the active center of shamanism. Olkhon is an amazing combination of the most beautiful Baikal landscapes: steppe expanses, light pine forests with relict pines, sandy beaches and mountain peaks.
The open-air architectural and ethnographic Museum "Taltsy"
The open-air architectural and ethnographic Museum "Taltsy" is a unique collection of historical, architectural and ethnographic monuments. The Museum is located on the 47th kilometer of the Baikal highway on the right Bank of the Angara river in the Taltsinsky tract. The Museum has retrospectively recreated four historical and cultural zones: Russian, Buryat, Evenk and Tofalar. Buryats, Evenks and Tofs are the indigenous peoples of the Baikal region.
The Baikal Museum
The Baikal Museum is located 70 km from Irkutsk on the shore of the lake at the source of the Angara river. The Museum has a long history that dates back to the demonstration of hydrobiological collections at the Baikal Limnological station of the Academy of Sciences.
Heritage City Center, 130th quarter ("Irkutsk Sloboda")
Heritage City Center, 130th quarter ("Irkutsk Sloboda") is a restored historical part of the city that serves as a cultural and tourist center. Wooden houses of historical value have been restored here, blacksmiths and potteries, souvenir shops, cafes have been opened, and the music House of the world — famous Irkutsk pianist Denis Matsuev has been built.
The Circum-Baikal railway
The Circum-Baikal railway is an architectural and historical monument of the beginning of the XX century. These are not only stunning views of lake Baikal, but also a huge number of unique engineering structures: long tunnels, many stone and reinforced concrete galleries, bridges, viaducts. The most popular trip is on the Circum — Baikal Express (a retro steam train or electric train).
Currently, there are 538 accommodation facilities in the Irkutsk region:
Download the catalog of the hotels that are ready to provide food and service that meets the needs of Indian guests.
Combined Routes in the Irkutsk region
«Irkutsk-Baikal-Lena pillars — Irkutsk»
During this tour, tourists will see the diamond quarry, the Museum of ancient wooden architecture, which is located in the open air, the "Circum-Baikal railway", the famous Lena pillars and many other bright historical and natural objects that you will want to explore!
«Great tea way»
a route that passes through 7 regions! During this tour your tourists will visit the Museum of wooden architecture, the Baikal Museum, the nerpinary, get acquainted with shamanic iconography, try Buryat cuisine and learn absolutely everything about the great history of tea!
«Cruises on lake Baikal»
Takes place in the Irkutsk region and the Republic of Buryatia. The best opportunity to see lake Baikal is a trip on the lake by ship: comfortable conditions, beautiful places inaccessible from land, successful fishing, a beautiful and persistent tan, exotic photos to remember the best vacation — that's what a cruise on lake Baikal by ship is!
«Tours on the Trans-Siberian railway»
These run on the «Circum-Baikal railway». Circum-Baikal railway is an important part of tourism in the Baikal region: it is very unusual and attracts both Russian and foreign tourists. It is on this road that your clients will arrive in the Irkutsk region: it runs around the entire lake and captures the stunning scenery of Siberia, as well as interesting engineering structures that will delight travelers
«South Baikal Ring»
On this tour, tourists will visit: Historical center of Irkutsk, the 130th quarter, Chersky Stone, the Baikal Museum, Seal, «the Circum-Baikal railway», ski resort «Sobolinaya Mountain», an amusement Park, «Wookey Park», warm lake on a Snowy mountain Cap of Monomakh — all located in the most attractive areas of the region.
Tour «Great Baikal Trail»
Around Lake Baikal stretches the Great Baikal Trail, allowing tourists to get acquainted with the unique wildlife of the lake. In 2018, the Great Baikal Trail was recognized as the best brand in Russia in its category «Tourist and environmental routes» according to a study conducted by the center for information communications" Rating "and the magazine about domestic and inbound tourism"Rest in Russia".
40 of the most popular tourist routes of the Irkutsk region
are mapped on an interactive map. Routes are divided by types and categories of difficulty, so that each group can know in advance what difficulties may be waiting for them on the way.
Indian and vegetarian restaurants
Download the catalog of restaurants that are ready to offer guests a vegetarian menu or Indian dishes:
Winter activities activities
Although the peak of tourist activity in the Irkutsk region falls in the summer, in winter the region offers no less opportunities for an interesting, full of impressions vacation.
In winter, lake Baikal is especially beautiful
Its landscapes has amazed everybodu. Surprisingly transparent ice allows you to see the bottom near the shore and look into the blackening depths of the lake. At the end of winter, there is a powerful movement in ice and ridges and dcrests can exceed the height of a person. Baikal grottos become incredibly beautiful in winter — long icicles hanging down give them a fairy-tale mystery.
In winter, people come to lake Baikal for real adrenaline.
Tourists are offered a large number of extreme activities: jeep safaris on ice, ice diving, skiing, Snowmobiling, traveling on a Hivus (hovercraft), sled dog rides and ice fishing.
In May begins a unique period of liberation of lake Baikal from ice:
the lake becomes warm, at the beginning of the month the ice begins to descend, and when the southern and middle basins of the reservoir are already free of winter cover, the Northern one remains covered with ice. People watch the floating ice floes like in Antartica.
"The outgoing ice of Lake Baikal"
during this adventure, you can catch up with the "outgoing ice". One of the most pleasant moments of the trip is that tourists will see the beauty of spring Baikal in remote and inaccessible places, bring home a lot of unusual photos and stay in comfortable conditions.
Irkutsk is located at the intersection of the main transport hubs of the West and East, so it has opportunities for holding business events of various levels: conferences, presentations and business meetings. Today, there is an increase in business activity in the city and the development of recreational opportunities in the region — this is causing increasing interest in Irkutsk as a platform for business events on the part of Russian and foreign companies. In the Irkutsk region, there are exhibition, sports and scientific centers with a capacity for business events in the range from 60 to 2,800 people. The water area of lake Baikal allows you to hold various business events on-board pleasure and cruise ships. Such a Congress platform is an unique way to hold a conference or meeting.
Tour operator companies
125 companies operating in the Irkutsk region are registered in the Unified Federal register of tour operators.
We are happy to answer all of your questions.