Lake baikal Guide Book

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Lake baikal Guide Book

  1. 1.     1   RUSSIA, SIBERIA   A TRAVELLER’S GUIDE TO
  2. 2.     2     A TRAVELLER'S GUIDE TO LAKE BAIKAL     The glimmering blue pearl of Russia, Lake Baikal is rightfully upheld as Siberia’s most famous attraction. It’s clear-as-a-mirror waters are a reflection of Siberia’s wildness, its vastness and its beauty. A UNESECO World Heritage Site, the crescent shaped lake extends for 636km from north to south and is up to 1,637m deep, making it the deepest lake in the world. In fact, 20% of the world’s fresh water is contained within Lake Baikal. The vast Baikal region is home to unique indigenous cultures such as the Buddhist Buryat people. Traditional villages are dotted along the lake’s shore, interspersed with taiga forest and rocky steppes. Irkutsk, the main gateway to Lake Baikal, houses museums, galleries, an opera house and other cultural icons. However, its natural beauty amidst the rolling hills and lush taiga forests astride the Angara River, the only tributary that flows from Lake Baikal, is the real drawcard. Intersected by the Trans-Siberian Railway, the Baikal region is an easily accessible and fabulously scenic place to get acquainted with a world of uniquely Siberian thrills. Go dog sledding in spectacular taiga forests, play a round of ice golf, or enjoy a summer sailing expedition on the glassy surface of the lake. From adventure to relaxation to fascinating cultural experiences, the Baikal region has it all. See you at Lake Baikal very soon!   Call  us  on  1300  742  374  (toll  free  from  Australia)  or  +61-­‐2-­‐8221-­‐88-­‐59  from  the  rest  of  the  world,  or  visit  our  website   www.56thparallel.com  
  3. 3.     3   SECTIONS WITHIN THIS EBOOK   When  to  visit  Lake  Baikal    -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐    5   Highlights  of  the  Baikal  Region    -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  6   Getting  In  and  Around  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  19   Eating  and  Sleeping-­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  21       Ethnic  Cultures  of  Baikal  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐    26   Tours  of  Lake  Baikal  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  -­‐  29       Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  4. 4.     4   LAKE BAIKAL FOR BEGINNERS   Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  5. 5.     5     WHEN TO VISIT LAKE BAIKAL   Lake Baikal offers beautiful scenery and plenty to see and do year-round. The high season for Lake Baikal is late spring and summer, when the weather is warm (temperatures reach around 24 C by late May) and the landscape is lush and green. Spring and summer offer comfortable conditions for hiking, camping, cycling and SCUBA diving, as well as the opportunity to sail and kayak on the lake. Autumn brings cooler temperatures, fewer tourists and a beautiful, rich red hue to the taiga. For many Baikal aficionados, winter is without a doubt the most spectacular time to visit the region, as the lake is presented in all its serene, icy glory. From late February to April, Lake Baikal is frozen, sealed by ice up to a metre thick and solid enough for cars to drive across it. At this time of year, a host of winter activities are available on the lake and its surrounds, including ice skating, cross-country skiing, dog sledding and ice fishing. of  winter  activities  are  available  on  the  lake  and  its  surrounds,  including  ice  skating,  cross-­‐ country  skiing,  dog  sledding  and  ice  fishing.       Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  6. 6.     6   HIGHLIGHTES OF LAKE BAIKAL   Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  7. 7.     7   IRKUTSK CITY   As the most populated area in the region, Irkutsk (population 600,000) is Baikal’s unofficial capital, and the main jumping off point for tourists exploring the Baikal region. Apart from being on the Trans- Siberian Railway and about an hour’s drive from the lake, Irkutsk has a unique charm, an atmospheric Old Town and quite a few attractions that make it worthy of a visit in its own right. As one of the oldest Siberian cities, the town is home to several 17th century churches, an Opera House, and a collection of attractive wooden houses dating back to the time of the Decemberists – Russian aristocrats who were exiled to Irkutsk after trying to prevent the coronation of Nicholas I. The Irkutsk Regional Museum features fascinating exhibits on the indigenous cultures of the Baikal region.   Call  us  on  1300  742  374  (toll  free  from  Australia)  or  +61-­‐2-­‐8221-­‐88-­‐59  from  the  rest  of  the  world,  or  visit  our  website   www.56thparallel.com  
  8. 8.     8   OLKHON ISLAND   The  most  famous  of  Baikal’s  three  dozen  islands  is   Olkhon,   renowned   for   its   sheer   size   and   the   monumental   grandeur   of   its   landscapes.   Olkhon’s   craggy   cliffs   emerge   dramatically   from   the   clear   waters   of   the   lake,   and   its   interior   is   verdant   with   forests,   hills   and   meadows.   Olkhon   is   sparsely   inhabited,   but   is   home   to   several   ethnic   Buryat   settlements  dotted  around  the  island.  Close  to  lively   Khuzhir   village   is   Shamanka   (Shaman   Rock),   the   holiest  site  for  the  Buryati  people.  Following  a  jeep   track  down  to   the  Khoboy  Peninsula  gives   you  the   chance   to   visit   shamanic   ritual   sites   and   spot   freshwater   Baikal   seals   sunbaking   on   the   rocks   below.           Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  9. 9.     9   WINTER SPORTS   Winter is perhaps the most spectacular time to visit Lake Baikal, when the taiga is blanketed in snow and around the lake are crystalline ice caves and glittering grottoes waiting to be explored. A variety of unique activities and experiences are on offer over winter, including dog sledding, snowmobiling, cross country skiing, hovercraft rides, ice fishing and ice rafting. When Baikal freezes over between late February and April, it’s possible to ice skate, drive a buggy or 4WD and even mountain bike over the surface of the lake. Several ski resorts in the mountain ranges around Lake Baikal have opened up, including Inturist-Baikal near Listvyanka, and Sobolinaya Mountain, just outside the town of Baikalsk. The ski season lasts from late November until May.   Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  10. 10.     10   OGOY ISLAND   A small island with an eight-metre-hight Buddhist stupa of Enlightenment was raised at the highest point. A Buddhist stupa and an object of worship that means, “ support for gifts”. There are only two stupas in Russia – on Lake Baikal and in Kalmykia Republic. It is believed that if you go around the stupa three times expressing your respect to it and make a wish, it will come true. There is only one condition: the thoughts of the person who makes a wish should be pure.       Call  us  on  1300  742  374  (toll  free  from  Australia)  or  +61-­‐2-­‐8221-­‐88-­‐59  from  the  rest  of  the  world,  or  visit  our  website   www.56thparallel.com  
  11. 11.     11   LISTVYANKA VILLAGE   70km from Irkutsk, nestled between the western shore of the lake and the mouth of the Angara River, Listvyanka is the most widely visited village in the Baikal region, with a good selection of hotels, restaurants and the opportunity to visit a Russian banya (sauna). There’s plenty to see and do in and around Listvyanka, including picturesque hikes around the lake, horse riding, mountain biking and dog sledding in winter. The Limnological Museum, also known as the Baikal Museum, features a large aquarium and offers a great introduction to the unique flora and fauna of the lake. 15km from Listvyanka on the road to Irkutsk is the Taltsy Museum of Wooden Architecture, with open air exhibits featuring real wooden houses brought from all over Siberia.   Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  12. 12.     12   CIRCUM-BAIKAL RAILWAY   An extraordinarily scenic stretch of rail beginning in Port Baikal, the Circum-Baikal Railway is undoubtedly one of the most picturesque sections of the Trans-Siberian Railway. An extraordinary achievement in engineering, known as the ‘gold belt’ of Siberia, it was one of the grand projects of Tsarist times. Built between 1896 and 1900 and designed by architects and engineers summoned from all over Europe, the rail was laid along the edge of the coast through the dramatic slopes of the Primorsky Range. A fantastic day trip from Listvyanka, it’s possible to hop on and off the train at some of the most scenic points along the railway.       Call  us  on  1300  742  374  (toll  free  from  Australia)  or  +61-­‐2-­‐8221-­‐88-­‐59  from  the  rest  of  the  world,  or  visit  our  website   www.56thparallel.com  
  13. 13.     13   TALTSY MUSEUM   The Taltsy Museum of Wooden Architecture and Ethnography allows visitors to step into the everyday life and culture of Siberians from past centuries. Taltsy is a unique, open-air museum, which lets visitors to walk around the 40 historical-architectural monuments and over 8,000 other exhibits. The museum is divided into two areas; the Russian and the Buryat areas and offers a range of historically and culturally significant monuments and exhibits from the 17-20th centuries. The Museum is set on 67 hectares of protected land and featured replicate buildings from historical Siberian villages, including houses, farmsteads, churches, and a school building. Visitors can enter these historical building and see tools, clothes, furniture, and other everyday objects from Siberian village life.     Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  14. 14.     14   HOT SPRINGS   Hot springs are dotted all around the Baikal region. One of the more accessible places to enjoy their steamy delights is the village of Arshan, a two hour drive from the western coast of Lake Baikal in the foothills of the thickly forested Sayan Mountains. On the main street you’ll find the Arshan Spa, a once- grand 1920s resort, which still attracts a steady stream of visitors to its soothing mineral pools and mud baths. Water temperatures range from 11 to 45°C, with each pool said to possess different healing properties. Around Arshan you can escape to peaceful walks in the forest and the Badkirkharma Datsan, a quaint Buddhist temple with a stunning mountain backdrop.     Call  us  on  1300  742  374  (toll  free  from  Australia)  or  +61-­‐2-­‐8221-­‐88-­‐59  from  the  rest  of  the  world,  or  visit  our  website   www.56thparallel.com  
  15. 15.     15   PESCHANAYA BAY   Peschanaya Bay (“Sandy Bay”) is one of the Baikal’s symbols. Its picture is met in many printed publications worldwide Peschanaya Bay is the only place on the lake where one can see the miraculous "walking-on-stilts" trees, a real wonder of Baikal. The trees have risen above the earth on their stilt-like roots, from under which water and winds blow out the soil. Peschanaya Bay is one of the most beautiful places of lake Baikal. Slopes covered with taiga woods, plenty of large and small rock formations, cedars and cleanest pebble beach.       Call  us  on  1300  742  374  (toll  free  from  Australia)  or  +61-­‐2-­‐8221-­‐88-­‐59  from  the  rest  of  the  world,  or  visit  our  website   www.56thparallel.com  
  16. 16.     16   VALLEY OF VOLCANOES   A very unique place, situated in the East Sayan Mountains (Republic of Buryatia) not far from the Lake Baikal. This fold is a water gap of the rivers Khi-Gol and Zhombolok, filled with lava from the volcanoes Kropotkin’s and Peretolchin’s, which were active just a few thousands years ago. The thickness of the lava layer in the valley reaches 150 meters, and nothing grows on its grey surface, in spite of the volcanic necks. The special feature of this place is that all the seasons can be presented during the time you will spend there. It means that the snowfalls in the middle of the hot summer are not an outstanding event in the volcanoes valley.       Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  17. 17.     17   ULAN-UDE CITY   The appealing capital of Burayatiya, 'UU' is 456km east of Irkutsk by rail and makes a sensible staging post for visiting Mongolia or eastern Lake Baikal. The city prospered as a major stop on the tea- caravan route from China, Ulan means 'Red' in Buryat, yet Ulan-Ude is pleasantly green, cradled attractively in rolling hills. Despite the inevitable concrete suburban sprawl, it remains one of the most likable cities in eastern Siberia. The main attractions in Ulan-Ude are the two museums (of history and of nature), Ivolginsky Buddhist Datsan, and open-air Ethnographic Museum. All these sights are really interesting, and are well worth hopping off the Trans-Siberian train, and spending 2 or 3 days in Ulan-Ude.       Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  18. 18.     18   IVOLGINSKY DATSAN   The home to the epicenter of Buddhism in Russia the mysterious Ivolginksy Datsan; along with the awe of the elaborately decorated temples is the phenomenon that is the preserved body of Khambo Lama, formally Dashi-Dorzho Itigilov, His education into the Buddhist teachings and conviction enabled Itigilov to pursue the greatest constituent of his faith, becoming Khambo Lama, the head of Buddhism in Russia. Pilgrims flock to Ivolginsky Datsan because they believe that Itigilov body has healing powers, as such pilgrims flock to press their foreheads to the lamas scarf. The Lama is only on display for 7 days of the year however the pilgrim doesn’t stop there the monastery itself is a magnificent wonder for the eyes. The monastery attracts visitors year round allowing the public to be enlightened by the Buddhist history, Meditation and the Buddhist faith, as well as the surrounding countryside.   Call  us  on  1300  742  374  (toll  free  from  Australia)  or  +61-­‐2-­‐8221-­‐88-­‐59  from  the  rest  of  the  world,  or  visit  our  website   www.56thparallel.com  
  19. 19.     19   GETTING IN AND AROUND   Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  20. 20.     20   BY AIR   The closest airport to Baikal is Irkutsk, around 70km from the southern part of the lake. There are regular flights from the major Russian cities to Irkutsk, including from Moscow, St Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, Novosibirsk and Krasnoyarsk. There are also several flights a week to Irkutsk from Beijing and occasional flights from Bangkok, Hong Kong and seasonally, twice a week from Seoul. For the western shore of Lake Baikal, the closest airport is Ulan-Ude. It’s a smaller airport, serviced by flights from Moscow and the larger Siberian airports, as well as flights from Beijing.   OVERLAND   Most travellers arriving in Lake Baikal overland get to the region via the famous Trans- Siberian Railway, typically departing from Moscow. From Moscow, the train takes three days to reach Irkutsk. From Irkutsk, the train passes along the far southern shore of Lake Baikal and on to Ulan-Ude. Another option is to begin your journey in China (Beijing) or Mongolia (Ulan-Bator) along the Trans- Mongolian Railway, which meets up with the Trans-Siberian in Ulan-Ude in south eastern Siberia.     Most travellers make their way between major destinations in Baikal by using the regular public buses, or on much-faster private transport via an organised tour.   Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  21. 21.     21   EATING AND SLEEPING   Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  22. 22.     22   ACCOMODATION IN LAKE BAIKAL The largest cities in the Baikal region, Irkutsk and Ulan-Ude, offer a wide range of accommodation options, making them good places to rest, relax and gather information before setting out for the lake itself. Both cities, particularly Irkutsk, have three and four star hotels of an international standard, as well as selection of mid-range options, budget guesthouses and hostels. Listvyanka is the most popular place on the lake itself for travellers to stay, and as such has an increasingly decent array of lodging to choose from, both in the village itself and in the picturesque forested surroundings. Several of the more upmarket hotels offer chalet style accommodation overlooking the lake and the Angara River, and have attached restaurants and banyas. Call  us  on  1300  742  374  (toll  free  from  Australia)  or  +61-­‐2-­‐8221-­‐88-­‐59  from  the  rest  of  the  world,  or  visit  our  website   www.56thparallel.com  
  23. 23.     23   Several boutique resorts have opened on Olkhon Island in the last few years, many with traditional wooden cabins, restaurants and banyas. Camping in Olkhon’s sheltered beaches and tranquil forests is also a popular option, especially for hikers and mountain bikers, and there’s also the long-standing Nikita’s Guesthouse in Khuzir village, a well-loved backpacker’s getaway with traditional carved wooden buildings and home-cooked meals ensuring an authentic local experience. Some of the smaller villages around Lake Baikal offer homestay accommodation. Families that open their homes to guests advertise with a sign out the front.       Call  us  on  1300  742  374  (toll  free  from  Australia)  or  +61-­‐2-­‐8221-­‐88-­‐59  from  the  rest  of  the  world,  or  visit  our  website   www.56thparallel.com  
  24. 24.     24   DINING IN LAKE BAIKAL If it’s a fine dining experience you’re after, Irkutsk is definitely your best bet. As the city welcomes more and more visitors, the dining scene in this city at the crossroads of Europe and Asia has become increasingly sophisticated. Figaro overlooks a historic part of the city centre and serves up quality European fare with friendly service and a smart casual atmosphere. Rassolnik and Snezhinka both dish up excellent traditional Russian dishes in quirky Soviet-era inspired surrounds. There are plenty of other options to cater for all tastes and budgets in Irkutsk and Ulan-Ude, offering Russian, European and Asian cuisine.   Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  25. 25.     25   Cafes and family-run restaurants serving regional Siberian and Russian food are found in traveller’s hubs and resort villages throughout the Baikal region. Finding a simple, affordable meal is no problem at all, although there’s not always a great deal of variety to be found in this rather remote part of the world. Be sure to check out some of the traditional specialities of Buryat cuisine. Buryat is a nomadic cuisine centred around meat and dairy products. The best known Buryat dish is buuza (or pozy, in Russian), a hearty steamed dumpling filled with minced meat and served in just about every Buryat kafe. Naturally, wild caught fish from Lake Baikal play an important role in the region’s cuisine. The most sought-after Baikal fish include omul, cisco, grayling and sturgeon. The local fish soup, ukha, is traditionally prepared using freshly caught fish boiled in crystal clear Baikal water, and is remarkably fragrant and flavoursome. Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  26. 26.     26   ETHNIC CULTURES OF BAIKAL   Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  27. 27.     27   The Lake Baikal region of Siberia is remarkable in that many of its indigenous inhabitants have largely maintained a traditional way of life outside of the city. Here, differing cultures not only co-exist but complement each other, as Russian customs and traditions merge with ancient Buryat foundations. The Mongol-descended Buryats are Siberia’s largest ethnic group, and many still practise an esoteric mix of Buddhist and shamanistic religion. Buryat culture blends ancient animistic rituals and beliefs with Buddhist ideas brought from Mongolia and Tibet. The Buryats were historically semi- nomadic peoples, although today many of them live in permanent settlements, particuarly within the city of Ulan-Ude. Today the Republic of Buryatia, on the eastern shore of Siberia, is home to 12 Buddhist communities and 14 Buddhist datsans (temples). The most famous datsan is Ivolginsky, 30km from Ulan-Ude. The residence of Russia’s head lama, it attracts pilgrims from around the world.     Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  28. 28.     28   Buryatia is also a stronghold of the Russian Old Believers, who live in rural villages across the region. Between 1652 and 1666, reforms within the Russian Orthodox Church were met with deep- seated opposition, resulting in the split of the Russian church into many subgroups. Those who refused to accept the new rules and revisions became alienated, and many were forced to move their families to remotest Siberia. Dubbed the Old Believers, or more locally, Semeiskie (family), today the colourful villages and wooden churches of this once-persecuted group are a distinctive part of Buryatia’s cultural landscape.     Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com
  29. 29.     29     TOURS OF LAKE BAIKAL   The Baikal region is incredibly vast, making an organised group tour or a private expedition a great way to see the sites. A tour gives you the opportunity to visit some of the more remote parts of the region, without having to rely on the sometimes scarce public transportation. As Siberia’s best known travel destination, a wide range of tour options are available, catering to both the general traveller and those with more specialised interests, whether you’re into adventure activities and extreme sports, or are seeking an immersive experience discovering the indigenous cultures of Siberia. 56th Parallel is one of the premier tour companies operating in the Baikal region, offering a choice of fully escorted tours and private charters. Visit www.56thparallel.com to see a full list of seasonal tours in the Lake Baikal region.     Call us on 1300 742 374 (toll free from Australia) or +61-2-8221-88-59 from the rest of the world, or visit our website www.56thparallel.com

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