the Most Popular Way to See Baikal
istvyanka village is located on the shore of Lake Baikal, at the source of the Angara River. The village was founded in the 18th century; it is one of the oldest settlements on Lake Baikal. Listvyanka got its name from the large number of larch trees growing in the area. Larch in Russian sounds like “Listvennitza”, so the word “Listvyanka” means a place with a large number of larch trees. Tourists from all over the world come here every year to see the beauty of Lake Baikal; Listvyanka is a good choice as the starting point of travel and exploration of the Lake.
Listvyanka is one of the most popular places for tourists on Lake Baikal. This is no wonder because the village is situated very close to Irkutsk. Moreover, local attractions and interesting places for visit are always opened for each guest of Listvyanka.
Read more about things to do in the village and its attractions below.
“Port Baikal” is a finish point of the Circum-Baikal Railway. The Railway was built in 18th century and it has an extremely interesting peculiarity – Protecting Galleries! Circum-Baikal Railway is a separate touristic route, you can learn more about it in this topic.
“Chersky Stone” - Observation platform
Cherskiy Stone in Listvyanka is a rock with a height of 728 meters, named after the well-known Siberian geographer Ivan Cherskiy. The rock is an interesting place for tourists, because of its special observation platform. From the platform, tourists can enjoy a beautiful view of many significant places, like:
Source of Angara River;
Pier of Listvyanka;
Peaks of the Khamar Daban mountain ridge.
You can reach the platform by the footpath located behind the Baikal Museum or using cableway (funicular). It costs 300 rubles to go there and back.
Another attraction of Listvyanka is the Shaman Stone. This monument of nature can be seen in the place where the Angara River flows out of Lake Baikal. The shaman-stone is popular because of an ancient legend of local people - Buryat people.
According to the legend, the beautiful Angara River was enclosed among the rocks and was under the strict supervision of her father - Great Baikal Lake. He loved his daughter very much and wanted to marry her to the Irkut River (another big river near Baikal). However, Angara with all her heart loved the other - the Yenisei River. After few centuries, sending prayers to the gods, Angara dared to make an escape. Baikal was furious and in despair threw a huge stone after his daughter in the hope of stopping her. Nevertheless, it was too late: Angara rushed into the arms of the Yenisei, and their waters merged. So today we can see that stone, Shaman Stone.
No wonder that Buryats are very respect the Shaman stone. There is a belief that if Baikal falls into a rage and washed away the stone, it would flood the whole Earth. Therefore, in order to appease him, the shamans offered prayers here, made ceremonies and sacrifices. This is the sacred home of Ama-Sagaan-Noyon, the spirit of the Angara source. Local residents relied on the fair court of Baikal - the accused of murder or theft was left on the stone at night and if by the morning he had not died of cold or had not drowned, all charges were dropped.
There are special tours to the Shaman stone for tourists. They can see special performances in national clothes and shamanic rites.
Monument of Alexander Vampilov
A monument in the memory of soviet dramatist Alexander Vampilov
Museum of Baikal
In Listvyanka, international guests can visit the Baikal Museum. The exposition is devoted to the history of the lake, its flora and fauna. The museum has 11 aquariums; the pumps supply water to them from a natural reservoir from a depth of 400 meters. Museum aquariums are part of the lake itself! It is a wonderful chance to see Baikal fishes and animals. In addition, we recommend you to visit the virtual exhibition “dive at the bottom of Baikal”.
The museum is opened for visitors from 8:00 to 21:00 without days off. A ticket for adults costs 310 rubles, for children 190 rubles.
Baikal Arboretum is a separate territory with an area of about 4 hectares, where a plot of original Baikal nature and landscapes is preserved. A walk through the arboretum is a great opportunity to find out how the real Baikal forest with its unique vegetation looks like. The cost of a visit is 50 rubles. Opening hours: from 8:00 to 21:00
Baikal Museum of Gems
A small museum with a collection of local minerals and gems mined on the shores of Lake Baikal.
A place where tourists can see Nerpa - Baikal seal that lives only in the lake. It is a symbol of Baikal. These animals are very curious and smart, so they can singing, dancing, count, playing musical instruments, spinning a hoop and even painting pictures! For an additional fee, you can take photos with charming artists and buy souvenirs with their photo. Opening hours – every day, except Monday, from 11:00 to 17:00, on weekends until 18:00. The ticket price is 500 rubles for adults, 400 rubles for children from 2 to 12 years.
Great Baikal Trail
This popular touristic route starts in Listvyanka. Usually, tourists go by foot from here to some point on the Trail and then go back to Irkutsk or Listvyanka by a minibus or ferry. You can learn more about the route clicking here.
Fish and Souvenirs Market
All international tourists should visit this place. Here you can buy all kinds of souvenirs: local tea, statuettes, ritual masks, amulets, toys, crafts made of charoite and seraphinite and so on. In addition, tourists can taste here delicious Baikal fish like golomyanka, omul and others. Just buy some fish and go to the beach to enjoy it!
We also recommend visiting:
Baikal Astrophysical Observatory,
Art gallery of Vladimir Plamenevsky,
St. Nikolsky wooden church.
Any traveler will like the weather in Listvyanka. Because of the close location to lake Baikal there is always sunny in the village. In summer time the temperature exceeds 30 degrees Celsius. However, the cold Baikal wind will quickly remind you that you are in Siberia! Do not forget to take a jacket just in case. And if you get hot, you can always swim in the cool water of the Lake.
How to reach Listvyanka
It is very easy to go from Irkutsk to Listvyanka. The most popular way is to go by minibuses that takes off each 20 minutes from Central Market and Bus Station. You can find these places on Irkutsk Map. The price of a minibus ticket is 120 rubles; the road takes 50 minutes.
Second way is to go by ferry on Angara River. It costs 1700 rubles and takes about one hour. All information of this option you can read here.
If you are travel in a big company, go by taxi will be a good option for you. You will have to pay about 1500 rubles.
Listvyanka attractions and interesting places for visit. Print the map in A3 format to use it offline or download it on your smartphone!
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