Visit Listvyanka

A small village 1 hour drive from Irkutsk, on the western side of Baikal, Listvyanka is the most comfortable location on the lake. There are a few hotels there for all budgets as well as many various tourist activities (boat rides, trekking, excursions to the more remote parts of the lake, winter sports).

Listvyanka is a bit overrated as it’s not that picturesque in itself: it just provides an easy and fast access to the lake, so it gets overcrowded at times. But if you only have not more than 3 days for your visit, perhaps it’s the best choice. Otherwise it’s better to skip it and to head further into the lake, for example to Olkhon island or to the Eastern side of the lake.
 

What to Do & See in Listvyanka

  • Walk along the shore of the lake;
  • Take the picturesque Circum-Baikal railway to Slyudyanka and back.
  • Eat the local smoked Omul fish – amazing;
  • Visit the tourist market;
  • Take a boat to Peschanaya bay;
  • Have a meal at one of the small cafes or restaurants on the lake;
Baikal Limnological Museum

Located at the very entrance to Listvyanka this museum has an aquarium complex with living inhabitants-endemics of the Baikal lake, as well as exhibitions about the flora and fauna. They also organize video excursions to the bottom of the lake. It’s better to take an English-speaking guide though.
Circum-Baikal Railway

Circum-Baikal railway starts at Port Baikal, which is just a few minutes away from Listvyanka, on the other side of Angara river (there's a ferry). It's a great and beautifully picturesque trip, you can stop along the way and walk around, do camping, or simply enjoy the views of the Russian countryside. Read more about it in our Circum-Baikal railway guide.
Visit Peschanaya Bay

While Listvyanka can get a bit crowded (not so good if you want to enjoy Baikal on your own), you can always take a short boat trip along the coast towards the north and visit some of the emptier areas around Baikal. They will still probably be crowded, but at least you'll get a glimpse of the nature and also be able to really enjoy the lake's vastness without any distractions.

Find out more about a visa to Russia at https://www.russianvisa.my/

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