Experience the best of winter with our list of Top 10 Baikal winter activities.There are exciting and amazing things to experience at the Baikal in winter.
Would you like to enjoy the original winter nature with the pure white mass of snow, clearest ice on the beautiful deepest lake Baikal, magnificent mountains and rich taiga, fluffy cedars and spruces? – Visit Siberia!
Do you want to meet the Siberian character and national local habits? –Visit lake Baikal! You’re welcome!
1. Take a fantastic dogsled tour , along wild taiga or over frozen lake, become a musher and enjoy the adventure! You’ll get a chance to drive a dog sled by yourself or travel with a musher relaxing and enjoying the inspiring views.
2. Feel the speed and adrenaline rush during a snowmobile ride over the frozen surface of the Baikal. This is exciting and spectacular activity! Make sure you’ve got your camera with you because the views are breathtaking!
3. Book a Baikal helicopter tour and enjoy the height, see the picturesque view of the mirror surface of the frozen lake! Soar over the huge Baikal, the area with purest ice, magnificent forest and mountains.
4. Enjoy Baikal Ice yachting , luxury and adrenaline fuelled experience! This is one of the most exclusive tours among other Baikal winter activities. It’s a favorite activity of the Russian tsar Peter the Great. If you’re looking for something unique and special, try yourself as a brave ice-yachtsman sailing a yacht across the clearest ice of beautiful Lake Baikal in the very heart of Siberia.
5. Did you know that the Baikal is a giant ice rink? Have a fun ice skating on the Baikal surface and glide on transparent ice, listening music and breathe the Baikal air and enjoy the picturesque Siberian views.
6. Experience a hovercraft tour (an air cushion vehicle) around the lake Baikal. The hovercraft is the safest vehicle to travel on ice, shallow water and ice splits. Its cabin is warm and comfortable. You will make several stops along the way to explore the amazing ice formations, icicles and frozen bubbles of methane.
7. There is nothing more relaxing and invigorating at the same time than ice fishing trip. Book ice fishing tour and feel the Siberian character and emotions. Be a true fisherman and catch local fish, enjoy the Baikal magic nature and feel Russian heart. Among target fishes is a Baikal endemic omul, a whitefish species of the salmon family.
8. After the exciting fishing adventure or separately you can relax in the Russian banya (steam room) with birch bath brooms that are traditionally used in steam bath. The banya is one of the oldest Russian traditions and a “must do” among the Baikal winter activities. Relax and make your health drinking Siberian herbal and berry tea after the hot steam room. There is a Russian proverb «The day you spend in the banya is the day you do not grow old».
9. If you want to admire the winter nature views take the Circum Baikal railway tour and go by the comfortable train along the lake Baikal shore by the old rail road through 39 tunnels and numerous bridges. All these structures were built during the Tharist Russia in 1902-1904. In the train you can try traditional Russian meal such as borsh, salads etc.
10. Book a visit to a Shaman. You will see the ancient elements of the shamanism and of course take part in a traditional ceremony. According to believe, a Shaman is a person who had a special connection to the spiritual world. On the tour in the «Shaman world» you’ll learn more about the Siberian people, their character and philosophy.
The main winter attraction of the Baikal is its frozen surface, extraordinarily pure and transparent like a polished mirrow. Ice season starts in late January and lasts till the middle of April.
In winter, the ice is 1.5 metres thick. Lake surface serves as a temporary road for cars travelling across it. Plan your visit for February-March, this is the best time to Baikal ice activities.
Remember that in high season prices are soaring, so plan your trip in advance!
Other Baikal attractions:
Listvyanka is the best place to get to know the unique nature of the Baikal. This settlement is a starting point for many Baikal routes including the Circum-Baikal Railway.
The Circum-Baikal Railway is truly the main Baikal man-made landmark. This unique achievement in architecture and engineering is a section of the Trans-Siberian Railway and one of the most beautiful places of Lake Baikal.
Olkhon Island, one of the most beautiful and mysterious places of the Baikal, rich with wonderful nature sights.
Chivyrkuysky Bay, one of the most wildest and thinly populated areas of Lake Baikal.
Barguzinsky bay, the largest bay of the Baikal. The Baikal’s longest sand beach stretches 12.5 mi (20 km) along the bay.
Bolshiye Koty settlement, is located close to Irkutsk and Listvyanka, yet far enough to preserve the beauty of a landscape. One of the section of the Great Baikal Trail passes through the village.