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18 сентября 2019
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Baikal Ring (10 days, 9 nights)

Ulan-Ude-Ust-Barguzin-Chivirkujsky Bay-Olkhon Island-Irkutsk

                                                          Special Offer Tour Eng

Dates: June 13-23, July 11-21, August 8-18 (check-in on Monday)

«Baikal Ring» is a classic circular route that covers eastern and western shores of the Sothern part of Lake Baikal. During the tour you will visit the biggest settlements on both shores: Ulan-Ude, Ust-Barguzin, Chivirkyjsky Bay, Olkhon Island and Irkutsk.


Day 1

Arrive at Ulan-Ude

Meet the guide

Transfer to the hotel, check-in

Breakfast at the hotel

Tour to Ivolginsky Buddhist monastery* (30 min en route)

Lunch at the Ger-cafe**

City tour of Ulan-Ude***

Tour to the museum of Buddhism****

Overnight in the hotel

*Ivolginsky monastery is the center of Buddhism in Russia. Nowadays it's also an institute called «Dashi Choikhorling» (from Tibetan language «Land of the happy Teaching»). It's a special place where buddhist monks, scientist-buddhologists, specialists in Tibetan and Old Mongolian languages are taught. Now the mpnastery keeps one of the most important Buddhist relicts that is the imperishable body of XII Pandito Khambo lama Dashi Dorzho Itigelov.

**National Buryat cuisine: salamat, buuza (steamed dumplings), bukhulyor (mutton soup), green tea with milk, shangy (buryat bread).

*** Historical center of Verkhneudinsk (nowadays Ulan-Ude), merchants' houses of the XVII-XIX centuries, churches and the biggest Lenin's monument in the world.

**** The museum was founded 1923. The exhibition includes unique materials on archeology, shamanism, Orthodoxy and Buddhism. There you can see rare books and coins, Buddhist tankas (icons), works of art of India, Nepal, Thailand, China, Japan, Tibet, Mongolia and Buryatia. The exhibitions «Buddhist art», «Atlas of Tibetan medicine».

Day 2

Breakfast at the hotel

Tour to Ethnographical museum of Transbaikalian people*

Tour to the village of Old Believers**Lunch, folk show

Return to Ulan-Ude

Overnight in the hotel

* Open air museum includes Evenks, Buryats, Cossacks, Old Believers complexes. Authentic houses, gers, domestic utensils, old furniture, national costumes.

** The Old Believers of Buryatia are a colorful branch of Orthodox Russians exiled in Siberia in the XVI century after the church reform carried out by Patriarch Nikon. They managed to save their culture, singing art, religion as they were two centuries ago. Lunch at a family, ritual funny games, Old Believers polyphonic songs and a lot of fun!

Day 3

Breakfast at the hotel

Transfer to Ust-Barguzin* (6 hours en route)

On the way stop to visit Sretensky convent in the village of Baturino**

Lunch en route

«The first meeting with Baikal» ritual***

Arrive at Ust-Barguzin village, accommodation at homestays

Dinner at homestay***

Bathhouse

Overnight at homestay

*Ust-Barguzin is the the last big populated village on the way to Zabaikalsky National Park. It is situated in the delta of the Barguzin river, which flows into Lake Baikal.

**Black soil lands of Baturino village attracted a great number of people. Such stately churches were the proof of well being and prosperety of locals. During the Soviet period the church in Baturino village became the club-house. After the village was declared an unprofitable one, the church was desorted half-ruided and desolated. Only in the 90s the church was given back to the believers, then was sanctified on the Ascension Daynd and there were established a nunnery and te church.

***The rituals of worshipping the local spirits are the peculiarity of buryat lamaists. They say that the blessing of Baikal has a miraculous power and since we visit the lake we must ask for its permission first.

****Appreciate the heat of Siberian banya, Russian cuisine and Siberian hospitality!

Day 4

Breakfast at homestay.

Transfer to Monakhovo (a small village at the Chivirkuisky bay**) by minivan across the isthmus Myaghkaya Karga*

Boarding the ship

Tour of Chivirkuisky bay: islands, caves, hot springs, bays

Picnic lunch

Return to Ust-Barguzin

Dinner at homestay

Bathhouse

* The isthmus Myaghkaya karga links the Holy Nose peninsula with the mainland. There is a great probability to see with your own eyes a white eagle flying or sitting on a nest.
** Chivirkuisky bay is one of the most beautiful places of lake Baikal, where the wild life still preserves its original beauty. There are many small splendid coves in the Chivirkuisky bay: Okynyovaya, Zmeinaya, Ongokonskaya, fertik, Krokhalinaya, Krutaya coves and so on: There are also hot springs on the shores of the Zmeinaya (snake) cove. Bolshoi Baklany island, sometimes called — Shimay is the biggest out of seven islands of the Chivirkuisky bay. A long time ago a colony of cormorants came to the island and built their nests, but later the birds were scared away by the presence of man, so nowadays the island is inhabited by wood-grouses.

Day 5

Breakfast at homestay

Sailing to the western coast of lake Baikal

Lunch on board

Arrive at Olkhon Island* (Uziri cove)

Tour to Khoboi cape**

Picnic lunch

Transfer to Khuzir village

Accommodation in the main settlement of Olkhon island, the village of Khuzir

Dinner

Overnight at the guest house

*Olkhon is the biggest island of lake Baikal as well as the historical and sacred centre of it. Olkhon is the focus of early legends and historical traditions. Olkhon is the only anciently populated island. It is famous of its historical and cultural memorials that are known as «Mongolian errections».

**Khoboi cape (from Buryat language «Fang“) is the most northern cape of Olkhon island. From the sea the cape resembles the side face of a woman who is looking afield. Local legend says that it is the petrified Buryat lady who asked the celestials to present her with the better castle than her husband was presented with. For her anger and envy she was fated to be a stone till there would be evil and rancor.

Day 6

Breakfast at the guest house

Independent walks of the village and the shore of Lake Baikal

Lunch at the guest house

Tour to sacred Shaman cape and local museum*

Dinner at the guest house

Overnight at the guest house


* Shaman Cape is one of 9 Asian relics. Used to be known as «Stone temple». The Cape is considered to be the residence of the top ranked celestial Hute-Baabay Khan who has come down to earth to manage human beings lives.

Day 7

Breakfast at the guest house

Free day at Olkhon Island*

As an option (extra charge):

-tour to the Shara-Nuri Lake

-tour to Ogoi Island

-tour to Buryat village

Room and board

Overnight at the guest house

*To your service: sea kayaks, automobile excursions, walking tours, mountain bike renting, and fishing.

Shara-Nuur Lake — means «yellow lake“ — is famed for its healing mud and very picturesque surroundings — 150meteres above sea level forests. A good point for 1 day biking trip.

Ogoi Island in the Small Sea is easily seen by its Buddhist Stupa of Enlightenment and victory over all obstacles. A very good destination for a day water trip.

Buryat village trip gives an excellent opportunity to get acquainted with local people of Olkhon Island, the Buryats.

Day 8

Breakfast at the hotel

Transfer to Irkutsk* (6 hours en route)

Independent lunch at the truck-stop

Arrive at Irkutsk*

Transfer to the hotel

Accommodation in twin/ double rooms

Independent dinner

*On Siberian map Irkutsk appeared in the middle of the XVII century. It began with the ostrog (wooden fortress) built in 1661, then it grew into a settlement which got its state insignia in 1686. In the beginning of the XVII century the town began to develop rapidly. The first ambassadors went to China through Irkutsk, Japan and America. In 1970 Irkutsk was included into the list of protected Russian cities with preserving its ancient planning and houses.

Day 9

Breakfast at the hotel

City-tour

Visit famous Znamensky Cathedral*, Decembrist museum

Independent lunch

Tour to Listvianka village** (30 min en route):the museum of Baikal & the head of the Angara river

Return to Irkutsk

Overnight at the hotel

* Znamensky Cathedral is famous of its lavishly decorated and individual icon-stand. On the territory of the cathedral there are the graves of famous Decembrists: Mukhanov, Beschanov and Shelekhov.

Day 10

Breakfast

Transfer to airport/railway station