Travel in Siberia

Baikal

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The following tours are provided in this region:

  • Excursion-ethnographical tour - "The Gaeser Land"
  • Active-excursion tour - "The Road To The Heart Of Baikal"
  • Baikal on the map


     

    Lake Baikal (Russian: о́зеро Байка́л, tr. Ozero Baykal) is the world's oldest and deepest lake at 30 million years old and with an average depth of 744.4 metres.

    Located in the south of the Russian region of Siberia, between Irkutsk Oblast to the northwest and the Buryat Republic to the southeast, it is the most voluminous freshwater lake in the world, containing roughly 20% of the world's unfrozen surface fresh water.

    At 1,642 metres (5,387 ft), Lake Baikal is the deepest and among the clearest of all lakes in the world. Similarly to Lake Tanganyika, Lake Baikal was formed as an ancient rift valley, having the typical long crescent shape with a surface area of 31,722 km2/12,248 sq mi, less than that of Lake Superior or Lake Victoria. Baikal is home to more than 1,700 species of plants and animals, two thirds of which can be found nowhere else in the world and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996. It is also home to Buryat tribes who reside on the eastern side of Lake Baikal, rearing goats, camels, cattle and sheep, where the regional temperatures vary from a minimum of −19 °C (−2 °F) in winter to maximum of 14 °C (57 °F) in summer. Lake Baikal is nicknamed "Older sister of Sister Lakes (Lake Khövsgöl and Lake Baikal)".

    The lake, called "the Pearl of Siberia", drew investors from the tourist industry as energy revenues sparked an economic boom. In 2007, the Russian government declared the Baikal region a special economic zone. The popular resort of Listvyanka is home to the seven-story Hotel Mayak. At the northern part of the lake Baikalplan (a German NGO) built together with Russians in 2009 the Frolikha Adventure Coastline Track a 100 km long Long-distance trail as example for a sustainable development of the region. Baikal was also declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1996.

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