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An update from Evaneos

Listvianka (Russia)

Practical information about Listvianka

  • Family
  • Spa and massage
  • Beach / Seaside Resort
  • Viewpoint
  • Hiking / Trekking
  • Port
  • River
  • Water Sports
  • Lake
  • Museums
  • Handicraft
3 / 5 - 2 reviews
How to get there
60 km by bus from Irkutsk
When to go
In summer or winter
Minimum stay
1 to 2 days

Reviews of Listvianka

Marie Cavalié Travel writer
27 travel articles

Listvyanka is a small village on the banks of Lake Baikal which has completely understood the tourist possibilities offered by the lake. If you're looking for authenticity then go a bit further, and explore Port Baikal.

My suggestion:
Take a break on the road between Irkutsk and Listvyanka to visit Taltsy Open Air Musuem of architecture and ethnography. It will tell you about the way of life of the Siberian people from the 17th to 19th centuries.

During my trip to Russia, Listvyanka was my first stop in the area around Lake Baikal. I have mixed memories of it. Obviously, going into the mountains, or climbing high enough to see the Lake's water left me speechless with the beauty of the countryside, but the village itself was a bit disappointing. Its only reason for existing seems to be tourism. There are numerous agencies offering excursions, a tourist trap crafts market and hotels along the banks of the river.

So my advice is to get to the old village as soon as possible, enjoy the pretty isbas and the church, try the omul which villagers smoke on the street, and climb Chersky rock. From there you can see the River Angara, the only river which drains the lake, Shaman's rock poking its head above the water, and the colourful prayer flags lefts by the Buryats to send their messages to the spirits.

I went to the opposite bank to see Port Baikal, which is more authentic, and walked along the old railway line, called "the golden buckle on Russia's steel belt", whose numerous tunnels, bridges and viaducts are real technical marvels.

View of Lake Baikal
Travel writer
26 travel articles

Listvyanka is a small fishing village on the shores of Lake Baikal, about an hour's drive from Irkutsk. If you don't have much time to spend on the Lake then this is the place to go.

My suggestion:
Watch your budget and negotiate for everything: meals, accommodation or omul! The villagers historically make a living from fishing and use tourism as a revenue complement.

I went to Listvyanka in springtime, when Lake Baikal was melting. You still felt like you were in a freezer standing right by the banks but 500 m inland (2 streets), it was "warm". It was a fascinating feeling!

I am dubious about this village's future - there are still a few traditional houses next to more modern ones which are gradually devastating the taiga... Saint Nicolas' Church and Baikal Limnological Museum are worth a visit. There are lots of different activities available, but not in the spring.

Happily, I was able to go for a walk in the forest, along the Great Baikal Trail, as far as Bolshiye Koty. We met some locals and shared salamis and vodka.

If you have time to spend in the region during your trip to Russia then you should go to Olkhon Island. If you don't, then Listvyanka is a good place to enjoy Lake Baikal.