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Blue Ice of Sayanas

Day 1

Arrival to Irkutsk airport/ railway station and hospitable meeting by a local guide. Sightseeing city-tour by minivan to the historical heart of the city. You'll visit the place where Irkutsk was founded at the confluence of two Siberian rivers: Irkut and Angara. The place is framed by three churches, two of which are Russian Orthrodox with golden domes and outer wall paintings and the third one is Roman Catholic. Lunch in one of the restaurants. After lunch you’ll have
transfer by minivan to Arshan village, which is situated near slopes of steep and rocky Sayan mountains. (250 km to go on paved road, probably it will take us 2.5-3 hours to get there). The road to Arshan runs through the numerous forest hills and when it reaches the southern corner of Baikal lake the great panoramic view opens up its beauty. Further the road runs through picturesque and quite country-side Tunka valley, which has Sayan mountains like a border from one side.
This night we will be accommodated at the guest log-house in Arshan village .In the evening we will have dinner at the local cafe where you may try the national dish of Buryat native people - pozy.
Overnight: Guest house.

Day 2

After breakfast we’ll take all the necessary equipment and walk through deep and rocky Kyngarga Canyon until we reach two huge icefalls which are coming down in cascades. Today you’ll have a chance not only to observe and enjoy the natural beauty of Siberian mountains but also you’ll get the basic skills of new kind of extreme sport - ice-climbing! While lunch will be preparing for you over campfire our guide-interpreter will give you some theoretical information about ice-climbing technique and personal security. Then you’ll be shown the way how to use the ice-climbing tools and after that all the members of the group will get equipped and start ascending icefall. During climbing trip our well-experienced guide will provide your safety and lead you to the top of the icefall through the chain of sparkling ice cascades. Even people who had never done any climbing found the ice-climbing quite easy and exciting.

This evening we’ll come back to the guest house where Russian steam sauna - banya will be prepared for you! After the day spent on the open air you’ll really enjoy the warmth and relaxing atmosphere.

Dinner party at the local café.

Overnight: Guest house.

Day 3

Today we’ll have a one-day trek trip to Sayan Mountains. First, in the morning we’ll visit holy springs where we’ll make a traditional ceremony of local spirits worship. Here we’ll ask spirits to give us a possibility to make a successful ascending to main mount of this area - Arshan Peak. Locals believe that you should tie a colored strip on branch of the tree for having luck for further journey. Next to these springs you’ll see a lot of trees which are covered with uncountable amount of stripes.

The route to the summit goes through typical Siberian Taiga forest. The trail rises up by the steep mountain slopes where a great view of Chamar-Daban mountains and near-by Tunka valley opens up. The height of the Peak is about 2400 meters. On the summit you’ll enjoy amazing panorama of never-ending rocky mountain ridges covered with snow. There you’ll have a great chance to take some memorable photos. In the evening we’ll come back to Arshan village and have dinner there. 

Overnight: Guest house.

Day 4

Walking excursion to the Buddhist temple - Datsan which is located next to Arshan village. Native people of Arshan village - Buryats are mostly Buddhists. There we might have a chance to watch traditional morning Buddhist ceremony which includes reading of mantras by monks. Together with the locals you’ll get acquainted to traditional spiritual life of Buryats.

After that we’ll leave Arshan village and have a trip to natural hot springs under the open-air. You can take hot steaming bath with a great open view to the snow covered peaks of Sayan Mountains. The difference of water and air temperature could be extremely big: the water can by about +48C and in contrast the air can be -30C. That’s why the huge cloud of steam covers the whole place of these thermal springs. Lunch will be served for you at the nice café at the southern corner of Baikal Lake with a fascinating view of the Lake.

It will take us 3 hours to get back to Irkutsk (350 km to drive).

More pictures taken on this trip


Tour price

Group size 1 person 2 persons 3 persons 4 persons 5 persons  6 persons
Price (Euro) per person     685      370      345      320      290     275




Note: Ask manager about ongoing tours and get your group discount!

Tour price include:
- guide service
- complete meal 3 times a day on hike
- rent of camping equipment
- accomodation at camping bases and guest houses according a program 
- all transfers according a program
- all fees for visiting museums and national park zones

You can book this tour by e-mail

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