Published: December 28th 2011December 28th 2011 Listvyanka settlement
Listvyanka Settlement at Lake Baikal
Listvyanka Settlement at Lake Baikal
is a small village on the southern coast of Baikal located at the source of the Angara river. Nestled between the coast of the lake and foothills of the mountain range surrounding LakeBaikal, the main embankment street of Listvyanka is extended along the coastal line for over five kilometers. For many visitors, the first acquaintance to the great lakeBaikal begins with a trip to this settlement.
History of Listvyanka
Listvyanka is considered to be one of the oldest settlements on LakeBaikal. The exact date of its foundation is unknown, but it is believed that Russian Cossacks stopped here in the beginning of the 18-th century. The settlement of Listvyanka has been mentioned for the first time in historical records as well as in diaries of the well-known ethnographer and the traveler Georges at the end of 18 century. The settlement is named after the trees which grow on nearby capeListvenichniy, those are larches.
In the near past hunting and fishery had been the major employment of its citizens. Later the settlement has turned into significant transport hub. Ship-building plant was constructed here and many vessels belonging to the Baikal fleet including the well-known ice breaker "Baikal" and ice breaker "Angara" were made in Listvyanka. This used to be the largest enterprise of the settlement during those times. Seaman, professional pilots, meteorologists were among the Listvyanka citizens.
Today, the unique lakeBaikal museum is based in Listvyanka. It was established on the basis of Limnological institute of the Siberian Branch of the RussianAcademy of Science. The expositions of the museum acquaint with history of the lake researches, its flora and fauna. It is visited by thousands of tourists from all over the world. Listvyanka has been playing a major role in LakeBaikal studies. Many scientists investigating LakeBaikal lived and worked here for a long time. Others have started their scientific expeditions from Listvyanka.
Sightseeing in Listvyanka. What to see and do
If you arrive to Listvyanka, besides the Baikal museum, it is recommended to see the other major sights which are the Baikal observatory, the Shaman-rock in the Angara river source and the Chersky peak viewpoint. At the beginning of Listvyanka settlement aside from the Baikal highway, there is a monument to the well-known Russian and Siberian novelist and playwriter Alexander Vampilov who died near to this place in 1972.
It is possible to visit small art gallery situated in Listvyanka. The main theme of the expositions presented here is LakeBaikal, of course. The architect and the writer V. Plamenevsky has started this gallery. One can also find works of local craftsman exposed here and available for sale.
A private "mini zoo" is also situated in Listvyanka. It was initiated by Valery Prokopevich Dunaev who had moved to Listvyanka from Irkutsk for permanent residence. The first bear Masha that was found alive after a big forest fire started the zoo. Now you can see three bears, two foxes, and a mountain ram in the zoo.
During past decades Listvyanka has become a modern tourist destination nestled at Baikal Lake shore near major Siberian city of Irkutsk. Various Listvyanka hotels
and restaurants, numerous baths and saunas with the water from lakeBaikal, an observatory, and Baikal seal aquarium have been built here to host guests from all over Russia and foreign countries. This entire infrastructure is making Listvyanka the most advanced tourist center developed on LakeBaikal by now.
From Irkutsk it is very easy to reach Listvyanka by car along the Baikal highway (65 km). During summer time it is also accessible by water with the hydrofoil "Rocket" that departs from the pier near Irkutsk dam. There is also daily bus service from Irkutsk bus station as well as numerous minibuses. The way to Listvyanka takes about 1 hour.
Information was found at LakeBaikalTravel web-site at www.lakebaikaltravel.com