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Tikiti
12-07-2017, 21:49
Hi there, I am an Italian teacher, I am going to Irkutsk to attend a course to brush up my Russian. I would like to meet people who can give me some useful information about the city and bajkal and living there as a foreigner. I would also like to know how I can find a Russian hosting family (I prefer it to hostels or living alone).

FatAndy
13-07-2017, 10:08
There are enough Eng-speaking guides in both Irkutsk and Listvyanka (the closest settlement on Baikal Western bank, 70 km by car, bus or marshrutka from airport or railway station).
On the way there is the nice open air ethnographic museum:
http://talci-irkutsk.ru

In Listvyanka I'd recommend you to visit Museum of Baikal (division of Lymnological institute of Rus. Ac. Sci.) http://www.bm.isc.irk.ru , and their botanical garden, located on the hills around.

http://www.krugobaikalka.ru/weekend/express.php - one day trip around southern corner of Baikal bank via KBZhD - older railroad built in 190x, former piece of TransSib, with tunnels, galleries and other constructions. Don't take 1st class tickets, 2nd and 3rd are more fun with drinking/eating together with friends, playing guitar and singing songs ;)

Don't forget Baikal is cold lake, and even if air temperature is +26, going by boat/ship/cutter always have a warm jacket with hoodie.

Also consider vaccination vs tick encephalitis at home or upon arrival.

Both Listvyanka and Slyudyanka (southern settlement) host open air markets with fish (dried, fresh, cold smoked, hot smoked) and touristic souvenirs, hotels and hostels, but Slyudyanka is cheaper.

Olkhon island, biggest in Baikal, also worth to visit, although not easy and longer time to reach - shamanic place, although you can meet also praying Buddhists and Christians there.

Irkutsk city is funny place itself, there still are a lot of wooden buildings in the center.
IAPO, one of biggest military airplanes production factories, is here, as well as hydroelectric power stations down by Angara river.

In winters you may try Baikal ice drifting:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rAE6TV7vK00

...or downhill skiing: http://baikalski.net - in Baikal'sk, East from Slyudyanka.

Tikiti
16-07-2017, 01:32
Hi FatAndy, thank you for your reply. Is the situation with tick encephalitis so serious in the Bajkal area? I had 2 shots done, which covers 90% of the risk, but my partner hasn't; would it be risky for him?
Can you advise anything about host families?

Uncle Wally
16-07-2017, 12:26
Hi FatAndy, thank you for your reply. Is the situation with tick encephalitis so serious in the Bajkal area? I had 2 shots done, which covers 90% of the risk, but my partner hasn't; would it be risky for him?
Can you advise anything about host families?



Will you be going very soon? I would assume that by mid August it will be a little too cold for ticks.

FatAndy
16-07-2017, 12:51
Is the situation with tick encephalitis so serious in the Bajkal area? I had 2 shots done, which covers 90% of the risk, but my partner hasn't; would it be risky for him?
And not only there. Whole taiga is risky, as Ixodes sp. live there. I'd recommend him to do vaccination asap, if he'll go with you.


Can you advise anything about host families?
No ideas, I was visiting on business + vacation, not the long-living there. I'd recommend you to dig there:
https://www.irk.ru
http://forum.ngs38.ru/board/general38/
Also, in these your entornets there are "communities" and "publics" (well, our proletary Vkontakte, Odnoklassniki and bourgeois Facebook)...


Will you be going very soon? I would assume that by mid August it will be a little too cold for ticks.
End of Jun-beginning of July is still risky, while August is too hot for them. Usually. But we've got abnormally warm weather in Siberia this summer, Tomsk and Irkutsk have +30.

Alan65
16-07-2017, 23:35
Hi there, I am an Italian teacher, I am going to Irkutsk to attend a course to brush up my Russian. I would like to meet people who can give me some useful information about the city and bajkal and living there as a foreigner. I would also like to know how I can find a Russian hosting family (I prefer it to hostels or living alone).

Use air b and b

https://www.airbnb.co.uk/s/Irkutsk--Irkutsk-Oblast--Russia/homes?allow_override%5B%5D=&s_tag=ua1Ul8uM

vossy7
16-07-2017, 23:49
Use air b and b

https://www.airbnb.co.uk/s/Irkutsk--Irkutsk-Oblast--Russia/homes?allow_override%5B%5D=&s_tag=ua1Ul8uM

Alan....seriously , you are the last person on the planet .....universe ....I would have expected to respond to a thread about Irkutsk......seriously ......shut the front door:silly:

Uncle Wally
17-07-2017, 01:28
Alan....seriously , you are the last person on the planet .....universe ....I would have expected to respond to a thread about Irkutsk......seriously ......shut the front door:silly:

Hey just be thankful RL didn't.