Kultuk usually comes to mind when one thinks of seeing Lake Baikal. It is the most obvious choice after popular Listvyanka village, of course. However, Kultuk is less touristic because it is more distant from civilization and a bit challenging to reach. To get there, you will have to take a 4-hour ride on a Russian train. Four hours seem like a very tiring trip but, while seated in the crowded train, you'll see lots of small villages and the real Russia from the window of your seat. A journey to Kultuk may take the whole day, but it's worth visiting this authentic village that is named after a Siberian wind!
The name of the village
Kultuk is the most ancient village around Lake Baikal. It is located in the Eastern part of Siberia, right on the shores of the lake. It is a very windy place, the snow doesn't stay for long in this village, as it gets blown away every winter by a strong cold vortex. Now, you might have the general idea of why the village and the Siberian wind have the same name.
Kultuk is situated near Slyudyanka, an administrative center of this part of Siberia. You can walk for 2 hours from Kultuk to reach Slyudyanka, and take a train there to go to other places. Slyudyanka train station looks marvelous, so take a couple of pictures there.
What to see in Kultuk
The main place of interest in Kultuk is the Circum-Baikal railway road. This track was a very ambitious project of prerevolutionary Russia. The railway is the peak of the engineers' talent in those ancient times. If you want to take the whole Circum-Baikal railway route, you can start in Slyudyanka and finish in Listvyanka that is at the opposite part of the Lake!
Sights of Shamanism in Kultuk
If you want to stay in Kultuk for a day and enjoy the surroundings, you can visit the Shaman Cape. A shoal with white sand leads to the cape. It is considered to have a special energy, which is why Baikal shamans used this cape for their rites. Locals say that there were lots of caves around the cape. One cave was blown up by the communists, as they thought it was a symbol of Shamanism that they didn't recognize. Nowadays, tourists can contemplate the pleasing smooth surface of the lake from above the cape. You will see fishermen here and there since this place is considered optimal for fishing.
Another point of interest is the Stella Monument dedicated to the Circum-Baikal railway road. It is situated right at the beginning of the village, a bit to the side of the main road. This monument is located right on the shores of Lake Baikal. It's good to start your day-journey from Stella landmark. From there, you can continue walking by the lake at your side, climb the Shaman Cape and finally reach Slyudyanka.
That is the best way to discover Kultuk, a timid village on Lake Baikal that is named after a Siberian wind!
Kultuk, a village on Lake BaikalUlitsa Kirova, 54, Kultuk, Irkutskaya oblast', Russia, 665910
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