Khuzir city map

Olkhon map




Olkhon - Getting There & Away

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photo: Manfred Bartels

To this day no road on Olkhon Island is paved with asphalt. Unlike to most of the other interesting places at Lake Baikal there is at least a well-built road that leads to the ferry station in Sachjurta MRS. The remaining 80 km on the road lead through the charming hills of the Taggeran Steppe which is mainly inhabited by Buryats. The amazin scenery almost gives the impression of being in Mongolia. A lot of the busses and marshrutkas rest for a while in Bayandai.

In summer, there’s a ferry from Sachyurta MRS (the last place on the land) to Olkhon Island several times a day. In winter, the bus towards Chuzir partially crosses the ice but you could also cross the ice by yourself and take one of the minibusses which wait for passengers on the other side.
In summer, there’s a public bus from Irkutsk (8 a.m. and 10 a.m. daily, approx. 8 h) as well as a private one to Sachyurta MRS (9 a.m. from the station or from the "Angara" hotel, approx. 5 –6 h). For this bus you can book tickets for 400 roubles in advance with the help of the russian company Baikalinfo (there are no business relations with the Baikalplan Association!!)in Irkutsk. In winter, the bus to Chuzir only leaves twice a week (tu/fr). When the crossing is not possible the bus only goes to Sachyurta MRS. There are also some marshrutkas from Irutsk station to Chuzir (350 roubles, 5 – 6 h). The return starts at the bus station (ul. Lesnaya 38) and for marshrutkas in ul. Lenina/ul. Baikalskaya.

more about this picture >>
photo: Manfred Bartels

If you are traveling in a group try to hire a minibus. This is usually not very difficult. Just ask the drivers at the busstation, call one of the taxi numbers, or ask in one the the many travel agencies in Irkutsk. However, a trip to Sachyurta MRS in a Japanese minibus or a Russian uasik should not be more than 120 Euro. You can easily arrange for the return at Nikita’s (Nikita’s Homestay) in Chuzir.

It is also possible to go by bike. The first kilometers from Irkutsk along the road are not really pleasant but after the junction in Bayandai the landscape gets more interesting and the traffic decreases.

Since June 2005 there’s the option to go to Olkhon by raketa (the Irkutsk – Severobaikalsk line). The boat used to run non-stop but now there’s a regular stop at the ferry.


The ferry still can be used for free. From 2006 there will run annother ferry during the main season (July – September) and this service will be defintly not for free. Meanwhile, there are also some private boats for foot passengers which are not free of charge. During the low season the ferry runs on the half hour. Outside the schedule (between 10 p.m. and 7 a.m.) you will have to pay a negotiable sum.


From December till January and from May till the end of June it is not possible to reach Olkhon Island because the lake is freezing. Therefore, ships can’t cross anymore and cars can’t cross the lake, yet. It is the same in spring, only the melting takes more time. So if you definitely want to go to Olkhon in this time of the year you will have to hire a helicopter.

Irkutsk - Nishneangarsk

The hydrofoil between Irkutsk and Nishneangarsk meanwhile also stopps at Olkhon. [more]


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04 May 2006

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