Our New Destination: Russia, Siberia: Altai Mountains
Why Siberia with us?
The virginity of nature, the skyscraping peaks, the Taiga, sandy beaches, ancient barrows, stone-paintings and a whole lot move-gives you the route though the mountains of Altai.This tour covers big territory and gives you an opportunity to enjoy the most of beautiful and interesting parts of Mountain Altai.
Our Package Tours to Siberia:
In the south of western Siberia located one of the most beautiful places of Russia - The Altai Mountains.
The autonomous republic of Altai borders upon Mongolia, China, Kazakhstan, Russian autonomies Tuva and Khakass, the Altai and Kemerovo regions.
Area : 92 000 sq. km;
Population - 204 800.
National structure: Altaians (native altai folk) - 31%, Russian - 60%, Kazakh - 6%.
Administrative division: one town, 10 rural districts (aimaks), 248 settlements.
What is Altai? A flowery fragrance of Alpine meadows; pure mountain rivers and lakes, the medicinal herbs along the icy mountain streams; the famous Altai honey; the nomadic stone idols and Rerich's trails; the settlements of the "old believers", the Siberian shamans…..the kingdom of nature and ancient spirit ...
From the ancient times the Altai was called "Golden mountain" (the name of the Altai comes from a Mongolian word "altan" which means "gold"). Located in temperate zone, it stretches from south-east to north-west for almost 1000 km. Located at an equal distance away from four oceans, right in the center of the Eurasian continent, it lies on the crossroads of Mongolian and Turkish worlds, and keeps all the traces of the centuries-old history: overgrown enclosures and burial-mounds, pictures and characters on the weathered rocks, ancient stone statues...
Being located on the crossroads of two great continents - Europe and Asia, this large mysterious mountain land has absorbed the peculiar features of both worlds. The Altai is the place of cultures concentration. Many ethnic groups were rooted and developed there. Altai has been keeping all the traces of the old-centuries history. Archeological finds and petroglyphs which you can see there are dated 1.5 million years back.
The Altai has escaped urbanization, remaining unchanged in the diversity of its landscape - limpid rivers, dense taiga, high-mountain meadows, sparkling glaciers, - all features of a gorgeous, majestic, and imposing land! Altai is the only place in Russia where you may enjoy walking along the unique band type coniferous forests. Being the main representative and proud of Altai forests, the larch-tree is characterized by extremely strong and durable timber. In the past times Altai larch wood was used during the building of Venice. The gem of the Altai forests is cedar. It gives a useful cedar nut, medicine oil and valuable timber. Many medical herbs such as gold root, maral root grow in this region. The effect of them can be compared with the effect of ginseng.
Animal kingdom of Altai is especially diverse. Here you can meet animal species of taiga forest, foothill as well as of steppe and semi-desert. The most famous one is Siberian deer - maral. The antlers of stag marals contain healing substance called pantokrin.
Isn't it curious that the Altai has the landscapes of almost all the geographical zones of the world? In one trip to the Altai it is possible to see deserted Mongolian steppe, dense Siberian taiga, and the high-mountain glaciers. You can gather a basket of ripe cedar-cones amidst the lofty forests, and half an hour later meet pastured camels on the valley floor!
The Mountain Altai is a part of the mountain system of the south of Siberia. Large ranges of absolute heights (320 - 4506 ? above a sea level), significant variety of a relief, and also the position of Mountain Altai in the central part of continent have determined an original climate, motley and rich structure of flora and fauna. The Altai which is often called Siberian Heart, thanks to its geographical location, protected by the mountains which are centuries’ old guards of this land.
The combination of all factors provides a specific climate to the Altai. The climate of the Golden Mountains is an ideal mean between the Asian heat and the Siberian cold. July and August are the most enjoyable months of the summer, when the clear weather becomes settled in the high mountains. The climate itself is known to be a natural treatment of many diseases.
The highest peak of Siberia (4506 m) is located in the Altai and it is called "Belukha". The three-headed peak of Belukha is a symbol of the peaceful coexistence of three world religions: Christianity, Buddhism, and Islam. The people of Altai believed this mountain to be sacred and called it Uch-Semer.
Nowhere else in Siberia this can be found - the combination of beautiful mountain chains with snow and glaciers, rocky canyons, white rivers with rapids and waterfalls, big and small lakes, somber fir-trees darkness in the east and light deciduous forests in the west. A great number of large and small rivers are born in mountain chains of the region.
An unusual view is represented by numerous lakes, one of which is Lake Teletskoe. One experiences unforgettable impression from this lake. Steep rocks and sandy beaches create specific in its beauty panorama of the lake. It looks fantastic in good weather, when the opposite coast is reflected in water, emphasizing its mystery and majesty. The Teletskoe is the biggest lake of Altai Mountains and it has an area of 230.8 square km with maximum depth - 325 m.
The Altai is a fantastic, enchanting country of light-blue lakes, meadows and snow-white mountaintops, prayed by the poets and artists. The magic magnetism of this land attracts everyone, who has once visited it.
Greatness of the Altai found its reflection on the pictures of the known artists such as N.K Rerich, G. Choros-Gurkin - a schoolboy of Ivan Shishkin, N. Chevalkov, is described in the books of V. Shishkov, V. Bianki.
The Art of nature has weaved a carpet made of orange, violet, dark blue flowers. You would admire with wonderful mountain air, bird's music chorus, old pines instead of high buildings, exhaust gases and urbane vanity. One can get here a real ecology of spirit and body.
Altai is one of the few places where all levels of different types of active tourism are available: trekking, rafting along the mountainous rivers, horse ridding tours, hiking routes, speleo routes. As well as motor routes, campaign tours, sightseeing routes.
Places where people settled in ancient times accumulated their culture century by century. This process was briefly defined by Nikolai Rerich: "If you want to find the most beautiful place, seek after the most ancient”. One of such destinations he did find in Altai where his soul craved for till the end of his time. Picturesque Altai foothills and mountains have stored the culture of the human race from pithecanthropuses to the present days.
In December 1998 the region of the Altai Mountains was included into the list of the most valuable cultural and natural areas of the world by the International Center for Preservation and Supervision (UNESCO List). The nature or the region is bright and peculiar. Nowhere else on the planet one could find zones so limited in area and so rich in landscape variety and contrast.
The Altai is a unique landscape monument of a nature and culture and the best means of acquaintance with it is a travel.
Welcome to Altai!