Top things to do

Top Choice Pub in Irkutsk


You’ll never walk (or drink) alone at Irkutsk’s most popular theme pub. Enter through a mocked-up red telephone box to find an interior tiled in Beatles photos and old vinyl LPs and strewn with reminders of northwes…
Top Choice Mongolian in Irkutsk


Take your taste buds to the Mongolian steppe for some yurt-size portions of mutton, lamb and steak as well as filling soups and buuzy (dumplings), sluiced down with a bottle from the decent foreign wine list. Smiley…
Top Choice Cafe in Irkutsk

Belaya Vorona

Disciples of the bean should definitely head to the ‘White Raven’, a relaxing cellar-based coffee hangout on the main drag. A funky soundtrack provides background for caffeine and cakes or a late breakfast as you ca…
Top Choice Italian in Irkutsk


It’s pretty obvious from the outside that Figaro is no ordinary Siberian eatery. The glass fronted dining space peppered with works of art and graced with unpretentiously stylish laid tables fills daily with diners …
Top Choice Russian in Irkutsk


Arguably the best eating addition in the 130 Kvartal, this retro restaurant serves up a 100% Soviet-era menu (think upmarket pelmeni, okroshka, shchi, kvas and grandmother's pickles) in a plush Stalinist banqueting …
Russian in Irkutsk

Arbatski Dvorik

This upmarket restaurant is all inside-out, the walls lined with imitation facades, doorways and street lamps. However there’s nothing topsy-turvy about the impeccable service and well-crafted menu. Oddly, it’s acce…
Cafe in Irkutsk


This cosy belle époque–style cafe has attentive English-speaking service and regularly wins local awards for its food. It’s been around since 1961, making it the city’s longest-serving eatery.
Pub in Irkutsk


Upmarket Bavarian-style bierstube (beer hall with heavy wooden furniture) serving Newcastle Brown and Guinness as well as German beers and sausages. Enter from ul Karla Marksa.
Pub in Irkutsk

Cheshskaya Pivovarnya

You’ll smell this place before you see it as Irkutsk’s unpretentious microbrewery-pub creates its own Pilsner Urquell lager, pumping out a pungent hop aroma in the process.
Museum in Irkutsk

Regional Museum

Irkutsk’s rapidly ageing Regional Museum occupies a fancy 1880s brick building that formerly housed the Siberian Geographical Society, a club of Victorian-style gentlemen explorers. The highlights here are the downs…