Angara Dam


Some 6km southeast of the centre, the 1956 Angara Dam is 2km long. Its construction raised Lake Baikal by up to 1m and caused environmental problems, most notably the silencing of the so-called singing sands on Baikal’s eastern shore. The dam itself is hardly an attraction but moored nearby is the Angara icebreaker.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Irkutsk attractions

1. Angara Icebreaker


Originally imported in kit form from Newcastle-upon-Tyne to carry Trans-Siberian Railway passengers across Lake Baikal (the trains went on her bigger…

2. Usadba Sukacheva

2.43 MILES

A small park on the edge of the historical centre contains a smattering of beautiful wood-lace buildings and arbours. These house exhibitions dedicated to…

3. 130 Kvartal


What does a city boasting some of Siberia’s most impressive original timber architecture do to improve the visitor experience? Yes, that’s right,…

4. Raising of the Cross Church

2.81 MILES

The 1758 baroque Raising of the Cross Church has a fine interior of gilt-edged icons and examples of intricate brickwork in a rounded style that’s unique…

5. Museum of City Life

3.03 MILES

This small museum filling six rooms of a former merchant’s house illustrates just why 19th-century Irkutsk was nicknamed the ‘Paris of Siberia’. Changing…

6. Regional Museum

3.09 MILES

Irkutsk’s rapidly ageing Regional Museum occupies a fancy 1880s brick building that formerly housed the Siberian Geographical Society, a club of Victorian…

7. Statue of Tsar Alexander III


Adorning the Angara embankment, a recast statue of Alexander III (a copy of the 1904 original) has the only tsar ever to visit Siberia looking as though…

8. Volkonsky House-Museum

3.14 MILES

The duck-egg-blue and white home of Decembrist Count Sergei Volkonsky, whose wife Maria Volkonskaya cuts the main figure in Christine Sutherland’s…