University & Siberian Botanical Gardens

Top choice in Tomsk

The classically colonnaded main buildings of the university lie in resplendently leafy grounds, giving Tomsk the sobriquet ‘Oxford of Siberia’. Most of the buildings themselves are closed to the public, but the grounds are open to all. However, the Siberian Botanical Gardens, at the southern edge of the grounds, are the real highlight of a visit. The exterior gardens contain samples of many Siberian plant species while the enormous greenhouses (guided tour only) get all tropical and steamy.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Tomsk attractions

1. Memorial Museum

0.47 MILES

The gloomy basement of this former NKVD (proto-KGB) building is now a museum dedicated to the unspeakable horrors that took place here. Look out for the…

2. Tomsk Regional Museum

0.54 MILES

Housed in the splendid Atashev Palace, this modest museum has a 2500-year-old bear amulet and an interesting exhibit on the Great Tea Trail. But it's the…

3. Red Mosque

0.66 MILES

This modest mosque, dating from 1904, was used as a vodka factory by the atheist Soviets, but was reopened to worshippers in 1997.

4. Prospekt Lenina 56

0.69 MILES

This lovely old house marks the start of a street that's home to a number of attractive wooden buildings.

5. Russian-German House

0.69 MILES

The spired, bright-turquoise Russian-German House (1904) is among several grand wooden mansions along ul Krasnoarmeyskaya.

6. Peacock House

0.71 MILES

The fan-gabled Peacock House (early 20th century) is a classic landmark.

7. Dragon House

0.77 MILES

Grand wooden mansions stand along ul Krasnoarmeyskaya including the late-19th-cenury Dragon House which is home to a clinic and a couple of dragons.

8. Tomsk Art Museum

0.93 MILES

Well worth popping into for its wide range of permanent and temporary exhibits. The highlight is the collection of 19th- and early 20th-century Russian…