Filming in Russia: Buryatia

Near Lake Baikal, in the middle of the predominantly Christian Russia, lies Buryatia, a Mongolic nation and the center of Russian Buddhism.

Film in Buryatia: Geography and Climate

Buryatia is slightly smaller than Germany with a total area of 351,000 km²  (218,101 mi² ).

In the South, its surface is covered with hills and mountains up to 1700m high. The North is covered with sharp mountains that start at 2,200m. The highest point is Monkh Saridag mountain with the height of 3,491 m.

On the West lies the world-famous Lake Baikal. Buryatia occupies more than 60% of its coastal line.

Buryatia has a strongly continental climate. Average temperatures are -22 ˚C (-7.6˚F) for the winter and 18 ˚C (64.4˚F) in the summer.

Film in Buryatia: Nature

Lake Baikal is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and home to a few thousands plans and animals. Many of them can be found only in the area, like the Baikal seal - the only freshwater seal in the world.

Film in Buryatia: Population

The total population is over 980,000 people. As in most national republics of Russia, Russians are the majority. They have 64% against the 30 percent of Buryats, whose ancestors have been living there for over 2500 years.

Film in Buryatia: History and Culture

When the first Russians reached the region in the 17th century, it was populated by groups of Mongolic tribes that would form the Buryat nation in the future. 

In 1666, the Cossack explorers built a wooden fortress that lived to become Ulan-Ude, curently the capital of Buryatia.

At about that time, a wing of Tibetian buddhism called Gelug started to gain popularity in southern Siberia, including Buryatia. Today, Buryatia is the stronghold of Buddhism in Russia. There are about two dozens Buddhist monasteries in the small nation, including the Ivolga Datsan near Ulan-Ude. 

Film in Buryatia: Cities

The capital of Buryatia Ulan-Ude has the total population of 426,000 people. It's located just 100 km from Lake Baikal. The second biggest city is Severobaikalsk with over 220,000 population. 

Film in Buryatia: How to get

Ulan-Ude is located 4,415 km (over 2,700 mi) away from Moscow. The flight takes 5 hours and 45 minutes.

The biggest airport Baikal host flights from Moscow, Vladivostok, Beijing and Seoul.  

Film in Buryatia: Interesting facts

  1. In the Ivolginsky Datsan lies the body of a Buryat Lama. Although he died in 1927, his body still didn't decompose and is open to public;
  2. The world's biggest monument of Lenin`s head(and one of the weirdest monuments ever) stands in the center of Ulan-Ude;
  3. The Buryats and the Mongols have incredibly similar cultures. Buryat language is considered a subgroup of Mongolian;
  4. The Severomuysk tunnel is the longest in Russia. Its length is over 15 km (9 miles).
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Ivolginsky Datsan (Buddhist monastery)

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Ulan-Ude
Monument to Lenin

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Ulan-Ude

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Ulan-Ude

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Sacrad tree on the shore of Baikal

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Ivolginsky Datsan

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Buddhist stupah

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Ulan-Ude

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Ulan-Ude

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Ulan-Ude
Triumph Arch

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Ulan-Ude
XIX century Gostiny Dvor building

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Ulan-Ude
Sovetskaya square

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Ulan-Ude

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Man on a wild mustang in the steppes of Buryatia

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Buddhist temple in a village

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Village house

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Lighthouse on Baikal

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Mountain lake

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Lava lake in Buryatia

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Mountain Lake
Sayan mountains, Eastern Buryatia

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Bridge over Selenga river

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Abandoned bus stop

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Fortress of Cossacks
Ethnongraphic museum

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Cossack house
Ethnographic museum

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Buryat archer practicing before annual competition

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Monkh Saridah
Tourists climb the Sayan Mountains' highest peak on the border with Mongolia

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Monkh Saridag

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Ascension to Monkh Saridag

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Road to a sacred mountain

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Colony of birds on Baikal

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Tree on the shore of Baikal

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"Saxon Castle" rocks
Sacred place of Evenki people

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Steppe in Barguzin mountains

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Highway in the Sayan mountains

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Sharp rocks in eastern Sayan mountains

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Church of St. Nicholas

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Zabaykalsky national park

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Ivolginsky Datsan (Buddhist monastery)

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Ulan-Ude
Monument to Lenin

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Ulan-Ude

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Ulan-Ude

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Sacrad tree on the shore of Baikal

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Ivolginsky Datsan

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Buddhist stupah

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Ulan-Ude

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Ulan-Ude

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Ulan-Ude
Triumph Arch

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Ulan-Ude
XIX century Gostiny Dvor building

Title #431

Ulan-Ude
Sovetskaya square

Title #432

Ulan-Ude

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Man on a wild mustang in the steppes of Buryatia

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Buddhist temple in a village

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Village house

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Lighthouse on Baikal

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Mountain lake

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Lava lake in Buryatia

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Mountain Lake
Sayan mountains, Eastern Buryatia

Title #440

Bridge over Selenga river

Title #441

Abandoned bus stop

Title #443

Fortress of Cossacks
Ethnongraphic museum

Title #445

Cossack house
Ethnographic museum

Title #446

Buryat archer practicing before annual competition

Title #447

Monkh Saridah
Tourists climb the Sayan Mountains' highest peak on the border with Mongolia

Title #448

Monkh Saridag

Title #449

Ascension to Monkh Saridag

Title #450

Road to a sacred mountain

Title #451

Colony of birds on Baikal

Title #452

Tree on the shore of Baikal

Title #453

"Saxon Castle" rocks
Sacred place of Evenki people

Title #454

Steppe in Barguzin mountains

Title #455

Highway in the Sayan mountains

Title #456

Sharp rocks in eastern Sayan mountains

Title #457

Church of St. Nicholas

Title #458

Zabaykalsky national park