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Where is the best place to live in the Altai Territory?

Before deciding to move to this special region in many ways, it is recommended to first live or at least relax here. Mountain Altai attracts with its splendor, the grandeur of the mountains, pristine nature, the magical beauty of lakes and noisy cold mountain waterfalls. The ecology here is at the highest level. The water can be drunk straight from the tap, without boiling. And the number of sunny days is even greater than in popular southern resorts. Although, you need to get used to the local climate and weather. It is the calm, fairly measured life that attracts visitors from other regions here. Some go to Altai when retiring early for a quiet life. Others transport families with children, taking care of their health. Still others manage to open and develop their own business in Altai.

What to do in Altai?

Altai is, according to many, a difficult region in terms of work and development. It can be difficult to find a well-paid job here. To be fair, it should be said that there are not enough specialists. The road is open to good teachers, engineers, and doctors (and these are often visitors). Other vacant positions in the civil service are usually filled by local Altaians; getting such a job is almost impossible. At the same time, those who are lively and not afraid of work organize their own farms in Altai, lead excursions and conduct master classes, and expand their business. Much depends on the person himself (someone works in Moscow for 30 thousand rubles, while another in a small town has his own business and drives a foreign business class car). Tourist services, excursions, and fishing are in demand in Altai. A good auto mechanic or other technical specialist is also highly sought after.

Where is it better to live in Altai?

Where to stay in Altai is a matter of personal choice. If, after all, developed infrastructure and the benefits of civilization are important for you and your family, you should choose a regional center or large villages. If you strive for maximum privacy, Altai has many quiet corners where you can lead a life alone with nature and take care of your own farming. The Altai Republic and the Altai Territory are very different, both in terms of living standards and earning opportunities, in terms of population and occupations, the development of tourism and other industries. Barnaul is the center of the Altai Territory, Gorno-Altaisk is the regional center of the Altai Republic. There is a huge difference between these cities. The first is an industrial area with developed agriculture. The second is closer to nature and simple life in environmentally friendly conditions. Among other settlements, the following are the most popular for living: It is in the Altai Territory that the largest biosphere reserves, mysterious mountains and gorges, called “Siberian Tibet” are located. Some remoteness from civilization, majestic silence attracts the attention of not only scientists and tourists from all over Russia, but also foreign guests. Therefore, if you want to learn more about your civilization than they write in textbooks, to reboot your consciousness next to dozens of natural uniqueness, you should come to Altai. You may want to stay longer than your vacation.

How do people live in Altai?

People in Altai live a measured life that is unusual for many of us. Often houses and cars are not locked here. Everything around is our own: the administrative center of Gorno-Altaisk, a couple of large villages and small settlements. Great life is in full swing in the regional center and in large resort areas. Living Conditions Housing here is inexpensive, since the standard of living, compared to other regions, is relatively low. The average salary barely reaches 18 thousand rubles. Many have subsidiary plots, growing vegetables and even fruits. Livestock farming is developed in the region, as there is enough space for grazing. The traditional food of indigenous peoples is meat. They eat less fish, although there is plenty of it in local lakes and rivers. The climate is moderate to sharp continental. In the hollows and river valleys the weather is mild and the summers are warm. Therefore, they even manage to grow cherries and grapes here. But the winters are quite cold, with January being especially harsh. Socio-economic situation There are no large production facilities in Gorny Altai. Those that were in the USSR have not been functioning for a long time. Locals often go to earn money on a rotational basis to the nearest industrial regions with a harsh climate: Yakutia, Norilsk and others. But they prefer to live in their homeland: they are attracted by inexpensive real estate and high-quality, natural farm products that cannot be found in large cities, as well as by the beauty of nature and ecology. Altai is one of the most sparsely populated regions. At the same time, the birth rate is very high. In addition, the influx of population is provided by visitors from different regions from Kaliningrad to the Far East. The majority live in rural areas (over 70%). More than half of the total population in Altai is Russian, 35% are indigenous peoples, Altaians (this includes a variety of national groups, including Telengits, Chelkans, etc.). A significant part of the population leads a traditional way of life with crafts and agriculture. In many ways, they are now focused on tourists, since Gorny Altai is actively developing as a major tourist center. There is a lot to see here in summer, and in winter, guests of the region are attracted to the Altai ski resorts. Another large part of the population is employed in the tourism industry and the service sector. Other features of living in Altai If you have already decided to move and are ready to pack your things for the trip and have chosen a stopping point, it is worth learning about some more features of this Mountain Region. • Due to the mountainous terrain, the climate in different parts of Altai is very different, including average temperature and rainfall. If this is an important indicator, you should get more information about your future area of ​​residence in advance. • If you are a sought-after specialist in a narrow field, a military or police officer, a doctor, a teacher, or a financial worker, then finding a job will be much easier. On the other hand, you should immediately prepare for the fact that the salary level will be an order of magnitude lower than usual (if you previously lived in a city with a million population). • Altai is, in general, a very calm region. There are pleasant, smiling people here, there is little crime, a calm atmosphere. But in places where tourists gather, criminal groups also gather. Crimes occur much more often here (as in any tourist center, Paris or Madrid), so you should be attentive and careful. • Altai, unlike many others, is a region with a fairly young population. People of retirement age make up only about 15% of the total population living here. • For those who dream of starting their own business, Altai is a place where there are still many unfilled niches, including production, services, various tourist services, etc. In a word, come to Altai. Imbued with its special spirit, atmosphere, and make the decision yourself! Friendly people and a hospitable region are always open to new residents.

The best attractions of Lake Teletskoye

Lake Teletskoye is a unique freshwater body of water in the northeast of the Altai Republic, one of the deepest (325 m) and largest in Russia (in terms of water reserves

Waterfalls of Lake Teletskoye

Altai natural uniques are not only pure lakes of glacial origin, petroglyphs and mountains. Altai is capable of surprising with its pristine

Best hotels in Altai

When planning a trip, we try to find the ideal accommodation option. Your ideal hotel. The problem is that everyone’s ideals are different. For someone in the lane

Mount Sinyukha (Altai Territory)

In ancient times, there was a great famine in Altai, the dry summer did not allow the cedar to grow, and the harsh winter that followed did not allow the hunter

Lakes of Altai

Water is one of the main sources of life on Earth. The Altai land, generously endowed by nature, is not deprived of this wealth. Transparent mountain streams, page

Sights of Lake Aya

The Altai foothills near Lake Aya are the first large recreation center along the Chuisky tract, where, in addition to accommodation facilities, food outlets and souvenirs are concentrated

Attractions of Altai

The Altai Republic is open to guests in any season. Natural beauty coexists here with ancient traces of mysterious civilizations. And many objects are included

Chemal River

A long time ago, when the mountains were higher, the sun was brighter, and the rivers were faster, on the distant Kulunda spur, at the foot of Mount Tomanyol, there lived a shepherd, and his name was Ku

Gorno-Altai Botanical Garden “Clean Meadow”

The Gorno-Altai Botanical Garden “Pure Meadow” is located in the tract of the natural monument of the Altai Mountains “Shishkular-Katail”. “Clean Meadow” – a branch of Siberian

Holidays in Altai as a savage

Gorny Altai is a developed tourist region where everyone can find an accommodation option to suit their taste. These are both economical camp sites and tour hotels

Ukok Plateau (Altai Mountains)

A unique place on earth. Mysterious and mystical. Very strong in energy and incredibly beautiful. This is the Ukok plateau in the Altai Mountains. Plateau

One of the most beautiful lakes in Altai

It is not for nothing that Altai is considered a fabulous lake region with beautiful natural reservoirs and natural uniqueness. Let us introduce you to one of the most interesting, mysterious Altai is a unique region. It seems that there is everything here: snow-capped mountains, wide steppes, mysterious forests, medicinal plants, ancient petroglyphs, mysterious caves, unusual legends and places of power. You can relax in Altai in any way you like: conquer natural spaces by car or on foot, swim in rivers and lakes, hunt and fish, climb the Golden Mountains of Altai, ski, take excursions through amazing landscapes, or just relax on the beach. Here everyone will find a suitable type of tourism – both a lover of a leisurely holiday and an extreme adventurer challenging the wild nature. tells you the most important things: where Altai is, what to see and where is the best place to relax.

What we will tell you about

  • Weather
  • How to get to Altai
  • Where to go to Altai for the first time?
  • Mountains and passes of Altai
  • Lakes of Altai
  • Other sights of Altai
  • Altai: holidays with children
  • Treatment in Altai
  • Local population
  • Where to stay in Altai?
  • Communications, gas stations and bank cards
  • Food
  • What to bring from Altai?
  • 5 things to do in Altai
  • Popular questions about traveling to Altai


Experienced tourists advise going on vacation to Altai from May to September: this is the most pleasant period for recreation and tourism. In winter you can go here for alpine skiing, but only if you are not afraid of frost: it reaches −25 °C and below.

The warmest places are in the Chemal region. This is where it is better to relax in Altai in the summer. Spring comes early and autumn comes late. Even in the last days of September it can be almost +30 °C, but after sunset it gets cold to +8 °C.

Ulagansky and Kosh-Agachsky districts are for lovers of extreme natural zones. The air temperature changes there are fantastic for the East European Plain, but not so outlandish for Siberia: in winter up to −60 °C, in summer up to +40 °C. True, average summer temperatures in these areas remain at +13 °C, and there are about 300 sunny days throughout the year.

Altai weather is unstable: even if the sun is hot on a summer day, at night it can only be +5 °C. Take warm clothes on any long trip.

Photo: Starover Sibiriak / Shutterstock

How to get to Altai

1. Airplane. Your goal is Gorno-Altaisk airport. You can fly there by flights from Moscow, Kazan, Novosibirsk and other large cities. The flight from Moscow to Altai takes about 4,5 hours. Prices for 2024 need to be looked at depending on the season. Sometimes it is cheaper to fly to Novosibirsk or Barnaul, and only then go to the Altai Mountains, where you can go by bus (a trip to the capital of the republic will cost from 700 rubles).

If you do fly to Gorno-Altaisk, then commuter bus No. 103 runs from the airport to the city (the trip costs from 20 rubles and takes about 45 minutes).

2. Train. The nearest railway station to the Altai Republic (100 km) is located in Biysk. By train from Moscow you need to travel 2,5 days, from Novosibirsk – 9 hours. Near the railway station there is a bus station, from where you can go to Gorno-Altaisk every day for about 300 rubles.

3. Bus. You can get to Gorno-Altaisk from Barnaul, Novosibirsk, Tomsk and surrounding cities.

4. Car. The way to Altai by car lies through the Chuysky tract: people travel here on their own from Novosibirsk, Barnaul, Novokuznetsk, Biysk and other cities. The route “Moscow – Altai” by car is about 3700 km – that’s 2 days and 3 hours of “pure” time.

In the cities of Altai and neighboring regions, you can rent a car – preferably an all-wheel drive one: the Chuysky tract is in excellent condition, but when leaving it, dirt roads and dangerous sections begin, and sometimes horses, cows and other animals appear on the roads. It is better to fill up gasoline for holiday driving at network gas stations, and when traveling to a remote area, it is advisable to fill the entire tank at once: according to reviews, refueling there is more expensive.

Where to go to Altai for the first time?

The best resorts in Altai have become year-round: you can come in any season, spend time in nature and improve your health. You can either stay in one of the villages or create your own route depending on the distance to iconic places in Altai.

1. Yarovoe. Lovers of peace and quiet prefer to relax here. The place is suitable for families with children, lovers of eco-resorts, small companies, as well as those who want to go on vacation to Altai to treat high blood pressure and skin diseases. The resort is famous for its mild climate and the Great Spring Lake with salty water.

2. Belokurikha. A developed resort with a high-quality ski complex. Belokurikha is fresh, clean and beautiful, you can relax here all year round – this is a real pearl of Altai.

  • Rest in Belokurikha
  • Hotels in Belokurikha
  • Houses in Belokurikha

3. Lake Aya. Its waters are fresh, and during a holiday in Altai in the summer you can swim here. Attractions and entertainment venues are open. Nearby are mountains and the Katun River.

4. Chemal. You can relax and receive treatment: there are good sanatoriums with treatment and unique attractions of Altai. Among the beauties we will highlight the Kamyshlinsky waterfall (Shebalinsky district), and among the unusual places – the monastery of St. John the Theologian of the 19th century. Many people also go to the Chemal hydroelectric station: in the summer you can ride water slides and bungee jump there. We recommend renting a house in Chemal.

5. Manzherok. One of the most popular places for all-season recreation. In winter they go skiing here, and in summer they go up the mountains on a ski lift – it’s somewhat reminiscent of a holiday in Sheregesh. The Manzheroksky underground spring is also attractive: its water heals the stomach and kidneys, strengthens the immune system, and relieves stress.

6. Zavyalovo. A resort for inexpensive recreation, recreation and fishing.

7. Turquoise Katun. An excellent place to relax in Altai in the summer of 2024: a good beach, water attractions, swimming areas for children, a cable car, extreme entertainment, a rope town. There are the mysterious Tavda Caves and the Crossroads of Worlds archaeological park.

See also:

Mountains and passes of Altai

Belukha Mountain

Belukha is the highest point of Altai (4509 meters) – climbers respect it for this. At the foot, you will come across mountain waterfalls and fantastic lakes, including Akkemskoe, where the meltwater of glaciers flows. Routes to the highest mountain in the region follow from the village of Tyungur (Ust-Koksinsky district). True, they are only suitable for those who are physically well prepared (even without climbing to the top). The Valley of the Seven Lakes is located 10 km from the mountain.

Malaya Sinyukha and Manzherok Group of Companies

It is approximately 40 km from Gorno-Altaisk. People relax here all year round: in winter on skis and snowboards, in summer on bicycles and on their own. The local ski slopes are suitable for beginners: there is no great steepness here. In winter, people go snowmobiling and dog sledding in the mountains in the company of cute huskies.

In the fall of 2019, a new cable car with amazing views from the top of Malaya Sinyukha appeared in the complex.

Seminsky pass

Tall and beautiful, with a long and gentle rise. From the pass you can admire the peaks of the mountains, and in winter you can go skiing and snowboarding. The air at the pass is thin, and the silence is almost ringing.

The highest point of the Seminsky pass is Mount Sarlyk. The path to it lies along the lake, huge stones and tundra vegetation. The route is long – about 20 km, and the climb to the top along the terrain is quite difficult: slippery stones are dangerous for balance. If you still decide, book a hike with guides from the Dynamo tourist center or from local travel agencies.


A pass on the Chuysky tract surrounded by rocky mountains. During the construction of the local serpentine, several peaks were blown up, but this made it possible to travel around the Altai Mountains. The road here is winding, but impeccably smooth. Road signs warn of possible rockfalls.

There is an observation deck at the pass: from there you can see cars that wind along an intricate road and seem no larger than ants. True, in warm weather there are always a lot of tourists on the site.

damn finger

One of the main Altai “tricks”. It is located near the Katun River, near the village of the same name. The mountain is named so because of its characteristic shape. Legends and myths of Altai say that this is a place of special power – a haven for shamans, lovers of rituals, meditation and yoga.

Chui steppe

Located on the border with Mongolia, surrounded by majestic mountain ranges. Almost nothing grows here, but horses and camels often appear. Snow leopards also live in the steppe. This animal is listed in the Red Book of Russia; hunting for it in Altai is prohibited. Moreover, May 26 is celebrated annually as Snow Leopard Day.

The Chui steppe is huge, its height above sea level is 1800 meters. Here you can understand what real freedom is. However, be careful on dirt roads: it is better to conquer the local hills in a jeep.

Martian Valley

Located near the village of Chagan-Uzun. This natural monument received its name for its landscapes like those on Mars. The air here is dry, so even in winter you can feel the warmth – however, it is insidious and deceptive: if you do not dress warmly, there is a risk of frostbite.

Pass Katu-Yaryk

The Chulyshman River flows in the local mountains, and the path to its valley lies through this pass. The observation deck here offers breathtaking views.

You can get to Katu-Yaryk along the Chuysky tract. Then from the village of Aktash you need to drive about 100 km along a dirt road: it will give you a thrill, but to overcome this narrow road with potholes, you need to be completely confident in your abilities.

See also:

Photo: step-svetlana / Pixabay

Lakes of Altai

teletskoye lake

Not only Russian tourists, but also foreign ones come here for the best holiday in Altai. This is the most beautiful lake in Altai: its steep shores sometimes turn into real fjords. Many people believe that this body of water is no worse than Lake Baikal.

To relax on Lake Teletskoye (Turochaksky district), guests are offered a boat ride, including to waterfalls (they charge from 1500 rubles per person). For 1800 rubles you can board a motor ship and take a ride to the Korbu and Chedor waterfalls (the journey takes about 5 hours).

Multinskie lakes

They belong to one of the reserves in Altai. There are 10 mesmerizing bodies of water, surrounded by snow-capped mountain peaks. The path to the lakes lies through the village of Multa along a rather difficult road. And from the village to the lakes you have to drive through the taiga, which only an SUV can overcome. However, you can book a tour at local agencies for 1000 rubles per person.

Karakol lakes

There are a huge number of glaciers in Altai – 1400. The total area of ​​glaciers exceeds 910 km². Karakol lakes are glacial mountain reservoirs with crystal clear water. Around them are alpine meadows, cedar taiga and juniper.

You need to get to the lakes from the village of Chemal; the path lies through the Sorgat tract. Tourist groups are offered horseback riding or a car excursion (1500 and 3000 rubles, respectively).

Blue Lakes of Askata

Another glacial lake with turquoise water. Reservoirs freeze only during severe winter frosts: water comes here from springs. It is better to go into the water only if you are seasoned, but getting here is not difficult: you get to the village of Askat, then a short walking tour of 4 km.

Geyser lake

It cannot be called a big lake, but there are thermal springs here. The lake is located 1 km from the Chuysky tract – the trail there is quite gloomy, with wooden paths and a swamp. If you are traveling by car, your reference point will be the Little Paradise tourist center.

Among the other “water” attractions of Altai, we highlight Lake Manas, Lake Shavlinskoye, Lake Kucherlinskoye, Tekelyu, Uchar and Kurkure waterfalls.

Other sights of Altai

Gorny Altai offers such a varied holiday that we simply won’t have time to talk about all the iconic places. And yet there are Altai sights that deserve mention at least in one line.

In particular, these are the Kurai steppe, Golden Lake, Uimon valley, Bashadar mounds (Ongudaysky district), Lake Uymen (Choysky district), eco-resort Maryin Island, Roerich Museum in the village of Verkh-Uimon, Oroktoy bridge, Katun valley and the village of Ust-Uymon Koksa, where the confluence of the Koksa and Katun rivers takes place.

In general, Altai is famous for its mountain valleys, lakes, rivers, forests and other natural beauties. At the same time, it is full of mysteries: take, for example, the famous Altai mummy, which was considered an ancient princess, or the Land of Belovodye, which the Old Believers were looking for.

See also:

Photo: pavel_laulin / Pixabay

Altai: holidays with children

We recommend these places:

1. Lake Teletskoye. It is quiet, clean and beautiful, there are many excursion programs suitable for children.

2. Kulundinskoye Lake. You can go here with a small child: there are no noisy establishments, but they offer goodies from local residents, including berries from the Altai forests and homemade ice cream.

3. Katun River. It is quite suitable for a trip with a teenager: on one of the most famous rivers of Altai you can arrange an active holiday with educational excursions. Take a closer look at the private sector in Katun.

4. Big Yarovoye Lake. Children of school age often go here. The advantages include an outdoor water park, a variety of cafes, jet skiing and other entertainment.

5. Belokurikha. The whole family will love it here: the amazing nature of Altai, parks, swimming pools, delicious food.

Treatment in Altai

There are beautiful mountains and wild nature all over Russia. However, in the Altai Mountains live deer – red deer. The horns of males are called antlers; they are used for health procedures during vacations in the Altai Republic. There is even a whole direction – antler treatment. This method has been known since the 8th century.

By the beginning of the 20th century, deer in this mountainous country were almost completely exterminated, but today they are bred in special nurseries – deer farms. These animals live not only in Altai, but the antlers of the local deer are the most effective.

Treatment with deer baths is carried out in sanatoriums and specialized centers – for example, in Cheremshanka, Kaimsky and Antares. Antler baths strengthen the musculoskeletal system, help treat joints, normalize blood circulation, and help in the treatment of the spine and psoriasis. Antlers are also used to make gels, creams and dietary supplements.

Fresh antlers are the richest in nutrients, so it is better to go to the Altai maralniks from May to mid-July – this is the time when such products are harvested here. The price of one procedure in an antler bath starts from 500 rubles. Usually a course of 7–10 procedures is completed.

In addition to antler treatment in Altai, we note the water sources and ionized air of the Belokurikha ski resort, as well as the healing mud of the Kuchuk and Borovye lakes.

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