The 10 Best Things To Do In Ulan-Ude

Nestled in the heart of Siberia, Ulan-Ude is a hidden gem that often flies under the radar. But let me tell you, this city is brimming with cultural treasures and unique experiences that are just waiting to be discovered. From the moment I set foot in this vibrant city, I knew I was in for an adventure unlike any other. So, buckle up as I take you through the 10 best things to do in Ulan-Ude, each offering a glimpse into the soul of this enchanting part of Russia.

1. Marvel at the Giant Lenin Head

One of the most iconic sights in Ulan-Ude is the enormous statue of Lenin’s head. It’s impossible to miss this 7.7-meter-tall Monument in the city’s Central square. Standing before it, you can’t help but feel tiny in comparison. It’s a popular spot for selfies, and honestly, it’s quite the conversation starter!

2. Explore the Ethnographic Museum of the Peoples of Transbaikalia

For a deep dive into the region’s history, the Ethnographic Museum is a must-visit. It’s an open-air museum that showcases the traditional lifestyles of local ethnic groups. You’ll find yurts, old wooden houses, and even a Buddhist temple. It’s like stepping back in time, and the experience is truly enlightening.

3. Visit Ivolginsky Datsan

As the center of Russian Buddhism, Ivolginsky Datsan is a serene and spiritual place that welcomes visitors. The complex is home to stunning temples and a vibrant community of monks. I was struck by the intricate details of the architecture and the peaceful atmosphere that envelops you as you wander the grounds.

4. Stroll Along Arbat Street

Arbat Street is Ulan-Ude’s cultural hub, lined with shops, cafes, and street performers. It’s the perfect place to soak up the local vibe. I loved browsing through the quirky boutiques and stopping for a cup of traditional Russian tea. The street comes alive with energy, especially during the summer evenings.

5. Discover the History at the Buryatia History Museum

The Buryatia History Museum offers a fascinating look at the region’s past. With artifacts dating back centuries, the museum tells the story of Ulan-Ude and its people. I was particularly captivated by the ancient tools and traditional costumes on display.

6. Enjoy a Performance at the Buryat Opera and Ballet Theater

For a touch of culture, the Buryat Opera and Ballet Theater is the place to be. The performances are world-class, and the architecture of the building is stunning. I was lucky enough to catch a ballet performance, and it was an evening I’ll never forget.

7. Relax at Lake Baikal

Just a short drive from Ulan-Ude is the majestic Lake Baikal. Known as the deepest lake in the world, its crystal-clear waters are a sight to behold. Whether you’re up for a swim or just want to enjoy the view, Lake Baikal is a natural wonder that can’t be missed.

8. Sample Local Cuisine

Ulan-Ude’s culinary scene is a delightful fusion of Russian and Mongolian influences. Be sure to try buuzy, the local dumplings, and indulge in a hearty bowl of Buryat soup. The flavors are rich and satisfying, and it’s a great way to connect with the local culture.

9. Visit the Holy Odigitrievsky Cathedral

The Holy Odigitrievsky Cathedral is a beautiful example of Russian Orthodox architecture. Its blue domes are striking against the city skyline. Inside, the frescoes and icons are simply breathtaking. It’s a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of the city.

10. Take a Trip to the Tarbagatay Mountains

For the adventurous at heart, the Tarbagatay Mountains offer stunning landscapes and hiking opportunities. The views from the top are panoramic, and the fresh mountain air is invigorating. It’s a bit of a trek, but the experience is well worth it.


  • What’s the best time to visit Ulan-Ude?

    Summer, from June to August, is ideal for warm weather and outdoor activities. However, if you’re up for a winter wonderland experience, December to February will show you a different side of the city.

  • Is Ulan-Ude safe for tourists?

    Absolutely! The city is welcoming to visitors, and I’ve always felt safe exploring its streets and attractions.

  • How do I get around Ulan-Ude?

    The city is quite walkable, but there are also buses and taxis available for longer distances. Don’t hesitate to hop on a marshrutka (minibus) for a true local experience!


Ulan-Ude is a city that may not be on every traveler’s radar, but it certainly deserves a spot on your bucket list. With its unique blend of Russian and Asian cultures, there’s an array of experiences that cater to all kinds of travelers. From the awe-inspiring Lenin Head to the tranquil Ivolginsky Datsan, and the natural beauty of Lake Baikal, Ulan-Ude offers a rich tapestry of history, culture, and nature. Whether you’re a history buff, a culture enthusiast, or simply in search of something off the beaten path, Ulan-Ude is a destination that promises memories to last a lifetime. So why not venture out to this Siberian city and see for yourself the best things it has to offer? Trust me, it’s an adventure you won’t regret.

Kurby Team

The Kurby Content Team is a diverse group of seasoned real estate experts dedicated to providing insightful, reliable information for homebuyers, real estate investors, and real estate agents. With backgrounds ranging from real estate brokerage, property investment, and residential home buying, our team combines decades of experience with a passion for demystifying the real estate world. We at Kurby are committed to helping you make informed, successful real estate decisions. Whether you're a first-time homebuyer, a seasoned investor, or a real estate professional, count on the Kurby Content Team to deliver the most relevant, actionable real estate content you need.