Russia is a seriously adventurous place to go.
From east to west, the country is filled with daring outdoorsy activities and fun experiences for explorers of all levels!
You could live a hundred lifetimes in Russia and never do it all, but you can still get the best out of your Russian adventures by trying a sampling of what the nation has to offer. Here are ten fun adventure ideas to get you started.
- 1. Drive a Snowmobile on Frozen Lake Baikal
It may be ridiculously cold during Russia’s winter, but that doesn’t mean you have to stay indoors to have fun. If you’re visiting Lake Baikal in February, March, or April, you can take advantage of the frigid weather and explore the surface of the frozen lake by snowmobile!
There are plenty of rental agencies in the area that can set you up with a sweet ride and give you the time of your life.
Cost: 6 hour snowmobile tour with the instructor starting from 9000 Rubles ($150) a person.
- 2. Climb Mt. Elbrus
This climb is not for the faint of heart! Mount Elbrus is the highest peak in Russia (actually, it’s the highest peak in Europe), and it’s on every climber’s list of top ten peaks to summit.
If you have experience climbing glacial mountains and are up for the challenge, then you should consider making Mount Elbrus the center of your trip to Russia. It will be an unforgettable experience!
Cost: 8 days climbing tour for approx. $1000 a person.
- 3. Rafting & Kayaking in Karelia
Karelia is one of Russia’s most interesting regions. Although the Republic of Karelia is a federal subject of Russia, it is culturally very Scandinavian.
Karelia is famous among adventurers for its many waterways that create opportunities for rafting, kayaking, and other water sports. You can try rafting or kayaking (or both!) during your visit to this beautiful region.
Cost: 9 day rafting & kayaking tours starting from 12500 Rubles ($200) a person.
- 4. Hot Air Balloon Ride in Pereslavl-Zalessky
This town has been around for a long time — so long, in fact, that some of its buildings are nearly a thousand years old! There are several old churches, like Savior’s Cathedral, which dates to the 12th Century, Church of the Metropolitan Peter, and Troitse-Danilov Monastery.
Besides the historic buildings, there are also plenty of newer buildings, many of them housing countless museums. These aren’t nearly as stunning as the older structures, but they are still quite lovely.
In order to really see everything, there’s no better way to go than by hot air balloon! From the air, you’ll be able to see the entire town and nearby Lake Pleshcheyevo.
Cost: starting from 5000 Rubles ($85) per hour.
- 5. Paragliding From the Top of the Ai Petri Mountain in Crimea
Imagine that you’re standing at the top of a green mountain Ai-Petri – one of the most beautiful places in Crimea. Above you, the azure sky stretches like a giant dome over the earth. Below you, the trees seem like tiny specks creating a carpet of green. You take a deep break and leap — and soar!
Paragliding anywhere is fun, but here it is no less than breathtaking.
Cost: 12000 Rubles ($200) for one hour.
- 6. Via Ferrata Climbing in Sochi
It might be in Sochi, but it’s not an Olympic sport!
A “via ferrata” is actually a climbing sport that uses a thick cable to help the climber up an otherwise dangerous rock face. You connect yourself to the cable, or just use it to help you get up where there are no good grips.
Sound like fun? Try it in Sochi! You can also check out more information on things to do in Sochi in the winter.
Cost: tours starting from 4000 Rubles ($70).
- 7. Dog-Sledding Tour in Yakutia
Alaska isn’t the only place to travel by dogsled. In the Yakutia region of Russia, you can travel by dog power using the strength of Yakutian laikas, a dog breed that is often trained to draw sleds, hunt, or herd reindeer.
If you visit the region, you can rent a sledding team and tour the area.
Cost: 7 day tours starting from 60000 Rubles ($1000).
- 8. Horseback Riding in Altai
Altai is full of surprises and wild regions you can only imagine. What better way to experience one of the most beautiful nature places in Russia than by horseback?
There are many tours to choose from, with varying lengths and destinations.
Cost: 5 day tours starting from 6000 Rubles ($100)
- 9. Free Ride and Heli Ski in Kamchatka
For the most adventurous skiers, helicopter rides to otherwise inaccessible slopes are absolute Heaven.
Kamchatka offers one-ups other heli-ski locations, since its volcanoes are still active. Fly through the snow, knowing that below your feet, fire still courses through the veins of the earth.
Cost: 40000 Rubles ($650) for one day.
- 10. Cave Diving at Orda Cave
This just might be the most fantasy-like experience of your life. Orda Cave grows gypsum, a beautiful clear crystal.
You can dive through the magical underwater caverns and learn about both the scientific facts and the mysterious legends surrounding the cave system.
Cost: at this moment available only for professional cave divers.
Are you ready for some serious adventures in Russia?!
Written by Breana Johnson.