You can visit the Altai Mountains throughout the year via the Chuya route, one of the most spectacular in Russia. Here, winters are particularly cold from February to March with heavy frost but lots of sun.
In May, the mountains are covered in a pretty purple carpet of flowering rhododendrons and, in September, the larch trees of the taiga gleam with golden tints giving substance to the name Altai, which means Mountains of Gold.
Our itinerary covers three typical Altai environments: steppe, taiga and pastures. Hiking is easy and a great way to meet locals. Reindeer herders in Altai will explain how they arrange their yurt, called ail in the region. Craftsmen of the Kupchegen village will introduce you to traditional felt decorative arts and a shaman will share his thoughts on the meaning of life.