Irkutsk, located smack in the middle of Siberia, is agreed by most to be a refreshing stop on the Trans-Siberian Railway only in the fact that the city is friendlier and more accommodating for backpackers with a budget. We stayed at the Irkutsk Downtown Hostel and were so excited about the full stacked kitchen with the decently sharpened knife that Zhenia cooked up a storm for the ENTIRE hostel, which included 11 travelers, Luidmila, the on-duty staff member, and her 19 year old son. Similar celebrations followed the next night but this time with Olga, one of our favorite hostel staffers EVER!
This picture was taken while Zhenia (after a few beers) held Olga to the security camera downstairs while Tom snapped the image on the screen upstairs at the hostel.
We took a break from camera snapping here so this is the only picture we have from our days in Irkutsk!