Is Siberia worth visiting?
Siberia is a land of contrasts. The lowest temperature in Novosibirsk was recorded on January 9, 1915 (−51.1 ° C), the highest – July 12, 2014 (+37.3 ° C).
Contrasts are everywhere: the weather, colors, moods of the people at the streets.
In this post you will experience how Novosibirsk weather is changing from month to month through the colorful pictures and videos I made. I hope you will feel the atmosphere and even sounds, smells and tastes through them.
Novosibirsk is a geographical center of Russia and the capital of Siberia (according to Novosibirsk dwellers). Krasnoyarsk people say that Krasnoyarsk is the capital, but this really does not matter ) Siberia is not a separate region. It’s a part of Russia with the capital in Moscow.
Tropical heat is great, but it is so predictable and constant. Go through these pictures and decide which month is your favorite.
You will find out:
- What is the weather like in Siberia in different months of the year
- Celebrations, holidays, activities
- Air temperature and water temperature (yes, you can swim in Siberia)
- What should you wear in Siberia
- How warm is Siberia in summer
Let’s start from the winter season. Siberian winter is something that is scary and challenging for many foreigners. But it mystically attracts so many adventure lovers. You will meet the people of different colors of skin, fashion style of and languages at the streets. Nobody is surprised by hijab girls and african people here in the heart of cold weather. Novosibirsk University attracts young people from all parts of our planet.
Normally the winter temperature ranges from -15C to -30C, sometimes reaching -40C. The -40C days are favorite for siberian children, because they are officially allowed to miss school classes.
To feel comfortable in such temperatures you should wear a warm down coat and pants, or downsuit (пуховик, тёплые штаны, комбинезон). The best footwear is valenki, ancient Russian shoes, transformed in a modern manner.
Winter fun is superterrific. There are so many activities organized in the city and nearest locations to warm up and feel great.
- Skiing and cross-country skiing.
- Winter Hiking (you will need special wide skies)
- Ice hills riding
- Huski dogs riding
- Russian Banya
- Concerts, Opera, Balley. (Siberia is famous for the great musicians.)
There are several slalom hills right in Novosibirsk. But professional skiers and adventure seekers prefer to go to Sheregesh (Шерегеш), an increadibly beautiful ski resort beside Novosibirsk.
Let’s have a look at the colors of the winter months
Freezing weather is the artist. It creates the works of art you will never find in a warm relaxing atmosphere. Window design and trees design are fascinating, aren’t they?
The end of December is a sweet time of the New Year Eve. After hard freezing winter days it’s so sweet to go to a coffe house and take cup of warm Siberian Raf (a coffee based drink).
The time of winter holidays is the time for real fun.
January, 19 is a special day for swimming in the ice holes. People believe that the water on this day is healing and will bring them health and renovation. Would you like to try?
The sky in winter is mostley of grey colors. But sometimes the clouds go away and the sky turns into deep blue and we see the sun shining – this is really the Magic. Look at this:
Spring in Siberia
There’s a marketing joke: live through 4 months of winter and get the 5th for free.
We say that March is the fifth month of winter. But it is clear that the spring is coming. Birds sing lowder. Snow starts to melt. There are more sunny days and the weather becomes warmer.
February-March is the time of Maslenitsa (pancake week).
Maslenitsa is an ancient Russian celebration, which goes back to pre-Christian times (and was endorsed by the church later). This week is all about connecting with friends and family, celebrating, eating “bliny”, sort of pancakes. Originally it was about change of season and time, sending off the winter and inviting spring. Monday is “meeting”, visiting friends and making the first “blin”. Traditionally they gave the first blin to the poor people.
March temperature normally ranges from -3C to -13C. This is the time when Siberian women sometimes take off their hats and winter coats to look even prettier.
The last day of Maslenitsa is called Forgiveness Sunday. This is the day when we ask the people to forgive us. And the doll Marena is a symbol of the winter evil: illness and failures we suffered in winter. In the end of celebration this doll is burned. This tradition symbolizes all the bad things go with the fire to another world.
In march the Ob River starts melting.
April temperature ranges from -3C to +8C.
In April the snow continues to melt. In this month we see the ground. Nature starts waking up from the winter sleep. We can see the first plants and flowers growing.
This is the turn of the Ob sea to melt. Though the water is about 0C, some brave people go to the beach and swim between the ice floes.
April is a time of another beautiful celeberation Paskha (Easter). The tradition of atheism is still widely spread as a heritage of Soviet times. But this celebration is so popular that all atheists are involved in visiting the Church, eggs decoration and exchange. Look at this short 1-minute video video.
Easter in Akademgorodok (Novosibirsk)
May starts with numerous celebrations that are dedicated to some Soviet dates:
May, 1 – the Day of Labour
May, 9 – the day of Victory
You can have fun joining demonstrations and street conserts organized on these days.
May temperature range from 4C to 17C. Sometimes we can enjoy really warm summer days. Young grass and leaves are so fresh. The trees take their special May color – light green, the color of May season.
Caution: not only grass and flowers wake up in May. This time is the season of taiga ticks (kleshi), little bloodsucking insects. They are dangerous, so you better keep away from grass in the forest in May and early June. Still you are completely safe in the city – kleshi keep away from civilization. Peaple say kleshi are bad, but I think they are little guards of nature. They protect young grass and flowers from the people.
The winter and the snow sometimes may come back to give us som interesting nature art.
Wet snow is perfect for building these guys.
Summer in Siberia
Summer is so beatiful, fresh, green, unpredictable. You can experience really hot days when the temperature rizes up to 40C. Sometimes it’s raining heavily so the streets turn into small rivers.
Summer fun includes lying on the beach and swimming in the Ob sea or the river, summer excursions and attractions. Novosibirsk Zoo is the biggest zoo in the region. It’s a big park for walking, enjoing nature and attractions for children and adults.
And certainly adventure seekers and lovers of nature are recommended to visit Altai, the land of mountains lakes, rivers and wild untouched nature.
The nature is in a hurry. There’s about 3 months to blossom before going to winter sleep again. June is a month of bright colors of tulips, dundalions, ogonki, medunitsy and other early flowers.
Temperature range from 11c to 23C.
Yes, there apples in Siberia.
Time to open swimming season. Water temperature in the Ob Sea raises higher than 21C.
The warmest month when the temperature raises from +13C to +25C sometimes reaching +37C.
July 7th is the day of Ivan Kupala.
Traditionally, girls float wreaths of flowers (often lit with candles) on rivers, and would attempt to gain foresight into their relationship fortunes from the flow patterns of the flowers on the river. Men may attempt to capture the wreaths, in the hope of capturing the interest of the woman who floated the wreath.
Here are some wreaths in the pond from Siberian girls. Would you like to capture?
August is colder than July, so we feel that the autumn is coming. Temperature ranges from +10C to +23C.
Dacha (sort of garden) is a favorite place to stay for many siberian people. August is the time to harvest crops.
Autumn in Siberia
This is a time of contrasts. Nature is changing it’s wearings. The leaves get yellow and red and fall down from the trees.
Early autumn nature is superterrific and attracts painters and photographers. Major activities:
walking in the Botanic Garden of Academgorodok, going to banyas, concerts, operas and balley, photographing and painting.
The time when the nature wears increadable colors. Sunny septemper days of indian summer attract creative people – artists, photographers. Temperature ranges from 4C to 15C.
Dacha people continue harvesting crops.
The time for the first snow. First snow is usually unstable, it comes and goes. Temperature sometimes fall below zero ranging from -2C to +10C.
Though we still can see green grass and flowers it is clear that the winter has come. November is the first month of winter in Siberia.
The temperature ranges from 0C to -12C and lower.
In November the snow is still wet and suatable for building fun. Would you like to build a snowman?
Finally the snow becomes so deep that covers all the ground and forrests and benches.
I hope you enjoyed my Siberian story and pictures. Which month is your favorite? Tell me in the comments.