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31 October 2017 / leggypeggy

Fancy, schmancy boats on Olkhon Island

Fishing port at Olkhon Island

Fishing port at Olkhon Island

Boat at Olkhon Island

Waiting for a paint job

Jungle boat at Olkhon Island

My last post was full of grey and dreary landscapes in China, so I thought I needed to brighten things up with a look at the creative canvasses on Olkhon Island in Lake Baikal in Russia.

We spent a glorious two nights/three days on the remote island, enjoying the sights, hospitality and food.

He-Who-Walks-Everywhere (aka Poor John) suggested we stroll down to the fishing port and what a wonderful find. Not only are there floating and ancient boats galore, but there is artwork everywhere too.


I have no idea whether all the paintings have been done by the same artist or set of artists, but the creators have had a wonderful time bringing colour, vibrancy, whimsy and dignity to a collection of old, rusty boats stranded on the sand.

The last time I saw boats marooned like this was in Uzbekistan beside the dried up Aral Sea. It was a tremendously sad and moving experience that I wrote about here. At least this sight brought some joy and smiles.


Lake Baikal, which I’ll write more about later, is the largest and deepest fresh water lake in the world. We had a day-long tour of the island and some of it’s important sights.

By the way, do you have a favourite painting? I think I’ll go for the jungle and the girl with the dog on the boat. Also very partial to the skeleton fish in the last image. The colours work so well with the rusted out boat, and the blue sky is the perfect backdrop.

P.S. Once again there aren’t many captions, but you’ll notice that one painting (of a man–fish) is on the side of a building rather than on a boat. Also, you can click on the smaller images to see a larger version.

Skeleton fish, Olkhon Island


Leave a Comment
  1. Miriam / Oct 31 2017 4:47 pm

    What a wonderful idea to give new life to old boats. I love the one with the dragon’s eye but also, like you, the one with the girl and the dog on the boat. Very creative.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Sharon Bonin-Pratt / Oct 31 2017 6:02 pm

    This must have been a wonderful experience – the Museum of Rusted Boats. Do people live in any of these boats? My favorite photo is the very first with the whole collection of dilapidated boats resting like a pile of discarded shoes and that decrepit sidewalk leading to down to the water. Much fun to see this.

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Oct 31 2017 11:30 pm

      The Museum of Rusted Boats—maybe they can use the name to market it as a tourist site. We didn’t try that sidewalk. It looked like a death trap for sure.


  3. Green Global Trek / Oct 31 2017 6:05 pm

    Love the art work – what an original canvas!

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Oct 31 2017 11:31 pm

      We thought so too. Very glad we wandered down that way.


  4. Brian Lageose / Oct 31 2017 6:14 pm

    I’d have to say that “Waiting for a Paint Job” is my fave. The other shots are terrific, as usual, but “Waiting” just has a stoic perseverance that speaks to me….

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Gilda Baxter / Oct 31 2017 6:57 pm

    Beautiful creations…what a great idea to bring these old wrecks back to life

    Liked by 2 people

    • leggypeggy / Oct 31 2017 11:33 pm

      I wish I could have learned more about the boats, but never found anyone who could speak more than a few words of English.


  6. Osyth / Oct 31 2017 7:12 pm

    How absolutely fabulous. I hoped over to the Kazak post and was devastated. This makes me smile. Thank you. PS: I rather like the lizard with the louche expression …

    Liked by 2 people

  7. weggieboy / Oct 31 2017 7:15 pm

    What a great idea: Turn eyesores into an art gallery in the open! I enjoyed the whimsy and talent of the works. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Oct 31 2017 11:35 pm

      So glad you enjoyed them. I think whimsy is the perfect word for the designs.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. beetleypete / Oct 31 2017 7:29 pm

    I like the aliens with portholes for eyes, but there is a real sense of ‘escape’ in the girl and the dog. The dog also looks like something from Ancient Egypt. Lake Baikal is in great danger of dying too, it seems. Pollution levels are now alarmingly high, so it is small wonder they no longer use those old fishing boats.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 3 people

    • leggypeggy / Oct 31 2017 11:38 pm

      Thanks so much for that link Pete. I plan to devote an entire post to Lake Baikal. Even though it is so important, I feel it isn’t at all well-known.

      Liked by 1 person

      • beetleypete / Nov 1 2017 12:03 am

        It is often featured on the BBC, Peggy. Reports about pollution, and the lack of traditional industries like fishing these days. I will look forward to your article.

        Liked by 1 person

      • leggypeggy / Nov 1 2017 5:09 am

        Can’t say mine will be learned, but it will be picturesque!


  9. ralietravels / Oct 31 2017 9:41 pm

    Your comment prompted me to look up freshwater lakes. I was unaware Baikal was the largest freshwater lake – by volume. I always thought it was Lake Superior — which would be the largest by surface area but for the Caspian Sea which became a lake 11 million years ago.
    That aside, I enjoyed the art.

    Liked by 2 people

    • leggypeggy / Oct 31 2017 11:37 pm

      Yes, the largest by volume. I look forward to telling more about Lake Baikal in a future post.


  10. Miss A / Oct 31 2017 10:52 pm

    That’s so creative and cool! Love how the old rustic boats have come to life again and in a totally new way. It’s like they got a second chance in life 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Oct 31 2017 11:36 pm

      Not only did they get a second chance, but they look like they’re totally enjoying it.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. gigglingfattie / Nov 1 2017 12:38 am

    Oh wow!! I love these! Especially the one which looks like space! ❤


  12. pvcann / Nov 1 2017 1:20 am

    These are a feast for the eyes, and evoke a sense of another world to inhabit, such character.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Christie / Nov 1 2017 3:49 am

    It is very interesting how life came over these forgotten boats. My favorite one is the girl with her dog, wondering where they are looking so keenly ahead?:)


    • leggypeggy / Nov 1 2017 4:51 am

      I love how these boats live on. I hope the girl and dog are on an adventure.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Dorothy / Nov 1 2017 5:54 am

    I liked the night sky one with the planets and stars. If it ever got back on the water you would not be able to see it at night, you would think it was part of the sky.

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Nov 1 2017 6:22 am

      Clever thinking Dorothy. That hadn’t occurred to me.


  15. Alison and Don / Nov 1 2017 6:46 am

    What a place! Girl in a boat is my favourite too.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. gerard oosterman / Nov 1 2017 10:28 am

    Isn’t it proof of whatever the situation, people often try and improve their lot. Truly inspirational to make and give those rusted hulls a new lease on life.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. paolsoren / Nov 1 2017 10:58 am

    I well remember your Aral Sea post. That was so sad. Actually it is always sad to see beautiful old boats and machinery left to rust away. Like seeing a beautiful old horse left in a tiny paddock, neglected and sad.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. lexklein / Nov 1 2017 12:50 pm

    Very cool – I love the whole scene. And I’m going to go back and read the Aral Sea post. Another blogger I follow was just there, and I found the whole thing so depressing. I’ll see if yours is any cheerier although I doubt it given the situation.

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Nov 1 2017 2:24 pm

      Yes, the Aral Sea situation is totally depressing, especially because if countries such as Turkmenistan stopped pumping the water, the sea might have a chance to recover.

      Liked by 2 people

  19. chattykerry / Nov 3 2017 12:07 am

    They are fantastic. Sad that life has changed but happy to see that art brings some joy.

    Liked by 1 person

    • leggypeggy / Nov 3 2017 2:46 pm

      I hope everyone who visit Olkhon Island takes the opportunity to visit the fishing port in Khuzhir.

      Liked by 2 people

  20. Joy Morris / Nov 4 2017 11:56 pm

    what wonderful paintings on those boats

    Liked by 1 person

  21. J.D. Riso / Nov 5 2017 4:57 am

    Okay so here’s a Lake Baikal post. Those boats are fabulous. What an interesting way to pretty up those junkers.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. adventuredawgs / Nov 6 2017 1:52 pm

    Wonderful to see some colour after the drab views from the train. That galaxy painting was gorgeous and I really liked the girl and dog too.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. jeanleesworld / Nov 14 2017 7:26 am

    Oh yes, I love that skeleton one at the end, Peggy. What a fascinating place! I feel like if I would step aboard a boat, it would take me to wherever the picture was real and alive as the rest of us. x

    Liked by 2 people

  24. Nice photos

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Carspot Classified Theme / Dec 30 2017 6:01 pm

    just wow 😍 a most appreciated art work on old boats just to give them a new life

    Liked by 2 people

  26. Ramadhan / Feb 13 2018 12:38 am

    Mural in the ship… So cool
    Pagang and sironjong island, a photographic view theory,

    Liked by 1 person

  27. Nilzeitung / Apr 1 2018 7:53 am

    great use with a lot of work in connection congratulations on the new lock. beautiful Easter

    Liked by 1 person

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