The Eastern Siberian territory of Zabaykalsky Krai (Russian: Забайкальский край) was formed in 2008 by the merger of Chita Oblast with its smaller neighbor Agin-Buryat Autonomous Okrug. It borders Buryatia to the west, Irkutsk Oblast to the northwest, Yakutia to the north, Amur Oblast to the northeast, North East (China) to the east, and Mongolia to the south.
Chita Oblast is similar to Buryatia in the great diversity and beauty of its landscapes. It is, however, far less visited than its western neighbor. Chita Oblast derives much of its importance to Russia from its proximity to China. As such, it has served as a point for international trade, migration, and even war. Today Chita Oblast contains a large Russian military presence — for this reason Chita was a "closed city" during the Soviet era.
Chita is the principal arrival point for most visitors, who usually arrive on the Trans-Siberian Railway, although the Baikal-Amur Mainline also cuts through Chita Oblast's more isolated north. Chita is also served by VIM Airlines from Moscow and Bratsk. However, VIM are by far the worst airline in Russia and it is a much better idea to fly Siberian (S7) or Ural Airlines.