Siberia is a region in Russia. Lake Baikal, known as the pearl of Siberia is the deepest and one of the purest lakes in the World. With an area of nearly 10 million sq.km., Siberia is vast. While the popular view of Siberia is of howling arctic wastes dotted with penal colonies, the truth is more complex. The west of Siberia is covered by a swampy plain, the central plateau is heavily forested, and the east has mountains soaring to above 3,000 meters. Only the extreme north is true tundra, where temperatures can hit -68°C in winter.