The Siberian ExperienceTrans-Siberian Railway
A great Siberian adventure from Moscow to Beijing
Operational season: Year round – Visas required: Russia, China
Day 1 - Arrive Moscow
“S Priezdom! Welcome to Moscow!” Our driver will be there to meet you from whichever flight, train or boat you arrive. You’ll then be transferred to the Irbis 3H Hotel. The facilities available at this hotel include a Restaurant, Lobby Bar, Lobby Wi-Fi access, Luggage Room, Safety deposit boxes and an ATM machine. At check-in, (after 2pm) the hotel reception will advise you they will need your passport for visa registration. This process takes 1–2 hours. Your complimentary InfoPack is full of ideas for getting the most out of your free time.
Please check out our “St. Petersburg Add On” if you wish to commence your trip in St. Petersburg
Day 2 - Around Moscow
After breakfast one of our local expert staff will meet you at the hotel to take you on a three hour walking tour round the highlights – you’ll use public transport around the centre to avoid the traffic jams and get the hang of the system for when you come to use it independently. Our staffers are full of ideas for this walk but are flexible about other ideas if you have your own. Your walk ends in the city centre around lunchtime. If you haven’t prebooked any of our range of city excursions the rest of the day is your own to explore further.
Some of our top suggestions (please check opening times/days before setting off) would include visiting the Moscow Kremlin, the Tretyakov Gallery, the Pushkin Fine Arts Museum, or a boat trip along the Mosvka River… perhaps locate some tickets for ballet, opera, circus or a concert this evening? As well as famous classical music traditions Moscow features on the touring schedules of world names in jazz, rock, pop and world music.
Day 3 - Depart Moscow
You’ll need to check out of your room by 12 noon today but the hotel offers a Left Luggage service for a small fee. Your day is free until 9pm, when a driver is scheduled to take you to the station. This morning you can continue sightseeing – the Lenin Mausoleum is only open in the mornings, and getting there early (it’s in Red Square) helps beat the queues. Although there’s a restaurant car service on board your train you may want to supplement this with some snacks, treats, and fresh fruit that you could buy today.
Your transfer from the hotel to Yaroslavsky station is scheduled for 9pm, so please be at the hotel reception where your driver will meet you and will assist your boarding of the Irkutsk bound train.
Day 4 - 6 - On board the Trans-Siberian Express
On board The Trans-Sib… travelling towards Irkutsk. The dining car is the heart of social life on the train. It functions as bar, lounge, and take-out snack store, as well as a café serving reasonably priced meals. It is a great place to meet fellow travellers and locals alike, sharing your experiences of your journey so far with a few drinks, which no doubt will include some Vodka – and maybe smoked salmon and caviar too! Along the way you’ll see astonishing Siberian scenery as the deciduous forests of the Ural Mountains slowly give way to Siberian pine forests. The major landmarks are the great rivers you cross, including the River Ob at Novosibirsk (one of the most famous bridges on the route), and the gigantic Enisei River (at Krasnoyarsk).
Day 7 - Arrive Irkutsk
Early morning arrival in Irkutsk. Our driver will meet you at the end of the platform, holding a meeting-board marked with your name. Transfer to “U Ozera Hotel” (the name translates as “At the Lake Hotel”, although it is not directly at the lake shore) situated in Listvyanka Village (70km) travelling by road through the forest. The facilities available at this hotel include; cafe-bar, Russian “banya” (sauna), safe at the reception.
The nearest ATM-machine in the Baikal Hotel (Listvyanka remains a village, and doesn’t have the range of banking services you could expect in a city). The official check-in time is 12 noon, the hotel reception will advise you they will need your passport for visa registration formalities. However if your room is available this will – of course – be allocated to you on arrival. (If your room is not available you will be able to leave your luggage with the hotel reception). You will have a chance to have breakfast before setting off on your walking tour around Listvyanka Village.
This will include a visit to the Limnological Museum (this is an exhibition about the Lake, its formation, wildlife etc – it includes multimedia presentations, information about creatures which live in the darkest depths, and also an aquarium with living aquatic species, including the unique freshwater Baikal seals) and also a small wooden village Russian Orthodox Church dating back to the C18th. You return to your hotel at the end of the walk, with time to relax and enjoy your lakeside surroundings, maybe experience real Siberian “banya” (sauna -small payment locally at the hotel).
Day 8 - Baikal Free Choice Programme
Choose one activity from the list, it’s all included in the trip price! You’ll need to inform us of your choice before commencing your journey, so that we can have the right staff on hand for when you arrive (please note the Siberian weather puts seasonal limits on some activities – details below). Want to extend your life? Local legend claims that you can get anything from five extra years of life (paddling up to your knees) up to twenty years if you manage to go swimming!
A. SIBERIAN TREK through the Taiga Forest with a local guide who will explain the wildlife, eco- system and lore of the Taiga (May-Oct).
B. CIRCUM BAIKAL PICNIC Take the Ferry from Listvyanka to Port Baikal which takes around 15 minutes. Walk around Port Baikal, where you will see the train station of the old Circumbaikal rail line. Then you will walk along the rail line to the nearest tunnel (2-3 km). Stopping for a picnic lunch on the shore of Lake Baikal. Return to Port Baikal, ferry back to Listvyanka (Jun-Sep).
C. SNOW MOBILE TRIP with a local guide through the forest, or even out over the deep frozen lake! Two hours (Dec–Apr).
D. DOG SLEDDING trip for a distance of 10 km. 1 dog sled for each client. (Dec–Mar)
E. TALTSY WOODEN MUSEUM A three hour trip which includes a driver, and English speaking guide to the Taltsy open air wooden museum on the shore of Lake Baikal. This picturesque area shows how life was and has been sympathetically restored as a tourist attraction where you can ride Troikas and also buy authentic souvenirs. There is a tea house here also to refresh you after a busy morning sightseeing. (Year round)
F. DO YOUR OWN THING maybe take off on a cliff side walk, or mosey around the village, or take a dip in Lake Baikal! (Weather permitting!)
Balance of day free time to explore the village at your own pace. Maybe try a local bar?
Day 9 - Return to Irkutsk
After breakfast transfer back to Irkutsk city. Check-into your 3* Hotel. You will be given a map and some recommendations of interesting places to visit by our local staff. Balance of day free to explore.
Day 10 - Depart Irkutsk
Day 11 - 12 - On board the Trans-Manchurian Express
Day 13 - Arrive Beijing
Included in the trip:
TRAIN: 2-Class 4-berth rail for complete journey.
MOSCOW: Transfers on arrival and departure. Two nights stay in a 3* Hotel, breakfast, included. 3 hour personalised guided walking tour of the city.
SIBERIA: All transfers provided. Two nights family stay Listvankya Village, all meals. One night hotel stay Irkutsk city, includes breakfast.
We have a range of airline tickets which fit in well with our trips. Run your flight requirements past us before confirming your flight arrangements.
Trip pricing (per person):
|1 person||2 people||3-9 people|
|Standard extra night Moscow||$160||$80||$80|
|Standard extra night Beijing||$160||$80||$80|
|Superior extra night Moscow||$tba||$tba||$tba|
|Superior extra night Beijing||$tba||$tba||$tba|
|Upgrade to 2 berth||$1000||$1000||$1000|
Due to the nature of these destinations all prices are subject to change. Contact us to confirm exact price.
Deposits hold bookings but fares can still vary with exchange rates and only final payment guarantees price.