Trans Siberian Express
Group tour Great Trans-Siberian Journey from Moscow to the Pacific Ocean
Moscow (2 nights) - train (4 nights) - Irkutsk in transit - Listvianka on Lake Baikal (1 night) - Irkutsk (1 night) - train (3 nights) - Vladivostok (1 night)
Traveling along the Trans-Siberian Railway is undoubtedly one of the most fascinating journeys in the world. It is the longest railway on the planet. The train route goes through all of Russia, crossing 10 time zones, 2 continents, 12 regions, 5 territories, 2 republics, 1 autonomous region, 87 towns, and 16 large rivers. It begins in Moscow, passes through European Russia, crosses the Ural mountains which separate Europe and Asia, continues into Siberia's taiga and steppes, and finishes in Vladivostok - the Russian Far East coast on the Pacific Ocean.
Visit Moscow - Russia's vibrant capital, Lake Baikal the largest, deepest and oldest lake in the world, the quintessential Siberian city of Irkutsk and Vladivostok on the Pacific Ocean - the Lord of the East.
While passing across the vast expanse of Russia, you will get a unique chance to explore the different cultures and present-day lifestyles of local people, see historical monuments, admire breathtaking landscapes of virgin land, the Siberian taiga, great rivers, steppes, mountains and deserts. For many people the most pleasurable part of the trip is simply sitting back and watching the countryside go by. Many travelers also find that it is interaction with other passengers and the local people that makes the trip an unforgettable experience. ThereÂ´s something special about watching thousands of kilometers passing by, and observing the ever-changing landscapes and views through the window of your train.
Day 1, Moscow
Arrival in Moscow. Transfer to the Cosmos hotel (3* hotel) or similar. Accommodation in renovated rooms.
Moscow is the capital and the largest city in Russia as well as the largest metropolitan area in Europe with a population well over 10 million. This amazing city has served as the capital of the Soviet Union, the Russian Empire and the Grand Duchy of Moscow. Moscow has had a tumultuous history dating back to medieval times when it was founded by Prince Yuri Dolgoruki (Yuri of the Long Arms, known for the length of his arms!) in the early 12th century. It has seen numerous invasions and sieges from the Mongols to the Poles and Lithuanians to the Crimean Tatars to Napoleon and finally the Nazi's but it has persevered and today is a thriving metropolis. The city is filled with unique architecture from the Kremlin and Red Square to giant Stalin skyscrapers to new office blocks built during the economic boom of recent years and it contains a strikingly beautiful metro system. The city is the center of political as well as economic power in Russia and visitors can feel the energy in the streets. There is always something going on in Moscow and there is so much to see. Your tour will give you valuable insights into Russia's history, its art and most importantly its culture and people.
Day 2, Moscow
Breakfast. At 10:00 meeting with guide for city tour including visit to Novodevichy Convent. Kremlin Grounds and one cathedral on its territory.
The Novodevichy Convent was founded in 1524 by Grand Prince Vasili Ioanovich, the original convent was enclosed by fortified walls and contained 12 towers. The structure served as a convent for ladies of noble birth and was host to many famous Russian personages throughout its history including Boris Gudonov and Peter the Great's elder sister Princess Sophia (who was banished there in 1679 by her brother).
The Kremlin is truly a fascinating structure, at the same time it is an ancient tower, the city's former military fortification, a palace, an armory, the sovereign treasury and the workplace of the Russian President. The Kremlinis the center of Russia's political life and State power and has been home to Tsars, General Secretaries of the Soviet Union and Russian Presidents. Red Square is beneath the Kremlin's walls. The most impressive cathedrals on the territory of the Kremlin are the Annunciation Cathedral, the Archangel's Cathedral and the Assumption Cathedral.
Day 3, Moscow
Breakfast. Free time. At 11:00 transfer to railway station. Train #70 at 13.05 to Irkutsk.
Days 4-6, Transit
Travel across Russia, through the Ural Mountains and on to Siberia. Watch the fascinating landscape roll by and meet other travelers on the train.
Day 7, Irkutsk
Arrival in Irkutsk at 05.28. Breakfast. City tour. Transfer to Listvianka settlement with stop in Taltsy village for lunch and visit to open-air Ethnographic museum. Accommodation at Legend of Baikal hotel in Listvyanka
Irkutsk (about 5200 km from Moscow, 75 hours by train):
Irkutsk is an old Russian city situated in Eastern Siberia on the picturesque bank of the Angara River, which flows out of Lake Baikal. Irkutsk began as a small settlement in the mid 17th century for gold-trading and for the collection of the fur tax from the Buryats. The settlement officially became a town in 1686 and the first road between Moscow and the new city was built in 1760. With the road construction, many new products, often imported from China, were widely available in Irkutsk for the first time including gold, diamonds, furs, wood, silk and tea. In 1821, Irkutsk became the seat of the Governor-General of East Siberia. In the early 19th century, many Russian officers and nobles were sent into exile in Irkutsk for their part in the Decembrist revolt against Tsar Nicholas I. Due to this influx of individuals from St. Petersburg, Irkutsk became the Siberian center of intellectual and cultural life. By 1900, the city had earned the nickname 'The Paris of Siberia'. Today Irkutsk has become a college town with many young people studying at the university and other institutes of higher education in the city.
Day 8, Listvyanka
Breakfast. Walking tour of Listvyanka. Transfer to Irkutsk. Transfer to railway station. Train #2 at 21.20 to Vladivostok.
Lake Baikal (65 km from Irkutsk)
Lake Baikal is the largest freshwater lake in the world with an average depth of 744.4 m (2,442 ft) and contains roughly 20 percent of the world's surface fresh water. The body of water is also known as the 'Baikal Sea' and the 'Pearl of Siberia'. At 1,642 meters (5,390 ft) Lake Baikal is the deepest, and among the clearest lakes in the world. At more than 25 million years old, Baikal is also the world's oldest lake. Baikal is home to more than 1,700 species of plants and animals, two thirds of which can be found nowhere else in the world and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996. It is also home to the Buryat people who follow the Tibetan Buddhist religion and reside on the eastern side of the lake rearing goat, camel, cattle and sheep.
Days 09 - 10, Transit
Head East over the untouched lands of Siberia.
Day 11, Vladivostok
Arrival in Vladivostok at 19.40. Transfer to Huinday (4* hotel).
Vladivostok (about 9200 km from Moscow, after 6 days by train):
Vladivostok is Russia's largest port city on the Pacific Ocean situated at the head of the Golden Horn Bay and near the border of China and North Korea. The city is home to the Russian Pacific Fleet. The territory on which modern Vladivostok is located had been part of many nations, including the Mongol Empire and China and in the past was populated by many Chinese, Manchu and Koreans. Russia acquired the region in 1858 at the end of China's Opium War with Britain. The naval outpost was founded in 1859 by Count Nikolay Muravyov Amursky who named it Vladivostok which is translated as 'Lord of the East'. An elaborate system of fortifications was erected between the 1870s and 1890s and a telegraph line from Vladivostok to Shanghai and Nagasaki was opened in 1871. The city's economy was given a boost in 1903, with the completion of the Trans-Siberian Railway. The city was fiercely fought over during the Russian Civil War but finally taken by the Red Army in October of 1922. This battle marked the end of the Russian Civil War and consolidation of power by the Soviets. Since that time, Vladivostok has been Russia's main cultural, trade and militarily important city on the Pacific Coast.
Day 12, Vladivostok
Breakfast. City tour and visit to the Oceanarium.
Day 13, Vladivostok
Breakfast. Transfer to airport.
ATTENTION! The itinerary is subject to change due to changes of rail schedule