WINTER SIBERIAN EXPRESS WESTBOUND

VLADIVOSTOK ● IRKUTSK & LAKE BAIKAL ● EKATERINBURG ● MOSCOW

TOUR OVERVIEW

DURATION, PRICE, TOUR TYPE & DEPARTURES

14 nights from UK £ 2,230 / US $ 3,010 per person*

*Price based on 2 people travelling in a shared 4 berth second class cabin. Upgrade to your own cabin from UK £ 675 / US$ 915 per person. These prices are based on 2021 rates and are here to give guidance. Final quotes vary by date, exchange rates and are subject to availability.

PRIVATE TOUR - NOT A GROUP TOUR - CAN BE TAILORED 

SEASON - NOVEMBER TO MARCH WITH WEEKLY DEPARTURES

TOUR CODE : TS-W-V-01

DOWNLOAD THE TRIP DOSSIER

Download the extensive Trip Dossier for this tour as a PDF file to read offline or print. The trip dossier contains more details of departures dates and trip inclusions for this tour as well as background information on the destinations, trains and FAQs. 
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TSWV01 dossier

MAP & DESTINATIONS

THE STOPS VISITED ON THIS TOUR

🇷🇺 VLADIVOSTOK - 1 night

Russia’s Eastern Port city is a heavily influenced by nearby China & Japan.

🇷🇺 IRKUTSK & BAIKAL - 2 nights

Forward looking Siberian city and gateway to Lake Baikal.

🇷🇺 EKATERINBURG - 3 nights

City in the beautiful Ural Mountains where the Romanovs met their fate.

🇷🇺 MOSCOW - 2 nights

Russia’s vast and iconic capital and the start of this railway adventure.

ON THE TRAINS - total 6 nights

We use the most comfortable and reliable trains possible for each leg.

TSWV01 map

OUR EXCLUSIVE TRIP GUIDEBOOK

This trip includes our exclusive 200+ page guidebook personalised to your trip with sections about the trains, destinations, timetables and emergency contacts and allowing you to be fully prepared for your trip of a lifetime - an invaluable resource!
trip-guidebook

DAY BY DAY ITINERARY

DAILY DESCRIPTIONS OF ACTIVITIES, MEALS & OVERNIGHT ACCOMMODATION

DAY 1 - VLADIVOSTOK

ARRIVAL IN RUSSIA’S FAR EAST PORT CITY OF VLADIVOSTOK

Arrival in Vladivostok, the legendary end (or beginning) of the true Trans-Siberian line. A driver will be waiting to transfer you to your hotel. For years this city was closed to foreigners being the home base of the Russian Pacific Fleet. It has a fantastic location on the Amursky Gulf. Free time for the rest of the day to relax or start to explore the city with the help of your personalised Trip Guidebook we send you before the trip.

MEALS: None Today.

OVERNIGHT: Sibirskoe Podvorie Hotel ★ ★ ★ click to view hotel.

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DAY 2 - VLADIVOSTOK 

FULL DAY CITY TOUR INCLUDING RUSSKY ISLAND & VOROSHILOVSKAYA BATTERY WITH AN EVENING DEPARTURE

A full day tour of Vladivostok today covering the main attractions and more including Vladivostok Railway Station - always worth a pre-look - and the C-56 submarine as well as passing many historic, cultural and architectural landmarks and view points. After lunch (own arrangement) we delve into Vladivostok's military history visiting its Fortress including two of the old batteries which now serve as museums. We also visit the Voroshilovskaya Battery located inside a real military base on Russky Island. This 80 year old building is a fantastic example of military architecture with it's rational organisation and efficient functioning. We also see the Pacific Navy warships stationed in the heart of the city which demonstrate the continuing importance of this port to Russia.

Finish the tour at Vladivostok’s beautiful station where you board the train westwards.

MEALS: Hotel Breakfast.

OVERNIGHT: On the train - click to learn more.

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DAY 3 - on the train 

ENJOY THE SCENERY OF RUSSIA’S WILD & REMOTE FAR EAST

Early this morning reach Khabarovsk crossing its 2.6 km bridge over the Amur river. There is some good scenery today following the Ingoda and Shilka rivers into a wild land of taiga forest and hills. The train is still stopping quite frequently so make good use of these stops to stretch the legs, take some photos and stock up on food and drink from the small kiosks and independent sellers.

MEALS: None today - however the train does have a dining car.

OVERNIGHT: On the train - click to learn more.

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DAY 4 - on the train 

CONTINUE THROUGH RUSSIA’S VAST FAR EAST ENTERING BURYATIA

Today notice a change in the people with many more Asian faces as you reach Buryatia which has strong cultural ties to Mongolia.

MEALS: None today - however the train does have a dining car.

OVERNIGHT: On the train - click to learn more.

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DAY 5 - IRKUTSK & LAKE BAIKAL 

PASS ULAN UDE & TRAVEL ALONG THE SHORES OF LAKE BAIKAL TO IRKUTSK WITH A TRANSFER TO LISTVYANKA VILLAGE

Today is usually the scenic highlight of the entire journey, a day of lake, forest and mountain views. Early in the morning you reach Ulan Ude before joining the main Trans-Siberian line on to Moscow. Later in the day the train rumbles around the Southern shore of stunning Lake Baikal often passing within a matter of meters of the lake and providing endlessly changing vistas.

Afternoon arrival in Irkutsk, regarded as the modern day cultural capital of Siberia, famed for its traditional wooden architecture, complimented by a vibrant cafe and restaurant culture.

Transfer from the station the 1 hour drive following the route of the Angara River down to the village of Listvyanka located close to where the river meets beautiful Lake Baikal. The lake is among the deepest in the world at 1,642 meters and has exceptionally clear water - or perhaps ice when you are here!

Settle in to your accommodation with free time for the rest of the day.

MEALS: None today - however the train does have a dining car.

OVERNIGHT: Usadba Demidova Guesthouse - click to learn more.

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DAY 6 - LAKE BAIKAL 

TOUR OF LISTVYANKA VILLAGE & FREE AFTERNOON

After breakfast your guide will take you on a 4 hour walking tour of the village. You will see the beautiful church and visit the Limnological Museum to learn about the Lake itself and its unique flora and fauna. We will also take chairlift up to a view point for some of the best lake vistas.

The afternoon is free or we can arrange snowmobiling or dogsledding (depending on snow cover) or, if the lake is frozen enough, you may want to venture out onto the surface by foot or by hiring a bike.

The village also has a banya (Russian sauna) you can arrange to visit and which we heartily recommend as the quintessential Siberian experience!

MEALS: Breakfast at the Guesthouse.

OVERNIGHT: Usadba Demidova Guesthouse - click to learn more.

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DAY 7 - on the train 

FREE MORNING BEFORE RETURNING TO IRKUTSK WITH A CITY TOUR & FREE TIME BEFORE DEPARTURE

A free morning in Listvyanka before an early afternoon transfer back to Irkutsk for a 2 hour walking tour of the city centre including the park and War Memorial, some of the beautiful churches along the Angara river, the main city centre streets and the statue of Alexander III - the Tzar responsible for the Trans-Siberian railway. Evening transfer to the station for your onward train.

MEALS: Breakfast at the Guesthouse.

OVERNIGHT: On the train - click to learn more.

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DAY 8 - on the train 

GOOD SCENERY TODAY PASSING KRASNOYARSK & ONTO NOVOSIBIRSK

Some good scenery today with a landscape consisting of gently rolling hills and dense forests of larch, pine and birch trees. There are many rivers and ponds and if it hasn’t happened before now you will start to comprehend just how vast and quite untouched much of Russia is. Pass attractive and prosperous Krasnoyarsk reaching Siberia’s largest city of Novosibirsk in the evening.

MEALS: None today - however the train does have a dining car.

OVERNIGHT: On the train - click to learn more.

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DAY 9 - EKATERINBURG 

LAST DAY IN SIBERIA BEFORE ARRIVAL IN EKATERINBURG

The scenery today is flat, often swampy or forested and with few major settlements except for Omsk. In the evening you enter the rolling hills of the Ural's before arriving at Ekaterinburg, historic capital of this mineral rich region with a rich and fascinating history and surrounded by beautiful, rolling countryside dotted with traditional Siberian villages. Transfer by private car to your hotel to overnight.

MEALS: None today - however the train does have a dining car.

OVERNIGHT: Chekhov Boutique Hotel ★ ★ ★ ★ click to view hotel.

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DAY 10 - EKATERINBURG 

LEARN TO DRIVE A DOG SLEDGE THROUGH THE WINTER FOREST & RUSSIAN BANYA

After a good breakfast you will be picked up at your hotel by our expert in dog sledging and driven to an area to the west of the city. Here you meet the real Siberian 'Khaski" dogs who will be pulling your traditional sledge for 7 km through the beautiful ice encrusted winter forest. Full instruction will be given and whilst sledging there is a back up vehicle. Picnic lunch in the forest.

The perfect way to relax after the exertion and cold of sledging is with 2 hours in the steam bath known as a “Banya”, one of the great Russian traditions. Your guide will instruct you in the etiquette and method of using the facilities including the tradition of being beaten with birch branches!

MEALS: Hotel Breakfast & Picnic Lunch.

OVERNIGHT: Chekhov Boutique Hotel ★ ★ ★ ★ click to view hotel.

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DAY 11 - EKATERINBURG 

CITY TOUR, VISIT THE ROMANOVS SECRET GRAVE & STAND ASTRIDE THE EUROPE-ASIA BORDER

This morning your guide will take you on a 3 hour tour by car of the city’s highlights. Stop at the central square and see statues of Ekaterinburg’s founders and leaders and learn local stories, legends (and a few jokes!) related to them. Continue to the 1905 Revolution square before the most compelling story will be told at the beautiful Church of Spilled Blood located at the Romanovs’ Death Site and Chapel of St Elizabeth. We also see views of the city from the Hill of Ascension and visit the powerful Afghanistan memorial at the Square of the Red Army.

After lunch (own arrangement) drive 15 km north-west to a monastery dedicated to the Romanov’s family located on the spot where the Bolsheviks tried to hide the corpses of the Tsar and his family in a secret grave. Continue on to the continental border of Europe and Asia 20 km west of the city. On the way we make a short stop at the Memorial of Victims of the GULAGs. The Main Obelisk “Between Europe & Asia” allows you to straddle the continental divide and you also get a Certificate with a glass of sparkling wine! Return to the city to overnight.

MEALS: Hotel Breakfast.

OVERNIGHT: Chekhov Boutique Hotel ★ ★ ★ ★ click to view hotel.

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DAY 12 - on the train 

EARLY MORNING DEPARTURE TOWARDS RUSSIA’S CAPITAL MOSCOW

Morning transfer to the station for your onward train. Shortly after departure you cross the Europe-Asia continental border with the rest of the day on the train passing through a relatively populated region of farms, small towns and villages interspersed with birch forest.

MEALS: Hotel Breakfast.

OVERNIGHT: On the train - click to learn more.

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DAY 13 - MOSCOW 

ARRIVAL IN MOSCOW & A 3 HOUR TOUR OF THE CITY BY CAR

Wake to Moscow’s sprawling suburbs arriving at the city’s handsome Kazanskaya station. The place to meet your transfer driver at this station is by the front of the train. Please note that hotel check-in time is 2pm although if a room is available you can go to it straight away. Guaranteed early check-in is not included. If you would like to add this please ask us.

Later this morning you will have the perfect introductory tour of central Moscow by car designed to orientate and open up its hidden treasures. Your guide will take you along the main streets and less visited back roads to see the diversity of architectural styles from the austere and restrained Russian style to richly decorated Moscow Baroque, elegant Empire, fascinating Art Nouveau and even Pseudo-Chinese and Moorish. Hear stories and legends not found in the guidebooks as well as passing the most important sites in the city including the Bolshoi Theatre, Tverskaya street, GUM Department store, Red Square and St Basil’s Cathedral.

MEALS: None Today.

OVERNIGHT: Budapest Hotel ★ ★ ★ click to view hotel.

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DAY 14 - MOSCOW 

FREE DAY TO EXPLORE RUSSIA’S CAPITAL & ITS MANY WORLD CLASS SIGHTS

A free day to explore Moscow. The city has much to offer whatever the weather from the famous museums such as Pushkin Fine Arts and Tretyakov Art Gallery to more outdoor areas including the Park of the Fallen Idols and Novodevitchy Convent. Of course, if the weather is not so good Moscow is one of the few cities where a day spent on the metro is a tourist attraction with many beautiful stations to visit and all for the price of a single ticket! For relaxing we recommend the bars, galleries and cafes of the Red October district or the fabulous Gorky Park.

MEALS: Hotel Breakfast.

OVERNIGHT: Budapest Hotel ★ ★ ★ click to view hotel.

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DAY 15 - end of tour 

DEPART MOSCOW & RUSSIA AFTER YOUR EPIC TRANS-SIBERIAN ADVENTURE

Today is a free until a transfer to your onward travel from Russia. We sincerely hope that you will have enjoyed your epic journey as much as we have many times already and we look forward to welcoming you back on another one of our trips!

MEALS: Hotel Breakfast.

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INCLUSIONS & EXCLUSIONS

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Train tickets in second class – ask us about upgrades.
All accommodation as specified above.
All private transfers and transport as described.
All meals as specified in the itinerary.
All tours as specified including entrance fees.
24 hour emergency assistance
Visa Paperwork you need in order to obtain the visas.
Financial Peace of Mind as your trip is protected.
Our exclusive 200+ page trip guidebook.
International Airfare to / from the start / finish of your trip – we can book these flights on request.
The Russian visa – we can advise and partner with VisaCentral.
Travel insurance to cover any medical treatment – we canadvise on options.
Discretionary gratuities to drivers and guides.

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