The Trans-Siberian is the one of the great travel adventures, passing through some of the most remote, and breath-taking, vistas in the world. Travelling in the Tsars Gold private train brings this journey to new heights, thanks to the luxury of your accommodation, and the fully escorted nature of the tour.
The Tsars Gold itself runs along a branch of the Trans-Siberian called the Trans-Mongolian, passing through Mongolia towards Beijing rather than to the Russian Far East and the Pacific coast. Along the way you will see the vast Siberian forests, Lake Baikal, the largest lake in the world, and innumerable staggering views of natural beauty.
Day 1 – Arrival and Excursion in Moscow
Once you arrive in Moscow, your tour guide will welcome you at the airport and accompany you to your hotel to settle in and leave your heavy luggage behind before heading out for your first taste of Russia’s historic capital.
You will be taken on a ‘City of Lights’ tour to see the exquisitely illuminated city, with visits also to Red Square and the metro system to see the ornately decorated stations. Once you have finished you will return to your hotel to rest up and prepare for the adventure ahead.
Day 2 – Excursions in Moscow
Your grand, guided, city tour will begin in the morning, taking in the Kremlin and its marvellous Tsarist-era cathedral.
Later on in the day you will be taken aboard your home for the next two weeks, and introduced to your travelling companions in the dining car while you are given more details about the upcoming journey. This will be your first night on the train.
Day 3 – Excursions in Kazan
On the morning of day three you will arrive in Kazan, the capital of Tatarstan, on the banks of the Volga River.
The highlight of this stop is a guided tour of the, UNESCO World Heritage Site, Kazan Kremlin. With its wonderful panoramic views of the Volga, you will learn all about the turbulent history of the Tartars, the Cossacks and the Russians.
That evening you will head back to the train before heading further eastward!
Day 4 – Excursions in Yekaterinburg
Around noon your train will stop in Yekaterinburg, the historical capital of the Urals. The city is most (in)famously known for being where the last Russian Tsar, Nicholas II, and his family were murdered in 1918.
As part of your tour you will visit the Cathedral of the Saviour on the Spilled Blood, a cathedral built in commemoration of that tragic event. In addition you will be taken around the attractive city centre before heading back to the train.
Day 5 – Excursions in Novosibirsk
Novosibirsk is in the heart of Siberia and is, in fact, the most populous city in Asian Russia.
You will be welcomed to the city in traditional Russia style with bread and salt, before being guided around the most Soviet of all the cities you will see on our journey, including visits to the Trans-Siberian Monument and the mighty Ob River.
Day 6 – Across Siberia aboard the Tsars Gold
You will cross a large portion of Siberia today, crossing over the Yenisei River along the way. With stunning views of verdant forests and crystal-clear lakes and rivers, it is the perfect day to relax and just enjoy the view.
Your talented chefs will not be relaxing though, as they will be busy putting together their speciality ‘Tsar’s Feast’. This will be a chance for you to taste a number of Russian snacks accompanied by many toasts; true Russian hospitality.
Day 7 – Excursions in Irkutsk
Irkutsk is one of the largest cities in Siberia, and today you will be guided around some of the best sights the city has to offer.
During the tour you will have the opportunity to view the beautiful wooden Siberian cottages, with their intricate, lace-like decorations, the new statue of Alexander III (the Trans-Siberians instigator) and the lively market hall.
Later on in the day you will be taken to an open air museum nearby, chronicling the history of Siberia from the 17th century onwards.
That evening you will spend the night in Irkutsk at a local 4* hotel.
Day 8 – Exploring Lake Baikal
You will be ferried by boat to Port Baikal on the morning of day eight, where the train will be awaiting you, before continuing the journey around the grand Lake Baikal, following the original route of the Trans-Siberian.
Later in the day the train will stop to allow you to take in the beauty of your surroundings while you enjoy a picnic on the shores of the lake.
Day 9 – Excursions in Ulan-Ude
You will continue along Lake Baikal today, heading towards the home of the Buryat people, Ulan-Ude. A brief tour will take place here before moving onwards towards the border with Mongolia.
Day 10 – Excursions in Ulan-Bator
Early risers will have the opportunity to see the magnificent landscapes of Mongolia before arriving into Ulan Bator, the capital of Mongolia.
Once in Ulan Bator the tour will take in many of the key sights around the city, including the impressive Buddhist Gandan Monastery, and the Choijin Lama Temple that was built between 1904 and 1908 before being converted into a museum in 1938.
That evening you will have the chance to attend a unique performance of traditional Mongolian folk arts, including throat singing, horse-headed fiddle playing, national costumes and dances (optional, to be paid on site).
Day 11 – Excursions in Ulan Bator
You will leave the centre of Ulan Bator today for a trip to the Gorkhi-Terelj National Park to explore a traditional side of Mongolia; nomadic herdsmen with their Ger settlements, horse herds and yaks.
A small horse-riding demonstration will be put on for you, as well as a picnic, before heading back towards Ulan Bator and the train in order to continue on your adventure.
Day 12 – Crossing the Gobi Desert
Crossing the vast Gobi desert you will have time to take in the views, socialise with your travelling companions, most importantly, relax.
Around noon you will change trains as the private rain is unable to travel on Chinese rail system due to a change in gauge. The last section of your journey before Beijing will be aboard a regular passenger train.
Day 13 – Arrival in Beijing
You will arrive in Beijing sometime in the morning, and be transferred to your hotel. After this you are free to explore the beautiful Beijing at your leisure.
Day 14 – Excursions in Beijing
Your first, full, day in Beijing will be split in two. First you will be taken on a tour of the city to see some of the most important and historic sites, including the Temple of Heaven and Tiananmen Square, as well as some of its more contemporary architectural achievements, including the ‘Birds Nest’ Olympic Stadium and the thoroughly modern skyscrapers now dotting the Beijing skyline.
In the afternoon you will be given the opportunity to enter the Forbidden City, the former imperial palace, and the centre of Chinese politics for nearly 500 years. The complex consists of 980 buildings, and while you will be unable to see all of them, you will have ample time to see many of the temples and halls that make up this UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Day 15 – Excursions in Beijing
To many, the Great Wall of China is the eighth wonder of the world, stretching, as it does, 6000km through the Chinese countryside, and it is here where your tour will start today. Along your walk you will visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site Ming Tombs, the burial place of 13 Ming Dynasty emperors, as well as the impressive Spirit Way.
That evening you can enjoy a farewell dinner of local favourite, Peking Duck, while swapping stories with your travelling companions, and plan for your next adventure!
Day 16 – Depart Beijing
This will be your last day on tour. After breakfast you will be transferred to the airport to begin your journey home. If you are not yet ready to journey home, why not try Real Russia’s ‘Dragon City’ Beijing extensions?
This tour includes:
Hotel and on-board accommodation:
Although you will spend much of your time sightseeing or socialising in the trains public areas, you will find your hotel room or cabin a welcome retreat at the end of the day.
An expert on the Trans-Siberian journey, available to answer all your questions.
Local travel guides, and expert tour guides:
Each tour group will be no more than 26 people. For Bolshoi Classes his number is 12.
All transfers and travel:
Tsars Gold will ensure that you need not worry about any of the travelling involved in your Trans-Siberian adventure, including to and from the airport at either end of your tour.
Excursions, activities and entry fees:
As laid out in the itinerary.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner, daily:
Meals are generally served in the well-appointed dining cars, though on occasion the tour will also provide meals in that day’s destination in order to sample the finest local cuisine.
While you will stay on the train for the majority of your journey, when you do stay in a local hotel, as well as when you begin, and end, your rail journey, you can be assured that all of your bags will be in safe hands.
In order to ensure your health and safety, Tsars Gold ensures you have a doctor on call for the majority of your journey. A doctor will not be available between Beijing and the Mongolian border.
Route guide and information pack:
One for each reserved cabin.
- Any flights or travel costs not covered in the itinerary.
- Visa costs. See the Real Russia Trans-Siberian Visa’s page
- Insurance. See Real Russia’s advice on travel insurance.
- Personal expenses such as souvenir shopping or extra food and drink not included in the itinerary.