The epic Trans Mongolian railway is arguably the worlds greatest journey. The longest continuous railway on earth it spans more than a third of the entire globes surface, covering a huge 6000 miles (10000 km).
Our below tour is a new deluxe version which includes 4 star hotels, extra tours and private transport throughout, including airport transfers.
Our upgraded comfort package option is available for £1695
Please note we also offer the same tour from East to West, starting in Beijing for the same price.
Departure day is every Saturday from Moscow. Dates from Beijing differ depending on the current train schedule.
Arrive at Moscow airport to be met by our driver who will collect you and take you to Moscow Yaroslav station ready to depart on your journey on the 13:50 train. Head out of Moscow's suburbs and begin your journey East towards Siberia.
Relax onboard the train as you travel further Eastwards towards Yekaterinburg through the verdant rolling foothill landscapes of the Ural Mountains.
Relax onboard the train and make the most of the restaurant car as you head towards Omsk and pass the 2102km point which officially marks the border of Siberia.
Give your legs a stretch at each stop and buy food from the many sellers on the platforms.
Onwards towards Krasnoyarsk as you pass through the busiest section of railway in the world. Freight trains, mainly full of coal heading towards the Ural smelting works from the Kubas Basin. Further along you will cross one of the world's longest rivers on the 870m long Ob River bridge.
Arrive in Irkutsk at 8:36. Our driver will meet you at the station and transfer
you to your central 4 star hotel accommodation before taking a half day tour
We will stroll around the city and take in the beautiful wooden buildings before visiting the Church of the Saviour, the Znamensky monastery and Irkutsk Museum.
Afternoon is free at your own leisure. Take the chance to head to the market to pick up some supplies then head out for a tradition Siberian meal at one of the cities many restaurants.
Our driver will pick you up at 9:00 and begin the journey to Olkhon. Head north 250 km along the Primorsky Mountains on Baikal's western shore towards Lake Baikal, the deepest lake in the world at 1673m.
Time for a coffee stop en route before arriving at the Olkhon Island ferry around lunch time. After a short stroll around the ferry stop you will make the crossing to Olkhon Island, 71km long and 14.5km wide; making it the largest lake island in the world.
Olkhon is populated primarily by the Buryati people who are of Mongolian descent and whose Buddhist practices coexist with their shamanism. Upon arrival you are transferred to your accommodation at a fishermans family guesthouse, made up of wooden chalets.
After lunch you can explore the village and visit the museum of Local Lore. A walking excursion can be done through the village to the Cape of Burkhan to see the famous Crag of Shaman (Rock Temple) which was generally regarded as one of the 9 sanctuaries of Asia. Return to dine on home-cooked grayling, a local Baikal speciality before spending the rest of the evening at leisure.
In the morning depart to explore Olkhon Island and classic Lake Baikal vistas^.
Head north and make your first stop at Sagaan-Khushun Cape, a beatiful cliff covered in red lichen. Then head forward to the coastal sand dunes and stretches of beach along the way, including the 200m high cliffs of Khoboy Cape at the northern tip of the island.
After a picnic-lunch (Baikal omul fish-soup), cooked on an open fire in Uzuri bay you will return to Khuzir village. Experience a traditional Russian banya (sauna) before being served a traditional Olkhon dinner. Again spend the rest of the evening at leisure.
After a farewell breakfast in the guesthouse, you will be driven to to the ferry-station
for your journey back to Irkutsk.
Cross the strait to the mainland and drive to Irkutsk. There is an en route stop for lunch in the Buryat village of Bayandai. Arrival in Irkutsk around 16:00. A few hours at your leisure before transferring to the train station for the 22:15 train to Ulan Bator, travelling around part of the lower edge of Lake Baikal.
onboard the train, passing through the semi autonomous region of Buryatia and the shores of Goose Lake.
Arrive at the Russian border town of Naushki ready for your crossing into Mongolia. After passports are checked you enter Mongolia and witness a rapid change of scenery with the pine and birch forests making way for the beautiful green pastures of the Selenge River basin.
Arrive in Ulan Bator in the morning where our driver will meet you and
transfer you to your 4 star hotel accommodation to drop off your luggage. We
will take a full day tour of the capital, in the morning visiting Gandan Function monastery with its huge golden Buudha.
Afterwards we stop for lunch before continuing to visit the War Memorial at Zaisan,
the Bogd Kgaan winter Palace and Sukhbaatar square with it's large bronze statues of Chinggis Khaan.
Afterwards attend a folklore performance.
The evening is spent at your own leisure. We recommend you try a traditional Mongolian barbecue. You could also visit the Tumen Ekh Ensemble Palace to view contortionists, dancers, opera singers and the bizarre Mongolian throat singers!
Our driver picks you up in the morning and drives you to Terelj National Park, 50 miles northeast of Ulan Bator. Enter the park and immediately feel the cool alpine air and view the magnificent mountain scenery.
You will be taken to see and possibly buy goods from local artists, view hawks and eagles and even camels! You then transfer from the minibus onto horseback* and a journey into the valleys past streams and through winding mountain paths. The horses are then tied up as you begin a mountain hike up to Ariyapala Temple crossing a rope bridge along the way.
After ascending the steps to the temple you will have the chance to meditate or simply sit back and admire the amazing views.
You then return to your horses and head back to Turtle Rock and the Ger Camp where you will spend the night.
The camp is set in the spectacular Gorkhi River valley. Settle down in your Ger then meet the farmer and his family who own the camp.
Spend the rest of the afternoon taking leisurely strolls on green meadows carpeted with edelweiss and a variety of other wildflowers; view incredible rock formations against a backdrop of pine-covered mountains; and stroll along the banks of a mountain stream.
Return to your camp and relax for the evening. Dinner cooked on a stove inside your Ger and eat it outside under a huge starlit sky. When the temperature drops head inside the Ger and light up your stove to keep you warm during the night!
After breakfast you will head to the Chinggis Khan complex outside Ulan Bator to
view the huge statue before returning to your hotel in
Ulan Bator with the afternoon spent at leisure. Maybe visit the National Modern Art Gallery, the Museum of National History and the Winter Palace of Bogd Khaan.
Visit the huge State Department Store before eating dinner at one of the cities many restaurants and maybe spend the evening watching the ballet at the State Opera & Ballet Theatre or a live rock or jazz band at River Sounds.
Arise early for your transfer to the station where you can order breakfast before the
7:15 train to Beijing arrives. head south through hundreds of miles of the Gobi desert, as far as your eyes can see.
Have dinner in the extravagant Chinese buffet car before arriving at the border around 21:00.
Travel through incredible Chinese countryside, crossing the Great Wall of China and finally arriving in Beijing at 14:04. Our driver will pick you up at the station and take you to your central 4 star hotel.
Our driver will meet you in reception ready to transfer you to the airport for your flight home.
Included in the price:
- Russian visa invitation
- 2nd class train tickets
- quality 4 star hotel accommodation in Irkutsk, UB and Beijing
- transport to Olkhon island, private accommodation, meals, English speaking guide and jeep tour
- transport to Terelj National Park with guides, Ger accommodation, horse-riding and meals
- city tours of Irkutsk and Ulan Bator
- all transfers
The price is based on two people travelling together. There is a £1240 additional charge for sole travellers .
The price doesn't include:
- international flights
- travel insurance
- some meals
- tips for guides
- Chinese, Russian and Mongolian visas
For an extra £485 per person (or £970 if travelling alone) we can upgrade you to private cabins on each train. First class cabin from UB to Beijing with private second class from Moscow to Irkutsk and Irkutsk to UB.
Please note you are not accompanied by a guide on the train. The guides will pick you up at each station and take you on the tours around Irkutsk, Lake Baikal, Ulan Bator and Terelj National Park. If you prefer to have a guide accompany you at all times, please contact us for further information.
* for anyone not keen on horse riding we can offer the alternative option of hiking or simply relaxing at the Ger camp.
During a period of 3-5 days in April, the lake becomes too dangerous to cross due to melting ice. The dates depend on the weather conditions. Therefore for April trips we cannot guarantee the tour. In this case we will replace the tour with a visit to Listvnyanka or the Circumbaikal railway.
We can add Moscow accommodation on request and/or additional nights in Beijing.
Please note that for any bookings coming less than 8 weeks prior to departure we cannot guarantee availability of train tickets. Also for any bookings less than 6 weeks prior to departure, there is a £85 surcharge to cover the higher ticket prices that are charged for late bookings.