While there are travelers who dread the shortest of train journeys, there’s an entire lot of travelers whose dream is to sojourn on the world’s longest rail network of Trans Siberian Railway.
An epic train journey that takes the travelers from one end of Moscow to the other end of Vladivostok, it is an once-in-a-lifetime experience to enjoy a thrilling ride on the Trans Siberian Railway Network. And for those who’d like to live their dreams, find all that you need to know about hopping on to the most eventful train journey of your life across eight time zones and more than 9,200 kilometers.
What Is The Trans Siberian Railway Network?
With its never ending expansion plans, the Trans Siberian Railway Network is a chain of multiple railways that bridges the gap between Moscow and the ends of Russia. Covering a former distance of 9,258 kilometers and boasting of covering 9,289 kilometers at present, the Trans Siberian Railway built by the Russian Government between the period of 1891 and 1916, happens to be the longest railway network in the world ever.
What Is The History Behind Trans Siberian Railway?
It all started under the reign Tsar Alexander III, and his son Tsarevich Nicholas under whose supervision, the construction of the Trans Siberian Railway network began in the 19th century. The need was felt when Siberia suffered poor transportation system within the region. Ultimately, trade and commerce during the Second World War got affected as the primary source of transportation were the rivers which used to be frozen due to the extreme temperatures in winters.
Trans Siberian Railway Map
Trans Siberian Railway Routes
The whole series of railway network is divided into three main routes and one extension which was recently inaugurated for traveler’s convenience.
Trans Siberian Railway Route: Yaroslavsky Vokzal in Moscow – Yaroslavl – Chelyabinsk – Omsk – Novosibirsk – Irkutsk – Krasnoyarsk – Ulan-Ude – Chita – Khabarovsk – Southern Siberia – Vladivostok
Trans Manchurian Railway Route: Tarskaya – Harbin – Mudanjiang – Ussuriysk – Vladivostok
Trans Mongolian Railway Route: Ulan-Ude – Ulaanbaatar – Beijing
Baikal Amur Mainline Route: Taishet – Amur River – Komsomolsk-na-Amure – Tatar Strait – Sovetskaya Gavan
Where Does Trans Siberian Train Start And End?
The main line and the longest route of Trans Siberian Railway starts from Moscow and ends in Vladivostok, Russia.
On the other hand, the second route of the Trans Manchurian Railway connects with the main line at the station of Tarskaya which is located at a distance of about 1000 kilometers from Lake Baikal. The Trans Manchurian line heads towards China, passes through Mudanjiang and again connects the main Trans Siberian at Ussuriysk stop which is located in the north of Vladivostok.
The third railway line of Trans Mongolian Railway route connects with the main railway line at Ulan-Ude which is located on the eastern coastline of Lake Baikal. It heads towards Ulaan-Baatar from where, it offers connectivity to the region of Beijing and nearby locations.
The extended version of Baikal Amur Mainline connects the Trans Siberian Railway Network at the station of Taishet or Tayshet which is located in the district of Irkutsk in Russia.
How Long Does The Trans Siberian Express Take To Complete Its Journey?
It depends on which route you choose to travel on. It takes a minimum of seven days and a maximum of eight days to complete a one-way journey on all three routes of this network. When it comes to the traditional route that the massive network of Trans Siberian Railway embarks on, it takes a total of six to seven days to complete a one-way journey starting from Moscow to Vladivostok in Russian which is a distance of about 9,289 kilometers.
How Many Trains Operate On This Network?
The two trains that function on the Trans Siberian Railway Network are that of #100/099 Train and the Rossiya Train. However, the departing and the arriving station remains the same for the trains.
Departing Station: Moscow Yaroslavsky
Arriving Station: Vladivostok
1. #100/099 Train
The train of #100/099 functions once in every 2 days making a halt at 120 stations. The train covers a distance of about 9300 kilometers and offers only second and third class passenger carriages.
2. Rossiya Train
On the contrary, the Rossiya train happens to be the world’s longest train journey. Crossing 90 cities across two major continents, this trains covers the same amount of distance in a total of 6 days. Also, Rossiya train offers first passenger carriages along with a fine dining restaurant car that offers impeccable services throughout the journey.
Take A Sneak Peek Inside The Trans Siberian Railway
How Much Does Trans Siberian Railway Cost?
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The tickets for a complete journey without any stopovers from Moscow to Vladivostok would cost €300 or INR 22,900 for second class carriage, and about €150 or INR 11,500 for a third class carriage per person. However, to travel from Moscow to Beijing via the Trans Mongolian train, and the Trans Manchurian train, the tickets would cost around €450 or INR 34,350 to €500 or INR 38,150 for a second class carriage with bed per person.
What Is The Best Time To Go On A Trans Siberian Railway Tour?
Of all the seasons, the months from June to October that bring broader daylight and lesser crowd on the Trans Siberian Railway Network happens to be the best time to experience this enthralling journey. Taking you through some of the best attractions that offer a sight to behold, the Autumn season would be the perfect time to enjoy this ride.
Which Are The Best Places To Visit On The Trans Siberian Express?
Located in the south western region of Russia, Kazan is a picturesque city which enjoys its establishment on the shimmering banks of River Kazanka and River Volga. Much famed for the popular attraction of Kazan Kremlin – a centuries-old citadel which serves as a home of sacred sites and various museums, it is a must to explore the capital city of Tatarstan on a Trans Siberian journey.
Must Experiences In Kazan: Visit the Kazan Kremlin, admire the intricate designs of Qolşärif Mosque, explore the The National Museum of the Republic of Tatarstan, watch a live show at Museum of Illusions, relax at the Millennium Park of Kazan, and more.
2. Altai Mountains
A massive mountain range nestled amidst East and Central Asia, the incredible Altai Mountains is the only point wherein the countries of China, Russia, Kazakhstan, and Mongolia come together. Literally translating into the Golden Mountains in the Mongolian language, the Altai Mountains also serve as the base for the headwaters of River Ob and River Irtysh, and a mecca for adventure enthusiasts.
Must Experiences In Altai Mountains: Steam bath in Beluha, trekking and hiking on the Beluha mountain, snowboarding during the winters, camping across Altai Mountains, rafting and kayaking in Katun, fishing, and more.
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Much famed to be the most ancient and largest city of all the cities in the whole of Siberia, Krasnoyarsk is located in the eastern region of Russia. Considered to be a compact city with over one million people, Krasnoyarsk also happens to be one of the important stopover on the Trans Siberian Railway route.
Must Experiences In Krasnoyarsk: Explore the Stolby Nature Sanctuary, enjoy skiing at Bobrovy Log, visit the zoo at Royev Ruchey, tour the Krasnoyarsk Regional Museum of Local Lore, visit the Paraskeva Pyatnitsa Chapel, and more.
4. Baikal Lake
Set in the heart of Siberia, Lake Baikal is a true manifestation of the most wonderful miracle one can ever witness. Located amidst the mountain ranges of Russia, Lake Baikal is one of the ancient lakes in the country which borders along Mongolia in the northern region. Encircled by the Great Baikal trail that attracts trekkers and hikers from all across the world, Lakes Baikal also happens to be one of the world’s deepest lakes which turns into a fantasyland during the extreme temperature in winters.
Must Experiences In Baikal Lake: Explore the Barguzin Nature Reserve, visit the Baikal Museum, Zabaykalsky National Park, skiing and dog-sledding at Sable Mountain, visit the beaches at Cape Burkhan, and more.
Located in the eastern region of Siberia, Irkutsk is one of the most prettiest cities in whole of Russia. Famous for its colorful and vibrant churches that are lined along the banks of River Angara, it is one of the must-visit destinations that falls on the Trans Siberian Railway Network. Being the sixth largest city in Siberia, Irkutsk holds a great cultural significance as the city came into existence in the early 1800s.
Must Experiences In Irkutsk: Visit the Irkutsk Museum of the Decembrists, admire the creative works at Irkutsk Regional Art Museum, Irkutsk Regional Museum, tea lovers must visit the Museum of Tea, stroll around the Kirov Square, and more.
But First, Experience The Journey Virtually
Tips For Future Travelers On Trans Siberian Railway
- The whole point of going on an exhaustive train journey of Trans Siberian Railway is to relish the sights worth beholding for a lifetime. Hence, make sure you ensure the best time to visit and plan accordingly.
- Prior planning and a good amount of time invested in research is totally recommended to all those who plan on boarding the Trans Siberian Railway Train.
- Planning your finances would depend on the route that you take. Hence, pick your route carefully.
- Make a note of the timings, departures, arrivals, train number, the frequency, stations, number of stops, direct and indirect trains, and other important aspects that will affect your journey.
- Deciding the class of carriages in which you want to travel is an important part of the travel that will have a direct impact on your whole experience as well as on your budget. Hence, choose wisely.
- Make sure you’re carrying enough supplies and propers clothing that would suffice for the whole journey.
- While the safety measures are being taken at every stop during the entire journey and the conductors would perform head counts to ensure everybody is on board, it is also a shared responsibility of the traveler to travel safe and responsibly.
- Last but not the least, do not forget to sit by the window and relish the glorious sights.
Dreaming already? Wishing that you could hop onto this train soon? Well while you get going with your plans in full swing, let us know what you feel about the Great Trans Siberian Railway in the comments below!
Frequently Asked Questions About Trans Siberian Railway
A: The route from Moscow to Vladivostok was completed and started functioning in the year of 1904. On the other hand, an entirely different Trans Siberian railroad was established in Russia in the year of 1916.
A: The train from Moscow to Beijing which is the Trans Mongolian Railway covers a total distance of about 7,621 kilometers and takes a total of 6 nights.
A: The visa grant differs for all travelers who belong to different countries. Irrespective of whichever country you’re a citizen of, you will need to get the visa for traveling to China, Russia, and Mongolia. The visa for all the three countries can be obtained from the respective embassies in each country. However, even if the travelers don’t plan on stopping at Mongolia or any other stop, they will still be expected to obtain a transit visa for traveling through the region during the journey.
A: For those who are well-versed with the Russian language can buy their tickets directly from the station. For those who plan on pre-booking their tickets, can get in touch with various agencies like that of Trans Siberian Express.
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