Trip SummarySee full itinerary
Come along on an awe-inspiring adventure traversing three great nations - Russia, Mongolia and China. From the opulence of Moscow and St Petersburg to the grace of imperial Beijing, travel along the most famous railway in the world through the heartland of Siberia and the vast grassy steppe of Mongolia - this trip showcases rail travel at its finest.
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The country we know today as China actually derives from a long line of smaller civilisations dating back six millennia. China’s influence on modern life is nothing short of remarkable having given the world a huge array of inventions such as paper, the compass, gunpowder and even pasta. The country is steeped in traditions and ancient practices and it is all just waiting to be rediscovered by you.
China’s rapid development over the last 20 years has helped transform it into a global economic super power, but its historic roots are here to stay. You only have to visit one of the many temples, the Great Wall or the Terracotta Army to see that!
Days 1-3 St Petersburg
Begin this Trans-Mongolian odyssey in St Petersburg, the shining star of modern Russia. After a boat tour along the city's canals and waterways, pick up some basic Russian in a language class. The illustrious Hermitage Museum is a great place to visit for its collection of artistic treasures, or maybe just wander about, admiring the Baroque architecture and European atmosphere of the city.
Day 4 Suzdal
Experience how Suzdal, part of Russia's Golden Ring of ancient capitals, holds a millennium's worth of Russian history. Venture down rustic lanes and be enchanted by medieval monasteries and cathedrals while on a walking tour. Relax by the riverside with a glass of medovukha, a local tipple made from honey.
Days 5-6 Moscow
Travel to the enigmatic city of Moscow, a mixture of Orthodox churches, communist relics and brash capitalism. Visit Lenin's Mausoleum and the Armoury Museum in the Kremlin, then meander through Red Square, and perhaps peek inside the iconic St Basil's Cathedral.
Day 7 Moscow/Trans-Siberian Railway
Take a last wander around the city, or stock up on supplies, before descending into Moscow's magnificent metro and heading to Yaroslavsky Station. From here begins the epic journey that is the Trans-Siberian Railway.
Days 8-10 Trans-Siberian Railway
Ride the famous Trans-Siberian Railway travels deep into the Siberian taiga - the perfect opportunity to chill out, sip tea with the locals and watch the scenery pass by. Enjoy stops along the way, which include the chance to stock up on dumplings at platform stalls.
Days 11-12 Lake Baikal
Head to the world's largest freshwater lake, Baikal. Experience a homestay on Baikal's tranquil banks for a firsthand experience of life in remote, provincial Russia. While here, why not get steamy in a traditional Russian sauna.
Days 13-14 Irkutsk/Trans-Mongolian Railway
Wander the streets of Irkutsk and see both traditional Siberian buildings and stark communist-era architecture. Delve into romantic local history at the Volkonsky House Museum - the former home of the 'Princess of Siberia', Maria Volkonsky. Depart the land of Lenin and venture into the grasslands of Ghengis Khan on the Trans-Siberian Railway.
Days 15-18 Ulaanbaatar/Ger Camp
Learn about Mongolia's turbulent history at some of Ulaanbaatar's fine museums, monasteries and palaces. Spend an unforgettable night in a nomadic ger camp in the magnificent Gorkhi-Terelj National Park. There's the chance to don an apron and help to prepare a classic meal of buuz – Mongolian dumplings - before returning to Ulaanbaatar to stock up on supplies for the rail journey to Beijing.
Days 19-21 Beijing
Revel in Beijing's wealth of historical sights and cultural attractions. Stand atop the Great Wall and marvel at the might of the Middle Kingdom before heading back to the hustle and bustle of Beijing city for a final spot of sightseeing. While here, a delicious meal of Peking duck is an absolute must.
To get a detailed PDF of information for this trip including full itinerary, country guides and travel advice on visas, money, insurance and the local weather, download our trip notes. By doing so you’ll also be kept updated on all the latest news, offers and stories on this particular trip. Happy reading!
Minimum age 18 years old.
Hotel (9 nts), Overnight sleeper train (8 nts), Guesthouse (2 nts), Ger (1 nt)
Bus, Boat, Ferry, Minibus, Train, Metro, Overnight sleeper train
Maximum of 12 travellers per group
Allow USD $600 for meals not included.
Our Real Gap Tours are guided tours that are run through our (other) favourite travel companies. Typically, most of your travel will be on a bus/coach and you will stop off at a number of different destinations in your chosen country. We won’t be able to offer you a buddy list for these trips as people will book through different companies.
Throughout your programmes you will have the support and guidance of the programme co-ordinator and team. You will be provided with competent assistance and help with any questions or advice you may need during your stay.
You will be assigned a personal travel adviser who will co-ordinate your programme with you. Feel free to contact them at any time before you go, or when you are on your travels.
In addition, you will have access to a 24 hour emergency contact number so you can contact one of our staff at any time should you need to.