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  • *
    Naadam Festival
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    The Trans-Siberian Railway
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    Beijing’s Imperial City
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    The Great Wall
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    Nomadic tents
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Pace 2
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Trans-Siberian Railway and the Naadam Festival

Trans-Siberian Railway and the Naadam Festival

  • A group of people Small Group 18 or less
  • A train Discover by rail

Embark on a real adventure

Experience a real sense of achievement as you embark on a once-in-a-lifetime journey aboard the world’s longest railway which has captured the imagination of travellers since it was founded over a hundred years ago. Bond with new found friends on this small group tour travelling aboard local trains for an authentic Trans-Siberian Railway experience interspersed with comfortable hotel stays. As you travel across two continents from Moscow to Beijing, crossing the Siberian hinterland and Gobi Desert en route, witness life in remote communities, and even stay in a traditional Mongolian ger!


14 nights in hotels and nights aboard train

35 meals: 16 breakfasts, 6 lunches and 13 dinners

Excursions and visits

  • Moscow city tour
  • Tretyakov Gallery visit
  • Moscow’s Metro station tour
  • Kazan city tour
  • Assumption Cathedral and Monastery of Sviyahsk
  • Ekaterinburg city tour
  • Lake Baikal museum visits
  • Attend the opening ceremony of the Naadam Festival
  • See the Naadam Festival’s horse racing at Khui Doloon Khudag
  • Ulaan Baatar monastery visit
  • Overnight stay in a traditional Mongolian ger
  • Beijing highlights tour
  • Visit to the Great Wall of China

Use of audio headsets on guided tours

View Full Itinerary

Day 1 UK-Moscow

Moscow at sunrise

Fly to Moscow and transfer to a locally rated 4-star hotel, for a two-night stay in the capital of Russia. D

Day 2 Moscow

St Basil's Cathedral in Red Square

Explore Russia’s captivating capital on a tour visiting its most iconic sights, including the Kremlin and Armoury Museum, Red Square and Zaryadye Park. Round off your day with either a performance of Russian National dance, or an opera or ballet at the Bolshoi Theatre. B

Day 3 Moscow

The mosaic ceiling of one of Moscow's impressive metro stations

Be amazed by the vast collection of Russian fine art on display at the Tretyakov Gallery and head underground on a tour of the opulent Metro stations, known as Stalin’s ‘People Palaces’. This evening, look forward to beginning your Trans-Siberian adventure as you board the first train. B

Day 4 Kazan

The Kremlin in Kazan

Arrive in Kazan, scene of the 16th-century siege by Ivan the Terrible which led to the fall of the Khanate of Kazan. This morning, tour the city and its main highlight, the Kremlin, which contains both a mosque and an Orthodox cathedral. Stay overnight at a locally rated 4-star hotel. B, D

Day 5 Kazan-Ekaterinburg

The Ural Mountains

Today, look forward to a visit to the Assumption Cathedral and Monastery of the town-island of Sviyazhsk. This monastery complex and UNESCO World Heritage Site offers a fascinating insight into Ivan the Terrible’s tactical plans to extend the Moscow state, from the island’s strategic location. It was the ideal place to build an outpost from which to conquer the Kazan Khanate. Founded in 1551 it would serve as the missionary and administrative centre of the conquered region. The highlight is the 16th-century cathedral, inside which you can view some of the Eastern Orthodox church’s finest murals. This evening, board your second train for an overnight journey to Ekaterinburg, centre of the Ural Mountains, the natural border between Europe and Asia. B

Day 6 Ekaterinburg

Ekaterinburg, Russia

After your early afternoon arrival, enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before the rest of your day is at leisure. Stay two nights at a locally rated 4-star hotel. L, D

Day 7 Ekaterinburg

Today you can look forward to touring the city’s historic sights. Ekaterinburg will forever be linked to the tsars as it was founded by Peter the Great in 1723 and was the assassination site of last Russian Tzar, Nicolas II. You’ll also visit Ganina Yama, the location where their bodies were initially concealed, as well as see the Europe Asia monument which marks the border between the two continents. You will also visit the golden-domed All Saints church which was consecrated in 2003. It was built on the former site of Ipatiev House, the final holding place of the Romanov family and where the tsar dynasty ended. B

Day 8 Ekaterinburg-Irkutsk

All Saints church in Ekaterinburg

Stock up on provisions during a morning at leisure, as you embark on your longest journey on the rails this afternoon, across the expansive Siberian taiga, a vast area of sparse forest. D

Day 9 Irtutsk

Your train journey continues today. B

Day 10 Irkutsk

Impressive buildings in Irkutsk

The train reaches the charming city of Irkutsk in eastern Siberia this evening. Founded as a winter outpost for traders in the 17th century, it became a hub for exiled Decembrist revolutionaries in the 19th century and has a wealth of beautiful churches and buildings set beside the Angara River. Stay two nights at a locally rated 4-star hotel. D

Day 11 Lake Baikal

Lake Baikal

Enjoy a tour of the world’s oldest and deepest freshwater lakes. Known as the ‘Galapagos of Russia’, the lake’s age and isolation have placed it on the UNESCO World Heritage List thanks to its unusual fauna and flora. Also visit the Wooden Architecture and lake museums and enjoy a brief city tour. B, L, D

Lake Baikal Irkutsk Oblast Russia Europe

Day 12 Lake Baikal-Ulaan Baatar

Lake Baikal

Board your train early today and enjoy travelling along the southern edge of Lake Baikal. A picnic box will be provided for breakfast. When you cross the border with Mongolia, the train will be inspected by Russian and Mongolian officials either side, which can take two or more hours with no toilet or dining car facilities available. B

Day 13 Ulaan Baatar – Naadam Festival

Archery at the Naadam Festival, Mongolia

Wake up in the capital of Mongolia, a metropolis with a blend of Soviet-era buildings and gleaming Chinese skyscrapers. Check in to your locally-rated 4-star hotel before continuing to the National Stadium for the opening ceremony of the Naadam Festival, an annual, nationwide festival featuring horse racing, archery and wrestling, plus Mongolian music, singing and dancing. Due to its significance in terms of ‘cultural diversity and creative expression’ Naadam has also been placed on the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage List. B, L, D

Day 14 Ulaan Baatar – Naadam Festival

Naadam Festival horse race

One of the highlights of Naadam is the horse racing and today you can look forward to travelling outside the city to watch the thrilling event at Khui Doloon Khudag. Mongolian horses have remained relatively unaltered since the time of Ghengis Khan. Small and renowned for their stamina, these sturdy horses are ridden by ‘jockeys’ generally aged between 5 and 13. B, D

Day 15 Ulaan Baatar and Terelj National Park

Terelj National Park

After breakfast visit the Tibetan-style Buddhist Gandan monastery to hear the monks chanting. Continue to Terelj National Park to meet a local nomadic family and visit a meditation centre, before an exciting overnight stay in a traditional Mongolian tent at the Alungoo Ger Camp. You’ll also be served a home-cooked Mongolian dinner. B, L, D

Day 16 Ulaan Baatar

Ulaan Baatar, Mongolia

Peer up at the impressive 40-metre high statue of Genghis Khan on the bank of the Tuul river where legend holds that the conqueror found a golden whip. Clad in 250-tonnes of stainless steel, this massive icon dominates the horizon. It’s set atop a 10-metre tall pedestal which houses a museum and a lift that goes up inside the belly of the beast and from where a tunnel will lead you to a viewpoint atop the horse’s head for outstanding views across the countryside. You can also look forward to a city tour of Ulaan Baatar revealing some of its highlights and also a cultural performance. Stay overnight at a locally rated 4-star hotel. B, D

Day 17 Ulaan Baatar-Beijing

Beijing, China

Transfer to the airport this morning for your flight to Beijing, China’s dynamic capital, where you’ll stay for the next three nights at a locally rated 4-star hotel. B, D

Day 18 Beijing

The Forbidden City

A full-day city tour will reveal Beijing’s main sights, including Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City. Lunch will be at a local restaurant. B, L, D

Day 19 The Great Wall of China

The Great Wall of China

Take a close up look at one of the world’s wonders, the Great Wall of China, which was originally built in 210BC to fend off nomadic invaders. The current wall dates from the Ming Dynasty when Beijing became the capital and is estimated to be 8,850 kilometres long. Enjoy a taste of China during lunch and dinner at local restaurants. B, L, D

The Great Wall of China China Asia

Day 20 Beijing-UK

Fly back to the UK. B

Travelling on the Trans-Siberian Railway is an immensely rewarding experience, especially for those of an intrepid and adventurous nature. If you are in any doubt about your suitability for this tour, please call and talk to our Travel Consultants.

Trans-Siberian Railway and the Naadam Festival