The Great Journey - East to West

15 days and 14 nights


Vladivostok - Ulan-Ude - Irkutsk - Novosibirsk - Yekaterinburg - Moscow

This unforgettable two-week journey from East to West passes through 6 major cities along the entire length of the Trans-Siberian railway. See the Golden Horn and Amur Bays in Vladivostok, then take the train west to Ulan-Ude with its Ivolginskiy Datsan Buddhist temple, then on to Irkutsk with nearby Lake Baikal. From there, you’ll go to the bustling city of Novosibirsk, home to the scientific hub Akademgorodok, and then to Yekaterinburg – Western Russia’s gateway to Siberia, and the site of the tragic end of the last Tsar and his family. Finally, the journey ends in Russia’s capital city, Moscow.

Day 1 Vladivostok

Vladivostok, Russia

Our representative will greet you when you arrive at the airport in Vladivostok, the “Lord of the East”. After a short trip to your hotel, your adventure begins.

Day 2

Vladivostok, Russia

Your tour of the city begins after breakfast, taking you through Vladivostok’s historic sites. See the Vladivostok Railway Station, end point of the Trans-Siberian route, as well as the unique S-56 submarine museum, located inside the submarine itself in the “Military Glory of the Pacific Navy Fleet” memorial complex. Visit the site of the city’s founding in 1860 and the Arseviev Museum, showcasing the history, culture of ecology of the Vladivostok area.

After the tour, you will be taken to the train station where the Trans-Siberian Express leaves for Ulan Ude in the evening.  

Day 3-4

Taiga, Russia

It is a two-and-a-half-day journey from Vladivostok to Ulan-Ude by rail. Fortunately, you’ll be passing the time in a comfortable cabin, watching the wild natural beauty of Siberia’s taiga and waterways roll by. Take advantage of the 20-25 minutes stops along the way to stretch your legs and restock your supplies.

Day 5 Ulan-Ude

Ulan Ude, Russia

Arriving in Ulan-Ude, our representative will meet and you and escort you to your hotel, giving you your first look at the city. A small, Buddhist republic located in Russia, Buryatia will give you a true taste of Asia. After you’ve had a chance to rest, it’s time for a brief walking tour of the city’s sights, including the History Museum of Buryatia, before ending the day with a visit to the Yurta Kochevnika for a traditional Buryat meal before returning to the hotel.

Day 6

Ulan Ude, Russia

This is a free day so please explore the city and enjoy Ulan-Ude.

Your train to Irkutsk departs in the evening.  

Day 7 Irkutsk

Baikal Lake, Russia

You will be greeted by our representative when your train arrives in Irkutsk in the morning. Then you will be taken to the world’s largest freshwater lake, the wondrous Lake Baikal, with a stop at the Taltsy Ethonographical Museum, to see preserved examples of Siberia’s classic wooden architecture.

You will take in incredible views of Lake Baikal from the observation point at “Cherskiy Peak”, then on to a hotel for an optional lunch. After this, you’ll go to the Limnological Museum, which hosts exhibits of the lake’s unique ecosystem and an aquarium with local species including the Baikal nerpa – the only species of freshwater seal in the world. Then it’s off to the St. Nicolas the Miracle-Worker Orthodox Church.

Day 8

Irkutsk, Russia

After breakfast you will travel by comfortable car or mini bus to Irkutsk where you will drop off your luggage in the luggage room of a hotel and continue on with your tour.

The next morning following breakfast our driver will pick you up in a comfortable minibus or car and take you to Irkutsk where you will drop off your luggage at your hotel. Next is a city tour of sights around the city, including the Cathedral of the Holy Sign (also known as Znamensky Cathedral). The tour then concludes with a visit to Irkutsk’s Museum of the Decembrists.

After a quick stop at the hotel to gather your luggage, it’s time to head back to the station for your train that evening.

Day 9 Novosibirsk

Novosibirsk, Russia

After almost a full day on what many consider the most beautiful section of the Trans-Siberian route, passing through Siberia’s scenic taigas and crossing many of its rivers, you will arrive at Novosibirsk, the largest train station on the Trans-Siberian route. Here you will be met by our representative and get your first look at this Russian city as they escort you to your hotel.

Day 10

Akademgorodok, Novosibirsk, Russia

After breakfast, get ready for a tour of the scientific hub of Akademgorodok. Founded as a secret research town in the Soviet era for scientists and their families, the town today remains an important educational and scientific center. You will visit the Geology Research Institute and tour the Geology Museum, and then visit the Open-Air Train Museum some 30 km outside Novosibirsk with its collection of old Russian, Soviet and other trains. Then continue on to a tour of Novosibirsk itself, visiting the Alexander Cathedral, Krasny Prospect and Lenin Square – where you can find Russia’s largest opera house. You will also see the city’s oldest section, with the historic Gorkogo Street, old Siberian wooden houses, Ob River embankment, and the small St Nicholas Chapel, which marked the geographic center of Russia.

Following this, enjoy some time on your own before the trip to the station, where the train will take you to the next stop on your adventure. Don’t hesitate to ask our representative about the best places to sample true Siberian cuisine before you go!

That evening, you’ll depart on the train to Yekaterinburg.

Day 11 Yekaterinburg

Yekaterinburg, Russia

Our representative will meet you at the station in Yekaterinburg. You should arrive about noon and will immediately be taken to your hotel.

Day 12

Yekaterinburg, Russia

Your day begins after breakfast with a city tour, which includes an exploration of the last days of the Romanovs.

This tour will introduce you to the history of the Imperial family in Yekaterinburg, including their imprisonment and tragic execution. You will visit the site where their bodies were hidden in a secret grave by the Bolsheviks, where today a Monastery dedicated to the family stands – a famous pilgrimage site for Russian Orthodox Christians.

Leaving behind the Monastery and the nearby wooden churches, next will be a tour of Yekaterinburg’s major historical sites, including the Istorichesky Skver (Historical Square) which contains the remnants of the dam and embankment from the city’s founding in 1723. You will also see a monument to Lenin, the first head of Soviet Russia, and places connected to Boris Yeltsin, the first President of Russia, who hailed from this city. Then after a trip to the hotel you will be free to explore Yekaterinburg on your own.

Day 13

train, Russia

Your train will depart in the morning, so after breakfast it’s off to the station to continue your journey.

Day 14 Moscow

Moscow, Russia

Our representative will greet you when you arrive in Moscow. As they transport you to your hotel, take the opportunity to enjoy your first glimpses of this historic city. You will then go on a city tour.

On our Panoramic City Tour, our professional guide will take you on a journey through many of Moscow’s most interesting spots. Take in the amazing view of the city from an observation point in Vorobyev Hills (“Sparrow Hills”), then get a closer look at the Stalin-era architecture of Moscow State University – one of the country’s premier schools. You’ll also see the Triumphal Arch, Victory Park, Novodevichy Convent, and Kutuzovsky Prospect.  And, of course you’ll see from the outside, Russia’s seat of power - the Kremlin and Red Square among many other highlights of the city.

Day 15

Moscow, Russia

After breakfast, you will check out of your hotel and have a transfer to the airport.  We hope that you enjoyed your Trans-Siberian railway adventure and are left with memories to last a lifetime!



Vladivostok, Russia

Vladivostok (the name means “Lord of the East”) sits on the Sea of Japan on Golden Horn Bay. The nation’s largest Pacific port, it is a major shipping and commercial fishing city and the home port of the Russian Pacific Fleet. The peninsula on which the city sits has been a possession of China, Mongolia, and others over the centuries before Russia acquired it in 1858 and built a naval outpost on the site the following year. With the completion of the Trans-Siberian Railway, linking the city with distant Moscow, the economy of Vladivostok grew rapidly, and the city was heavily contested in the Russian Civil War before being taken by the Red Army in October 1922 in what would be the war’s final battle. Today the city is a gateway for travelers heading to China, Japan and South Korea and has a number of unique sites, including the longest cable-stayed bridge in the world and an extinct volcano, called Eagle’s Nest Hill, which offers stunning views of the city.

Vladivostok Railway Station

The foundation stone for the railway station was laid in 1891 by P.E. Bazilevsky, the station’s architect, with Crown Prince Nicholas (who would later become Tsar Nicholas II) in attendance. The station opened two years later, and trains began running between Vladivostok and Ussuriysk. When Moscow’s Yaroslavsky Station was built, this station was rebuilt in a matching design to stylistically connect the end points of the Trans-Siberian Railway. After several additional changes and updates, the station was updated in the 1990’s to recapture the original, pre-Revolution style.

Arseniev Museum

The Vladimir K. Arseniev Museum of Far East History was founded in 1884 by the Society of Study of the Amur Region and was opened to the public 6 years later. Seized by the Soviet state in 1925, it was named for explorer Vladimir Arseniev in 1945. The museum holds a number of artifacts ranging from the 16th through the 19th Centuries, as well as Ice Age fossils and exhibits relating to the indigenous peoples of the r


Ulan-Ude, Russia

Capital of the autonomous Buryat Republic, Ulan-Ude sits roughly 100 km southeast of Lake Baikal on the Uda River. Originally occupied by the Evenks, followed by the Buryat Mongols who still comprise almost half the region’s population. The modern city, then called Udinsk, was founded in the 17th Century by Russian Cossacks and rapidly grew into a large trade center owing to its location between Russia, China, and Mongolia. With the completion of the Trans-Siberian Railway, this growth increased significantly, reaching over a hundred thousand by 1939 and currently sites at roughly 360,000. It was renamed to Ulan-Ude in 1934.While two-thirds of the population are ethnic Russians, there is still a strong Eastern influence, and the city has a number of temples and monuments dedicated to Tibetan Buddhism, which dominates the area.

Buryatia History Museum

This museum, founded in 1919, was the first regional natural history museum in Siberia. It holds some 100,000 items, including books, photos, religious art, and various documents. The museum’s collections cover disciplines including archaeology, ethnography, and numismatics. The religious section, especially, is impressive and includes a great deal on Buddhism.


Lake Baikal, Russia

Irkutsk began as a 17th Century gold-trading settlement which also served to collect the fur tax from the local Buryats. When the first road was constructed to Moscow in 1760, trade brought a number of luxuries and other items to the town for the first time. About 60 years later, the town was the seat of the Governor-General of East Siberia, and it later received an influx of exiled elites from St. Petersburg involved in the Decembrist revolt. As a consequence, the city developed a surprisingly rich cultural and intellectual life which continues to this day, with a large number of museums and scientific institutes.

Taltsy Ethnographic Museum

Also called Taltsy Village, this unique open-air museum covers 67 hectares near Listvyanka and showcases over 40 preserved buildings including a watermill, a 17th Century watchtower, two churches, and various farms and peasant homes. The museum also includes 8000 exhibits relating to daily life in Siberia in the 17th to 19th Centuries. Regular folk festivals are also hosted here.

Museum of the Decembrists

Located in the Volkonsky Mansion, the former home of one of the aristocratic families exiled to Irkutsk in the wake of the failed Decembrist revolt, this museum showcases the lives of the Trubetskoy and Volkonsky families and the events of their exile. Of special note is a monument to the wives of the Decembrists who left behind everything to follow their husbands into exile.

Cathedral of the Holy Sign

Known also as Znamensky Monastery, this holy site has a towering iconostasis, a sarcophagus containing holy relics, and a beautifully ornate interior. The graveyard holds the grave of Grigory Shelekhov, who claimed Alaska for Russia, as well as a number of Decembrists.


Listvyanka is a small town of wooden, Siberian-style houses on the shore of Lake Baikal. Some 70 km from Irkutsk, it has a population of fewer than 2000 people. Among its places of interest are the Taltsy Village, an open-air museum of various preserved examples of wooden buildings, and the Baikal Limnology Museum, showcasing the ecology and history of the lake. This town is also home to a handful of sacred sites, including the Church of St Nicholas, Shaman Rock, and the Obo (sacred for the Buryat people who live in the region). The town features a number of shops selling local crafts and souvenirs to visitors.


Novosibirsk, Russia

Novosibirsk was founded in 1893 at the Trans-Siberian Railway’s planned crossing point over the Ob River. The city saw explosive growth after the completion of the railroad, and rapidly became a major industrial city. It reached a population of a million people by 1962, making it at the time the youngest city in the world to meet that milestone. During the Soviet era, a secret town of scientists and researchers called Akademgorodok was founded about 30 km south of city center. Some 65000 scientists and family members lived in this hidden town in its prime. The collapse of the Soviet Union dealt a heavy blow to the town’s economy, but private investment in the 1990’s helped to rebuild it and today the town is still a major educational and research hub. With some 300 technology companies operating in the town, Akademgorodok has earned the nickname Silicon Forest.

St. Nicholas Chapel

This chapel was built in 1915 on what was considered to be the geographic center of the Russian Empire. While the original chapel was demolished in the 1930’s, it was rebuilt on the site in 1993 for the city’s 100-year anniversary.

Open-Air Train Museum

Also called the Museum for Railway Technology Novosibirsk, the museum was founded in 2000 by Nikolai Akulinin, a retired railway worker. This is the 2nd largest transportation museum in Russia, after the Central Railway Museum in St Petersburg, and includes 60 exhibits including steam, diesel, and electric locomotives. Most of the exhibits are Russian or Soviet, but some from Hungary, Czechoslovakia, and even the United States are included. Leon Trotsky’s private train car is among the collection as well.


Built originally as a secret town of research scientists and their families, Akademgorodok is today a major research and educational center in Novosibirsk. Some 40 research institutes are located here, employing as many as 100,000 people.


Yekateribnurg, Russia

Tsar Peter the Great founded this city on the dividing line between Asian and European Russia in 1723 to facilitate the exploitation of Siberia’s vast natural resources. Named for his wife, the Empress Catherine I, Yekaterinburg is now the 2nd largest city in Siberia and is still prosperous thanks to Siberia’s mineral riches. In the wake of the Russian Revolution, Tsar Nicholas II and the rest of the Romanov family were exiled here and held at Ipatiev House (where the Church on Blood now stands) before their execution.

Ganina Yama Monastery

Originally the site of the Four Brothers mine, the remains of the Imperial family were thrown into a pit and burned here in 1918 before being secretly moved and buried a few miles away. Throughout Soviet rule, people still clandestinely came to pay their respects to Tsar’s family and in 1991 a memorial cross was set on this spot. The monastery was constructed in 2000, and now includes seven churches.

Church of All Saints

This church, known also as the Church on Blood in Honor of All Saints Resplendent in the Russian Land, was built on the former site of Ipatiev House, where the Romanovs were held after being exiled to Yekaterinburg after the Russian Revolution, and where they were later executed. A memorial at the church includes sculptures representing the family’s final walk to execution and a memorial alter on the murder site itself, as well as an exhibit dedicated to the final days of the Imperial family.


Moscow, Russia

With the largest urban area in Europe (as well as being the most populous city in Europe), Moscow is one ofthe largest cities in the world. The capital of Russia, as well as its cultural, political, scientific, and economic center, Moscow’s history extends back to medieval times. Moscow was a minor border town in its earliest history but was elevated in the 12th Century to the Grand Duchy of Moscow under the rulership of Prince Daniel. This Grand Duchy would continue to gain in power and influence after this, ultimately absorbing neighboring principalities over the following centuries, such as the Grand Duchy of Tver and the Novgorod Republic. Ultimately Ivan III extended the city’s territory to encompass all of the Rus’ territory, taking for himself the title of Tsar (though officially his son, known as Ivan the Terrible, was the first actual Tsar of Russia). Moscow has seen numerous wars through its history, from the Mongols to the Nazis, and has been under siege numerous times. Today a flourishing city, Moscow has an impressive metro system to facilitate visitors touring the city.

Moscow has numerous points of cultural and historical interest, notably Red Square and the Kremlin, but also St Basil’s Cathedral, over a hundred parks and gardens, the Bolshoi Theatre, Tretyakov Gallery, and the Moscow State Circus. Key architectural points include the Ostankino Tower and the Seven Sisters, a group of skyscrapers during the Stalinist period.

Prices and Terms

Low Season Nov 1st - Apr 30th
1st class
  1 $7584
  2 $5086
  3 - 4 $4769
  5 - 6 $4430
single supplement $644
2nd class
  1 $6567
  2 $4069
  3 - 4 $3752
  5 - 6 $3413
single supplement $644
High Season May 1st - Oct 30th
1st class
  1 $8105
  2 $5607
  3 - 4 $5290
  5 - 6 $4951
single supplement $644
2nd class
  1 $6857
  2 $4359
  3 - 4 $4042
  5 - 6 $3703
single supplement $644

Prices are per person based on double occupancy in a specific hotel. If you travel in a group but decide to stay in a single room, please add the single supplement to the price. We offer discounts for groups of 7 or more. To inquire about group rates, please contact us.

Please note:

Train fares and schedules are subject to change without notice and the program may be slightly changed in this event. However, this will not influence the quality of the services and we will do our best to make your trip unforgettable!

Regular trains are used for these tours. On these trains, there is no WC your individual cabins and no shower on board. A different train is used for each leg of your journey. There is no guide accompanying you during your time on the train. A new guide will meet you by the train on arrival in each city and they will  accompany you back to the train station on the last day in that particular city.

Every effort will be made to adhere to tour pricing, however, currency fluctuation is beyond our control and may affect final costs.

Prices include:

  • Transfers airport to hotel / hotel to airport or train station to hotel / hotel to train station;
  • Train tickets 1st (2-berth compartment*) or 2nd class (4-berth compartment);**
  • Russian visa invitation (single entry).
  • Bilingual guide for all programs (Russian/English);
  • Accommodation in 3 star hotesl, DBL, B&B;
  • Excursions according to programs;
  • Entrance tickets to museums.;
  • Free visa invitation - the document necessary for obtaining a Russian visa when applying for one at the local Russian Consulate in your country. PLEASE NOTE: your passport should be valid for no less than 6 months after the planned departure from Russia and it should have at least 2 blank pages. The process of applying for a visa may take a long time and we recommend that you start the process 3 months before your trip. In case you are booking the trip last minute, we recommend that you check with the Russian Consulate in your country to determine if you have enough time for the visa application process. In case you have to cancel your trip because of visa issues, our standard cancellation policy will be applied.

Single compartment in the train is available on request

Not included:

  • Meals and snacks not listed in the program or listed as “optional”;
  • Visa fees levied by the Russian, Mongolian and/or Chinese Embassies. For US, UK and Canadian citizens, our company offers Full Visa Support. With Full Visa Support, you send your passport and other documentation to us or our visa agent and we obtain the Russian visa for you.
  • International airfare. Our Russian tours are offered as land only.  Please arrange your own airfare and we will meet you at the airport and handle everything else on the ground in Russia.
  • Fee for oversized and overweight luggage;
  • Travel insurance. We highly recommend to purchase travel insurance before embarking on your trip to Russia. It’s always good to have extra protection while traveling far from home. Click here to learn more.
  • Tips.

Payment policy:

To book a tour, a 30% deposit is required at the time of booking. The trip must be fully paid 61 days before departure.

Cancellation policy:

  • 61 or more days before departure - a fee equal to 15% of the entire package will be charged.
  • 60-15 days before departure - a fee equal to 30% of the entire package will be charged.
  • 14 days or less before departure or no-show - a fee equal to 100% of the package will be charged.
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