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Winter Magic

Overview

Experience the wintertime magic of Siberia on an unforgettable railroad journey from Moscow to Mongolia. A fairy tale of snow and ice awaits you.

DATES

22/02/19-06/03/19 (13 days)

Day 1. Moscow by Night
Welcome to Moscow, one of the most vivid, dynamic and richly-historic cities on Earth. After dinner, experience the opulence and color of Moscow at night on a guided walk that includes the almost dream-like Red Square. Relax after your urban adventure in your central and comfortable hotel. Overnight: Hotel Azimut Olympiski (or similar). (D)

Day 2. Moscow by Day
Wake up to morning in cosmopolitan Moscow. Visit the otherworldly Kremlin grounds and see the surreal and candy-cane Orthodox masterpieces of St. Basil’s Cathedral. Visit the lovingly-reconstructed Cathedral of Christ the Savior, pass by the notorious former KGB headquarters, and behold the imposing architecture of the Soviet-era White House and Lomonosov University, before bidding farewell to this bold city. Towards evening, your train departs for Siberia. Overnight on board. (BLD)

Day 3. Ural Mountains
In the morning, pass through the Russian heartland and cross the mighty Volga River. Then make the steady climb towards the Ural Mountains. As your train whisks you through the wintry landscape, enjoy enlightening talks on the history of the Tartars, Cossacks, Russians and winter life in Siberia. Overnight on board. (BLD)

Day 4. Yekaterinburg
Yekaterinburg is the capital of the ancient Ural Mountain region. Its position on the Asian-European border makes for a city of fascinating influences and combined cultures. You visit the painstakingly-preserved city center and fairytale-like Church on Blood, which commemorates the site where the Romanovs, Russia’s last Tsar dynasty, were shot by revolutionists. From here your train leaves Europe into Asia. Overnight on board. (BLD)

Day 5. Siberia
A day of fantastically frosted views enjoyed from the comfort of your train. Snow-capped mountains and birch forests sparkle in the sunlight. Icy rivers crash along jagged rocky banks. Huge, imposing skies, shift in rhythm with the clack of the tracks. Winter has come alive. Entertaining presentations on local customs and culture double as social get-togethers between new friends, complete with Russian canapés, hospitality and, of course, a vodka tasting. Overnight on board. (BLD)

Day 6. Krasnoyarsk
Is this most beautiful city in Siberia? The writer Anton Chekhov thought so. Krasnoyarsk’s certainly wears winter well, with snow dusting its streets and blue-gold hues coloring the cityscape. See all the sights on a short tour and take in the stunning vista across the Yenisei River. Back on board, your Trans-Siberian tour continues on to Irkutsk. Overnight on board. (BLD)

Day 7. Lake Baikal
You’ve arrived in Irkutsk, one of Siberia’s largest cities. Travel light and leave your main luggage securely stowed in your train on the transfer to your hotel, located in the village of Listvyanka on Lake Baikal. After you’ve settled in, take a peek at the frozen shoreline of this remarkable body of water and visit the local open-air museum. Then relax by visiting a banja, a traditional Russian sauna. Overnight: Hotel Mayak (or similar). (BLD)

Day 8. Lake Baikal
A day dedicated entirely to enjoying blissful Lake Baikal, the oldest and deepest freshwater lake in the world. Surrounded by snowy mountains, the clear, deep, aquamarine and blue waters glitter in the winter sun. The lake’s frozen sections are like perfect glass, imbuing a near-total stillness. Ride in a horse-drawn troika sleigh before switching to a motorized sled that takes you across the lake’s icy surface. Climb higher by cable car (seasonal opening conditions allowing), arriving at a spot with spectacular views of the chilly waters below. This vantage point is known for blustery and bitter cold temperatures—so bundle up for what might be the deepest chill you have ever experienced! After a warming meal with a local family, learn about the lake’s unique ecosystem at a nearby museum. After an unforgettable day, return to Irkutsk, where you spend the night at your centrally-located hotel. Overnight: Hotel Irkutsk (or similar). (BLD)

Day 9. Irkutsk
Popular and historic Irkutsk is one of Siberia’s largest cities. Explore its walkable core, tour the city’s colorful market, theater, and two-manor site of the Irkutsk local history museum. Back on board, your train powers on towards Mongolia. Overnight on board. (BLD)

Day 10. Farewell Russia
Today, you wind along the picturesque valley of the Selenga River. As your time in Russia comes to a close, relax on board and enjoy entertaining talks on winter travels during the tsarist era and the Mongol invasions. Overnight on board. (BLD)

Day 11. Ulan Bator
It’s morning and the vibrant Mongolian capital, Ulan Bator, awaits. Here your train adventure ends, but your voyage is far from over. Should you wish, spend the night in a traditional yurt tent in the pristine winter wilderness—truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Or opt to stay in a hotel in the city, where you enjoy evening performances of captivating traditional Mongolian music and dance (optional). Overnight: Hotel Bayangol (or similar) in Ulan Bator. Upon request: Sleep in a yurt in the Mongolian Alps. (BLD)

Day 12. Ulan Bator
Today, you visit the painstakingly restored Buddhist Gandan Monastery and the jewel-like Choijin Lama Temple. An afternoon excursion takes you to a family of cattle herders just outside of the city. Learn how they and their animals spend the Mongolian winter. Overnight: Hotel Bayangol (or similar). (BLD)

Day 13. Farewell Mongolia
Enjoy a final breakfast with your fellow winter travelers before transferring to the airport for your flight home. What a magical journey through snow and ice it’s been!

(B)

(B) = Breakfast, (L) = Lunch, (D) = Dinner

Riding the Trans-Siberian Railroad is an amazing adventure any time of the year. But winter brings out the true soul of the Russian taiga. See the crisp sun shine upon a frozen Lake Baikal. Take a traditional troika sleigh ride through a frosty landscape. Enjoy the warm hospitality of a nomad camp amidst a landscape of pristine wilderness. Explore Russia and Mongolia during the colder season from your snug, Trans-Siberian train. Hop aboard for a snowy voyage that is captivating, convenient and secure. It’s the winter experience of a lifetime!

Rates include

  • Seven nights aboard a special car on the Trans-Siberian Railroad in the category booked.
  • One night in a top-range hotel in Moscow.
  • One night in a hotel in Listvyanka.
  • One night in a mid-range hotel in Irkutsk.
  • Two nights in a mid-range hotel in Ulan Bator.
  • An experienced tour manager for the entire journey from Moscow to Ulan Bator.
  • All meals as specified in the itinerary including vodka tasting.
  • All transfers and bus tours as per itinerary.
  • Porter service at all stations.
  • Fascinating talks aboard your train, related to life in Siberia during the winter.

Highlights of the journey

  • Soaking up the incomparable wintertime atmosphere at Lake Baikal. A snow globe-scene come to life.
  • Traveling by train through the Siberian countryside as fairytale villages pass by.
  • Sleeping in a yurt in the pristine Mongolian wilderness (upon request).
  • The cities of Moscow, Yekaterinburg, Krasnoyarsk, Irkutsk and Ulan Bator.
  • See world famous Red Square and the Kremlin grounds.
  • Ride a cable car to a panoramic viewing point above Lake Baikal (seasonal opening conditions allowing).
  • Ride on Lake Baikal’s ice in a motorized sled.
  • Authentic Russian banja saunas.
  • The Choijin Lama Temple and the Gandan Monastery in Ulan Bator.

DATES for 2019

(13 days/12 nights)

Depart 22nd February 2019 – Arrive 06th March 2019

 

RATES (per person)

Twin Share

Single Supplement

Category I: Standard US$4200pp US$1130
Category II: Classic US$5990pp US$1900
Category II: Superior US$6440pp US$2240
Category III: Nostalgic US$8130pp US$4060
Category IV: Bolshoi US$10520pp US$5210
Category V: Bolshoi Platinum US$12880pp US$7040