We are halfway through our trip and I thought it might be helpful to give you an update on the trip and in particular the details on the “SuperiorPlus” carriage- cabins, which may be helpful for future clients. In a nutshell everything has not only met our expectations but exceeded them.
A few points. Firstly the Chinese train was fine for the short journey to Erlian on the Mongolian border – as single travellers we had our own cabin – well equipped with towels/water/ comfortable bed . The Tsars Gold train of course is far better furnished and of a higher quality and standard, as expected for such a long journey. Every individual cabin has 2 Power points. – so no problem with recharging phones/ laptops etc. The cabin also has towels/ and a bathrobe. The shower room is large and well equipped with shampoo/hairdryer etc and the shower itself is great – plenty of hot water! There is a schedule posted outside the shower room so we write down the time we want for showers – 15 minutes which is more than adequate. There is also a washroom at the other end of the carriage available for our use to do hand washing etc. There are 2 toilets at either end of the carriage which are kept very clean – similar to vacuum toilets in planes. Given that there are only 13 of us in the group the amenities are always available, clean and we are more than happy with the shared arrangements.
All the clients are very considerate of fellow passengers. Every carriage has a conductor available 24/7 to assist in any way and also will make tea/ coffee etc at any time. Superior Plus clients eat in the Dining car with the Bolshoi clients. There is also a bar in an adjoining carriage available most of the time we are in the train. ( The wines are reasonably priced and mostly good quality) The breakfasts are great! We have a choice of porridge or a buffet table withe cereal/juices, cold meats/ cheese/ fresh breakfast rolls etc. Also on offer is a cooked breakfast -hot coffee and tea. Lunch and dinner is usually 3 courses ( not too large) but more than adequate.
All the staff are very friendly and helpful. Each town we stop in there are local guides who travel with us and give us background on the particular country/area/ history etc. they are all very well informed and friendly. We usually leave a small tip for local guide and the bus driver when we say good bye. The detailed program for each day is posted on the wall of the carriage and our tour guide also runs through final schedule details the night before. As Superior Plus clients we are assigned to the “Silver” Group – we stay and travel with this group throughout the journey- which is great because there are no more than 13 in our group and we always are transported in a small bus. All our meals are given to us in separate rooms in restaurants – as is the case with the Bolshoi group. Of course we do meet other travellers but generally stay within our group, so, notwithstanding the fact that there are a total of approximately 120 total travellers, you feel like it is small group travel.
I do hope this information may be helpful Simon – my sister and I have been very impressed with the organisation of the journey on the Trans Siberian. Regards Helen
We would like to thank you, Simon and the crew for your attention to detail. Arranging our transfer from the Hotel to our train in Moscow and St Petersburg was really fabulous. The train trips between Moscow and St Petersburg, and St Petersburg and Helsinki were excellent.
We loved Mongolia. It was such a special place. We definitely want to travel again!