Nowadays it is the capital of the Selenge Province (aimak) with a total population of 20 thousand. It’s an agency that sends you all the right forms, collects your passport and delivers your passport with the visas included in it back, right to your doorstep. Can you imagine? Read my FAQ about the Trans Mongolian Express. In order for you to stay in Russia, you need an invitation from the hotel you’re staying at. This is a picturesque area with valleys surrounded by mountains. Although it did burn a huge hole in my travel savings, I think the money spent was worth every single dime. You can cross the TMR off of your bucket list and have a trainload of memories that will last for a lifetime. From Ulan-Ude the tracks go south towards Mongolia, crossing the great Gobi Desert and finally ending up in Beijing. Join our own Russian Travel, Culture and Literature Club on Facebook. At the station, the wheels of the train are changed to fit the Chinese tracks. Other important stops are Sükhbaatar, Darkhan, Choir, and Zamyn-Üüd/Erenhot (border crossing and gauge-changing station). More birch trees roll past as you start to settle into the rhythm of train life. Please do not take any photos at this stop, if you are caught, your film and possibly camera will be confiscated. The stop is only 2 minutes. The route of the TMR passes through some major Russian cities. To opt out of non-essential cookies, please click here. My main reason to travel the Trans Mongolian Railway was that I wanted to travel to Nepal overland and traveling towards Beijing was the logical choice. Make sure to pack enough healthy snacks from home. This is the festival of the year where the men of Mongolia show off their skills in wrestling, archery and horse riding. A Trans–Mongolian train passing through the Gobi Desert, Wheels rolling below an elevated carriage during the wheel changing from Mongolian to Chinese gauge, Changing the wheels from Mongolian to Chinese gauge at the border, Planned students number is 50, and in main University of Railway Engineering in, Irkutsk State University of Railway Engineering, "Mongolia gives green light for new line to Russia", Mongolian Railway company - official site, Mongolian Incoming Railway Tour Operator since 1997!- official site, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Trans–Mongolian_Railway&oldid=978635685, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 16 September 2020, at 03:07. The train makes only a short stop here. The third primary route is the Trans-Mongolian Railway, which coincides with the Trans-Siberian as far as Ulan-Ude on Lake Baikal's eastern shore. The trains run in both directions and they follow exactly the same Moscow - Ulan Bator route. I’m Naomi. I’ve traveled in early September and I thought it was perfect because nature was amazing and it was not too cold in Mongolia. You will travel 4,735 miles or 7,621 km from Moscow to Beijing. But the way the routes cross Siberia and arrive at their final destination are different. Your health is your most valuable possession and you need to look after it carefully. The Trans–Mongolian Railway follows an ancient tea-caravan route from China to Russia and connects Ulan-Ude, on the Trans–Baikal (Trans–Siberian) railway in Russia, with the Chinese city of Jining, by way of Ulaanbaatar in Mongolia. Ulan-Ude, founded in 1666, is the capital of the Buryat Autonomous Republic, which in the 13th - 17th centuries was part of the vast Mongolian Empire. The distance between Ulan-Ude and the Russian-Mongolian border is 250 km. Of course, you can make the 6 night stretch from Moscow to Beijing in 1 long haul. Next up: Staying Home. The best view is around the 284 km mark. Ok, so you’ve made up your mind. If you do want to travel the Trans Mongolian Railway in summer, book ahead in time to ensure your seat on the train. If you will leave the train, please take warm clothes. The air is full of coal fumes and coal dust so watch out. During the journey you’ll cross the border from Russia (Naushki) into Mongolia (Sukhbaatar) at night. Crossing three vast countries, each as fascinating as the next, the train trundles through the seemingly endless birch forests of Russia, skirting impressive Lake Baikal and the wilds of the Siberian taiga, into an entirely different world of steppes dotted with gers (traditional yurts) and the stark Gobi Desert in Mongolia, before nature makes way for the urban landscape and skyscrapers of Beijing. There you have it. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Nowadays it is the capital of the Selenge Province (aimak) with a total population of 20 thousand. The Chojr station looks like a cake and has a statue of VVT Ertvuntz, the first Mongolian cosmonaut. I used a local booking office that doesn’t exists anymore today. Mainly because of the lower price, it also was a great way to meet fellow travelers and I shared my berth with 2 lovely Navy Seal ladies who were traveling home from Ukraine and shared all their lovely food and snacks with me. If you have the top bed, you will sit during the day on somebody else’s bed and you need to climb up and down. I only planned 1 day in St. Petersburg, but here’s an idea on what to do in St. Petersburg in 1 day? I do think there is something romantically nostalgic about traveling all the way to Vladivostok or visiting Harbin in the winter, I’m happy I chose the Trans-Mongolian Express because the journey was amazing and I had such a humble time in Mongolia. The train travels along the Selenga River and makes a short stop in Selendum village. Your email address will not be published. The Chojr station looks like a cake and has a statue of VVT Ertvuntz, the first Mongolian cosmonaut. The weekly Trans-Mongolian train (train 4 eastbound, train 3 westbound) leaves Moscow for Beijing every Tuesday night. I agree. I soon gave up because I found it quite complicated. To opt out of non-essential cookies, please click here. While state owned, there are plans to sell 51% of the shares to investors to finance the enlarged network. We offer train tickets for two Trans-Mongolian trains. learn more, We use cookies to improve your experience on our Website, and to facilitate providing you with services available through our Website. There are some scary stories about Russian officials and border crossings on the Trans-Mongolian, but generally it should be quite straightforward with professional and efficient staff. Taking the train is an excellent choice for starting your backpacking adventures. The final day brings a well-deserved change of scenery – just as you start to get a bit delirious from endless rows of the spindly trees, you’ll be twisting your neck from left to right to see mountains on one side of the train and the glistening Lake Baikal on the other. I will tell you the general price, but please investigate thoroughly when you want to buy your own tickets to travel the Trans Mongolian Railroad. It departs from Yaroslavsky train station in Moscow and arrives 5 days later at Beijing Central station. When you plan on backpacking further into China or the rest of Asia, it’s easier to apply for these visas at home, because you can only apply for them, 3 months in advance. The railway between Ulan-Ude and the border with Mongolia was built in 1940. It’s a great place for hiking and trekking or you can just stop here if you want to break the long train journey. For Russia, Mongolia, and China, you’ll need: Hepatitis A and Typhoid, but you might want to consider Hepatitis B. It touches the rim of the biggest freshwater lake in the world (Lake Baikal that is) and crosses straight through Mongolia, into the green plains of China until it reaches its final destination 7 days later in Beijing. The train station has many traders that can change money for you but using a bad exchange rate so watch out! Read my 9 things to experience in Mongolia to learn more. The Mongolian visa is valid for 30 days and you can stay for 90 days with the Chinese visa. Before that the only railways in Mongolia had been a 43 km (27 mi) line (opened in 1938) connecting the coal mines at Nalaikh to the capital and a Soviet-built 236 km (147 mi) freight-only branch (completed in 1939) from Borzya on the Trans-Siberian Railway to Bayantümen, Dornod near Choibalsan in north-eastern Mongolia. Here are the main 3 routes: The Trans-Siberian Railway is the oldest route and the main name people refer to when traveling by train from Russia. The stop is 1-5 minutes. The train goes along the western shore of Gusinoe Ozero (lots of geese used to live here). Are you still with me? The stop is from 1-3 hours depending on which train. The train goes along the western shore of Gusinoe Ozero (lots of geese used to live here). The route is not just called TransMongolian Railway because the train is crossing Mongolia, it’s also called this way because you just have to stop in Mongolia. Get more travel inspiration, tips and exclusive offers sent straight to your inbox with our weekly newsletter. You will travel 4,735 miles or 7,621 km from Moscow to Beijing. The town was an airbase during the Soviet period. Read more: Life and Death experiences in Mongolia. The town was built in 1940 on the banks of the Selenga and Orkhnon rivers. You can travel the Trans Mongolian Railway with children or with your grandparents. Click the link to skip right ahead to the visa section below. If you’re more of a nature enthusiast, the stop at Irkutsk and Lake Baikal is a must. It doesn’t really matter which class you book in terms of the facilities. He or she will keep an eye out for the people traveling, vacuums the corridor and is in charge of the samovar, the kettle with hot water for your soup and tea. For this stretch, you can add 7,621 km (4,735 miles) to your travel journal. Here you will have to show your customs declaration and immigration forms. The Trans-Mongolian Line was built from 1940 to 1956 between Ulan-Ude at Lake Baikal’s eastern shore and the Chinese capital Beijing. You can get off the train in Irkutsk and book a stay anywhere along the shores of Lake Baikal. Have you dropped your toothbrush on the toilet floor as I did? One of the main attractions is a group of Buddhist cave temples – Yungang Grottoes. I agree. Above mentioned 3 options for booking the TMR, are mainly different because of the amount of service offered but therefor also what the Trans Mongolian Railway cost will be. More trains: Thalys Train from Amsterdam to Paris. This is the Mongolian border with China and is decorated with lights. First phase of the construction will be a Dalanzadgad–Tavantolgoi–Tsagaansuvarga–Zuunbayan–Sainshand–Baruun Urt–Khoot–Choibalsan alignment about 1100 km long in Russian gauge.[5]. By continuing to use our Website, you accept our use of cookies, the terms of our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. Construction of the Trans-Mongolian line began in 1947, reaching Ulan Bator from the north in 1950 and the Chinese border in 1955. The city is strategically located on the great tea route between China, Russia and Europe. Miles and miles of snow-covered tundra will give a whole new meaning to the term “winter”. This is a little village which was originally built for an airbase. To become a fan, click here. The gauge is 1,520 mm (4 ft 11 27⁄32 in) in Russia and Mongolia and 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in) in China. (Note that the toilets will be closed during the crossing, which can last for hours.) It takes about 8 hours to travel from Sukhbaatar to Darkhan (380 km). Some even offer “Travel the Trans-Mongolian Railway”- package where you’ll get a discount because you have to apply for 3 visas in 1 go. In the aftermath of the 1990 Democratic revolution freight traffic was reduced by about half, but by 2005 had almost returned to previous levels. The train keeps to Moscow time, so dinner in the restaurant car is served at Moscow dinner time, although it might be night-time where the train is at that moment. In order to get all the 3 above mentioned visas, you need to fill out the appropriate forms, add the right amount of stamps and pay the visa fees. The Trans-Mongolia Railway follows the Trans-Siberian Railway up to Ulan Ude (Mongolia) and then continues along the ancient tea route that connected China with Russia. Please consider taking the Trans Mongolian Railway, the famous train journey across the continent of Asia. The Trans Siberian Railway is sometimes used as the main name for all train travel around Russia.

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