Russia on the Trans-Siberian Express: Moscow-Vladivostok

  • Golden Eagle

  • 15-day Escorted Tour


    The Tour

    The Trans-Siberian Express is THE big train ride—an epic 15-day journey spanning two continents and seven time zones. Travel across the world’s most famous railway on board the private Golden Eagle Trans-Siberian Express.

    You’ll spend most days touring cities along the route as well as enjoy three, relaxing all-day train rides. You’ll spend your nights on the train in private train compartments (except on the first and last nights of the tour, when you’ll be in top hotels). Highlights include viewing the early-morning mist rising over Lake Baikal, as you ride outside on the engine, followed by a picnic lunch on a secluded beach.

    There’s no better way to see the vastness of Siberia. One of IRT members’ favorite journeys, it’s a trip that will change your life.

    Three Imperial Suites are available on all Golden Eagle departures. These new compartments are the most spacious – 120 square feet – offered on the train and feature a fixed king-sized bed, a dedicated dressing table and lounge area, and more. For more details about the Imperial Suites, click here.

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    “It was a fine way to see Siberia, a vast land mass of unending field and forest, punctuated by surprisingly vibrant, colorful cities and warm, smiling people. We were like a cruise ship making stops at varied, otherwise inaccessible ports of call.”

    — Owen Hardy, Publisher, The International Railway Traveler®

    “I went on the Golden Eagle…and although I had already traveled to 132 countries, this was the most dramatic and most fantastic trip I have ever taken. It was so well organized and in every way fabulous. I want to continue receiving your notices and hope I can find a similar train trip soon.”

    — W. Friar, Trans-Siberian, 2008

    The Itinerary

    For Vladivostok-Moscow (Westbound) Itinerary, click here.

    Moscow-Vladivostok (Eastbound)

    Day 1: Moscow, Russia

    Arrive at Moscow airport, where you are met and transferred to the luxurious five-star Ritz-Carlton hotel (or similar) located in the heart of this vibrant city for a one-night stay. We enjoy a welcome reception dinner at our hotel, whilst you meet your fellow travelers and anticipate the epic 15 day voyage that lies ahead.

    Day 2
    Moscow – Freedom of Choice Touring
    Our morning city tour of Moscow principally takes us to Red Square, an iconic symbol of Russia’s former military and political might. Here we see an eclectic mix of fascinating architecture, such as the ornate St Basil’s Cathedral with its magnificent onion-domed spires, the grandeur of The Kremlin and the sombre and evocative site of Lenin’s tomb. With our Freedom of Choice touring options you may instead wish to visit, for example, the Tretyakov Gallery and Space Museum. Early afternoon sees us boarding the luxurious Golden Eagle Trans-Siberian Express. After settling into our modern, stylish cabins, we enjoy dinner in one of the beautifully designed restaurant cars as our rail adventure eastwards to Vladivostok begins.

    Day 3: Kazan
    Mid-morning arrival in Kazan, beautiful capital of Tatarstan located on the Volga River. One highlight of our city tour is the Kremlin Fortress, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where we’ll see the stunning mosque and magnificent onion-domed cathedral. After enjoying a relaxing dinner on the Golden Eagle, you may wish to retire to our welcoming bar car where you can enjoy drinks with new friends whilst listening to our resident pianist.

    Day 4: Yekaterinburg
    Tour Yekaterinburg, last city in Asia and capital of the Urals. More important for students of Russian history, Yekaterinburg is the execution site of Russia’s last Czar, Nicholas, as well as his wife, Alexandra, their children and servants.

    Khrushchev ordered the destruction of the building where the crime took place, but the Russian Orthodox memorial which replaced it several decades later is a moving tribute to the doomed Romanovs.

    Day 5: Novosibirsk
    Stop in this modern “Soviet” city and visit one of the world’s largest Opera House, completed in 1944 and whose stage reportedly was ordered by Stalin to withstand the weight of a squadron of tanks. Also visit Lenin Square and River Ob, which flows 3,500 miles from its source to the Arctic.

    Day 6: Onboard
    Of Siberia, the Russian poet Chekov reportedly wrote: “only the migratory birds know where it ends.” Today, we find out why.

    After several exciting stops, we have a full day on the train to rest, reflect on the sights we’ve seen and simply gaze out the window. All meals are served in the train’s restaurant cars.

    Day 7: Irkutsk
    Today we arrive in the “Paris of Siberia,” Irkutsk, so named because of the sophistication brought to the Silerian outpost by the exiled “Decembrists.” These were eight aristocractic families banished to Irkutsk in 1825 following an attempted revolt in St. Petersburg.

    Our full-day tour includes an exploration of the classic wooden architecture that is unique to the region. We also visit the Decembrist House museum, where a private concert will be performed for our group. Return to the train for dinner.

    Day 8: Lake Baikal
    A fantastic day’s adventure as the Golden Eagle diverts from the main line, winding its way on a little-used, single-track line through tunnels and around cliffs along the shoreline of Lake Baikal, the world’s largest and deepest freshwater lake.

    We stop at one of the bays, descend from the train to the beach and enjoy a barbecue at the water’s edge (weather permitting), featuring freshly smoked fish. Some brave souls might take a swim! We then visit Listvyanka, a small Baikal village nestled at the base of the surrounding hills. Evening train departure.

    Day 9: Ulan Ude
    Afternoon arrival in Ulan Ude, capital of the Buryat Republic, where you’ll notice a fascinating change of people and dress. We visit a community of Old Believers, Russian Orthodox church members whose forebears broke off from the main church following the 1443 split with Constantinople.

    We learn about the culture and history of these communities through a traditional meal and concert featuring local dancers and musicians.

    Day 10: Ulaan Baatar, Mongolia
    Our Trans-Siberian adventure takes us into Mongolia, home of Genghis Khan, undoubtedly the most feared and revered Mongol. We visit the capital city of Ulaan Baatar, taking in the National Museum to learn the country’s history.

    Lunch is taken Mongol style in a traditional Ger (Yurt) where we experience an authentic meal, enjoying excellent local dishes and entertainment, providing a unique opportunity to witness this time-honored nomadic way of life. Afternoon free for shopping or a drive through Gorkhi-Terelj National Park.

    We board the train in time for dinner as we head back into Russia.

    Day 11: Onboard
    Today offers an opportunity to enjoy the train’s service and amenities. Practice your improving Russian or sit back and enjoy a drink (perhaps the local favorite, vodka) in the bar car, where a resident musician entertains.

    Day 12: Onboard
    Our journey today follows the Shilka and Amur Rivers, close to the Chinese border. Relax on board as the Russian scenery unfolds before you. Perhaps you would like to attend an on-board lecture or Russian language lesson.

    Day 13: Onboard

    Passing directly north of Seoul, Darwin and Osaka, we spend our last full day on board the Golden Eagle today as the most easterly point of our mammoth journey is reached passing through Khabarovsk, where we cross the River Amur. Tonight, we enjoy our final dinner onboard our private train that has been our home for the last twelve days as we approach our final destination on this unforgettable journey.

    Day 14: Vladivostok
    After travelling through 8 time zones and covering an amazing 6,600 miles (10,600 km) along this epic route to the end of the Trans-Siberian line, the Golden Eagle pulls into Vladivostok, a military port located on the western shores of the Sea of Japan. Vladivostok (literally translated as ‘Ruler of the East’) offers visitors an exciting opportunity to explore its principal military attractions including a tour of a restored submarine before we transfer to the four-star Hyundai Hotel. The final evening is spent saying our goodbyes to our fellow travelling companions and friends at the Farewell Dinner.

    Day 15: Vladivostok
    Following breakfast, you will be transferred to Vladivostok airport to begin your journey home.

    Click here for Westbound Itinerary.

    2020 Dates:

    May 3-17
    May 31-June 14
    July 26-August 9
    August 23-September 6

    2021 Dates:

    May 2-16 (Provisional)
    May 30-June 13 (Provisional)
    July 1-15 (Provisional)
    July 24-August 7 (Provisional)
    August 21-September 4 (Provisional)

    The Prices

    2020 May & June Departures Double
    Deposit amount
    Silver Class
    Gold Class
    Imperial Suite


    2020 July-September Departures Double
    Deposit amount
    Silver Class
    Gold Class
    Imperial Suite

    Please note: All pricing is per person.


    Please note: All classic Golden Eagle Trans-Siberian Express journeys are guaranteed departures. Arrival and departure transfers included, even if you extend your stay. Are you a single? Ask to share, and be guaranteed the per person, double rate. Ask us for details.

    Extensions: We are delighted to make arrangements for your extension, and highly recommend adding on St. Petersburg, traveling by first-class train from Moscow, with special visits to Catherine’s Palace, the Hermitage, and more. Let us custom-design a package for you.

    Double-entry Russian visa required for this trip. Mongolian visa may be required for some nationalities.

    Latest News: Click here for Track 25, our blog, for the latest news on this and other tours on our World’s Top 25 Trains™.

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    The Highlights

    • Guided tours in Moscow, Kazan, Yekaterinburg, Novosibirsk, Irkutsk, Lake Baikal, Ulan Ude, Ulaan Baatar and Vladivostok
    • Afternoon barbecue on Lake Baikal shore, largest freshwater lake in the world (weather permitting)
    • Dinner, concert and dancing provided by the Old Believers, breakaway Eastern Orthodox sect living outside Ulan Ude
    • Irkutsk, elegant home of the upper-class “Decembrist” revolutionaries exiled by Tsar Nicholas I in 1825
    • Yekaterinburg, infamous execution site of Tsar Nicholas II, his wife Alexandra, their son, daughters and servants, by the Bolsheviks in 1918
    • Grand Moscow’s Red Square, the Kremlin and Kremlin museum, with its Imperial jewels and Fabergé eggs
    • All meals, fine wine with lunch and dinner, hotels, gratuities, off-train tours and arrival/departure transfers included
    Moscow's Red Square, jumping-off point for the eastbound Trans-Siberian journey. IRT photo by Owen Hardy
    Moscow's Red Square, jumping-off point for the eastbound Trans-Siberian journey. IRT photo by Owen Hardy
    The Golden Eagle Trans-Siberian Express at the Yekaterinburg station. IRT Photo by Owen Hardy
    The Golden Eagle Trans-Siberian Express at the Yekaterinburg station. IRT Photo by Owen Hardy
    One of the Golden Eagle's little pleasures: fresh coffee or tea, with superb Russian chocolates and cookies, delivered on request to one's compartment. IRT Photo by Owen Hardy
    One of the Golden Eagle's little pleasures: fresh coffee or tea, with superb Russian chocolates and cookies, delivered on request to one's compartment. IRT Photo by Owen Hardy
    Patriotic Russian teenage girls do their duty at a Soviet-era WWII memorial. IRT Photo by Owen Hardy
    Patriotic Russian teenage girls do their duty at a Soviet-era WWII memorial. IRT Photo by Owen Hardy