Stride climate

Trip Type : Small Group Tour
Russia Expedition: Winter Trans-Siberian Adventure tour
Lake Baikal Moscow Russia Expedition: Winter Trans-Siberian Adventure Trip
Tibet Vladivostok Russia Expedition: Winter Trans-Siberian Adventure Trip

Russia Expedition: Winter Trans-Siberian Adventure

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4.7 . Excellent
98%
Travel Style: For those looking to maximize their sight seeing time. You thrive on a packed day’s schedule from 8 am to 6pm, with some (but limited) free time. Most activities and meals included. Full on
Physical Level: Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level: Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
15 days
From: $ 2,650 $ 177 / day
Checking price

Overview

Highlights

  • Experience one of the most legendary bucket-list journeys ever in the magic of the Russian winter
  • A sobering but essential excursion to the Romanov family resting place shines light on one of the Russian Revolution’s major tragedies
  • Encounter a way of life that has changed little since the 18th century on a visit to the Old Believers Village near Ulan Ude
  • Lake Baikal is astounding at any time of year, but in winter it’s next-level. Marvel at its sheer size (like sea) and enjoy the tranquility of the lake under winter sunshine.
  • Russia is one of the best places in which to celebrate New Year’s Eve. With our hosting family at lake Baikal, get into the spirit of things and toast the old year with a shot of vodka and the new one with a glass of champagne

Short Description

Tibet may have the highest, and Australia and Switzerland the steepest, but Russia most certainly takes the prize when it comes to sheer depth of history and legend in a train trip. Embark on a beautiful winter adventure on the great Trans-Siberian Railway, one of the great journeys of modern times. Travelling in winter adds a dramatic dimension to Russia’s vast landscapes, as Lake Baikal shimmers with a deep speckled blue, the wooden Romanov monasteries outside Yekaterinburg take on a sombre, snowy profile, and the time-capsule scenes of the Old Believers village near Ulan Ude are given a fairy-tale dusting. With the must-see historical sites of Moscow revealed before you set off, and the spirit of the new year alive throughout, this Tran-Siberian itinerary pulls out all the stops for an unforgettable expedition.

Small groups are usually defined as between 10 and 24 travelers, often less. If you're the kind of person who enjoys more intimate experiences and personal service this is a good choice. All else being equal you will pay a premium for this style vs a larger group tour.
Trip Type Small Group Tour
Spend most of the time outdoors. Common trip themes and activities include cycling, hiking, kayaking, whitewater rafting.
Itinerary Focus Active
Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Lodging Level Value - 3 star
Flights & Transport N/A
Start City Moscow
End City Vladivostok
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Itinerary

Day 1 Moscow

Zdrastvutye! Welcome to Russia. The journey begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm, where your insurance and next of kin details will be collected. Please also have two copies of your passport, visa and migration cards ready. Your leader will collect one; the other is for you to keep on you at all times whilst on the trip. Please look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask the hotel reception where the meeting will take place. If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. After the meeting, join your leader for a short orientation walk to get your bearings. If you arrive early and have time, there's plenty to see and do. Perhaps check out Victory Park, the Tretyakov Gallery, the Izmailovo Markets, or get a sneak peek of Red Square ahead of tomorrow's explorations.

Day 2 Moscow/Trans-Ural Railway

Accompanied by a local guide, head across the cobblestones of Red Square, where ornate Christmas trees loom next to the colourful domes of St Basil’s Cathedral, the fairytale-like State Historical Museum, and the dramatic walls of the Kremlin. This square has been a key part of Russian history since the era of Ivan the Terrible and through the Cold War period. Catch a glimpse of Lenin, the revered revolutionary, at his resting place before heading into the spirital nebula of Russia – the Kremlin. Walk through the towers and cathedrals and continue to the Armoury Museum, where an impressive former royal collection is displayed – ambassadorial gifts, Faberge eggs, coronation robes and opulent jewels. Later you can ride the metro to see the 'palaces of the people' – the lavishly designed train stations. Before you board your midnight train to Yekaterinburg, your afternoon and evening are free.

Day 3 Trans-Ural Railway

Settle in for the journey to Yekaterinburg (approximately 33 hours). From Moscow, we'll be travelling 1816 km west. You'll get a real sense of how vast this country is by travelling on the train. The route goes via Moscow, Yaroslavl, Kostroma, Galich, Kirov, Balezino, and Perm, with stops of up to 40 minutes in duration.

Day 4 Yekaterinburg

After arriving in Yekaterinburg mid morning, board a private bus at the train station and make your way to the hotel (approximately 30 minutes). In the afternoon, explore the city on a guided walking tour (approximately 3 hours). Yekaterinburg is fourth largest city in Russia, was founded in 1723 and named after Peter the Great's wife, Yekaterina. Located on the border between Europe and Asia, the city has been the anchor point for the development in the Urals and Siberia and was once called 'windows on Asia'. Your walking tour shines a light on the city's history and development, visiting the Vysotsky skyscraper lookout, memorial sites for soldiers killed in different wars, and also site related to the Romanovs, the Church of All Saints, which was built on the site where the Tsar's family (the Romanovs) were executed by the Bolsheviks in early 1918.

Day 5 Yekaterinburg/Trans-Siberian Railway

In the morning, jump on a bus and head 15 km north of town to explore Ganina Yama with a guide. This is where the Romanov family were secretly buried after their execution following the 1917 revolution. The existence of this site was not publicly known until 1989. Explaining some of the history along the way, your guide will show you around Monastery of the Holy Martyrs, a complex of seven beautiful wooden monasteries, each one dedicated to a different Romanov family member. Afterwards, the afternoon is yours to spend as you please. In the evening, we board our Trans-Siberian train to Ulan Ude.

Day 6-7 Trans-Siberian Railway

The adventure rolls on via Tyumen, Ishim, Omsk, Barabinsk, Novosibirsk, Litvinovo, Mariinsk, Achinsk, Krasnoyarsk, Ilanskaya, Zima and Irkutsk. Before arriving in Ulan Ude, note the time zone changes: Ulan Ude is three hours ahead of Yekaterinburg, so remember add these to your clock! Otherwise, sit back and enjoy the simplicity of life on the Trans-Siberian Railway. It pretty much involves eating, drinking, talking, reading, sleeping and gazing out the window at the great icy plains that stream by.

Day 8 Ulan Ude

Arrive in Ulan-Ude in the evening and transfer to your hotel, in time for an optional dinner with the group. Ulan Ude is the capital of the Republic of Buryatia and homeland of the Buryat people, a close relation of the Mongolians. After being repressed during Soviet times, Buryat traditions and religions (such as shamanism and Tibetan Buddhism) are experiencing a revival. The city is fascinating mix of Euro-Russian, Mongolian and Buryat cultures. The future of Buryatia is directly connected with development of the Lake Baikal area as a tourism zone. By coming here with our groups, respecting environmental issues and with rational use of the area's rich cultural and historic legacy, the aim is to contribute to the development of sustainable tourism in Eastern Siberia. The area surrounding the city is tremendously beautiful, with vast, wild nature, boundless steppes, and alpine and taiga forests.

Day 9 Lake Baikal

Departing mid-morning, enjoy a quick tour of Ulan Ude, checking out the monument to Lenin (believed to be the biggest sculpture of Lenin's head in Siberia), town square, and the local opera house built by prisoners. Continue by bus to the Tarbagatay Old Believers village (approximately 1 hour). The Old Believers are Orthodox Christians who were exiled or fled from European Russia during the church reforms of the 17th century, and their way of life has changed little since the 18th century. Visit the local church and ethnography museum, attend a concert of folk songs and games, and enjoy a meal of timeless and tasty home-cooked dishes. Then it's off to Lake Baikal (approximately 2.5 hours). This is the deepest fresh water lake in the world and, amazingly, holds more than 20% of the world's fresh water. It's especially magical in winter, with fewer visitors and often a lovely sunny sky to match. Note that accommodation here, a comfortable local guesthouse, is on a multishare basis.

Day 10 Lake Baikal

Roll up your sleeves and cook some New Year Buuz (dumplings) with your lovely hosting family. Or try out the banya – the traditional Russian sauna – and jump into the ice cold Baikal! During your time here there are also loads of other optional activities to partake in, including making snow figures, taking a ride to hot springs or sledging in the surrounding hills. Enjoy a full-board meal plan, with plenty of tasty Russian staples like salads, soups, black bread, pancakes and pies. You'll also get a chance to try the local fish from Baikal – omul – which tastes extra delicious when roasted over a camp fire on the lake shore. Come New Year's Eve, why not do as the Russians do: say goodbye to the old year with a shot of vodka and make toast to the new one with a glass of champagne!

Day 11 Ulan Ude/Far Eastern Railway

At midday, take a private bus to Ulan Ude train station (approximately 4 hours). Climb aboard for the final part of your Trans-Siberian train adventure, heading for Vladivostok on the eastern end of the route.

Day 12-13 Far Eastern Railway

The route to Vladivostok goes via Khilok, Chita, Chernysh Zab, Yer Pavlov, Belogorsk, and Khabarovsk. Settle in and enjoy yet another leg of the most legendary train journey in the world. 

Day 14 Vladivostok

Disembark at the Vladivostok train station, terminus of the Trans Siberia railway, as our 9,289 km journey from Moscow concludes. Transfer to your hotel (approximately 30 minutes away) and, after a quick freshen-up, enjoy a city tour. This city is a major eastern gateway of Russia, the home port of the Russian Pacific Fleet, and the largest Russian port on the Pacific Ocean. You'll visit the Submarine C56 museum, stroll down Central Square and Svetlanskaya Street, see the impressive Nikolai Triumphal Arch, and visit Tsesarevich Embankment and Sport Harbor. Celebrate the end of your journey over a hearty optional dinner tonight.

Day 15 Vladivostok

The trip comes to an end in Vladivostok this morning. Your leader can help with any local or onward travel plans.

Availability

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Price From $ 2,650
Price Per Day: $ 177 per day
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Start DateFinish DateBase PriceDeparture GuaranteedAvailability 
Dec-22-2019Jan-05-2020$ 2,790Yes1 spots left Reserve
Dec-28-2019Jan-11-2020$ 2,845YesSold Out Reserve
Jan-04-2020Jan-18-2020$ 2,780Yes5 spots left Reserve
Feb-23-2020Mar-08-2020$ 2,780Yes4 spots left Reserve
Dec-22-2020Jan-05-2021$ 2,650Yes12 spots left Reserve
Dec-28-2020Jan-11-2021$ 2,730Yes6 spots left Reserve

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3,182 Intrepid Travel Travel Reviews & Ratings

98%
4.7 out of 5 (100+ reviews)
Excellent 2,376
Great 625
Average 101
Disappointing 37
Terrible 38
Value
4.7
Guide
4.7
Activities
4.7
Lodging
4.7
Transportation
4.7
Meals
4.7

Russia Expedition: Winter Trans-Siberian Adventure

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Fantastic Trip in Southern Africa

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging4.0
Transportation4.0
Meals5.0
We did this trip, Explore Southern Africa, from Aug 9 - 26 this year and we thought it was probably our most memorable trip ever. The variety of wildlife (we saw the big 5 plus giraffes, zebras, cheetahs, hippos, hyenas, wildebeests, impalas, baboons, ...) and our proximity to them that we experienced was unparalleled. The scenery was like nothing we had ever experienced before (our first time anywhere in Africa). Although it was winter time there when we went and many areas were looking very dry it was an experience not to be missed. Additionally we were made to feel welcome everywhere that we went. The highlights of the trip for us would be the two days to the Okavango Delta, the optional game drive through Chobe National Park and day 13 with our guide tracking rhinos in Matabos and going to the African village. Our tour leader, cook and drivers were excellent as were our co-travellers. The meals that were prepared for us tasted great, were well balanced and no one ever left hungry. The 2 person tent accommodations weren't the most luxurious but they allowed one to stay right in the "middle of the action" with the animals in close proximity to our overnight homes. This being the case, we never felt unsafe in our tents at any point. The overlander vehicle didn't have air conditioning, as is standard, however if you made sure to open windows for air circulation during the drive the heat wasn't so bad. If one is prepared to put up with these few inconveniences and willing to help out with camp set up, vehicle clean up, and meal clean up afterwards (this is a participatory type of trip where certain tasks are required of the travellers) it is an experience not to be missed. It all makes one more appreciative of the luxuries that we have at home that many do not have in South Africa, Botswana and Zimbabwe.
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Only excellent value for money and memories to last a lifetime.

5.0
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Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Faultless service and incredible trips, at a really good price. Plus they are all really nice peeps, by email or phone, and we need more of that in the world.

So far, and still counting, I've used them for:

Alaska
Tanzania
Kenya
Uganda
Northern India
Lombok
Bali
Russia
Mongolia
China
Nepal

Never had a bad experience, only excellent value for money and memories to last a lifetime.
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The Trip from Hell Avoid Intrepid Travel

2.0
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Value1.0
Guide1.0
Activities5.0
Lodging3.0
Transportation1.0
Meals3.0
The Trip from Hell
Avoid Intrepid Travel!
My daughter and I recently returned from a tour in Central Asia booked through Intrepid Travel. After about 24 hours of travel, we were not met at the airport nor did we have a room. After getting that straightened out, the next morning we were informed that the vehicle we would be traveling in had no air conditioning. The temperatures were over 100 degrees to about 115 degrees or more. The heat was unbearable and no one inquired about how we were coping or their health. Our welfare was ignored. So ww left the tour early so we wouldn’t have to camp in the desert for two nights.
The tour leader booked our flights to Istanbul but neglected to tell us we would have to rebook our flights to Los Angeles. Upon arriving at the airport in Istanbul, we were told we couldn’t get on the flight. New tickets cost us $1800 EACH!
Intrepid Travel has refused to take responsibility or provide any satisfaction in this matter.
BEWARE!
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It was an incredible experience!

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Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
We just wrapped up a Tanzania family safari. It was an incredible experience!

Even the cook made sure my picky teenager would like his breakfast by fixing him his scrambled eggs the way he likes them.

I’ve been dreaming of this trip with my son for a long time and I’m glad I booked it with you guys! We’ll cherish the memories we made for ever

If you’re looking for a real adventure kinda trip then go with Intrepid!

Thank you Thank you Thank you
Johan & Maxime
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Perfect Itinerary, Guide spoiled a lot of the trip

4.0
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Value4.0
Guide2.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals4.0
The perfect itinerary allowed us to efficiently visited all the top sites with great lodgings. Unfortunately, the guide cut short stops at the Bahai Gardens, Acco, Tel Aviv, and Jerrico on days when we got to our hotel room in the early afternoon--all group members were upset by this. This Palestinian Christian guide emphasized unimpressive churches and minimized all sights that were secular, Muslim, Jewish, ancient, or other faiths. He made bizarre strident political comments about how great Mao Zedong was, praised Putin, said Palestinian people "had never done anything wrong in their history," talked about the Jews killing Jesus--all with a lot of anger. He knew a lot of about Christinaity, not much about anything else. He did a lot to make what could have been the perfect trip, mediocre.

(I would recommend the trip, but only if I knew it was a different guide.)
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I loved the history of this trip

5.0
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Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
I loved the history of this trip, as well as the spectacular scenery. Our guide was knowledgeable and helpful. Having arrangements made for places to stay and transport, plus some activities, but with plenty of free time, made for a perfect balance for me. Breakfasts were delicious!
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Details

Group Size:

Small Group - 24 max

Maximum Number of People in Group: 12

Accomodations

Overnight sleeper train (8 nights),Hotel (4 nights),Guesthouse (2 nights)

Guides

All group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. We endeavour to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders. Your leader will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. We aim to support local guides who have specialised knowledge of the regions we visit. If you were interested in delving deeper into the local culture at a specific site or location then your leader can recommend a local guide service in most of the main destinations of your trip.

Additional Information:

Finish point

  • Zhemchuzhina Hotel Гостиница «Жемчужина».
  • Bestuzheva 29 г. Владивосток, ул. Бестужева, 29
  • Vladivostok
  • RUSSIAN FEDERATION

Trip ID#:

intrepid-WBSA

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