Last leg of the Trans Siberian and my thoughts on the experience

24th – 25th July 2014

There isn’t much to say about this last leg of the Trans Siberian route except that I was ill, nausea and sickness, not ideal for riding on a train, but it passed after half a day or so.

My summing up of the Trans Siberian train journey:

Was it what I expected?

I expected a lot of raucous drunken nights but in reality it was quite a quiet and pleasant affair!  Although I’m partial to a raucous drunken night or two, I wasn’t disappointed by my experience.  On the first two legs of the journey there were very few Westerners on the train, I expected to see far more.  I had spoken to Sarah previously (Australian girl I met in Moscow) and she had been on an organised tour on the Trans Siberian, and instead of their usual group size of 12, there were only 4 of them, so I think the recent troubles between Russia and Ukraine that have been all over the news have kept the Westerners away.

The Russia to Mongolia leg had more Westerners on it, but we were even told on this train we weren’t allowed to drink the beer we had bought or the police would come!  This wasn’t what I expected at all.  Needless to say we closed the cabin doors and drank the beer anyway!

All in all a fantastic way to cover so much ground, meeting people who speak your language or not, enjoying a few beers in a cabin to myself, sharing beer with new found friends, eating strange deep fried foods, trying out vodka shots the Russian way, seeing an endless amount of fir trees, and eventually plucking up the courage to get off the train when it stopped at a station (was initially so scared that the train would go off without me!  Could never work out how long the train would be stopping due to the language barrier!)

I would definitely recommend the journey to anyone thinking of doing it.  Nearly 5,000 miles of sleep and contemplation time, along with making new friends and watching the gradual cultural change before your very eyes, is far better than a ten hour plane journey any day!

A couple of videos from the journeys, maybe some suggestions to some good music to soundtrack to them?!

Trans Siberian Moscow to Irkutsk

Trans Siberian Mongolia to China

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