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11d/10n - $2,190

Summer Trans-Siberian & Baikal

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May - September
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Trans-Siberian Railway
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Your guide is also a Russian teacher
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Moscow - Trans-Siberian - Irkustk - Ulan-Ude 

This incredible immersive rail trip will conduct you to the heart of Siberia : the majestic Baikal Lake and its surroundings. 

 

As always with  Immersion in Russia, the time of this long journey will be used to initiate or improve your knowledge of the Russian language and culture. Your cultural rail trip will take you to the “Paris of Siberia” - Irkutsk - with its typical old wooden houses and its powerful and mythic river: the  Angara. You will then discover Olkhon - the sacred island of Lake Baïkal - and its shamanic rituals, before sailing to the Buryat part with its astonished wild sand beaches and its multicultural capital Ulan-Ude, where your trip will end.

Program

Day 1

Departure!

You will begin this trip in the tumultuous city of Moscow, meeting in the evening with your guide and the other participants in a typical Russian bar for a welcoming toast. 

 

After a toast to celebrate the beginning of your adventure, your guide will take you to the train station where you will embark in the legendary Transsiberian, departing for Siberia. You will just have  the time get a cup of tea at the famous samovar before the train sets off. Поехали !

Day 2 - 4

Trans-Siberian Trip

You will spend whole days in the mystic train while crossing this immense country from West to East and admiring the unique beauty of the Siberian landscapes unfolding behind the window.  

 

Provodnitsa

Each carriage is managed by a key figure, in most cases a woman, called "provodnitsa". She is responsible for maintaining the order on the train, checking tickets and passports, and handing out bed sheets, and she is also the person that wakes you up 30 minutes before you need to get off the train. It’s always better to get along well with them ;) 

 

Russian Classes

Your Russian teacher will give Russian language lessons throughout the trip. You will be placed into 1 or 2 groups according to your level of Russian. During the train journey, the lessons are given daily and last 2 hours. From the beginning to the end of the trip, you will receive around 18 hours of Russian language lessons. For the very beginners the focus will be made on learning the cyrilic alphabet, training words’ reading and pronunciation of simple and useful sentences. For the more advanced levels, we will focus on the reading of press articles and the conversation. 

In the evening you will have the occasion to watch Russian and Soviet cartoons, films which are a pleasant way to get acquainted with the culture, as well as perfectionning your language skills. 

 

Free Time

The Trans-siberian is also ideal to make a break in our modern fast life. Take the time to focus on yourself, to meet local peoples from all over the country, to read, have a drink or snack in the restaurant car, or just gaze outside your window and enjoy the beautiful Russian landscape.

Day 5

The Paris of Siberia

Arrival in Irkutsk in the evening

After a long train journey you’ll finally leave your train neighbours to make your first steps in the city of Irkutsk. Once called the “Paris of Siberia”, Irkutsk is one of the main historical and cultural centers of Siberia. After dinner you will soon head to your hotel so you can finally get a shower and go to bed soon enough to be ready for the very busy day ahead. 

Meeting Baikal Lake

Day 6

Transfer to Olkhon Island

Today we will head to Olkhon, a mystic island located in the middle of Lake Baikal. We will go by bus from Irkutsk and get to the port of Olkhon. From there, we will cross by ferry  the "Little Sea" (the strait that separates the island from the mainland), and arrive at the port of Skahurta, on Olkhon island.

 

Khuzhir & the "Shaman Rock"

We will then head to Khuzhir, the main village of Olkhon. You will enjoy the beautiful nature in and around the village, discovering the famous Bourkhan Rock, the highest place of Shamanic culture in Siberia. 3 km further you will come across the "Sarayskiy Bay", an excellent sandy beach. We will come back to Khuzhir for the night.

Olkhon - the pearl of the Lake Baikal

Day 7

Excursion on Olkhon island

Excursion to Khoboy Cape, the northernmost point of the island. Along the drive, you will have the occasion to see the beauty of Olkhon steppes, sand beaches, taiga, and abandoned villages. This drive will also allow you to discover the splendours of Maloye More (“the Little Sea”) and its small islets. After having enjoyed a delicious open air picnic of “shashliki” (traditional Russian shish kebab), we will visit the small settlement of Uzury, in the east of the island.

Day 8

On board

Olkhon from the see

Today we will navigate along the Olkhon island by the "Maloye More" (small see). We will double the cape Khoboy and see the landscapes that aren't accessible from onshore. It's a good opportunity to take rare photos. Then you will cross the lake in its deepest and widest point till the village of Ust-Barguzin, on the east coast. 

 

Russian banya

Upon arrival on the Eas t coast of the Baikal, you will have the chance to experience a traditional “banya” (Russian traditional bath).

Baikal East coast

Day 9

Chivyrkuisky Bay and the Svyatoy Nos peninsula 

After breakfast, we will go to one of the most beautiful places on Lake Baikal - the Chivyrkuisky Bay and the Svyatoy Nos peninsula. The Chivyrkuisky Bay is one of the warmest bays of the lake Baikal. Along its shore there are a lot of bays. In one of these bays there is a hot spring with the temperature about +60°C. Another sight of lake Baikal is the Svyatoy Nos peninsula. The summit of Svyatoy Nos peninsula reaches an altitude of 1878 m (6160 ft). At this altitude there is a tableland (zone of high-mountain tundra) from where you get a staggering view of isthmus of Svyatoy Nos, Chivyrkuysky and Barguzinsky Gulfs, and the Ushkany archipelago. It’s possible to reach the top by following a path beginning in Monakhovo village.

Day 10

Ulan-Ude

Ulan-Ude, the capital of Buryatia. 

After breakfast, a bus will take you to the capital of Buryatia, Ulan-Ude (285 km, 4h). Buryatia is a region of the Russian Far East, populated by Buryat-Mongols. The capital, Ulan-Ude, is home to Russian Orthodox Odigitrievsky Cathedral and a giant Lenin sculpture. Around the city, you will see colorful Buddhist monasteries, called "Datsan". The biggest and most important of them is Ivolginsky Datsan, located 23km from the city. It is also a training center for monks.

 

Farewell toast !

We will take you to one of our favorite bars of the Buryat capital to have a last toast all together, remembering all the good moments we had together, exchange contacts and discuss your next road trips and adventures in Russia or Central Asia !

Availability

20.07.2020 - 30.07.2020

     Begin                          End

Availability: 9 spaces left

Status

$2,190

Standard price per person

17.08.2020 - 27.08.2020

     Begin                          End

Availability: 10 spaces left

Status

$2,190

Standard price per person

Conditions

Standard Conditions

​The price includes

  • Accommodation in comfortable 3 stars hotels (standard double room) and with host families

  • Transportation throughout the trip  (cars, bus and boat)

  • All the activities and excursions mentioned in the programme

  • Banya

  • An experienced teacher-guide to accompany you for the duration of the trip, plus a local English-speaking guide to accompany you through the Baikal region. 

  • 18 hours of initiation courses to the Russian language and culture

  • Train tickets (2nd class, called “Kupe”) from Moscow or Saint-Petersbourg

  • Meals : Breakfast days 6, 7, 8 9 & 10, lunch on day 9, dinner on days 5, 6, 7, 8 & 9. 

  • Vouchers & visa support

NOTA BENE : Minor changes are possible in the program of the excursion tour, or in the sequence and time of the excursions

Guaranteed departure from 4 participants. If there are less then 4 participants in the group, the price can be recalculated. For individual groups with 4 participants and more, there are open departure dates. 

The price does not include

  • Meals which are not mentioned in the program

  • Tips and personal expenses

  • Flights

  • Personal insurance

Premium Offer

The premium offer includes at least one of these services.

  • All flights (domestic and international)

  • Full visa support (online questionnaire and deposit at the visa center) 

  • All transfers from/to airports, hotels, railway station, etc.

  • Additional days, activities, hotels, destinations

  • Single room option

  • Personnalisation of the tour / Individual tour

  • Additional guide speaking your language during the tour 

  • Insurance 

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Booking

You have two options to book a tour​ with us

  1. Book directly below by choosing your date to secure your spot, then fill in your information. It is completely free, no credit card required.

  2. Or send us a message for more information and more dates.

Booking & Cancellation

1. Regular services

A deposit of 30% (thirty percent) will be required to confirm your order of any Service. Another part of the payment (70% (seventy percent)) shall be paid 1 (one) month before the start of provision of any of the Services.

Terms of Cancellation

If cancellation of the ordered Services or any of the ordered Services occurs:

1) more than 30 (thirty) days before the start of provision of the Services, then the cancellation fee is €100 (one hundred euros) per person. If any of the applicable fees and/or charges (including, but not limited to banking, payment systems’, etc.) are higher than €100 (one hundred euros) per person, then the necessary amount is paid by a customer,

2) between 30 (thirty) days and 7 (seven) days before the start of provision of the Services – 30% (thirty percent) of the total price of the Services,

3) in less than 7 (seven) days before the start of provision of the Services, the cancellation fee is 100% (one hundred percent) of the total price for the Services.

2. Premium Services

A deposit of 50% (fifty percent) will be required to confirm your order of any Service. Another part of the payment (50% (fifty percent) shall be paid 1 (one) month before the start of provision of any of the Services.

 

Terms of Cancellation

If cancellation of the ordered Services or any of the ordered Services occurs:

1) more than 30 (thirty) days before the start of provision of the Services, then the cancellation fee is €100 (one hundred euros) per person. If any of the applicable fees and/or charges (including, but not limited to banking, payment systems’, etc.) are higher than €100 (one hundred euros) per person, then the necessary amount is paid by a customer,

2) between 30 (thirty) days and 7 (seven) days before the start of provision of the Services – 50% (fifty percent) of the total price of the Services,

3) in less than 7 (seven) days before the start of provision of the Services, the cancellation fee is 100% (one hundred percent) of the total price for the Services.

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