Top 12 Beautiful Stops on the Trans-Siberian Railway

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Last updated:
17.06.2021

Setting off on a journey along the longest railway line is a one-of-a-kind experience. Apart from the impressive Trans-Siberian railway scenery that you’ll be able to see out of your train compartment window, there are also some stops along the route undoubtedly worthy of your attention. Add Trans-Siberian rail tour to your itinerary, and let's find out the best stops on the Trans-Siberian Railway.

1. St. Petersburg

Counted as one of the must-visit places while in Russia, St. Petersburg would definitely be on the list of the most beautiful stops along the Trans-Siberian Railway.

saint-petersburg

Hop off the train and explore the sights of Russia’s cultural and historical capital, which are recognized all around the world: the Winter Palace, now housing one of the world’s largest art collections as the Hermitage Museum; the opulent Peterhof Palace with its manicured gardens and impressive fountain cascades; and the spectacular Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood, designed in the traditional Medieval Russian style.

It would take you years to explore the Hermitage.
The second-largest museum in the world houses over 3 million pieces of art and cultural artifacts. According to estimates, if you looked at each artwork for a minute for 8 hours a day, you would need 25 years to properly see everything in the Hermitage.

2. Moscow

The Trans-Siberian Express usually starts its journey in Moscow, and traveling to Russia without a doubt would be incomplete without visiting this legendary city.

The Kremlin architectural ensemble, the unmissable Red Square, the uniquely-designed St. Basil’s Cathedral, and the spacious Gorky Park - embracing hundreds of years of Russian history, Moscow will be an unforgettable starting point of your Trans-Siberian journey.

3. Kazan

Though not situated directly on the Trans-Siberian route, Kazan is certainly one of the most beautiful and interesting places to visit during your trip to Russia. The capital of the Republic of Tatarstan, Kazan is a place where two religions - Orthodoxy and Islam - are blended uniquely.

kazan

The city’s cultural and architectural sights, such as the World Heritage-listed Kazan Kremlin, the Kul Sharif Mosque regarded as one of the largest mosques in Russia and Europe, and the modern Farmer’s Palace, add to its charm, attracting travelers from around the world.

Did you know that Kazan means 'cooking pot' in Tatar?
This beautiful city holds true to its name, blending Orthodox and Islamic cultures.

4. Ekaterinburg

The 4th largest Russian city, Ekaterinburg is remarkably located at the Europe/Asia border next to the Ural mountain range and is often nicknamed ‘the Great Divide of Urals’. The city has played an immense role in shaping Russian history: here in 1918 the last Imperial family of Russia, the Romanovs, were executed by Bolsheviks.

ekaterinburg

Now the city’s sites connected with this tragic fact - the Church on the Blood and the Ganina Yama Monastery - are of great interest to those eager to learn more about the Russian revolution.

5. Krasnoyarsk

Another city on the Trans-Siberian Railway worth paying a visit to is Krasnoyarsk. Picturesquely set on the bank of the Yenisei River, Krasnoyarsk provides travelers with a good opportunity to explore the riches of Russian nature.

krasnoyarsk

The Stolby Nature Reserve, located within easy reach of central Krasnoyarsk, is a perfect place for hikers and rock climbers, offering a great deal of well-maintained hiking trails and breathtaking views of the Siberian woodlands.

6. Lake Baikal, Listvyanka Village

Meet the gem of your Trans-Siberian Railway itinerary - Lake Baikal, the deepest lake in the world, with its unsurpassed natural scenery, unique flora and fauna. If you embark on the Trans-Siberian journey in summer, you’ll get a chance to admire the crystal clear water of the lake and take a ferry boat ride to the mysterious Olkhon Island; in winter the frozen lake transforms into a massive natural ice rink attracting hundreds of tourists.

baikal_listvyanka

Those interested in the history of one of the most famous Russian natural sights, shouldn’t miss the chance to visit Listvyanka Village, located on the southwest bank of Baikal. The locality features a museum, dedicated to the origin and history of the lake, - the Baikal Limnological Museum, presenting a fine collection of exhibits.

Lake Baikal has the clearest water in the world.
Baikal can boast of being the most transparent of all lakes. In some areas you can see its bottom at a depth of
40 meter (130 feet)!

7. Irkutsk

Within a short drive from Lake Baikal is the city of Irkutsk, nicknamed by Chekhov the ‘Paris of Siberia’, which is also considered one of the most beautiful Trans-Siberian Railway stops. Creating its backdrop are the outstanding 19th-century brightly colored buildings.

irkutsk

While in Irkutsk, it’s highly recommended to take a leisurely walk around the historical center of the city with its European-style architecture, take a look at the Polish Roman Church and the impressive Kazan Church.

8. Ulan Ude

Located at the junction of the Trans-Siberian and the Trans-Mongolian railway routes, Ulan Ude is, without a shadow of a doubt, an attention-worthy place. The capital of the Republic of Buryatia, Ulan Ude represents the center of the Buddhist Buryat culture in Russia. The main religious site of the city - the Ivolginsky Datsan - attracts Buddhist pilgrims from all over Russia and has even been visited by the Dalai Lama himself five times.

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Ulan Ude is also known for hosting the world’s largest Lenin bust, weighing over 94 tons. Take a walk to Lenin Square to see this impressive and even a bit frightening statue.

Have you heard about dyalama?
This is a tradition of tying up colorful ribbons on trees practiced by Buddhists and Buryats, in particular, to show respect to the spirits of nature.

9. Ulan Bator

For those willing to pay a visit to some off-the-beaten-path place, Ulan Bator, the capital city of Mongolia, would be of huge interest. Embracing hundreds of years of the country’s unique history, Ulan Bator presents numerous relics of the then second-largest empire in the world, as well as the world-known Buddhist temples. While in the Mongolian capital, make sure to visit Mongolia’s largest Buddhist monastery - the Gandan Khiid, and the remarkable Gorkhi-Terelji National Park, with its peculiar Turtle Rock and Aryabal Meditation Temple.

In Ulan Bator, you also have a chance to learn more about Mongolia’s culture and traditions by meeting nomadic people and spending time at the ger camp.

10. Khabarovsk

The Far East Russian city of Khabarovsk can become another highlight of your Trans-Siberian itinerary. Located only about 20 km from the Russian-Chinese border, Khabarovsk is off the well-worn Russian tourist routes. However, once you manage to get to this remote city, you definitely won’t regret adding it to your bucket list.

khabarovsk

Amur Cliff, offering spectacular views on the Amur River; the beautiful Spaso-Transfiguration Cathedral, which is supposed to be the 3rd-tallest church in the country; and the iconic Khabarovsk Bridge over the Amur River are the most remarkable sights of the city.

Beijing offers a unique amalgam of cultural attractions.
The city is, in fact, home to seven UNESCO World Heritage sites: the Great Wall, the Forbidden City, the Summer Palace, the Temple of Heaven, the Ming Tombs, Peking Man Site at Zhoukoudian, and the Grand Canal.

11. Beijing

Traveling the Trans-Siberian Railway would be even more memorable if you decide to visit the capital of one of the most ancient civilizations in the world. Beijing has always been one of the most peculiar places in the world, rich in tourist attractions. So hop off the Trans-Siberian Express and begin your Beijing exploration!

beijing

We recommend the legendary Tiananmen Square as the starting point, where you can spot the Monument to the People's Heroes, the Museum of the Chinese Revolution, and the Mausoleum of Mao Zedong. You can continue by visiting the impressive Forbidden City, previously home to Ming and Qing Emperors. In addition, being in China and not taking a look at the world-known Great Wall would raise questions from your family and friends, so grab your camera, and take a guided tour to explore this historic site.

12. Vladivostok

Vladivostok is the last stop on the Trans-Siberian railway line, but doubt not, it has a lot to offer. Vladivostok is a port city, located on the shores of the Sea of Japan, and home to the Russian Pacific Fleet headquarters, which was the country’s secret navy base during the Soviet times. If you want to learn more about the Russian navy history, visit the Submarine S-56 Museum, dedicated to the legendary submarine which played a significant part in fighting Nazis during WWII.

vladivostok

While in Vladivostok, also don’t miss the chance to take a look at the iconic Russki Bridge, twin of San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge.

You can be sure traveling this legendary railway route is an experience you don't want to miss. Check our best Trans-Siberian Train Trips and don't hesitate to contact our specialists, ready to help you make the Trans-Siberian journey truly unforgettable!