When it comes to mammoth, legendary train journeys, the Trans-Siberian Railway is up there. Coming in at 9,289 kilometers, simply put, it’s the longest railway line in the world. Starting in Moscow, it chugs east to its terminus, Vladivostok, but has another interchange where it then forks south to Mongolia and continues to Beijing, ultimately linking two of the world’s great cities. So, nearly 180 episodes in to Talk Travel Asia, we’re going to finally talk about this epic journey, what’s entailed and hopefully give you enough background to either inspire or give you the idea that this journey is not for you. All aboard – here we go!
Trevor: today, we’re going to chat with Scott about his 2013 ride along the Trans-Siberian and then onwards via high-speed rail from Beijing to Hong Kong. How did this whole idea get going?
Scott: My dad had a hankering to do the Trans-Siberian (TS) for a while and my mom wasn’t down with it. So he asked me and I said yes. I didn’t know a whole lot about it but dig trains, my dad, and thought when is this going to be an option again. I think it was the last week of August and first week of September I believe.
Trevor gives his impressions of the voyage.
Scott’s impressions on riding the trans-Siberian railway:
- It’s big – those are big countries and territories covered
- Moscow was interesting and beautiful
- There’s a lot of trees
- Super glad we went to Mongolia
- Wow – it’s long and big!
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Trevor: We’re surprised we haven’t talked about this legendary trip from Europe to and through Asia already, but today I’m going to chat with Scott about his experience there, traveling the TS with his Dad. They also spent one week in Mongolia, a few days in Beijing, then took the high-speed rail to Shenzen and then onwards via train to Hong Kong. Let’s get into it!
Listen to episode 176 – Riding the Trans-Siberian Railway to hear Scott’s answers to the following questions:
- So where did the idea to do this trip come from?
- Is this the first trip you and your dad did together?
- How did you go about planning the trip, securing train tickets, hotels, etc??
- When did you go, how long and what’s the high view of the trip you did?
- What was Moscow like?
- Where did you first get on the train, what was it like, and what sort of quarters were you in?
- So how long were you on to the first stop and what was that like?
- What were the stops like along the way?
- What are the meals and drink like along the way?
- Then you got to Mongolia – where, how long?
- Then how did you get to Beijing?
- How long in Beijing and how did you feel about that city?
- So then you had to make it to Hong Kong, how did you do that?
- What are a couple of the stand-out memories that come when you see a map and remember the trip?
- What advice do you have for people who want to do this trip / experience?
- Is there anything you learned along the way?
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