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Trans Mongolian Discovery with Sundowners Overland

21 days

Trans Mongolian Discovery with Sundowners Overland

Your overall experience

Begin by walking the Great Wall of China. Then ride the rails north, far across the vast expanses of the Gobi Desert. Still farther on, we find a city where Islamic and Orthodox architecture stands side by side. In the distance, we discover Russia’s two grandest cities.

"This is a trip of a lifetime that started off in Beijing enjoying the energy of the city & its people and climbing the Great Wall. The vastness of Mongolia & the Ger experience provided an understanding of the culture of the nomadic people. Russia is magnificent country of culture and charm of its people broadens your horizons. What a stunning adventure. Made even better by our Tour Leader. We can do this all over again." Warwick & Bernadette, Sydney, Australia


  • 13 breakfasts, 2 dinners
  • All transfers including to and from the airport
  • 10 nights in a hotel (twin share)
  • 2 nights in a Siberian guesthouse (twin share)
  • 1 night in a Mongolian ger (shared)
  • 7 nights onboard the train (shared 4-berth)
  • Comprehensive schedule of sightseeing with certified Local Guides. You’ll have a generous sprinkling of free time to relax or explore on your own.
  • An experienced Tour Leader accompanies the whole journey to keep your adventure on track. Local Guides are native to each destination and as certified professionals will share their immense knowledge with you. 24/7 support is available in the office and on the ground.


Day 1: Beijing

Follow smoky, spicy aromas off Beijing’s neon strips and get acquainted with the capital through its food and the people who gather to

cook and eat it. After tasting contemporary culture, perhaps people watch in Tiananmen Square or slip back in time with a visit to the

ancient Forbidden City.

Join your Tour Leader and fellow travellers this evening as final preparations are made for your departure. Please meet your Tour

Leader at 5:00pm for your Welcome Meeting as detailed on your Joining Instructions.

Day 2: Beijing

Beyond the city we take an unforgettable walk on the Great Wall of China at Mutianyu.

Sightseeing - Excursion to the Great Wall at Mutianyu Optional activity: Evening cultural performance.

Meals - Breakfast

Day 3: Trans Mongolian Railway

Board an early morning departure on the Trans Mongolian Railway and observe the villages and fields of northern China slip away as we

head north. As the sun sets we’ll cross the Gobi Desert bound for the Mongolian border, and its quirky yet friendly capital of


Meals - Boxed breakfast

Day 4: Ulaanbaatar

The scenery as we approach Ulaanbaatar is impressive. The train winds around tight bends to provide excellent photo opportunities.

Finally the capital appears, set amid endless grassy steppes.

Sightseeing - National History museum and Sukhbaatar Square

Day 5: To Terelj National Park

After breakfast, we visit the Zaisan Memorial from which the entire city is visible, as well as the country’s largest remaining monastery,

Gaandan Khiid, where you can mingle with Buddhist monks.

Later in the day we travel out across the grasslands, through the countryside that was once the home to Genghis Khan and his Golden

Horde, to the pristine Terelj National Park.

Sightseeing - Gaandan Khiid Monastery and Zaisan Memorial

Meals - Breakfast & Dinner

Day 6: Terelj National Park

This morning we awake in a Mongolian nomad ger (felt tent), amongst spectacular rock formations and wild rolling hills. Living among

nomadic families and their grazing livestock we can explore nearby valleys or just relax and enjoy the area.

Sightseeing - Excursion to Aryabal Monastey, Turtle Rock and visit a local nomadic family.

Meals - Breakfast & dinner

Day 7: Ulaanbaatar and across Mongolia

We return to Ulaanbaatar where you have the opportunity to further explore this fascinating city before boarding our overnight train to


Sightseeing - See the enormous Chinggis Khaan Statue.

Meals - Breakfast

Day 8: Arrive Irkutsk and to Lake Baikal

You find Irkutsk after your train trip north. It’s a charming city with a history dating from the fur and tea trading days when it began as an

isolated Cossack outpost. Aristocratic exiles from the west brought a touch of elegance with their ornately decorated wooden houses,

while Asian traders from Mongolia and China introduced a touch of the Orient.

Your train rolls into Irkutsk Station late afternoon. From here you will drive to the nearby lakeside village of Listvyanka, where you will

spend the next two nights. This is a perfect spot to pause and relax.

Meals - Dinner

Day 9: Lake Baikal

Today we will enjoy our time in Listvyanka on the shores of the world’s deepest freshwater lake, Baikal. Here we have time to explore

the village with its traditional houses, Limnological Museum and spectacular landscapes.

Sightseeing - Limnological Museum

Meals - Breakfast

Day 10: Irkutsk and aboard the Trans Siberian Railway

Upon our return from Lake Baikal we will embark on a walking tour where you will discover the city’s wonderful historic sights – 18

century churches, bright painted shutters and log houses decorated with intricate wooden lacework.

Late this evening we join the Trans Siberian Railway! We head west pausing briefly at stations - Novosibirsk, Omsk and Yekaterinburg

among them – riding the rails of the world-famous Trans Siberian Railway en route for Kazan.

Sightseeing - Walking City Tour including Local History Museum.

Meals - Breakfast

Day 11: Trans Siberian Railway

Life on board is a destination in itself! Mingle, learn some new phrases, or practice those you have learned on the locals over the

mandatory vodka.

Day 12: Trans Siberian Railway

When your train pulls into the many stations along the way hop off and sample the fresh local snacks from the Babushkas selling their

homemade goodies and fresh produce from the platform.

Day 13: Welcome to Kazan

This afternoon we arrive in one of Russia’s most progressive cities – the capital of the Tatarstan Republic within Russia, where orthodox

and Islamic cultures meet.

Day 14: Kazan and onto Moscow

Built on the intersection of two rivers, Kazan has endured a tumultuous history, in 1553 Ivan the Terrible took it from the Golden Horde

and the city under went a process of Russification. Today Tatars, the descendants of the Golden Horde, make up about 43% of the

population, maintain their own language as well as culture, and are very proud of their history.

Today you can soak in the history and culture of this wonderful city on a full day tour with a local guide including a visit to the UNESCO

World Heritage Listed Kazan Kremlin before we board our overnight train to Moscow.

Sightseeing - City Tour including the Kazan Kremlin

Meals - Breakfast

Day 15: Hello Moscow!

Welcome to Moscow! This city will amaze you, its palaces and public buildings restored to their former glory. The echoing vastness of

Red Square, the splendid twirled cupolas of St. Basil’s across the cobblestones.

Sightseeing - City Tour including Red Square, St Basil’s Cathedral. Optional activity: Cultural evening performance

Day 16: Moscow

Today we can explore the Kremlin itself, where we go behind its walls to visit the Armoury Chamber with its vast array of treasures.

Sightseeing - Kremlin excursion including the Armoury Chambers, City Exploring and free time.

Meals - Breakfast

Day 17: Moscow and to Velikiy Novgorod

Enjoy the day in Moscow exploring the city. Head underground to see the palatial, chandelier-draped metro, people watch on Arbat

Street or wander the recently opened Zaryadye Park and take in the breathtaking views of the Kremlin. Returning to the station late in

the evening, we board our train to Velikiy Novgorod.

Sightseeing - City Exploring and free time.

Meals - Breakfast

Day 18: Velikiy Novgorod

Welcome to Veliky Novgorod, one of Russia's most important historical cities. Novgorod lies along the Volkhov River which once

featured as the main waterway for medieval trade between the Varangians and the Greeks.

As a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the city boasts a number of great sights to visit and unique architecture. Visit the stone Cathedral of

St. Sophia which was built by Vladimir of Novgorod in the 11th century and view its impressive 5 domes at 38 metres high. See Russia's

oldest palace, bell tower and clock tower which are located within the Novgorod Kremlin. The entire city acts as a museum, offering

plenty of opportunity to delve into Russia's history.

Sightseeing - Kremlin Complex including St Sopia Cathedral & Museum of Wooden Architecture Vitoslavitsy

Meals - Breakfast

Day 19: Welcome to St. Petersburg!

This morning we depart on the final leg of our epic journey to St Petersburg.

It is the city on the water, the ‘Venice of the North’, standing resplendent on the delta of the Neva River. Our City Tour will reveal the

city’s other great secrets including St. Isaac’s Cathedral and the enormous Palace Square.

Sightseeing - Half Day Tour including Peter and Paul Cathedral Day, City Exploring and free time.

Meals - Breakfast

Day 20: St. Petersburg

Further explore this luxurious city with richly filled palaces and museums, wide boulevards and Venice-like canals, and the greatest art

collection of all, at the Hermitage.

Sightseeing - City Tour including Hermitage Museum and Palace Square, City Exploring and free time Optional Activity: Cultural evening


Meals - Breakfast

Day 21: St. Petersburg

Our adventure has drawn to a close. Say farewell to your travelling companions and tour leader before departing your hotel this


Meals - Breakfast

  • 13 breakfa

Journey Summary

Day 1 Beijing - journey begins

Day 2 Beijing

Day 3 Depart to Ulaanbaatar Early morning departure

Day 4 Arrive Ulaanbaatar Afternoon arrival

Day 5 To Terelj National Park

Day 6 Terelj National Park

Day 7 Return to Ulaanbaatar and depart to Irkutsk Afternoon departure

Day 8 Arrive Irkutsk and to Lake Baikal Afternoon arrival

Day 9 Lake Baikal

Day 10 Return to Irkutsk and depart to Kazan Late evening departure

Day 11 Onboard train

Day 12 Onboard train

Day 13 Arrive Kazan Afternoon arrival

Day 14 Kazan and depart to Moscow Evening departure

Day 15 Arrive Moscow Morning arrival

Day 16 Moscow

Day 17 Moscow and depart to Velikiy Novgorod Late evening departure

Day 18 Velikiy Novgorod

Day 19 To St Petersburg Morning train

Day 20 St Petersburg

Day 21 St Petersburg - journey concludes


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What our experts say


Prices are per person (pp) in NZD, twin share based on lead in season. All care is taken to promote correct pricing at time of publication but is dependent upon availability and will be confirmed at time of reservation. Valid for sale until sold out. Airfares not included unless specified. Offers are subject to availability and can change without notification due to fluctuations in charges and currency. Credit card surcharges apply. Supplied by Sundowners Overland. For full terms and conditions please contact a World Travellers consultant.

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