Trans-Siberian Railway – bucket list.

5,772 miles of line connecting Moscow to Vladivostok, traversing seven time zones, and now 100 years old this year, spanning the Tsarist, Soviet, and … Putin eras of Russian history, the Trans-Siberian Railway remains the bucket list journey.

map1In an age where a return flight from London to Tokyo will set you back £500, and with the soaring volume of airline bargains out there – I managed to nab a Bangkok to Oslo flight for £162 – it says a lot about the lure of antiquated travel that the Trans-Siberian and other such lengthy train journeys are as popular as ever, holidaymakers forking out big money for the ‘comforts’ of the railway.

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There is indeed something romantic about this epic quest across Eurasia – the getting from A to B a jaunt to experience in itself. Perhaps in our age of hyper-terrorism it’s a safety thing, or a longing for the charm and simplicities of the past amidst the grotesque tedium of air travel, the fuselage the preserve of martinets in tacky uniforms and lunatics with imaginary friends.

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Construction of the track. Siberia, 1899. Photograph by I.R. Tomaskiewicz. 

Further reading:

https://www.theguardian.com/travel/2016/oct/06/trans-siberian-railway-100-an-unforgettable-experience-readers

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