Friday, 16 August 2013

Day 10 - Across Siberia

Day three (or 2.5 if you want to be precise) in the Trans Siberian, the landscape keeps changing as we travel further East. There are subtle changes at times but you can see them if you pay attention or just look out the window enough and trust me, you will be looking out the window a lot.
It is difficult to capture it all in pictures but I hope they can give you an idea.

It is easy to forget how vast distances and how big certain countries really are if you fly everywhere. I mean if you can be in an almost constantly moving train for days at an end and still have more to go to reach your destination, then you will understand an appreciate distances you've never thought of before.
I have flown over Siberia numerous times before, on my travels to Asia, but never really understood the sheer size of it. Kind of makes you wonder how long it must have taken to travel here before the train line was built or the effort it must have taken in building the rail tracks.

This is certainly one of the best journeys I have taken and can only recommend it to everyone because here you don't think about the destination or how fast you get there, this is all about the journey itself. You lose any concept of time and it does not really matter, the train keeps moving and you keep yourself occupied with whatever you can find or just look out the window.
The only times that do matter are the times when the train stops at certain stations for 20 minutes for passengers to board and you can get some air, stretch your legs and get supplies of you need.
I have never understood cruises on a ship where you see nothing but water for days and weeks to an end but I can fully understand taking long train journeys. This despite not having had a shower since I left Moscow, be happy you don't sit next to me while I type this. ;)

On my first day, I mentioned of hoping to share the compartment with someone speaking English or tourists, forget this. Looking at it know, you want to share this journey woth the locals and be completely immersed in the country and culture. So despite me seeing some tourists, I kept to my Russian travel companions and have enjoyed it so far.

Sitting here, looking out the window, I feel like writing so you can blame this on my long posts. Should I ever feel like writing a novel, I will take this train to Vladivostock and back as it will provide me with the time and inspiration needed to do so. :)
Maybe I feel like writing because there are only so many ways you can take pictures out of a train and I need a different outlet.

It certainly is a change from the manic past days where I have been walking around 10km each days sightseeing, taking pictures and trying to get from one city to the next. Now, I am just sitting here, looking out the window and trying to find ways to keep occupied. Some have wondered about my tight schedule but this train journey here and the expensive cities I have passed through were the main reason for the scheduling I had set.


  1. Cristian - Clearly you are a patient man. Your experience seems to be an exercise in living in the moment. Not easy to do!


  2. Fabulous documentary of a place I will never see and most people have never seen. Even though I have a degree in Geography, I had to look up the location of Irkutsk. That is one hell of a remote location!

    Keep safe and keep shooting these marvellous photographs. I salute you for your sense of adventure.

  3. I really enjoy reading your candid comments and watching the pictures! Your earlier post about the Trans Siberian's journey reminds me of Paulo Coello's books. No wonder now that the Moscow to Vladivostock trip triggered his inspiration. I also like what you say about talking with non-English speakers and to immerse yourself in the culture.


  4. Thanks for your comments!

    John, I always live in the moment, it's the best advice I can give anyone as t makes things so much easier.

    Calvin, if you can at some pint do this journey, I can fully recommend it and think it would be good to do this and get the time for yourself.

    Thanks Elodie! Glad you enjoy reading the posts and seeing the pictures.
    I need to have a look at his books when I am back.