That’s where we are right now. Everything is booked and – as far as possible – payed for. Now we are stuck and have to wait for the Russians and the Chinese to grant us our visas (the only item still in red on my 19-point booking/todo list for this trip).
So while we’re waiting with nothing better to do… here are some blogs of other people who managed to get their visas and travel on the Trans-Siberian Railway in the past:
Train-Adventure 2006/2007 (November-December 2006) [German]
How did we get here? (October-November 2012) [English]
Mit dem Zug nach Südostasien (October 2013) [German]
Since apparently the world did not end after our last trip (unreliable Mayans!), it’s time for another installment in our highly successful Asia travel series.
And here are the stops for 2014:
We will travel from Stuttgart to Frankfurt by train and then fly to Moscow with Aeroflot. Between Moscow, Irkutsk, Ulan-Bator and Beijing we’ll be using the Trans-Siberian Railway (using the Mongolian route tho, so technically we’ll be using the Trans-Mongolian Railway starting in Ulan-Ude) After a short stop in Beijing (to shower, rest and maybe visit another segment of the Great Wall – or just go geocaching), we’ll be boarding an overnight train to Shanghai. There we will spend two days exploring the parts of the city that we didn’t get to the last time (because of too much EXPO’ing). After that we will ferry over to Osaka with the Su Zhou Hao – like we did back in 2010. Our usual business hotel in Osaka will be our operating base for 2 days – during which we will surely train down to Hiroshima for some Okonomiyaki – before we will move north to Niigata (to visit the nearby Nagaoka Festival which is apparently famous for its big fireworks show). From there we will skip into Hokkaido and Hakodate will become our base – right in the middle between Aomori (so we can visit the Nebuta Festival) and Sapporo. The final stop on our trip will (obviously) be Tokyo where we will have our sushi breakfast, maybe make another trip to look at Mt. Fuji and do souvenir shopping before flying back to Frankfurt (via Moscow). To get back to Stuttgart we will probably have to use a City Night Line train, because we will be arriving too late to catch an ICE and sitting around at the airport for 8 hours (when there is an alternative) is not really my preferred way to spend the night.