Vodkatrain offers semi-guided journeys for 18 to 35 year olds on the Trans Mongolian Railway and the Silk Road. Travel routes cover Russia, Mongolia, China, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and India. Setting it apart from other trip operators are the local 'Honchos' and flexible schedules that allow you to explore just the way you like. 

Why travel with Vodkatrain

  1. Small groups of like-minded travellers
  2. Expert staff with heaps of local knowledge
  3. Mix and match with Vodkapacks and Railpacks
  4. Comfortable rail travel between destinations
  5. Schedules are determined for you

Popular Vodkatrain tours

  • The Vodkatrain (21 days)
  • The Marco Polo (25 days)
  • Budgeting Bolshevik (12 days)
  • Ruski Huski (17 days)
  • The Holy Cow Leg 1 (12 days)

A unique approach

Feel like your crossing uncharted territory but know that Vodkatrain has your back the whole way, providing accommodation, transport and local guides to help you get the most out of your unique experience. You decide what you see, eat, drink and experience with a local expert at each stop to provide a little guidance and insight.  

During your overland adventure you have the opportunity to disembark and explore various cities along the route. In Beijing you can shop, eat fresh street food and walk along the Great Wall. In Mongolia you’ll stay in traditional felt huts and ride horses with the locals.

The Vodkatrain way

Known for its popular Vodkatrain twist on the Trans Mongolian journey, the Vodkatrain tour is a classic. Traverse three distinct countries as you soak up local culture, party to the wee hours at fantastic nightclubs and explore the unique diversity of each place you stop. From Beijing to St Petersburg, surprises and hidden treasures abound.

Group sizes are small to ensure more personalised service, and excellent value ensures you get the most bang for your buck as you go. Accommodation ranges from hostels and hotels to traditional gers and yurts along the Silk Road, while the train travel provides yet another opportunity to mingle with locals on scheduled services.

Did you know...

  • Vodkatrain provides visa support for Australian and British domiciled clients
  • Vodkatrain is a partner of Sundowners Overland, which offers more than 30 years in the industry

Explore Vodkatrain

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This was an excellent experience that I thoroughly recommend. Firstly, the train itself is a very unique experience - amazing landscapes and scenery, interesting Russian people and the train itself all make it a very different trip. Then there are the guides provided that are very friendly and informative and always up ofr a laugh. Thirdly, even though this is the cheapest trip, it would be a lot harder to do it independently, and you are transported over a huge distance. Definitely recommend it to anyone, especially as a different start to your gap year.

Steven

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Crossing China, Mongolia and Russia on the Trans-Mongolian and Trans-Siberian Railway has been an unforgettable experience. We are really happy  with our decision to go with Vodka Train.  It was all the parts of a tour we like - organised transport and accommodation, without the structured sight-seeing.

We definitely got a lot more out of each city and visited more cities and sights than if we were doing it on our own. It would also have been pretty difficult to do on your own as there is very limited English, the train timetables are impossible to understand, and we often crossed multiple time zones in a day.  The trains also leave without a bell or warning so it would be easy to miss a train and get stuck in the middle of no where. 

The best part about going with Vodka Train was having a local honcho to tell us about the city and show us the best parts. The honchos were similar ages to our group, spoke fluent English and were a lot of fun. We learnt more about the people, culture and life in China, Mongolia and Russia from them than anything we could read in a guide book. It was also a lot more fun to do in a group. We have made some fantastic friends that definitely enhanced our experience, and we look forward to catching up with. 

We saw some amazing places. We would never have considered visiting Mongolia but it turned out to be one of our favourite parts of the trip. Staying in a traditional ger, riding horses across the desert, and the beautiful scenery was fantastic. Our guide in Mongolia, Gerlee, definitely made our experience. Moscow was also spectacular, walking into Red Square and seeing St Basil's Cathedral was our favorite experience of the trip. Lake Baikal was magnificent, and seeing the Kazan Kremlin at night was another top experience.

We also enjoyed trying different local foods and learning a bit of the languages; we are now pricrasna (perfect) at Russian! Traveling on the trains, especially for up to 3 days at a time was a very unique adventure. As was not showering, not being able to go to the bathroom for hours at a time, and surviving on instant porridge, noodles and coffee. I have a new found respect for the multitude of uses for a thermos!

However we were pleasantly surprised by the standard of the trains. The cabins were comfortable and the train attendants were great. The food cart was also good fun, as was eating food sold by women on the platforms, and drinking wodka with Russians. We would definitely recommend Vodka Train, it is such a unique experience and a fantastic way to see some different and interesting places.

Claire

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I had a fantastic time, the vodkatrain was a really great journey and the honchos definitely made travelling and time at each city easier and more interesting. The group element was the best part probably and I would do this trip or another vodkatrain one again. Two things i would improve is more pre-departure info as to what we need and what we will be doing, and the honcho should have told the group to bring litres and litres of bottled water to the national park in Mongolia as lack of clean water became a real problem. Other than that, the places visited were very diverse and interesting and I had a lot of fun!

Izzy

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An amazing experience. Not recommended for fussy travellers but for those with a sense of adventure and a laid-back, positive attitude you will love this trip! The visa support, ample pre-departure info, pre-booked accommodation and transport, as well as having a local to hang out with in each destination make this trip stress free, while still leaving you to create your own adventures in each destination rather than being shunted around in a group following a fully booked itinerary. LOVED IT.

Sally

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