From bustling Beijing to the Hermitage in St Petersburg, travel halfway around the world in three incredible weeks. Board one of the world’s great trains and ride the rails on this once-in-a-lifetime trip across the grassy steppes of Mongolia and through the taiga forests of Siberia. Share train carriages with locals and spend nights in a Mongolian ger and a cozy Russian guesthouse. Not only does this trip provide the perfect blend of comfortable accommodations and plenty of activities, but also free time to explore this fascinating region at your own pace.
There are no planned activities until the group meeting in the evening.
While on board, settle in and enjoy impressive views as the train tackles the mountains before descending to the arid lands of Inner Mongolia and continuing into the heart of rural Asia. In the evening, reach the border post of Erlian. Here, the train's wheels will be changed to accommodate a different gauge rail. Opt to stay on board and watch it happen.
Discover one of the most important Mongolian temple complexes, the Gandan Monastery. Learn about the history of Buddhism in Mongolia and hope for the chance to see chanting monks. If lucky, a local fortune teller may be around to share some wisdom. After the Monastery, the tour will continue in the Winter Palace of the last Mongolian King (the only King's palace that survived the revolution). At the end of the tour, visit Zaisan Hill, a great viewpoint with a monument dedicated to Soviet soldiers.
Walk through the valleys and live simply while overnighting in a traditional ger camp.
Return back to Ulaanbaatar before boarding the next train.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Lake Baikal is the oldest and deepest lake in the world. With free time, catch a glimpse into why this is the "Galapagos of Russia". Opt to go for a boat ride or take a short hike.
With free time, opt to see a performance at the Yekaterinburg Opera and Ballet Theatre, visit the fine art gallery or spend some time at the military museum.
In the morning, board the Trans-Ural Railway. Say farewell to Asia while crossing the Urals into Europe.
The area around the Red Square is perfect for sightseeing and people watching. Visit one of the many shops, wander the Alexandr Gardens or visit the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Head down into the metro to explore the beautiful stations or visit another part of the city.
St Petersburg, one of Europe's finest cities, is home to baroque European architecture combined with the opulent palaces of Russian royalty. Its tree-lined streets and cosmopolitan atmosphere make it a favourite destination for travellers from around the globe. Upon arrival to St Petersburg take a walking tour of the city. Learn the sordid history of the city from the Peter the Great to Dostoevsky to the Seige of Leningrad.
Your Welcome Moment: Meet Your CEO and Group Your Local Living Moment: Traditional Ger Stay, Gorkhi Terelj National Park. China-Mongolia Railway. Ulaanbaatar guided city tour including Gandan Monastery, Zaisan Hill and Bogd Khan Palace. Chinggis Khaan Statue Complex visit. Trans-Mongolian Railway. Irkutsk city tour. Lake Baikal stay (Listvyanka). Trans-Siberian Railway. Yekaterinburg walking tour. Trans-Ural Railway. Red Square visit and Moscow metro orientation tour. Kremlin and Armoury guided tour. St Petersburg walking tour. Hermitage Museum entrance. Local meal suggestions and language and border-crossing support throughout. All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.
Ride the rails through Mongolia's grassy steppe and Siberia's taiga forests, stay in a local village on Lake Baikal, admire the grand structure of Moscow's Kremlin and Red Square, marvel at the rich art collection in the Hermitage Museum
The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in the brochure. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience. Please note that our brochure is usually released in November each year. If you have booked from the previous brochure you may find there have been some changes to the itinerary. VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Trip Details to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.
While it is our intention to adhere to the route described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The Trip Details document is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Aboard expedition trips visits to research stations depend on final permission. Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.
OFFICIAL LETTER OF INVITATION An official letter of invitation for Russia is needed in order to get your Russian visa. We work with a local operator to obtain these letters, so please complete the visa information form which will be emailed at time of booking in a timely manner so the visa process is completed before your departure. Please note that we enter Russia on day 9 of this trip (See Visa section) IMMIGRATION CARD On arrival in Russia you will receive a double immigration card, you must fill out both parts and one is taken away upon entry, the other must remain with your passport at all times and you must have it when you are leaving Russia to hand to the relevant authorities. BOOK THEATRE TICKETS IN ADVANCE Booking Theatre tickets in advance: to avoid disappointment we recommend that you book any theatre performances that you wish to attend in Moscow or St Petersburg in advance. Please consider carefully which performances you are going to want attend and make sure that the dates correspond to your trip. Here are some useful internet sites to check for what will be on (ballet, opera, exhibitions, etc) in Moscow and St Petersburg when you are there. In particular we recommend you see what's playing at the Bolshoi and Mariinsky, as it may be difficult to get tickets when you are there especially during White Nights in St Petersburg. The most useful sites to check in English are www.mariinsky.ru, www.bolshoi.ru and www.ticketsofrussia.com. PASSPORT Please confirm the tour with the same passport you will be travelling with on the Trans-Mongolian Express. If you happen to change passports before departure, please reach out to our Sales team with your new passport details so they can notify our teams on the ground. At approximately 60 days from date of departure our local teams purchase our train tickets with the passport provided. If your passport information changes within this time please notify our Sales team as soon as possible with your new information. You could be subject to rebooking fees. MONEY Due to the bank restrictions on changing money in Russia, Mongolia and China, only notes/bills printed after 1996 and in good condiition will be accepted for exchange. Usually 50 and 100 USD/EUR notes get better exchange rate.
All our G Adventures group trip is accompanied by a G Adventures Chief Experience Officer (CEO) in China. The aim of the CEO is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. They will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the countries visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. We also use local guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting- we think it's the best of both worlds.
Max 16, avg 12
9 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 4 dinners
Eating is a big part of traveling. Travelling with G Adventures you experience the vast array of wonderful food that is available out in the world. Generally meals are not included in the trip price when there is a choice of eating options, to give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat. It also gives you more budgeting flexibility, though generally food is cheap. Our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. There is no obligation to do this though. Your CEO will be able to suggest favourite restaurants during your trip. The above information applies to G Adventures group trips. For Independent trips please check the itinerary for details of meals included. For all trips please refer to the meals included and budget information for included meals and meal budgets.
Train, private bus, metro, walking.
All trains are 2nd Class Kupe Soft sleepers: 4 berth compartments that have lockable doors. There an overhead locker and storage space under the bottom bunk that is sufficient space for your luggage. Bed linen is provided on all trains. Each carriage has two toilets and one hot water boiler. There are two train attendants in each carriage to take care of passengers and maintain the facilities. Most of the trains (but not all) will have dining car. This being said, it is always a good idea to bring your own snacks aboard for more variety of food options while travelling.
We believe solo travellers should not have to pay more to travel so our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and do not involve a single supplement. Single travellers joining group trips are paired in twin or multi-share accommodation with someone of the same sex for the duration of the trip. Some of our Independent trips are designed differently and solo travellers on these itineraries must pay the single trip price.
Hotels/guesthouses (11 nts), sleeper trains (5 nts), Mongolian ger (2 nts).
Please note that if you have booked the "My Own Room" option for this tour, you will receive your own single room for all night stops
Nights 2, 6, 9-10, 13 (overnight train); Nights 4-5 (ger tent).
A variety of styles of hotels/guest houses are used on this trip. In some local guest houses the rooms can be small and simple with shared toilet facilities and showers. A sleep sheet and travel pillow are recommended for the overnight train journeys, although simple bedding is provided. The trains have sleeper carriages with 4 beds per cabin.
For details of your joining hotel please refer to your tour voucher, G Account, the G Adventures App or contact your travel agent.
When arriving to Beijing International Airport, you have a few choices on how to get to your starting point hotel. Taxi: Follow the signs to the taxi ranks once you have come out of the baggage hall. The ranks are clearly defined and traffic guards will systematically put you into a taxi. Print out the name of your hotel in Chinese. A taxi ride will take between 34-45 minutes depending on traffic, and should cost between 95-120 Yuan (plus an extra 10 for the tollway). DO NOT GO WITH ANYONE WHO APPROACHES YOU OFFERING A METERED TAXI WHICH IS PARKED IN THE LOT. We do not recommend travelling with anyone who approaches you offering a metered taxi from the nearby parking lot. They are not official taxis and usually charge a much higher price. Airport Express Train: Once you have come out of the luggage hall, follow the signs to the underground Airport Express Line. This line takes you to the center of Beijing, to DONGZHIMEN, where you can transfer to Subway line 2, or take a taxi from here to your hotel. The Airport Express ticket costs 25 yuan. It takes about 16 minutes from Terminal 3 of the Airport to Dongzhimen. Train hours are from 6:30am to 10:30pm. To continue to Chongwen Men Hotel by subway, it is very easy to transfer to Line 2 of the Subway and take it 5 stops to the Chongwenmen stop (Chongwen men station). Take Exit D out Walk will take you about 3 minutes to hotel. Subway fare is 2 yuan. If you have paid in advance for an arrival transfer, a G Adventures representative will be at the airport to meet you. If for any reason you are not met at the airport, please call our local support line. If you are unable to make contact for whatever reason, please make your way to the joining point hotel via taxi. Please note that Day 1 is an arrival day and no activities have been planned for that day other then your welcome meeting in the evening, so you can arrive at any time. Similarly the last day is a departure day during which no activities have been planned. A G Adventures Representative will organize a short meeting soon after arrival, during which you will meet other tour participants and receive information about general and specific aspects of the trip. A welcome note will be left for you in the hotel so you have all the necessary information regarding the meeting time. If you arrive late, s/he will leave you a message detailing what time and where you should meet the next morning.
We don't expect any problems, and nor should you, but if for any reason you are unable to commence your trip as scheduled, please refer to the emergency contact details provided in this dossier and contact us as soon as possible. If you have a pre-booked transfer, and you have not made contact with our representative within 30 minutes of clearing customs and immigration, we recommend that you make your own way to the Starting Point hotel, following the Joining Instructions. Please apply to your travel agent on your return for a refund of the transfer cost if this occurs.
Should you need to contact us during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call either the G Adventures Local Operator (if one is listed below) or our G Adventures Local Office. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible. AIRPORT TRANSFER If you have purchased an arrival through G Adventures or if an arrival transfer is included in the cost of your tour, please note that: Your arrival transfer has been arranged based on flight information provided to us. If you are advised of a flight schedule change within 48 hours of your scheduled arrival time, we will do our best to rearrange your arrival transfer however we cannot guarantee this. If your arrival transfer does not arrive within 30 minutes after you have exited the arrivals area please take a taxi to your start point hotel If your call is specifically concerning Beijing Airport Transfer complications please call our local G Adventures Transfer provider directly at: Ms Xiaofeng Chen (Beijing): +86 1391 0388 356 EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS Mr Laziz Otayarov (Operations Manager - Central Asia) Mobile 1: +99890 963 4779 (24h) Mobile 2: +99897 921 7087 (24h) G Adventures office (China): During office hours, Mon-Fri 9:30-18:00 Local Time 1st contact +86 138 1141 7691 2nd contact +86 180 6662 0092 After office hours emergency number: +86 187 0058 2383 If you are unable for any reason to contact our local office, please call the numbers listed below which will connect you directly with our Sales team who will happily assist you. Hours of operation by region can be found here. Toll-free, North America only: 1 888 800 4100 Calls from UK: 0344 272 0000 Calls from Germany: 0800 365 1000 Calls from Australia: 1 300 796 618 Calls from New Zealand: 0800 333 307 Outside North America, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and the UK: +1 416 260 0999
If you go to the airport - metro is the easiest way. From metro station Moskovskaya there are buses to the both airport terminals (about 3-5$). Make sure you check from what terminal - Pulkovo 1 or Pulkovo 2 you depart. There is no bus connection between two terminals, and they are quite far apart. If you take train - make sure that you go to the right train station (by metro again). Trains to Finland leave from Ladozhsky and Finlandsky train stations. To Moscow - from Moskovsky train station - 10 min walk from our hotel. To Eastern Europe - from Vitebsky train station. You also can take a bus to Helsinki (approx 25 EUR - bus stop is at the hotel Oktyabarskaya, opposite Moskovsky train station; 10 min walk from the hotel), or to Baltic states (check EuroLines website). If you need a taxi to take you to the airport, ask hotel to book it and confirm a price for you.
You will be on the move a good deal, so pack as lightly as possible. It is in your own interest as you are expected to carry your own luggage, though distances are never great. Most travellers carry their luggage in a pack, which is the most suitable. Suitcases are not recommended for G Adventures travellers! It is important that your bag can be locked. You will also need an overnight pack for the Terelj ger stay. This should be big enough to carry a spare set of clothes and basic necessities (approx. 30 litre/8 gallons capacity). If you are not sure about what kind of clothes to bring - check some weather web sites, and remember that layers are always good when it's chilly. Do not bring any knives or swords into China (gifts or otherwise). If they do make it into the country, they will not be permitted on trains. If you purchase a knife or sword while travelling elsewhere before arriving in China your best option is to post/mail it home before entering the country as no post/mail companies in China will accept it as a parcel.
Cold Weather: • Long-sleeved shirts or sweater • Scarf • Warm gloves • Warm hat • Warm layers Conservative Dress: • Modest clothing that covers knees and shoulders (Long pants, long skirts, shirts that cover shoulders) • Shawl or scarf (for temple visits) Documents: • Flight info (required) (Printouts of e-tickets may be required at the border) • Insurance info (required) (With photocopies) • Passport (required) (With photocopies) • Required visas or vaccination certificates (required) (With photocopies) • Vouchers and pre-departure information (required) Essentials: • Binoculars (optional) • Camera (With extra memory cards and batteries) • Cash, credit and debit cards • Day pack (Used for daily excursions or short overnights) • Ear plugs • First-aid kit (should contain lip balm with sunscreen, sunscreen, whistle, Aspirin, Ibuprofen, bandaids/plasters, tape, anti-histamines, antibacterial gel/wipes, antiseptic cream, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, rehydration powder, water purification tablets or drops, insect repellent, sewing kit, extra prescription drugs you may be taking) • Flashlight/torch (Headlamps are ideal) • Fleece top/sweater • Footwear • Hat • Locks for bags • Long pants/jeans • Moneybelt • Outlet adapter • Personal entertainment (Reading and writing materials, cards, music player, etc.) • Reusable water bottle • Shirts/t-shirts • Sleepwear • Small travel towel • Sunglasses • Toiletries (Preferably biodegradable) • Watch and alarm clock • Waterproof backpack cover • Windproof rain jacket Health & Safety: • Face masks (required) • Hand sanitizer (required) • Pen (Please bring your own pen for filling out documents.) • Rubber gloves Light Hiking: • Hiking boots/sturdy walking shoes • Hiking pants (Convertible/Zip-off and quick dry recommended) Sleep Sheet: • Sleep Sheet (Lightweight sleep sheet / liner) Train Travel (Optional): • Slip-on shoes • Small container with lid • Travel cutlery • Travel or camp cup Warm Weather: • Sandals/flip-flops • Shorts/skirts (Longer shorts/skirts are recommended) • Sun hat/bandana • Swimwear Note: We recommend using a backpack or soft suitcase for your main luggage. As we will be travelling on trains with limited storage space (typically inside your sleeping compartment) we recommend that your luggage dimensions be approximately 76x50x40 cm.
Laundry facilities are offered by some of our hotels for a charge. There will be times when you may want to or have to do your own laundry so we suggest you bring non-polluting/biodegradable soap.
Russia: ***PLEASE READ THE ENTIRETY OF THE TEXT BELOW AS THIS IS IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR YOUR ENTRY INTO RUSSIA*** Please note that visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. The visa requirements for your trip vary depending on where you are from and where you are going. We keep the following information up to date as much as possible, but rules do change. It is important that you check for yourself with the Embassy of Russia. Please, keep in mind that all countries require passports valid for at least 6 months from the moment of departure from the country. To apply for a Russian visa, all nationalities must present an official Russian Letter of Invitation (LOI). ***It is the responsibility of the traveller to check with their nearest Embassy and confirm the requirements for entry into Russia*** IMPORTANT: Once your trip is confirmed, at 90 days prior to your entry into Russia, you must submit an application for your Letter of Invitation. A link will be emailed to you in your confirmation email. The details will be forwarded to our local agent in Russia and as a Russian visa is only valid for 90 days once it is issued, you will be emailed your Russian Invitation Letter about 10 business days after submission. Russian LOI’s can be rushed in extreme circumstances. As Russian visas are dated specifically for entry and exit, please ensure you enter the correct dates. We also recommend that you add an extra day to the end of your trip so your visa length will cover any unexpected delays. Please also remember to put exactly the same dates when you fill out the visa application at the Russian Embassy. Input your name the same way it is in your passport. The information on the application form must match your passport (if you have 2 or more names - all of them have to be listed under "first name"). If you have an umlaut or other character not recognized in the english alphabet in your name (ie. ü), please enter it in the longer form (ie. ue). For the following multi-country trips, the days spent in Russia are as follows: ACTM - Trans-Mongolian Express: Days 6-19 Please note: Our Supplier will provide the Russian LOI by email only. This Supplier is based in Russia, so please make sure to check your SPAM folder - emails from addresses ending with .ru often get redirected as SPAM. Some nationalities may require an original copy of the LOI - please contact the Russian Embassy or Consulate to confirm. If you do require an original copy, please send an email to email@example.com to request this. You will be required to provide a valid mailing address and cover the cost of postage to receive this document. The LOI will contain 2 sections. The section on the right in Russian is identical to the section on the left in English. Beside ‘Confirmation voucher SPC’ you will find the confirmation/application/approval number you will need when filling out your visa application. The Supplier information can be found at the bottom of the left page in English (Supplier name can be found in the quotations, address, email, website and phone number follow). At time of writing, the below documents will be needed to obtain your visa (however, we do advise you confirm this with your nearest Embassy): 1. A standard visa application form from the Embassy or Consulate where you will collect your visa 2. 2 colour, passport sized photos (taken within 14 days) 3. Payment for the visa (this will be dependent on nationality and will sometimes need to be made at a local nearby bank - check with your Embassy to confirm details) 4. Passport with empty pages and at least 6 months validity 5. Russia Letter of Invitation 6. We also recommend bringing your vouchers as well as proof of onward travel (flight tickets entering and leaving the country) and a copy of the itinerary, printable from our website. While this may not be needed, we recommend having a copy on hand if needed. ***Please carefully check all the information below prior to submitting*** Once you have received your LOI you can apply for your visa by going to the Russian Embassy. Please remember that it is your responsibility to check whether passport details, name spelling and dates on the LOI are correct. PASSPORT DETAILS Please confirm the tour with the same passport you will be travelling with on the Trans-Mongolian Express. If you happen to change passports before departure, please reach out to our Sales team with your new passport details so they can notify our teams on the ground. At approximately 60 days from date of departure our local teams purchase our train tickets with the passport provided. If your passport information changes within this time please notify our Sales team as soon as possible with your new information. You could be subject to rebooking fees. Information accurate as of January 21st, 2016 ---------------- Mongolia: ***PLEASE READ THE ENTIRETY OF THE TEXT BELOW AS THIS IS IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR YOUR ENTRY INTO MONGOLIA*** Please note that visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. The visa requirements for your trip vary depending on where you are from and where you are going. We keep the following information up to date as much as possible, but rules do change. It is important that you check for yourself with the Embassy of Mongolia. Please, keep in mind that all countries require passports valid for at least 6 months from the moment of departure from the country. To apply for a Mongolian visa, many nationalities must present an official Mongolian Letter of Invitation (LOI). ***It is the responsibility of the traveller to check with their nearest Embassy and confirm the requirements for entry into Mongolia*** Noted Exemptions: Some countries do not require an LOI to apply for a tourist visa valid up to 30 days including Canada, Germany and the United States. Please be sure to check with the Embassy or Consulate to determine if your country may also be exempt. IMPORTANT: Once your trip is confirmed, at 90 days prior to your entry into Mongolia, you must submit an application for your Letter of Invitation. A link will be emailed to you in your confirmation email. The details will be forwarded to our local agent in Mongolia and you will be emailed your Mongolian Invitation Letter about 10 business days after submission. Mongolia LOI’s can be rushed in extreme circumstances. Mongolian visas can be used up to 3 months from the date the visa is issued, and once you have entered Mongolia, the visa is valid for a maximum of 30 days. Therefore, please time your application accordingly and do not apply for the visa more than 3 months in advance of your trip. Input your name the same way it is in your passport. The information on the application form must match your passport (if you have 2 or more names - all of them have to be listed under "first name"). If you have an umlaut or other character not recognized in the english alphabet in your name (ie. ü), please enter it in the longer form (ie. ue). For the following multi-country trips, the days spent in Mongolia are as follows: ACTM - Trans-Mongolian Express: Days 2-6 If your country has an official Mongolian Consulate/Embassy, you must choose this as as your 'Visa pickup Embassy’. If you do not see a local Consulate/Embassy on this list or you are unable to go there due to prior travel arrangements, please contact your Travel Agent or G Adventures for further assistance. Once you have received your Mongolian LOI and are completing the visa application from the Mongolian Embassy or Consulate, please refer to the LOI for the Supplier details required. At time of writing, the below documents will be needed to obtain your visa (however, we do advise you confirm this with your nearest Embassy): 1. A standard visa application form from the Embassy or Consulate where you will collect your visa 2. 2 colour, passport sized photos (taken within 14 days) 3. Payment for the visa (this will be dependent on nationality and will sometimes need to be made at a local nearby bank - check with your Embassy to confirm details) 4. Passport with empty pages and at least 6 months validity 5. Mongolia Letter of Invitation 6. We also recommend bringing your vouchers as well as proof of onward travel (flight tickets entering and leaving the country) and a copy of the itinerary, printable from our website. While this may not be needed, we recommend having a copy on hand if needed. ***Please carefully check all the information below prior to submitting*** Once you have received your LOI you can apply for your visa by going to the Mongolian Embassy you listed in the online application. Please remember that it is your responsibility to check whether passport details, name spelling and dates on the LOI are correct. Information accurate as of January 21st, 2016 ---------------- CHINA: all nationalities require a visa to visit China Most nationalities also need an official Letter Of Invitation (LOI) before they can apply for their Chinese visa. You can obtain the LOI through our visa support agent in China. The visa support link you need to complete will be sent to you or your travel agent by email when you confirm your booking. You must read the instructions carefully and fill out all the details. When filling out your Chinese Visa Application form, Please ensure that you list the same details as appear on your LOI when filling out your Chinese Visa Application form. Passengers traveling to Tibet: As Tibet continues to be a sensitive area for travel to the Chinese government you must refrain from listing Tibet as one of the places you are going to visit as your application form or your Visa will be denied. We will provide you with the necessary documents to obtain your Chinese Visa, please use the details provided when filling out your Chinese Visa application form. HOW TO FILL IN CHINA LOI FORM ONLINE: As Chinese visas are dated specifically for entry and exit, please ensure you enter the correct dates as per your flights entering and exiting China. Please remember to put exactly the same dates when you fill out the application at the Chinese embassy. You will need to provide additional documentation to the consulate (i.e. flights tickets, hotel reservations) if these dates fall outside the duration of the tour. Please do not submit the below application until 3 months prior to your entry into China. The details will be forwarded to our local agent in China and you will be emailed your Chinese Invitation Letter (With day by day Itinerary) only once we are within 60 days of the trip start date. Once you have received your LOI you can apply for your visa by going to the nearest Chinese embassy.Please, remember that it is your responsibility to check whether passport details, name spelling and dates on the LOI are correct. As of April 3rd, 2018, all Chinese visa application forms must be typed. Handwritten forms will no longer be accepted.
An official letter of invitation for Russia is needed in order to get your Russian visa. We work with a local operator to obtain these letters, so please complete the visa information form which will be emailed at time of booking in a timely manner so the visa process is completed before your departure. Due to Internet restrictions, some popular websites and applications – including social media sites like Facebook and email services like Gmail – may not work in China. If you think these restrictions may affect you, we suggest you do research before your departure in order to be prepared. Bear in mind the availability of websites and apps can change without notice at any time.
Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.
As currency exchange rates in Asia fluctuate often we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com. There are lots of ATM's in every big city on the way: in all of them you can withdraw local currency. Some ATM's in Moscow and St Petersburg allow to withdraw USD. Major credit cards are accepted in the shops and restaurants almost everywhere in Mongolia and Russia. Some banks in Beijing, Irkutsk, Moscow and St Petersburg (but not Ulaan Bataar) will allow cash advances against a credit card but cash withdrawals are subject to a 3% to 4% service charge. One of the main things to remember is that Mongolian Tugriks can't be exchanged outside Mongolia. Because of bank regulations and exchange rate the best USD notes to have are $50 and $100 without any marks/stamps/holes or stains on them. If a banknote has a mark it might be refused to be exchanged. For security reasons the safest way to carry your money is as travellers cheques, but please, be aware that not many banks in the region are familiar with travellers cheques, and there might be very long delays when changing them. The easiest cheques to change are Thomas Cook or American Express in US currency. The easiest and quickest way is to change USD or EUR cash but you must be aware of the security risk of carrying large sums of money. In any case some money should be taken as cash in case of emergencies. Black markets do exist but we strongly advise that you do not get involved. We recommend that you don't use money changers on the street.
Please also make sure you have access to at least an additional USD $200 (or equivalent) as an 'emergency' fund, to be used when circumstances outside our control (ex. a natural disaster) require a change to our planned route. This is a rare occurrence!
Departure Tax is included in all International and Domestic tickets in Russia.
It is customary in Asia to tip service providers such as waiters, at approximately 10%, depending on the service. In Mongolia tipping is not expected, but some restaurants have donation boxes, rising money for different charity projects. If you want to tip, they usually ask you to put money into the donation box. In Russia some restaurants include 10% service charge into the bill - check the menu. In general tipping is not expected but highly appreciated. Although it may not be customary to you, it is of considerable significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels. There are several times during the trip where there is opportunity to tip the local guides or drivers we use. You may do this individually, or your CEO will offer to collect the money and tip as a group. Recommendations for tipping drivers and local guides would range from $1-$2 USD per person per day depending on the quality and length of the service; ask your CEO for specific recommendations based on the circumstances and culture. Also at the end of each trip if you felt your G Adventures CEO did an outstanding job, tipping is appreciated. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline $20-25 USD per person, per week can be used.
Beijing - Beijing Express Ulaanbaatar - Mongolian Cultural Show (30000MNT per person) Listvyanka - Baikal Limnological Museum (350RUB per person) - Russian Banya (Bathhouse) (2000-3500RUB per person) Lake Baikal - Lake Baikal Boat Trip Irkutsk - Decembrists Museum Visit (300RUB per person) Moscow - Lenin's Mausoleum (Free) - Moskva River Boat Trip (400RUB per person) - Saint Basil's Cathedral - Red Square Visit (Free) - Alexander Garden Visit (Free) Saint-Petersburg - Midnight Canal Boat Tour (800RUB per person) - Peterhof Visit (1500RUB per person)
Please note inoculations may be required for the country visited. It is your responsibility to consult with your travel doctor for up to date medical travel information well before departure. We recommend that you carry a First Aid kit and hand sanitizers / antibacterial wipes as well as any personal medical requirements. Please be aware that sometimes we are in remote areas and away from medical facilities, and for legal reasons our leaders are prohibited from administering any type of drug including headache tablets, antibiotics, etc. In Asia pharmacies tend to stock the same western drugs as you get at home but they are usually produced locally so please bring the full drug name with you when trying to purchase a prescription drug. When selecting your trip please carefully read the brochure and itinerary and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please refer to the Physical and Culture Shock ratings for trip specific information. G Adventures reserves the right to exclude any traveller from all or part of a trip without refund if in the reasonable opinion of our CEO they are unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group.
Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers' cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewelery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. When travelling on a group trip, please note that your group leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it deemed necessary, due to safety concerns. Your Chief Experience Officer (CEO) will accompany you on all included activities. During your trip you will have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy and explore at your leisure. While your CEO will assist you with options available in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and we offer no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Although the cities visited on tour are generally safe during the day, there can be risks to wandering throughout any major city at night. It is our recommendation to stay in small groups and to take taxis to and from restaurants, or during night time excursions. Water based activities have an element of danger and excitement built into them. We recommend only participating in water based activities when accompanied by a guide(s). We make every reasonable effort to ensure the fun and adventurous element of any water based activities (in countries with varying degrees of operating standards), have a balanced approach to safety. It is our policy not to allow our CEOs to make arrangements on your behalf for water based activities that are not accompanied by guide(s). Swimming, including snorkeling, is always at your own risk. Read more about travel safety for ways to further enhance your personal safety while traveling.
We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers' cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage.
Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on any trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter and in particular the local people who make the world the special place it is. The exploitation of people in the sex trade is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our CEOs have the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they utilize the services of paid sex workers, in any capacity.
Travel insurance is compulsory in order to participate on any of our trips. When travelling on a group trip, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance has been sighted by your leader, who will take note of your insurance details. When selecting a travel insurance policy we require that at a minimum you are covered for medical expenses including emergency evacuation and repatriation. A minimum coverage of USD200,000 is required. G Adventures can provide you with the appropriate coverage. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. Some tours include adventure activities that require extra coverage (e.g. crampon use); please review your itinerary and make sure that you are covered for all included activities. If you have credit card insurance we require proof of purchase of the trip (a receipt of credit card statement) with a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage and emergency contact telephone number.
Planeterra International Foundation is a non-profit organization committed to turning travel into impact by helping local communities earn an income from tourism. Planeterra connects underserved local communities to the benefits of tourism by developing and supporting small community-owned businesses. These businesses support Indigenous people, empower women, grant youth access to employment opportunities, and protect the environment. Planeterra also works to ensure these businesses have a thriving customer base by integrating their projects into G Adventures’ itineraries globally. G Adventures is Planeterra’s largest corporate donor, covering all operating costs, so 100% of your donation will bring opportunity to people in need. G Adventures Dollar-a-day Program - Make Every Day Count - Turn your travel into impact with Planeterra Foundation. Did you know? Most communities around the world do not benefit from tourism. Give back to the places you visit on your travels by creating opportunities for local people to earn an income, and protect the environment. Make every day count by donating $1/day for the length of your trip, and join us in empowering the communities you will visit when you travel. 100% of your donation goes directly to Planeterra projects.
In Asia the dress standard is generally more conservative. When packing try to pick loose, lightweight, long clothing that will keep you cool in the usually hot and humid climate of Asian summers. In predominately Buddhist countries we ask that you dress respectfully and avoid very short skirts and singlets/tanktops when visiting temples or mosques or other holy sites.
After your travels, we want to hear from you! Your feedback information is so important to us that we'll give you 5% off the price of your next G Adventures trip if your feedback is completed on-line within 30 days of finishing your trip. Your tour evaluation will be e-mailed to you 24 hours after the conclusion of your trip. If you do not receive the tour evaluation link in the days after your tour has finished, please drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will send it on to you.
Our adventure travel e-newsletter is full of travel news, trip information, interesting stories and contests. To avoid missing out on special offers and updates from G Adventures, subscribe at www.gadventures.com/newsletters/ Stay current on how our company invests in our global community through our foundation – Planeterra. Sign up for Planeterra's monthly news to learn more about how to give back and support the people and places we love to visit.
You must be 18 to travel unaccompanied on a G Adventures tour. For minors travelling with a guardian over 21 years old, the minimum age is 12.
Check-in times and baggage allowances/restrictions vary by airline and can change at any time. For the most up-to-date information for your flight, please contact your airline. We recommend checking in online in advance to avoid potential delays at the airport.
Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout, local guides.
Ved skriftlig aksept av vårt tilbud bekrefter du/dere at våre betingelser er både lest og forstått og at evt kansellerings gebyrer kan tilkomme ved en evt. avbestilling av reisen.