Trans Siberian Railway
Moscow late at night, and we boarded Train No 4 for the 6 day journey to Beijing with a crowd of europeans intent on a party and with Russians and Chinese on board to make the jouney interesting.
For 3 days, we crossed the vastness of Siberia, passing villages of mud roads and wooden houses, and woke to sunrise over the spectacular Lake Baikal, the deepest fresh water lake in the world; and spent most of the day traveling along its shores. On day 5, after a night celebrating leaving Russia with too much Russian 'champagne' and the sobering experience of Mongolian customs, we woke up to the the barren grassy steppes on the way to Ulan Bator and the vast Gobi Desert. We reached the Chinese border at midnight to the sound of triumphant martial music played at full volume, and the surreal experience of being jacked up to have the bogies changed to Chinese gauge.
On the last day, the train crossed the mountains north of Beijing along the Great Wall of China at Qinglongqiao and finally arrived, 8961 Km from Moscow, at Beijing's main station in the late aternoon.