This is a continuation from: Photo Story – Trip to famous Lake Baikal via Listvyanka
For the second league of the Trans Siberian league, we booked our tickets on the Russian Railways website. It’s cheaper because there isn’t any commission fee from the tour agency involved, though slightly inconvenient as you’ve got to exchange the booking confirmation for confirmed tickets. The long distance railway ticket office is located some distance away from the main station in Irkutsk. Come out of the Irkutsk Railway Station, turn right and walk straight. Be there an hour earlier just in case the queue gets really long!
The Siberian landscape, unlike Mongolia, is filled with trees, buildings and occasional factories as we pass by townships. It could be sunny, then raining or snowing in a matter of minutes. We had some difficulties taking pictures because the windows were so dirty. Hence, the pictures were edited to increase the contrast of the landscape and clean out dirt spots. Have fun looking through them!
In all honesty, I preferred the Mongolian landscape much more. Wide flat plains with clear blue skies and cotton candy clouds. The Siberian landscape was pretty harsh to me, possibly because of the season. Trees were about to hibernate, loosing their leaves and causing them to look bald and spidery. We also came across several industrialised towns in Russia spewing out what seems to be grey smoke against the setting sun. Then I am reminded of China.
There were a few “incidents” that happened along the way, given that we met Russians from all walks of life during this 4 day 3 night trip. Stay tuned, but before that let me share a series of tips and tricks for travelling on the Trans Siberian.
Watch this space for my next post on Trans Siberian tips: Planning to poo on a train toilet.