The world’s longest train journey takes eight days!

November 05, 2018
Very few things can elicit extremely contrary emotions in people – whereas on one hand, some of us would be thrilled to make a long journey by train, there are others who would groan at the very thought of spending a single day in a train. To those, we ask, how about an eight-day rail journey?

That, in fact, is how long it takes to travel from Moscow to Vladivostok (Russia) on the world’s longest journey without changing trains: the Trans-Siberian Railway. In seven days, 20 hours and 25 minutes, it covers 10,214 kilometres (6,347 miles), according to the Guinness World Records – more than three times the distance between India’s southernmost (Kanyakumari) and northernmost (Siachen Glacier) points. 
Once hailed as 'the fairest jewel in the crown of the Tsars,' this journey, which was launched in 1891, today crosses seven time zones across one journey at 60kmph, touching Moscow’s Red Square, Běijīng's Forbidden City, the Ural mountains and Lake Baikal (the world’s largest freshwater lake), scenic parts of Mongolia and Syria, and Vladivostok's Golden Horn Bay.
But it hasn’t been a bed of roses for this legend; its 127-year-old history has been bloody indeed. Sergei Witte, the Russian minister who conceptualised this train, left Japan alarmed by hinting that Moscow was looking east. Just four years after Russia sent 170,000 soldiers to Manchuria, which Japan wanted too, through this route, the 1904 Russo-Japanese War broke out. The war that left 170,000 people dead eventually triggered the events leading up to Pearl Harbour attack. 
But the historic railway network has left its past behind. Today, it is a regular ride for local businessmen, students and soldiers. The Trans-Siberian also draws romantic travelers from around the world. You could take the ride too, only if you can shell out £500 (Rs. 47,600). Go royal on the Golden Eagle, complete with deluxe cabins, personal attendant, complimentary drinks and meals, if you can afford $16,700 (Rs. 12 lakh)!

Post Written By - Bahana Saikia

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