28.05.2012   14:26

Russian Railways presents tourist potential of Trans-Baikal Railway in Paris

Russian Railways presents tourist potential of Trans-Baikal Railway in ParisRussian Railways presented the tourist potential of the Trans-Baikal Railway in Paris on 24 May 2012. The presentation of the role the Trans-Baikal railway could play in the development of tourism at Lake Baikal took place at the residence of Russia’s ambassador under the auspices of the Association, The Franco-Russian dialogue.

In attendance were Alexander Orlov, the Russian Federation’s Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary in France, and Vyacheslav Nogovitsyn, President of the Republic of Buryatia, as well as other official figures.

Vasily Frolov, head of East-Siberian Railways, spoke about the tourism opportunities and potential of the Trans-Baikal Railway. He gave a brief account of the construction of the Trans-Baikal Railway, noting its unique engineering solutions and its historical and architectural value.

"The Trans-Baikal Railway has more engineering structures than any other railway line in Russia and ranks among the most challenging mountain routes in the world," said Frolov.

The difficult geological conditions and rough terrain on the stretch between ​​Baikal - Slyudyanka on the Trans-Baikal Railway necessitated the construction of 900 man-made structures, the biggest of which are tunnels, galleries, bridges and retaining walls.

Along the railway line are 806 cultural heritage sites consisting of 582 engineering structures, 172 architectural monuments, 16 archeological sites and 46 natural and landscape monuments.

This lends a unique character to the Trans-Baikal Railway that attracts tourists from both Russia itself and abroad.

Russian Railways is always ready to provide domestic and international tourists the opportunity to see for themselves the beauty of Lake Baikal from the window of a luxury train carriage.

"A tourist train with carriages decorated in the style of Tsar Nicholas II operates regular services around Lake Baikal. Taking two days to travel around the Lake, the train makes several stops en route so tourists can alight from the train and take a walk through the neighbourhood. For tourists who would like to make a similar trip but do not have enough time, Russian Railways offers another option - a trip round the lake using a rail-mounted bus," said Vasily Frolov.

Frolov also noted that Russian Railways would continue to develop rail tourism on the Trans-Baikal Railway and that various options were already being developed for travel programmes, in particular the possibility of combining a journey on the train with fishing trips during specially planned stops.