Russia, Asia Centrale, Mongolia
Se siete alla ricerca di un’esperienza di viaggio indimenticabile e stimolante, allora unitevi a noi. Questo è, di gran lunga, il tour più avventuroso che offriamo. Partendo da Riga, entreremo in Russia seguendo la Transiberiana, la strada più lunga del mondo, che comprende sette fusi orari. Visiteremo molte città che fanno parte del patrimonio mondiale dell’umanità incluse ovviamente Mosca e San Pietroburgo lungo il nostro cammino verso il Kazakistan. Steppe, deserti e cammelli e paesaggi esotici ci attenderanno prima di entrare in Uzbekistan, dove potremo finalmente raggiungere la Via della Seta. Lungo la Via della Seta, visiteremo alcune delle più belle città che tu abbia mai visto. Un’atmosfera da fiabe di Mille e una notte ti avvolgerà. Dopo aver lasciato l’Uzbekistan, inizieremo l’ascesa sulle strade della catena montuosa del Pamir. Questa è la seconda strada internazionale più alta al mondo, che vanta montagne gigantesche e viste mozzafiato e alcune delle persone più gentili e ospitali che tu abbia mai incontrato. Lasciando l’Asia centrale, guideremo verso est raggiungendo il Lago Baikal e infine arrivando nell’immenso parco giochi per motociclisti alla ricerca di avventura chiamato anche Mongolia. L’estremo Oriente russo sarà l’ultima tappa della nostra spedizione, completando il viaggio a Vladivostok.
Si prega di notare che questa è un percorso indicativo. Non è preciso al 100%. Il percorso che offriamo è più interessante e divertente!
Date & Prezzi
- In Risalto
- Cosa è incluso
- Informazioni utili
- Tour description + local food
21 città storiche, 15 siti patrimonio mondiale dell’umanità, 7 paesi, 7 fusi orari, 5 capitali.
- La Transiberiana, la strada più lunga al mondo
- San Pietroburgo
- Velikij Novgorod
- Nizhny Novgorod
- Il fiume Volga
- Saraj Batu
- Kazakistan steppa e il deserto
- La via della seta
- Il Pamir Highway la seconda strada internazionale più alta del mondo
- Parco Nazionale del Tagikistan
- Passo di montagna Ak-Baital con i suoi 4655 metri (15272 feet)
- Il lago Kara-Kul
- Vista del Picco Lenin con i suoi 7.134 metri
- Catene montuose occidentali Tien Shan
- Lago Baikal
- Monastero Zuu Erdene
- La statua di Genghis Khan
- Parco Nazionale Khangai Nuruu
- Ulan Ude
Riga, si entra in Russia, San Pietroburgo, Velikij Novgorod, Mosca
Vladimir, Nizhny Novgorod, Kazan, Saratov.
Volgograd, Astrakhan, si entra in Kazakistan, Atyrau, Beyneu, si entra in Uzbekistan
Khiva, Bukhara, Samarcanda.
Samarcanda, Shakhrisabz, si entra in Tagikistan, Dushanbe, si inizia a salire sulle strade di montagna del Pamir Highway,
il passo Ak-Baital con i suoi 4655 metri (15272 piedi), il lago Kara-Kul, si entra in Kirghizistan, vista del picco di Lenin con i suoi 7.134 m ( 23405 ft), Osh.
Osh, Lago Ysykköl, Bishkek, si rientra in Kazakistan, Almaty
Almaty, Qalbatau, entrando in Russia, Novosibirsk, Krasnoyarsk, Irkutsk, Lago Baikal
Lago Baikal, Ulan Ude, entrando in Mongolia, Ulan Bator, Gengis Khan Statua, Erdene Zuu Monastero, Parco Nazionale Khangai Nuruu
Si rientra nella parte dell’ estremo oriente della Russia, Ulan Ude.
settimana 12 fino alla fine
Chita, Skovorodino, Birobidzan, Khabarovsk, Vladivostok.
In Russia nelle città più grandi pernotteremo per lo più in hotel 4 stelle. Nelle città più piccole lungo la Transiberiana, le sistemazioni saranno più rustiche. Kazakistan e Uzbekistan sono generalmente mediocri, ma le sistemazioni tra i confini saranno molte più sobrie. Lungo la strada nelle montagne del Pamir, pernotteremo con famiglie del posto “homestay” , nelle Yurte e in alcuni hotel per una settimana fino ad arrivare a Bishkek, la capitale del Kirghizistan.
In Mongolia, passeremo le notti in tenda e nelle ger (versione mongola delle yurte) sperimentando la vita da veri nomadi. Stare con la gente del posto è spesso il modo migliore per immergersi in una cultura diversa.
Una mente aperta per esplorare queste aree remote è necessaria per partecipare in questo tratto del tour. Questa è la parte più avventurosa di tutto il viaggio.
Cosa è incluso
- Assistenza nella preparazione della documentazione necessaria e la logistica
- Supporto nell’acquisto del motociclo
- Programma di allenamento per la preparazione fisica
- Servizio di trasporto da/per l’aeroporto
- Tutti i pernottamenti
- Tour leader in moto
- Autista e veicolo di supporto 4 × 4 che può ospitare fino a 2 moto e trasporto bagagli (1 bagaglio pezzo di 10 kg a persona) e spazio per i passeggeri (limitato) su tutto il tour.
- Kit di emergenza di primo soccorso ed estintore
- Il nostro team ha esperienze meccaniche ed ad ottenuto il brevetto di primo soccorso
- Briefing del mattino
- Escursioni a piedi nelle città nei giorni di riposo
- Tutti gli ingressi nei Parchi nazionali
- 1 cena di benvenuto e 1 cena arrivederci
- Bagno termale sulla strada Pamir
- Una sessione di Thai Massage
Anche se non offriamo le colazioni, sono incluse in alcune prenotazioni alberghiere
Tutti i servizi non menzionati e tutte le spese personali
Quanti sono i giorni “senza guidare” ?
Ci sono 29 giorni durante il quale il tour non avanza (incluse i giorni di arrivo e partenza). Sono solitamente usati per scoprire i fantastici posti in cui soggiorniamo. Comunque ci sono molte possibilità di guida anche durante questi giorni.
Quanti km si guida giornalmente?
La media totale di viaggio è di 226 km/giorno (140 miglia / giorno). Ovviamente qualche giorno si guiderà di più e qualche giorno di meno.
Posso aggregarmi al gruppo posticipatamente o tornare prima?
Certo si può, scriveteci le vostre esigenze.
Quanto esperienza di guida ho bisogno?
Non è necessario essere dei piloti per viaggiare con noi. Tuttavia, dovresti sentirti a tuo agio in sella durante le ore di punta di traffico urbano, così come sui passi di montagna e sulle strade sterrate. Questa sarà un’esperienza stimolante, ma gratificante e divertente per i piloti di tutti i livelli.
Che tipo di moto ho bisogno?
I modelli di moto da viaggio sono la scelta migliore, ma a seconda del vostro livello di abilità, quasi tutte le moto possono riuscire nell’impresa. Queste sono le nostre uniche raccomandazioni:
La moto deve essere completamente revisionata prima dell’inizio del viaggio
Per mantenere il passo con il gruppo, dovresti avere una moto con almeno
È possibile fare il tour con un passeggero?
Ovviamente si, siete invitati a viaggiare con un compagno.
Il passeggero deve avere almeno 12 anni.
Lui / lei devono essere in grado di appoggiare entrambi i piedi sulle pedane del passeggero.
Ovviamente guidare con un passeggero richiede più abilità. Il passeggero deve avere esperienze di viaggi sul retro di una motocicletta. È inoltre possibile prenotare un posto sul veicolo di supporto per il passeggero, se non volete guidare sempre assieme.
Quanti visti di viaggio ho bisogno?
I paesi dell’ex unione sovietica si sono finalmente aperti al turismo. Americani, Australiani ed cittadini Europei non hanno bisogno di un visto per il Kazakistan e Kirghizistan. Tagikistan è ottenibile facilmente on-line e la Mongolia (non necessario per gli Americani e per cittadini Tedeschi) può essere ottenuto in giornata prima di entrare in Mongolia.
Avrete bisogno quindi realmente di due visti: Russia e Uzbekistan che sono facilmente ottenibili attraverso agenzie di viaggio
Dove avvengono i tagliandi delle moto e la sostituzione degli pneumatici?
All’inizio del tour, la moto deve arrivare e completamente tagliandata con gomme nuove.
In Russia i concessionari e i pezzi di ricambio sono molto rari, quindi si dovranno portare tutti i ricambi e pneumatici necessari.
I cambi gomme possono essere effettuati quasi ovunque. La durata dei pneumatici dipende dalla vostra moto, stile di guida e il peso. In Mongolia, tutti i piloti dovranno cambiare in pneumatici con dei tipi off-road.
1 ° di servizio: Almaty
2 ° servizio: Ulan Ude
Per la lista ricambi cliccare qui
From Riga we start off with entering from the biggest country in Europe, the Russian. Federation. Russia, is neither Europe nor Asia, it’s its own continent with its unique traditions and cultures. Main roads are good, but some parts will be good practice for what we will experience in the weeks to follow. Our first resting day will be St. Petersburg. Peter the Great founded the city. A patron of seafarers and merchants, he built St. Petersburg as a seaport town so that Russia would be on par with other maritime nations. Peter achieved this goal and built his city with such splendor that today it is a UNESCO world heritage site. It is also home to the Hermitage, one of the largest museums in the world.
St. Petersburg is also called Venice of the north due to its numerous canals. Other highlights are Church of the Savior , the Peterhof palace- referred to as the Russian Versailles, the Peter and Paul fortress, Catherine Palace and many more.
After leaving St. Petersburg we will hit the road towards Moscow, the capital of Russia. This will be our first section of the Trans-Siberian Highway, the longest in the world, encompassing seven time zones.
On the way we’ll stop in Velikiy Novgorod, our second World Heritage site in Russia. This is a small and beautiful city which in the 14th century was the capital of the Novgorod republic.
Next stop, Moscow. A city of 16.8 million residents and also the coldest megacity on Earth. It is also a World Heritage site and home to the Kremlin, the Red Square, St. Basil’s Cathedral and the Lenin Mausoleum. The fabulously decorated metro stations are also one of the many highlights.
After leaving the capital we are going to stroll around in Vladimir, our fourth World Heritage site.
Next day we will arrive in Kazan, the capital of Tatarstan. Kazan has been named the sports capital of Russia as it hosts many international sporting events. It is truly one of the most beautiful cities in Russia and its Kremlin has been added to the World Heritage list. Tatars are an Asian people and are Muslims, their culture is completely separate from that of European Russia.
Interestingly enough Tartars are only one of the 159 ethnic groups living in Russia. After leaving Kazan, we will ride along the Volga river, the longest river in Europe, 1500 km to Astrakhan.
driving in Russia is very different than in the Western World. Everything will be explained in Riga and St. Petersburg. Russian drivers are getting better thanks to traffic cameras and a heavy police presence, however they are still a far cry from the “Western Standard”. Road signs are sparse and road markings do not exist. Road conditions are good outside of the cities but within city limits there can be a lot of potholes. “Expect the unexpected” will be the adage of the trip. However this time of the year day light stretches out to 11 pm, but drivers are not used to motorcycles at all, so a defensive riding style should be adopted.
Food of the week:
first course Borsch- we will have had already tasted different versions of this beetroot based soup in Poland and Lithuania.
Rossolnik- a soup made from pickles, pearl barley and pork of beef kidneys (Wyzygam sie) the key ingredient is pickle juice. The soup is a favorite hangover cure. Solyanka- is a thick, spicy and sour soup. Main ingredients are meat, fish, mushrooms and pickles.
Second course, Shashlik- beef roasted on a spit.
Pirog- dough stuffed with a savory filling.
Pelmeni- dumplings made with thin, unleavened dough, stuffed with meat.
Kasha- buckwheat groats boiled in water or milk. Often served as breakfast or a side dish.
Olivier- a salad dish, made with boiled potatoes, carrots, peas, celery, onions and mayonnaise.
Desserts, Bliny- are pancakes traditionally made with buckwheat flour and served with sour cream.
Pirozhki- baked or fried buns with a variety of fillings.
Drinks, Chai- basically strong tea served at the end of meals with dessert. An important aspect of Russian tea culture is the ubiquitous samovar, a tea brewing apparatus- which has become a symbol of Russian hospitality and comfort.
On the way to Astrachan, we’ll stop for a day in Volgograd. Volgograd became famous for its resistance during the Battle of Stalingrad (the previous name of the city) against the German Army in World War II. It is often regarded as the largest and bloodiest battle in the history of warfare (between 1,250,000 and 1,798,619 people have died) and one of the key factors for the defeat of the Nazis. Some of the highlights of the city that are related to the WWII battle and are the Motherland Statue and the WWII museum.
After leaving Volgograd our last stop before entering Kazakhstan will be Astrakhan. On the way we will visit Saraj Batu, a Mongol city which, during the medieval times, was one of the largest city in the world. Sarai is Persian for “palace” and Russian for “shed”. Astrakhan has a strategical location on the Caspian sea and, in fact, has suffered several wars and changes of power. This week we’ll say goodbye to Russia and get on the renowned “Silk Road”, and our first Stan countries Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.
Stan in Persian means “the place of”, so for example Kazakhstan means the place of the Kazak. From there we will start to experience exotic adventures. We will have the first contact with steppe, deserts, and get to see our first camels. Suddenly, the conditions of the roads will become dreadful, and time will look like it stopped many years ago. Clothes, food, people and everything around us will be unique and interesting. Not many people have the opportunity to visit here and you may start to feel a bit like Marco Polo….Kazakhstan is the world’s largest landlocked country, and the ninth largest in the world. Its population density, however, is among the lowest, at less than 6 people per square kilometer. This helps us understand its poor road conditions a little bit more.
Next, we’ll move on to Uzbekistan. Uzbekistan is truly one the highlights of the entire expedition. Nukus is a city-oasis, located among the four deserts: the Karakum (Black Sands), Kyzyl Kum (Red Sands), rocky desert Ustyurt plateau and “Aralkum” (White Sands). We will stop here to visit a very interesting art Museum, The State Art Museum of the Republic of Karakalpakstan. It is named after I.V. Savitsky and is also known as “Nukus Art Museum” one of the finest in Uzbekistan and in all of Central Asia.
Kazakhstan roads are either OK or a disastrous. Road police will most likely stop us several times, but just to question where we are from and where we are going. “Strange” foreigners who travel by motorcycle seem to pique their curiosity. On the border with Uzbekistan, we will have our first off road session. Uzbekistan is a challenging country to ride in, mostly due to drivers and roads conditions. Roads are improving year by year, but many parts are still in poor condition. On a more positive note, both countries have very little traffic. Drivers are not used to motorcycles at all here. You may encounter situations where it is best to drive defensively, but safely.
Food of the week
Kazakh cuisine is the traditionally focused on mutton and horse meat, as well as various milk products. For hundreds of years, Kazakhs were herders who raised fat-tailed sheep, Bactrian camels, and horses, relying on these animals for transportation, clothing, and food. The cooking techniques and major ingredients have been strongly influenced by the nation’s nomadic way of life. For example, most cooking techniques are aimed at long-term preservation of food. There is a large practice of salting and drying meat so that it will last, and there is a preference for sour milk, as it is easier to save in a nomadic lifestyle.
Besbarmak, a dish consisting of boiled horse or mutton meat, is the most popular Kazakh dish. It is also called “five fingers” because of the way it is eaten. Besbarmak is usually eaten with a boiled pasta sheet, and a meat broth called sorpa, and is traditionally served in Kazakh bowls called kese. Other traditional foods are Baursak and Manti. Baursak is made by frying dough balls. Manti, a very popular Kazakh dish, is a spiced mixture of ground lamb(or beef) spiced with black pepper, enclosed in a dough wrapper. Manti are cooked in a multi-level steamer and served topped with butter, sour cream, or onion sauce.
The most famous drink is Kumus, which is fermented mare milk which contains between 0.7 and 2.5% alcohol.
Kazakh cuisine has many similarity to all central Asian countries included Mongolia. So we will find similar dishes along our way to the east.
Week nine will be a relaxing one with a lot of sightseeing. We’ll be able to recharge our batteries and enjoy our visits to the pearls of Uzbekistan: the cities of Khiva (Itchan Kala), Bukhara and Samarkand. This will remind you of the tale, One Thousand and One Nights. All three are World heritage Cities and were part of the Silk Road. These cities were important centers of trade for thousand years and for this reason have seen different wars and changes of power. Strolling in those cities is like being in open sky museum. You don’t really need to be a professional photographer to take great shots as everything is just so picturesque. You will leave those cities with great memories and with the wish to come back soon. If you have never experienced + 40 celsius (104 F°) in your life you’ll get your chance there!
Riding conditions: Same as prior week.
Food of the week:
The Uzbekistan’s signature dish is palov (plov or osh or “pilaf”), a main course typically made with rice, pieces of meat, grated carrots and onions. It is usually
cooked in a kazan (or deghi) over an open fire; chickpeas, raisins, barberries, or fruit may be added for variation.
Uzbekistan is one of the main exporters of agricultural products to Russia. We will be able to taste the country’s own delicious watermelon, melons. grapes, apricots, and so on. Bread is also very tasty and is baked on dome shaped wood fire oven. This bread is generically called non or paty. It is formed into circular flat loaves (lepyoshka in Russian) with a thin decorated depression at the center and a thicker rim all around. Green tea is the national hot beverage taken throughout the day, typically made without milk or sugar. Tea always accompanies a meal, but it is also a drink of hospitality, traditionally offered (green or black) to every guest. Teahouses (chaikhanas) are of cultural importance in this region.
During week ten, we will leave Uzbekistan and enter Tajikistan, a mountainous paradise. On the way to the border we will visit a city founded 2700 years ago, Shakhrisyabz, our 4th Uzbek World Heritage site. Tajikistan is landlocked, and is the smallest nation in Central Asia. It is covered by mountains of the Pamir range, and more than fifty percent of the country is over 3,000 meters (9,800 ft) above sea level. If the beauty of Uzbekistan lies in its ancient cities then the beauty of Tajikistan is in its mountains.
Pamirs is a mountain range in Central Asia at the junction of the Himalayas with the Tian Shan,Karakoram, Kunlun, and Hindu Kush ranges. They are among the world’s highest mountains. We will ride entire length of the Pamir highway “M41” which is the second highest international road in the world. This road leads through the Tajik National Park which is another World Heritage city. Our trip in Tajikistan will start from its capital Dushanbe. In Dushanbe we will have a day of rest getting ready for our first off road excursion, as the next 1500 km we have to cover will be on dirt roads. We will also fill up our support vehicle with food, toys, and school supplies to gift to local families.This will be Motorcycle World Tours initiative. If you wish to contribute, you are free to buy or gift whatever you want .We’ll ride along the Afghanistan border for about 240 km. We will see Afghan villages just across the Panj river; this river runs in between the two countries. We will enjoy stunning views as we slowly ride up. On the way, we will cross a few rivers, but it will not be much of a challenge as the water level will be very low. On the Pamir highway we’ll get to experience local hospitality as we stop to rest and eat in people’s homes which have been converted into “bed and breakfast” establishments. This will be also our contribution to the local economy; this area is one of the poorest of the Tajikistan. We will stop in Khorog for a day and you will be able to just ride to thermal bath, or visit Afghanistan, which is just next to the bridge (no visa required on market day).
The biggest danger of Tajikistan are its free-grazing animals. Drivers and enthusiastic children, who hear the hum of an approaching motorcycle, can be a little too “welcoming and/or enthusiastic” at times. The locals are not used to motorcycles or speedy drivers. Our first full week off-road does not require professional skills because the road is mostly hard gravel, but will require concentration as we ride next to a river for many km.
Food of the week:
Tajik is the traditional cuisine of Tajikistan, and has much in common with Russian, Afghan, and Uzbek cuisines. Plov also called osh (Tajik: ош), is the national dish in Tajikistan, as in other countries in the region. Green tea is the national drink. Traditional Tajik meals start with a spread of dried fruit, nuts, halva, and other sweets arrayed on the table in small dishes, and then progress to soup and meat, before finishing with plov.
Along the Pamir, food will be mostly based on yak products like cheese and meat. Along the roads, we will be able to purchase fresh fruits from local kids who literally run and block the road trying to sell them
After Khorugh (or Korog) we’ll ride in towards Murghab. On the way, we will climb up to Pereval Tagarkaty Pass, at a height of 4.160m (13648 ft), which actually looks like a lunar plateau. After Murghab, we will go North towards the Kyrgyzstan border. On the way, we will ride up to Ak-Baital Pass with its own 4655 meters (15272 ft) is the highest point of the Pamir Highway and the second highest international pass in the world. We will spend the night at Kara-Kul lake, both beautifully scenic areas. This will be our last night in Tajikistan and the day after we will cross the border to Kyrgyzstan.
The first day in Kyrgyzstan we will ride towards the base camp of Peak Lenin, the ex-USSR’s highest mountain with a height 7,134 metres (23,406 ft). The base camp offers great views of those giants mountains. The views during sunrise and sunset are ones that will be imprinted in your mind forever. Kyrgyzstan is part of the Western Tien-Shan (meaning the Mountain of Heaven), which is a large system of mountain ranges with beautiful landscape and many wild horses that you will see galloping across the land. The Western Tien-Shan mountain ranges are World Heritage listed. After those giants, we will ride north towards Bishkek, the capital of Kyrgyzstan. We’ll travel through secondary roads and pass by the largest and most famous lake of Kyrgyzstan, Issyk Kul. Roads will be mostly a compact gravel. Every year they add more tarmac to them. Stunnings views, mountains roads, a few historical sites, and few nights of camping will make a memorable journey to the Capitol.
A full day of rest and and change of tires (back to the dual sport type) awaits us in Bishkek. Back in Kazakhstan, we’ll have proper rest for two days in a four star hotel in Almaty, (the old capital of Kazakhstan).
Riding conditions for the week n 11 and 12 are mostly the same as the prior week. We will ride for several days over 3600 meters (11.800 ft) . Entering in Kyrgyzstan, we will have tarmac for a few days and then again go off road. The views will change as Kyrgyzstan is less “lunar landscape” and more “lush and green”. Its mountains are covered in pine. Kyrgyzstan is a bit more developed than Tajikistan in all aspects so road conditions are better.
Food of the week
Kyrgyz cuisine refers to the cuisine of the Kyrgyz, who comprise the majority of the population of Kyrgyzstan. The cuisine is similar in many aspects to that of their neighbors, particularly Kazakh cuisine. Traditional Kyrgyz food revolves around mutton, beef and horse meat, as well as various dairy products. Meat in various forms has always been an essential part of Kyrgyz cuisine. Among the most popular meat dishes are horse meat sausages (kazy or chuchuk), roasted sheep’s liver, beshbarmak (a dish containing boiled and shredded meat with thin noodles exactly the same as in Kazakhstan), and various other delicacies made from horse meat.
Paloo is the Kyrgyz version of plov. A popular drink in summer is maksym, which is similar to the Russian kvas.
From Almaty, we will arrive at Baikal Lake via another section of the Trans-Siberian Highway. We’ll cover 3700 km of steppes, deserts, pine forests and wide-open spaces. Russia is vast, and this leg of the ride will allow you to witness its expanse. The route to Kazakhstan will be manageable; the roads are not great, but the tarmac makes the journey quick. We will arrive at the border on the 4th day. After Kazakhstan, we will enter Siberia, the land of forests, bears, wolfs and tigers . We will most likely not see those animals along the way, as they avoid civilization. In Novosibirsk, we will have a full day of rest. Take advantage of the Thai massages offered while we are here! This treatment will stretch, relax, and balance your body after countless days of riding.
Hitting the road again, we will arrive in Irkutsk, which is also the route to Baikal Lake. Baikal lake was declared a World Heritage Site in 1996. Baikal is home to thousands of species of plants and animals, many of which exist nowhere else in the world. Lake Baikal is also the largest freshwater lake by volume in the world, containing roughly 20% of the world’s unfrozen, fresh water. It contains more water than all of the North American Great Lakes combined. After a day of rest, we will roll onto Olkhon island on the Baikal, to discover with a closer eye, the magnificence of this body of water. A free day will give you chance to relax, take a boat ride or simply cruise around the island.
On the Kazakhstan side, as the prior week, roads are either decent or disastrous. Expect more friendly road police stops, too. On the Russian side, the road conditions are much better. The conditions around the city limits are not good. On a more positive note, traffic in Siberia is sparse. The traffic mainly consists of old Kamaz (Russian trucks). These trucks are very slow and release a lot of black smoke. However, passing them will not be difficult. Native drivers are not used to motorcycles. Please use your best judgement, caution and respect during these sections.
Food of the Week
Okroshka is a traditional Russian soup. The name most likely originates from kroshit´ (крошить), which means “to crumble into small pieces”. This classic soup is a mix of raw vegetables (like cucumbers, radishes and spring onions), boiled potatoes, eggs and cooked meat such as beef, veal, sausages, or ham. Kvass, also served with it, is a non-alcoholic (1.5% or less) beverage, made from fermented black or rye bread. Okroshka is usually garnished with sour cream (smetana).
Ukha is a clear Russian soup, made from various types of fish such as bream, wels catfish, or even ruffe. It usually contains root vegetables, parsley root, leek, potato, bay leaf, dill, tarragon, and green parsley, and is spiced with black pepper,saffron, nutmeg, and fennel seed. Fish such as perch, tench, sheatfish, and burbot are often used to add flavor to the soup.
Bliny (salty version) , Pirozhki (salty version), and Kholodets are jellied meat dishes. It gets its name from kholod, and is an essential part of winter holiday festive meals.
Salads: Dressed herring is a layered salad composed of diced pickled herring covered with layers of grated boiled vegetables (potatoes, carrots, beet roots), chopped onions and mayonnaise. Some variations of this dish include a layer of fresh grated apple, while some do not. Grated boiled beetroot, covered with mayonnaise, gives the salad a rich purple color. Dressed herring salad is often decorated with grated boiled eggs (whites, yolks, or both).
Mimosa salad’s main ingredients are cheese, eggs, canned fish, onion, butter and mayonnaise. This dish got its name because its reminds of us of “Mimosa” flowers scattered on the snow.
Desserts: Oladyi and Syrniki are fried quark pancakes, garnished with sour cream, jam, honey or apple sauce.
Drinks: Kvass is a traditional fermented beverage commonly made from black or regular rye bread. It is classified as a non-alcoholic drink. Kissel is a fruit dish, popular as a dessert and as a drink. It is made from the juice of berries.
Heading back to the mainland, we will ride south of the Baikal and arrive in Ulan Ude, the city of Buryats. The Buryats, who have a population of approximately 500,000, are the largest indigenous group in Siberia. They have a distinct look that you will notice and their language is similar to Mongolian. Eat at the local restaurants in Yurtas to enjoy authentic Buryat cuisine. The next day we will enter in Mongolia. This exotic spot has horizons that stretch as far as the eye can see; it is a vast land of nature and silence. It is the land of nomads. Genghis Khan, one of the greatest conquerors of all times, inhabited this land.
There is one word to describe Mongolia: freedom. Mongolia is the 18th largest and most sparsely populated, sovereign country in the world, with a population of around 3 million people. Ulaanbaatar, the capital and largest city, contains almost half of the population. This country contains very little arable land; much of its area is covered by grassy steppe, with mountains to the north and west and the Gobi Desert to the south. Approximately 30% of the population is nomadic or semi-nomadic; horse culture is integral to survival. The majority of its population are Buddhists. Almost half of the population is non-religious. The majority of the state’s citizens are of Mongol ethnicity, although Kazakhs, Tuvans, and other minorities also live in the country, primarily in the west. If you are not comfortable with your own bike on challenging roads of Mongolia in the capital Ulanbatoor we will have the opportunity to rent a light dual sport motorcycle. On the first day we will visit the statue of Genghis Khan . We’ll change our tires to prepare for off-road riding and roll out to Ulanbatoor. We will also fill up our support vehicle with food, toys, and school supplies to gift to local families.This will be Motorcycle World Tours initiative. If you wish to contribute, you are free to buy or gift whatever you want. The next week, we will be surrounded by nature and emptiness. Nights will be spent in our tents and in local ger (mongolian version of yurta) to experience nomadic life. You’ll see people appear from nowhere only to disappear, just as one would imagine a nomad would do.
We will cover around 1800 km, riding a loop to the west. The Highlights of the trip will be Hustain Huruu, Khangai Nuruu and Khogno Tarna National Parks, the Orkhon Valley, which is our 14th World Heritage site since Saint Petersburg. We’ll visit Erdene Zuu Monastery, one of the oldest surviving Buddhist monasteries in Mongolia. Feast your eyes on an extinct volcano, wild horses, camels and much more.
We’ll then cruise back to Russia. The roads might not seem so bad after our week of off-roading. We will end the week number 16 in Chita.
Riding conditions: Mongolia continues, over time, to improve its roads and add more tarmac. A famous quote from Genghis Khan is: “If you’re afraid – don’t do it, – if you’re doing it – don’t be afraid!” Mongolia is filled with endless dirt roads, sand roads, mud roads and no roads. Gas stations are usually in every town, if not the opportunity to buy gas in canisters. We will carry a reserve in support vehicle to be safe. Most villages have phone signals and data. so you won’t be completely off the grid. Travelling at a safe speeds, follow the guide and you will be fine.
Food of the week: Mongolian cuisine primarily consists of dairy products, meat, and animal fats. Use of vegetables and spices are limited. Due to geographic proximity and deep historic ties with China and Russia, Mongolian cuisine is also influenced by Chinese and Russian cuisine. The nomads of Mongolia sustain themselves from the products of domesticated animals such as cattle, horses, camels, yaks,sheep, and goat and game. Meat is either cooked, used as an ingredient for soups and dumplings (buuz, khuushuur, bansh,manti), or dried for winter (borts). The Mongolian diet includes a large proportion of animal fat which is necessary for the Mongols to withstand the cold winters and their hard work. Winter temperatures are as low as −40 °C (−40 °F) and outdoor work requires sufficient energy reserves. Milk and cream an cheese are used to make a variety of beverages. The nomads of the countryside are self-supporting on principle. We will find gers marked as guanz in regular intervals near the roadside, which operate as simple restaurants. Mongolians usually cook in a cast-iron or aluminum pot on a small stove, using wood or dry animal dung fuel (argal).
The most common rural dish is cooked mutton, often without any other ingredients. In the city, every other local displays a sign saying “buuz”. Those are steamed dumplings filled with meat. Other types of dumplings are boiled in water (bansh, manti), or deep fried in mutton fat (khuushuur). Other dishes combine the meat with rice or fresh noodles made into various stews(tsuivan, budaatai huurga) or noodle soups (guriltai shol). Mare’s milk is the most drink of Mongolia.
A little less than 3000 km are left before we arrive at our final destination, Vladivostok.
Heading back on the Trans Siberian highway, we will drive east circumnavigating China. This is the wildest part of the Trans Siberian highway. We will visit Mogacha on the way. From 1947 until 1953, Mogocha was where the Klyuchevlag prison labor camp of the gulag system was maintained. The camp held up to 3,000 prisoners at any one time, mainly used as forced labor for molybdenum and gold mining in the villages to the southwest of the town. The remoteness of Mogocha, combined with the harsh climatic conditions, gave rise to the Soviet military slang expression, “God created Sochi, and Satan Mogocha”.
After many more km(s) of forest, we will arrive in Birobidzhanis, a town and the administrative center of the Jewish Autonomous Oblast. The JAO is Russia’s only autonomous oblast and, aside from Israel, the world’s only Jewish territory with an official status. After departing Birobidzhanis, we will arrive in Khabarovsk. This is our last day off before arriving at our final destination. Khabarovsk is the administrative center of the Far Eastern Federal District and is just 20 km away from the Chinese border. A good rest , a stroll in city center and a visit to Muravyov Amursky Park is the perfect way to spend our day in the city.
We’ll wave goodbye to Khabarovsk and we continue South instead of East. When finally we will meet the first city sign, we will stop and a take photo of the group. You will feel the glory of victory after completing this journey
17 time zones and 35000 km from Los Angeles, and 9 time zones and over 28000 km from Lisbon and over 2000 km and 7 times zones from Riga we will reach Vladivostok which translates in Russian to “King of East”. We have just completed a motorcyclist’s dream, the hard part of a Motorcycle World Tour. We have just accomplished what for many, will be just a dream. We will treat you to a delicious Celebratory dinner! You’ll see, dreams come true, we have made it happen.
Roads are generally good. We will encounter some road work with detours. Drivers commonly speed; in this part of Russia, distances are huge and road police presence is sporadic. There are quite a few Japanese used cars that will transit in opposite direction in small groups. We will need to be careful ass they tend to drive quite fast. We’ll find gas stations approximately every 300 km and you can use your credit cards almost anywhere.
Food of the week:
This fare is similar to the other cuisines of Russia. Caviar here is so cheap that if you are a fan of it, you can eat it for breakfast, lunch and dinner with it without spending a fortune.
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